29 Feb 2012

Cultural Village (Korea Part 3)

We visited several cultural villages during our trip. Here's just a very brief summary of such places we visited. 

First was Korean Folk Village. Let's start by saying it was a very very cold and windy day when we visited and despite that the girls enjoyed themselves tremendously.

A whole bunch of kids (ours included) jumped on for a ride at the village.

For us, the highlight was watching traditional dances such as the Farmer's dance (Pungmul) where they move their heads in unison to swing that ribbon on the hat to form  different patterns. I'd get really dizzy if I had to dance that dance.

Here's 2 short videos of Pungmul/Nongak.


Tight Rope walking, Jultagi. Jo was just awed by this tight rope walker. I was too. He did all sorts of stunts, including hopping on one leg, walking backwards, etc. His performance is accompanied by music, and he stops every now and then to tell jokes and stories.  Here' Jo who was actually imitating him, walking a step at a time as the old man did.
A short video of Jultagi.


A part of the village here contains props that resemble the ones we saw on a Korean drama while we were at our friend's house. Here's Nel and her AhMa (grandma) pretending to be a part of a drama where she is tied and whipped for  something. hahaha
Jo and cousin enjoying this stunt show which demonstrated how skillful warrior were at horses. They stood on horses, shot arrows at boards from horses, hid behind their horses etc. Amazing skill!

A short video of stunt.

In blue and white, my 9+ year old child, almost as tall as her grandma. Here she's just keeping her AhMa warm from the biting wind.

2) We headed towards Seoul by subway and visited the Gyeongbokgung Palace. It's easy to get there as the subway takes you right there. The place is really huge and so we opted for an English tour. It was a little difficult understanding our tour guide's English accent but we managed to pick up some things. What my kids liked most about the place?? Haha...unbelievable but not long into the tour when they got fed up of trying to understand our tour guide, they started forming a secret group with their cousins. And so together they became a secret society using the palace grounds and walls to hide from "enemies."

Nel looking at the map before start.

The queen's palace. Notice the beautiful hexagon shaped chimneys.

Nel enjoying the architecture and taking shots with her camera.

Jo and cousin, pretending that an oncoming tourist on other side of wall was an approaching enemy. You should've seen how they ran from her later. She must've wondered "what the heck?"*grin*

Girls in awe as they watched the Changing of Guards 

They said it's beautiful here in summer with lotus and flowers. Well...everywhere we went, we saw frozen water and bald trees.

One of the many sculptures here depicting real and mythical creatures

Very intricate designs within the palace buildings

When we finished our visit to Gyeongbokgung,  we simply headed to Insadon which is really closeby for some shopping. It's a really lovely street with lotsa art and Korean craft for sale.


3) Namsangol Hanok Village

This visit was mainly to meet with close friends who lived in Seoul. Our dear friends took us to Hanok VillageNamdaemun Market  and Seoul Tower.

The kids loved Hanok Village because they got to try various Korean traditional games, and learn a bit about traditional houses. An interesting feature is how the Koreans heat up their flooring.

Here's Jo about to check out the wishing well.

The kids tried several games such as rolling a metal hoop, throwing sticks into a jar and spinning tops. Here's a short video of a man spinning a top by whipping it with a short piece of cloth.

After Hanok, our friends in Seoul took us on a short bus trip to the Seoul Tower.

Locks symbolizing everlasting Love decorated the area surrounding the Seoul Tower

On the invitation of close friends in Seoul, we ended up staying a night in Seoul and visited the very huge church (Full Gospel, formerly headed by Cho YonGi). Before church we took a walk by the Han River and also the children worked out here for a while before heading to church.

1 comment :

Carolyn (Lil' Dahling) said...

wah next time if I go to Korea, I can refer to your blog..:)

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