We got an email this morning from our friend June, saying that she and her boyfriend Park would like to take us to the Korean Folk Village in Yongin, about a half hour south of Seoul.
"Sure", we said..."let's go"!
The Minsok Folk Village was built to show the national culture of Korea to international tourists. But there were a lot of Koreans there too! The village is composed of real houses and buildings that were relocated and reconstructed from different parts of the country. The idea is to re-enact life from the Joseon period which lasted in Korea for five centuries from 1392 to 1897.
Check out the fancy stonework on that wall.
And this wall too!
The structure of their old buildings is amazing.
So, the idea of this village is to show a recreation of life in Korea dating back centuries ago. There was one section of it dedicated to day to day life, but another section was a lot of entertainment and shows that they had going on. We spent about six hours at the village, but it's really not enough time to see it all. You really need to show up when it opens and stay until it closes. And even then you might not see it all.
It's reasonably priced at 15,000 won ($17.25) and you can add on another 9,000 won ($10.35) if you want to include admission to the small attached amusement park as well.
This fellow is making shoes out of straw!
We actually didn't spend much time looking at the re-enactments. There were some shows that we wanted to see, and they lasted about a half an hour each. We spent the next two hours or so watching these various shows!
Korean Folk Dance.
Couldn't resist a shot of these two kids across in the audience. Too funny!
These guys were really good. I should have got a video for you! The ribbon coming from their hat swirls around them as they are twirling through the air. Really neat stuff!
Meanwhile, the guys in the background are banging on drums and making music. Great show!
Next up was a tightrope guy. He was amazing. He could pretty much run across this rope! And the most interesting thing? We're guessing he was over 70 years old!
Not a young man to be doing this kind of thing!
Oh look, he can do it with a pot on his head too!
Then, it was over to the equestrian arena...
Yup, nothing to it. We can all do this while the horses are galloping around the ring!
And this little guy slept through the whole thing!
More neat old buildings.
Then, they did a re-enactment of a traditional wedding. This is not something you would see nowadays, this was what it would have been like a few hundred years ago!
Check out the colors on this structure!
After the wedding, the bride is carried away in this thing! Her new husband was on a horse in front of her.
There's the bride.
June and Park like to feed us. They think it's interesting seeing what Korean foods we like and don't like. Most of it we're really good with, and they make the most delicious BBQ pork on a stick. The tofu dish? Not so much...!
More food! Each dish at the folk village cost between 5,000 ($5.75) and 8,000 won ($9.25). We bought a few different dishes and shared them.
June and Park.
Kevin, beside a Korean totem pole. Bet you didn't know they have totem poles in Korea!
We spent the last half hour or so at the amusement park. Too funny. We went on this big swinging thing and we sat at one end and June and Park sat at the other so that we could take pictures of each other. It was hilarious!
Oh...what's up next?
Yep, the little roller coaster. It was kind of lame and it was over in about 30 seconds. More for the kids I think!
End of another great day in Korea.
Tomorrow we're doing a bicycle tour of the Han River than runs through Seoul. They are big on bike riding here and there are bike paths everywhere. This is a guided tour, and we're looking forward to spending a few hours out getting some exercise. Should be fun!