Thursday, December 2, 2010

Seongeup Folklore Village

Still wanna go to South Korea despite the current tension with North Korea?
Since u guys insist, let's continue our journey to where I left before okies.

It's here.

View Jeju Trolley in a larger map

Side note:
I've mentioned Jeju as a great place for honeymoon. Yes, it's true but recently I go crazy drooling Santorini Island, Greece! Can someone convince me not to fall in love with this beautiful island? Or do u agree with me?

Before we proceeded to village that still preserving Korean tradition, we had lunch in local restaurant somewhere nearby the Seongeup Village. The lunch was included in the Jeju Trolley package price as well. I requested for vegetarian and seafood during booking, but since everyone including Mr Driver briskly walk into the restaurant without bothering us who still hesitant to enter without assurance there was edible food for muslim, we opted to stay outside and had biscuit we brought *sad* They let us starved while everybody else enjoying their bulgogi! 

The restaurant entrance

We were already 15 minutes staying outside the restaurant when Mr Driver disturbed us with his korean languange none of us understand. By his gesture, we assumed he invited us in to have our lunch. In return, the 3 of us waved our hand as a 'no' sign. He insisted us to get in. I tried to look for words 'vegetable' and 'meat' in phrase book to explain to Mr Driver that we don't eat meat and only prefer vegetable. Huh, headache!

After a while Malaysian and Korean exchanging words and gestures trying to get each other understand, we finally went into the restaurant. Mr Driver lead us to unoccupied table with many plates of vegetable and condiments on it. Among the plates was bowl of rice. Then, one of the cook came to us and explained how to eat the vegetarian bibimbap she prepared for us :) *happy got to eat finally* It was the best bibimbap EVER!

Other korean foods I ate is here.

Mr Driver is the one wearing tie behind our back

Full tummies and happy faces

Only then, the journey continued to Seongeup Folk Village, an area during Koryo period was Jeju's provincial capital. It was designated as Folk Village for its many cultural properties such as residential houses, ancient government offices, stone statues, fortress ruins, millstones and stone monument.

Another tour guide took us over from Mr Driver and she guided us to visit traditional Jeju village, where many families still living in choga, a straw thatched house.


The house is distinct from mainland houses. Its roof is made from weaving Sae, a kind of straw into checked shape by using well twisted straw ropes.

Compared to mainland, Jeju has strong wind and heavy rain. Thus, choga was built low to escape strong wind and typhoon. The walls also built to overcome this disadvantage. Outer walls are thick and made from stone reinforced with mud.

Outside the house, many big vases with cover were seen. It COULD be the storage area for kimchi.  

Jeju's house front gate is also unique. They used three long logs called Jeongnang at the gates of their houses during absence to give message to whoever wanna come for visit. The logs were hanged onto the holes of the stone pillars at both sides of the gate. One log means 'returning shortly', two means 'returning later' and three means 'out-all-day'.

Another thing about Jeju you couldn't miss is Dolharubang or Stone Grandfather Statue made from volcanic stone Jeju is famous for. You'll see dolharubang almost everywhere *look again at restaurant photo above*

With its helmet style hat, prominent eyes, a blunt nose, a tightly closed mouth and a bulging belly, dolharubang usually placed at entrance of a village as a guardian, to symbolize the spirit of Jeju people who overcame difficulty and hardship. The statue may also be associated with incantations and border marker similar to totem poles found on mainland.

After the Folk Village tour ended and before proceeded to Ilchulland, here is us with our unofficial korean language translater :D


Susana said...


I hadn't heard about this place! Nice to know new traveling spots thanks to you!

I am crazy about Santorini too, by the way!



Traveller's Anatomy said...

Yay, another one agreeing in Satorini :)

Old settlement is my fav spot during travelling, u should visit this place in your next travel.