Sunday, July 7, 2013

Korea #4: Hanok, the slow village

Korea #4:  Hanok Village

When told I’d be spending some class and group free time at a heritage village I imagined a rustic reproduction with Koreans pretending to be living in times past, which we have seen before.  It is, instead, a lively, functioning village within the city however one composed of 700 ancient and rehabilitated dwellings and businesses. Two years ago it was recognized as the best tourist spot in Korea and it is part of an international “slow cities” movement.

Korea’s history, crafts, arts and culture are on display here.  The largest site is the palace of a dynasty that goes back to the year 900, including a library from that era.  However almost all of it has been reproduced.  As part of its brutal occupation from 1910 to 1945, the Japanese destroyed almost everything left standing. Here are some features of it today:



Hanok is full of inns, galleries and restaurants, tea houses and coffee shops, of course.  There are compact little museums and demonstration places for paper making, herbal medicine, calligraphy, wine making, dolls, tea, pottery, literature, dance and various handicrafts.  Craftsmanship in wood and tile is particularly pleasing.

Rather than explain any more of this I am satisfied to let the village speak for itself through a few more pictures.

(Forbidden area.....)

 What's with all the pots?  Kimchi.  They have been used for centuries to ferment cabbage, sometimes buried in the ground, and so as to last through the winter.





1 comment:

  1. Dear jerry....

    It always seen you make your reader to think about every line you write and learn a lot from your eyes and thougts, again one more opportunity to know about one more civilization and culture.
    will look forward for every blog.....