Jeollanam-do

Nohwa-do, Wando-gun, Jeollanam-do, 19 May 2016, 1pm We regretfully leave Bogildo and its sister island Nohwado behind. We have a bigger ferry for the return journey and I somehow manage to reverse the car into position without hitting anything or anyone. As we sail back to the mainland I am happily wandering around on deck […]

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2016 travel diary 19: The Scholar’s Garden #1: Yun Seon-do on Bogildo

by Philip Gowman 19 May 2016
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Bogil-do, Wando-gun, Jeollanam-do, 19 May 2016, 10:30am Way back in the mid Joseon dynasty, being a scholar official was a troublesome occupation. If you were a dedicated scholar you had to act in accordance with your conscience and the highest principles. Unfortunately, as happens with whistle-blowers today, your conscience could be severely career-limiting. If you picked […]

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2016 travel diary 18: Incompetent Foreigner on the ferry to Bogildo

by Philip Gowman 19 May 2016
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Ttangkkeut Maeul / Songji-myeon, Haenam-gun, Jeollanam-do, 19 May 2016, 6am. Despite the calmness of the previous day, at the top of the hill it was quite breezy. During the night the wind had risen. Always in a strange bed you sleep lightly, and with the wind rustling in the trees and somehow seeping into the […]

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2016 travel diary 17: Land’s End

by Philip Gowman 18 May 2016
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Songji-myeon, Haenam-gun, Jeollanam-do, 18 May 2016, 6pm. We continue our drive southeast along the coast of Haenam County, heading towards our destination for the day: Land’s End. The official name for the village is Songho-ri, Seongji-myeon, but Land’s End Village, Ttangkkeut Maeul, is much better as a marketing tool, ensuring everyone knows its geographical significance. […]

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2016 travel diary 16: Yun Du-seo’s historic house

by Philip Gowman 18 May 2016
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Hyeonsan-myeon, Haenam-gun, Jeollanam-do, 18 May 2016, 5pm. By the time we leave the Jindo bridge area it’s past 5pm. I have a huge range of things on the itinerary that I could try to fit in, should there be time. But to rush anything would not feel right, particularly when the weather is so conducive […]

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2016 travel diary 15: Song of the Sword and Roaring Currents – the two sides of Myeongnyang

by Philip Gowman 18 May 2016
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Munnae-myeon, Haenam-gun, Jeollanam-do, 18 May 2016, 4:30pm. The battle of Myeongnyang, in October 1597, was Yi Sun-shin’s penultimate victory, and the last one that he came out of alive. His final victory, the Battle of Noryang, came in December 1598 in the narrow strait between Namhae and the mainland, when a stray bullet killed him. […]

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2016 travel diary 14: Journey towards Jindo and the Myeongnyang Monument

by Philip Gowman 18 May 2016
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Sancheong-gun, Gyeongsangnam-do, Wednesday 18 May 2016, 10am Sancheong -> Sacheon -> Suncheon We say our farewells to the mayor and tourism chief at the County administrative offices. Kyung-sook is driving me to Suncheon – about 90 minutes’ leisurely drive away – so that I can meet up with Insoon. She is scheduled to arrive in […]

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2013 Travel Diary #20: The temple of a thousand pagodas

by Philip Gowman 11 September 2013
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Unjusa, Hwasun-gun, Wednesday 11 September, 3:45am. My phone wakes me up at 3:45 am, and I struggle into my trousers, splash some water onto my face, and make my way to the main shrine. I’m the first one there, and soon Kyung-sook arrives, then Wonsan himself. Later, a couple of the temple women join us. […]

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2013 Travel Diary #19: Mosquitoes at Unjusa

by Philip Gowman 10 September 2013
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Suncheon-si, Tuesday 10 September, 12:30pm We head back to the hotel for a quick shower and change of clothes, before lunch at a nearby eatery – a deliciously delicate clam noodle soup. The soup is brought in a large bowl full of a light broth. At the bottom of the bowl is a mound of […]

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2013 Travel Diary #18: Suncheon Garden Expo — The Korean Garden

by Philip Gowman 10 September 2013
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Suncheon-si, Tuesday 10 September, 11:30am. As we emerge from the container tunnels on the western bank of the river we are beginning to wilt in the heat and we are sorely tempted to exit the expo at the nearest gate. But then we catch sight of a frozen (and non-alcoholic) cocktail stall which gives us […]

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2013 Travel Diary #17: Suncheon Garden Expo — The Bridge of Dreams

by Philip Gowman 10 September 2013
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Suncheon-si, Tuesday 10 September, 11am. The expo precincts are shaped like an inverted triangle, its long northern baseline lying on a straight road which leads eastwards to Gwangwang and westwards towards the tea fields of Boseong. This baseline is about two kilometres long, but in the heat it feels three times that. At the Sancheong […]

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2013 Travel Diary #16: Suncheon Garden Expo — The Lugworm’s Trail

by Philip Gowman 10 September 2013
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Suncheon-si, Tuesday 10 September, 10am. Like many areas of the Suncheon Garden Expo, Hwang Ji-hae’s garden, which was the main reason for my coming to Suncheon in the first place, also limits its reliance on floral colour. Looked at from above, or viewed from the source of the water (top left of above image) which […]

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2013 Travel Diary #15: Swirls and spirals in the Suncheon Lake Garden

by Philip Gowman 10 September 2013
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Suncheon-si, Tuesday 10 September, 8am. After the rich variety of the hanjeongsik food the previous evening, the buffet breakfast at the hotel offered comfort for a lazy western palette. I could have had some Korean food – miso soup, noodles, rice, the normal offering – but instead I went for toast, omelette, frankfurter, and tomato […]

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2013 Travel Diary #14: Gwangyang and the journey into Jeollanamdo

by Philip Gowman 9 September 2013
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Sancheong-eup, Sancheong-gun, Monday 9 September, 11:30am. We have an appointment in Jeollanam-do. We are to meet former LKL contributor Shin Eunjeong and her husband Tim Anderson for lunch in Gwangyang, a coastal town known for its huge steelworks. It is also known for its Gwangyang bulgogi, a variant of the dish where the meat is […]

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The Suncheon Bay Garden Expo 2013 opens in Jeollanam-do

by Philip Gowman 21 April 2013
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Hwang Ji-hae, Korea’s best-known garden designer, won’t be at Chelsea this year. After two consecutive Chelsea gold medals, she’s taking a break from what is possibly the world’s most prestigious flower show, and instead has been concentrating on designing a garden closer to home: for Korea’s first International Garden Expo at Suncheon, Jeollanam-do. The Mayor […]

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Kang Bong Kyu: Korea, Koreanity at the KCC

by Events Editor 5 October 2011
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It’s only a brief, 2-week, exhibition, but it’s well worth a visit. In fact it’s worth more than one visit: From 5th October to 18th October 2011, the Federation for Gwangju Museum of Art will hold an exhibition on traditional Korean aesthetics entitled, “Kang Bong Kyu, Korean, Koreanity” at the Korean Cultural Centre UK (KCCUK). […]

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The Gangjin Celadon Festival

by Philip Gowman 30 July 2011
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If I was in Korea right now I’d be heading for Jeollanam-do and the Gangjin Celadon Festival http://bit.ly/otRFzY #. (Photo: Chosun Ilbo)

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