Entrance to Gamcheon Culture Village (Gamcheon Culture Village)

The Beginning of Gamcheon Culture Village

The stream flowing at the foot of Cheonmasan Mountain used to be called “Gamnae,” which literally means sweetness in Korean, referring to its sweet taste. During the period of Japanese occupation and the Korean War, approximately 4,000 Taegeukdo religion believers gathered in this area. Subsequently, more people, including merchants and refugees, moved to the area, forming a village. Initially named Cheondeok-dong, the area eventually split due to increased population, forming a new area named “Gamcheon-dong,” which further separated into “Gamcheon 1-dong” and “Gamcheon 2-dong.”

Gamcheon-dong was initially constructed with around 1,000 shacks on slopes when the Taegeukdo followers relocated to this site. In the aftermath of the war, severe shortages of supplies and living spaces afflicted the residents. Originally, the village was built as a communal residence village, all inhabitants shared wells and bathrooms, leading to increased inconvenience as the population grew. Moreover, shacks were susceptible to fire hazards. Therefore, three 6-meter-wide vertical stairs were installed as a safety measure, which still exist in the village today.

From its initial planning stages, Gamcheon Village was designed to ensure houses at the back would not obstruct the view and to maintain a pedestrian lane in front of the houses. These planning considerations contribute to the colorful and well-organized village seen today. Unfortunately, the village started to decline as its facilities deteriorated, prompting residents to seek better living conditions elsewhere. To revitalize the village's atmosphere, the government initiated the “Gamcheon Village Art Project.” This project involves installing artwork in the village annually, aiming to enhance residents' quality of life. The renovated village eventually became a popular tourist spot for visits and photography.

An information center is situated at the village entrance, where visitors can purchase a map of the village. Additionally, visitors can converse with village guides who provide course guidance and explanations. It's essential to note that touring the village is permitted only between 9 AM and 6 PM, and visitors should refrain from peeping into residents' houses or taking photos without their consent.

@Registered by : KOREA TOURISM ORGANIZATION

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