This gate is all that remains of the origional wall that surrounded Jeonju during the Chosun dynasty. There are various festivals that are held here throughout the year including the Pungnamun gate festival held in the spring.
Every New years in Jeonju at the PungNam gate there is a new years concert with traditional music as well as rock and hip hop music. At midnight as most of the city has converged near the gate there is a great display of fire works
Kwanchoksa boasts Korea's largest stone buddha. construction began in 968AD and was finished some 38 years later.
The temple is quite attractive though it is located very close to a semi-busy road which detracts from the serene atmosphere. Nonetheless The buddha image is really impressive and worth seeing!
Located at the foot of Maisan is Tapsa. It is famous for the mysterious 80 towers of rocks that were all built by one may (Yi Kap Ryong) some 100 years ago. The pagodas took 10 years to complete and Yi worked only had night. Some say tigers helped him. He told his daughter in-law that a heavenly spirit descended to Earth every night and helped him with its mighty strength. Either way they are quite amazing... Yi's diet consisted of pine needles yet he lived to be almost one hundred. The rocks has survived typhoons, storms and 100 years of history yet they remain...
It's one of my most favourite places in Jeonju. It's a peaceful park near the centre of town. I enjoy sitting in the cool shade of the trees in the summer months. Many old men hang out in the park in the day playing Korean checkers.
Every Sunday from April to October there are live performances of Traditional music and Pansori at the front of the park.
The shrine (origionally constructed in 1410) houses paintings of the Chosun Kings as well as the placenta of King Yejong.
There's also a small bamboo grove which is nice and cool in the summer.
Maisan is east of Jeonju about and hour away by bus. It's famous for the twin rocky mountains that lean away from eachother, that look like Horse ears. The Mountain is famous for Tapsa (temple) Over a hundred years ago the hermit Yi Kap-ryong built about 80 stone pagodas. They are still standing though they often sway in the wind. This temple is not like other Korean temples (or mountains) I recently took a Korean friend here for his first time and he could not believe how beautiful and different it was. He kept saying it was like a different country.
During the colder months Maisan experiences a strange "magical" phenomena where if you place a bowl of water outside, an icicle will form and grow upwards. Though there is obviously a scientific explanation for it... I don't know what it is....
UPDATE!!! you can no longer climb the smaller ear.. as the park authorities have closed the trail for the next 10 years for nature to regenerate itself...
Kumsansa was one of the first places I fell in love with in Korea. It's a huge temple complex nestled away from the city in green mountains. I have been there many times since and always get that feeling. There are rarely more than a few visitors there, and you are pretty likely to see and hear monks praying.
the park lies to the north of Jeonju close to Chonbuk national university. Towards the end of the summer thousands of lotus flowers bloom in Deukjin pond. It's quite beautiful. All through the summer you can see a water shows and rent rowboats and paddle boats.
Gaeksa is the city centre. The buildings date from around 1471. . Gaeksa was used to accomodate important visitors. Rituals to honour the king were also held here. It's a meeting place for many as well as a hangout location for many old men. The downtown area sourrounding is also referred to as Gaeksa. To get downtown most people will simply tell the taxi driver to take them to Gaeksa
Mt Chimyeongja can be seen from many places in Jeonju. The mountain houses many important relics including the remains of the Yu family who were excecuted in 1801. The mountain is very important for Korean Catholics. The walk up is very pleasant and if you could read albeit very interesting as there are signs everywhere. At the top there is an interesting cave/ like Cathedral built into the rock. If you continue past the cathedral and the huge cross which is where the Yu family are buried, and the strange rock (which some say looks like the virgin mary) you come to Tongo Temple. Tongo temple is a typical temple with a huge white Buddha which can be seen from downtown Jeonju. The temple is very small but there are some nice gardens and bamboo grove and interesting trees all around that area.
The Hansol paper museum records the history of paper making and usages since the age of the Egyptians. There is an interesting movie shown in english upon request. Most of the signs are in korean only, but I found the museum quite interesting. There are some displays on tradtional Korean paper making. You also have a chance to make a piece of paper there as well. On weekends and holidays, there are various workshops available.
I think that this is one of the most beautiful temples in South Korea. It is a pretty big complex situated a half hour outside Jeonju right in the mountains. It is a great place to escape. There are rarely more that a trickle of visitors which makes it really quiet serene place.
I've never seen it before.. only in movies. it was magical and the night that I saw it, I declared it the number one natural wonder of the world. Science folk were trying to explain it to me, but nothing made sense. anyways on Sonydo the season supposedly lasts 3 weeks. when I was there it was Saturday June 7 2003.... so somewhere around there!. The beach was amazing as well because the drops of phosphorus i the water made it into a 'disco beach'
This festival is quite a young festival but it seems to be growing in popularity by year. There are hundreds of movies from around the world to be seen. It's definately worth going for a weekend if you are in the area. during this weeklong festival usually held in May, Jeonju is over run with tourists from korea and abroad. There are concerts and shows and markets and just about everything you can imagine. My favourite scene is usually the Jeonju Indi stage where Indiebands from Korea, including Dabang a orean/Foriegner band play. Check the website for details as to when the dates are. For opening and closing films as well as the major block busters tickets must be bought in advance as they will sell out very quickly!
This buddha image is really quite impressive. It is virtually unknown among many Koreans and travellers alike; for which reasons I have no idea. It is located maybe a 45 minutes easy hike past Sonunsa. It really should be more famous in the Korean tourism world but as of not it is really off the beaten track...
Martyr Mountain is in the southern part of Jeonju next to one of several rivers that run through the city. The mountain is the final resting place of 6 Catholic missionaries who were killed for their beliefs. The mountain itself has a wonderful trail laden with crosses, biblical statues, and great views of the city below (on a nice day!). Near the top there is a traditional-style Korean tomb (a large, round mound of earth) where the remains are buried. Additionally, there is a pavillion where Church gatherings are sometimes held. If you aren't Catholic, as is my case, it is still a great place to visit, even if only for the view.