Category: Culture & Event

A Symphony of 110,000 Chrysanthemums

Masan Gagopa Chrysanthemum Festival

Hosted at Masanman Bay Beach for Ten Days Beginning on October 29


The largest flower festival for a single species, Masan Gagopa Chrysanthemum Festival takes place at the beaches of Masanman Bay at Changwon, from October 29 to November 7, for ten days. There are 7,600 entries to be exhibited at this year’s festival, which marks its sixteenth year. Twenty percent of all entries are new ones, beginning with the main artwork installed at the entryway. The work symbolizing seagulls that were installed last year will be changed to one representing a hot-air balloon this year. Along with kids’ zone, love zone, and other theme zones, the festival will feature various works or chrysanthemum art symbolizing the stone female diver statue at Dotseom Island, golden pig, and turtle ship. The number of chrysanthemums used for the festival also increased, from 100,000 last year to 110,000 this year, marking the highest in the festival’s history.


Opening of cherry blossom festival ‘the 52nd Jinhae Gunhang(naval port) Festival

 The 52nd Jinhae Gunhang festival which is a world-class cherry blossom festival begins on April 1st. Gunhang festival will be running opening event, commemoration event, military music honor guard festival, artistic event, special event beginning with eve, with the slogan, ‘enjoying 360,000 cherry blossom tree, sharing Spring feast’, with the theme of ‘Flower – Luminary – Hope’ around Jinhae-gu, like Joongwon rotary.

In March of lunar month, Jinhae Gunhang festival takes place, it attracts springtime picnickers to naval port city embracing the quiet sea. Jinhae Gunhang festival includes the event of commemorating the spirit of general Lee-Sunsin and main events, e.g. eve, scenery and customs market of 8 provinces, artistic culture performance at Joongwon rotary as the theme event of cherry blossom tourist attractions and the event of offering fl ower to the statue of admiral Lee-sunsin, commemoration ceremony, victory marching
parade at Bookwon rotary.

여좌천 로망스 다리

In addition, military music honor guard festival, which is characterized as naval port city, takes place on Friday and over the weekend and is the military art performance with the fusion of military music and honor guard showing the viewers powerful marching and honor guard in a wonderful uniform that you can see only at Jinhae Gunhang cherry blossom festival.

You can visit to Naval academy and Jinhae Admiralty port which are not usually accessible and have a various experience of museum of naval academy, watching a turtle ship, naval vessel, photo exhibition, wearing a naval uniform, boarding on a yacht cruise etc and fully enjoy a great cherry blossom at the age of over 100 years old with the aspect of Korean naval base


The cherry blossom attractions are Naesumyun ecology park, Yeojwacheon,  Gyeonghwayeok,  Jinhaetap, Jinhaeru etc. When you take jehwangsan monorail and overlook the city from Jinhaetap rooftop, the area spreads to the east and west, with the mountain like a folding screen upward, quiet sea downward lying around. Around Palgeori of Joongwon rotary, there are 100-year-old buildings and 360,000 cherry blossom trees together being coexistent with past and present and you can enjoy the nice and peaceful city at a glance.

In Jinhae-gu are three rotaries, Joongwon, Bookwon, Namwon, at the city center and there are eight driveways starting with each rotary.

Each alley at Joongwon rotary is dotted with the relics of modern culture, e.g. over 100-year-old buildings such as Jinhae post offi ce, Sunhak beef bone soup, Heugbaeg coffee shop, Ppojokjip. Gunhang village history hall, which you are going to visit as a time travel of Joongwon rotary palgeori alley, is the place for viewing pictures of naval port development started since 1902 and old city scenery and hearing a storytelling directly to make you feel
fascinated by another facet of Jinhae of cherry blossom.경화역111

Jinhae Gunhang festival came from the commemoration ceremony held annually with the statue of admiral Lee-Sunsin the fi rst time ever on April 13th, 1952 in Korea and there was a simply ceremony held initially at Bookwon rotary where the statue of admiral Lee-Sunsin is located, however, it grew into the festival of cultural art to promote a local culture art based on the patriotic and loyal spirit of Lee-Sunsin since 1963, further, has been  developed into the event of enjoying a cherry blossom through 1980 to 1990 having its 52nd anniversary this year.

Jinhae Gunhang festival has been developed annually into the world class cherry blossom festival with over 3 million tourists in and outside of the country and Changwon city will continue to make every effort to fulfi ll the worldwide celebrative event where more tourists are happy to visit in the coming years ahead.

52회 군항제 포스터최종

“Sparkly night”at Jinhae Harbor

Jinhae(진해) Harbor’s Sokcheon(속천) pier, in Changwon City, is now equipped with exterior lighting, and is now rapidly emerging as a new tourist attraction. The buildings along the 572-meter coast, including the Suhyup(수협) building, the car ferry passenger terminal, the seawall, and the lighthouse, are now illuminated with lights. The theme of the light display was titled “The Story of the Coastline’s Ocean Glimmer,” making Jinhae Harbor a place where nature and people coexist.

Exterior lighting on the buildings around Sokcheon(속천) Pier graces the night of Jinhae(진해) Harbor.

The exterior lighting installed in Jinhae Harbor’s Sokcheon Pier has been operating since Feb. 28. The lights remain on for four hours each night, from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. LED lights have been installed on the exterior wall of the breakwater, and the car ferry passenger terminal, along with three Suhyup buildings, has been equipped with symbolic lighting that accentuates the skyline. The symbols include the Changwon City logo, seagulls, autumn leaves, and fish.
The exterior lighting surrounding the Suhyup buildings was chosen specifically to minimize any environmental or ecological influences while promoting the city’s vision and providing tourists with a range of attractions.
The city at the same time plans to construct a waterfront area, that comprised of strolling paths, a outdoor plaza, pergolas, benches and sporting facilities on a 3929-square meter lot in Sokcheon Pier. The construction will be completed by October.

51th Jinhae Gunhangje(진해 군항제) festival to open on April 1

When the cherry-blossom girl meets the marching-band boy

Yoejwacheon Romance Bridge
Yoejwacheon Romance Bridge

The 51th Jinhae Gunhangje(진해군항제), Korea’s largest cherry blossom festival, kicks off its 10-day event on April 1 in and around Jinhae-gu area under the theme of “Encounter between cherry blossom and military music.”

The history of the festival dates back to April 13, 1952, when people put up a statue of the revered 16th-century Admiral Yi Sun-shin(이순신) and held a ritual to commemorate him. At first, the ceremony was relatively small in size and was held only at the Bukwon(북원) junction where the statue sits. However, year after year it has grown into a nationwide spring festival with various events.    The feast, selected as the best South Gyeongsang(경상) province festival for 2013, will be carefully organized in a budget-minded manner given the current economic slump the nation faces. It will specialize Yeojwacheon(여좌천) festival of light and Jinhaeru(진해루) Multimedia fireworks, which gained great popularity among tourists last year. Various art and cultural events will also be prepared around Jungwon(중원) junction and Changwon community center to draw active participation from citizens.

Ceremony to commemorate Admiral Yi sunsin
Ceremony to commemorate Admiral Yi sunsin

The Jinhae World Military Band Festival that adds a musical flavor to the whole festival, threw a concert last year. But this year it plans to tell a different story. Over 700 participants from 13 teams including the army, the navy, the air force, the Marine Corps and the Eighth US Army will march together in a parade to the tune of music, creating what spectacles to see for tourists. The three-day military music festival starts on April 6.

World Military Festival
World Military Festival

As this year’s Jinhae Gunhangje slogan “When the cherry-blossom girl meets the marching-band boy” shows, the festival will combine the two pillars of Gunhangje cherry blossom festival and the World Military Band Festival.   Main events including K-pop start concert, Jinhaeru(진해루) multimedia fireworks, Yeojwacheon(여좌천) festival of light, illumination of Jinhae(진해) pagoda of Mount Jehwang(제황) and night view of Anmin hill(안민 고개) will present visitors with unforgettable experience.

Following last year’s huge success, Yeojwacheon(여좌천) festival of light extends its range from 400 meters last year to 1 kilometer this year. Changwon Marine Solar Park, with an observation tower overlooking the Southern Sea and as far as Busan Newport and Geogadaegyo(거가대교) bridge, will be open temporarily during the period.

The opening ceremony will be staged on March 31, 6 p.m. at Jungweon(중원) junction. The commemoration ceremony for Admiral Yi Sun-shin is scheduled on April 6, between 2-5 the special stage in Bukwon(북원) junction and downtown area. The grand ritual ceremony is on April 7, 2 p.m., at the special stage in Bukwon(북원) junction. The Military Music Festival is to be held between April 6-8, at the Jinhae municipal stadium(진해공설운동장). Jinhaeru(진해루) multimedia fireworks is slated for April 5, 8 p.m., over the waters near Jinhaeru(진해루).  Yeojwacheon(여좌천) festival of light from April 1-10 starts from 6 p.m. until midnight, at the vicinity of Yeojwacheon(여좌천). Cherry blossoms street culture festival in Changwon and cherry blossoms silver festival in Seowongok(서원곡), Masan(마산), are slated for April 6 and 7, respectively.

Yongwon(용원) Culture Street completed

A sculpture in an artificial pond in Yongwon street
A sculpture in an artificial pond in Yongwon street

Changwon City has completed the Yongwon(용원) Culture Street in the Yongwon industrial district in Jinhae(진해).
Launched in 2011, the project was designed to secure comfortable pedestrian paths in the area that is 600 meters long and 10-16 meters in width.
The decision to install the culture street followed a visit to the district by Changwon City Mayor Park Wan-soo who was dismayed by the illegal parking that got in the way of pedestrians.
A total of 1.45 billion won ($1.3 million) was allocated for the project.
Among the installation has been a 350-meter-long pathway between the residents’ center and a local apartment complex where cars are prohibited and includes an artistic fountain, outdoor performance facility, a running stream and stone plants.
There are numerous artistic items on display along the pathway, including sculptures and are representative of the identity and future of the Yongwon district which are visible in sculptures such as “Toward a Dream,” “Bubble Memory,” “A Day for a Picnic,” “Photographer” and “A Girl Awaiting” whch all seem to tell their own stories.
The city government is hoping that the construction of the pathway will go a long way in securing safety for pedestrians and boosting more public access to culture in the eastern parts of Jinhae(진해).

Marine Solar Park built in Changwon

Largest-ever solar power generation tower in Korea

Changwon City’s new landmark, Marine Solar Park
Changwon City’s new landmark, Marine Solar Park

A large ship sits on the top of Eumjido in Jinhae-gu, which is famous for the Marine Park with a warship exhibition hall and a smaller islet Dongseom linked to the mainland twice a day at low tide.   It is not an ordinary vessel, however. This is a sail ship-shaped tower called the Marine Solar Park, the largest-ever solar power-generating facility in Korea both in size and capacity, becoming another great tourist attraction for its must-see list for visitors.

□ Background                                                                                                              The Marine Solar Park was initiated when the Ministry of Knowledge and Economy chose it as the nation’s first landmark project in solar energy in 2006. It was designed to build a world-class renewable energy brand that can be developed into a specialized tourism resource.

□ Features                                                                                                                    The solar park is mainly composed of two parts: Exhibition floors that refer to the hull of the ship and the mast-shaped solar panel tower that stands on top of it. The ship with a total floor space of 6,336 square meters is sitting on a lot of 14,977 square meters.   The tower is 136 meters high, highest among all facilities built on the nation’s islands. The solar panels have been installed on the side of the building that faces south. Those panels with solar power capacity of 600㎾/h will generate 1,264 kW a day, equivalent to consumption by 200 households.

At 120 meters, the tower has an observatory that looks like a giant laid-down cylinder. It is a duplex that can house as many as 70 people at a time. All-glass walls of the observatory enable visitors to have a panoramic view of the entire island. Geoga Bridge, Busan New Port, the Marine Park, Eumji Bridge, and the scattered small islands in the sea all come within sight. One corner of the observatory is glass-floored that lets visitors feel the giddy height of the building, as if they are floating high up in the air.   The four-story exhibition floors on the lower part of the tower will house a 644- square-meter conference room that can accommodate up to 500 people at a time. Others slated to be installed in the area are a renewable energy exhibition hall, an event exhibition hall, a climate change simulation center and a cafeteria.

□ Utilization and effect                                                                                          Changwon City will open the solar park to the public in April this year, when the Jinhae Cherryblossom Festival is held. Before its official opening, trial operation of the facility, construction of driveways and deck trails surrounding Eumjido, and landscaping will be completed.

The city plans to install night lights for the park and include it into a new tourism route, encompassing the Marine Solar Park, the Marine  Museum, Eumji Bridge, Udo Pedestrian Bridge, dotted small islands and Geoga Bridge. The Marine Solar Park will become not only a tourist attraction, but also a learning site for greener environment and clean energy and a business center for companies as well.

Panoramic view from the park’s observatory
Panoramic view from the park’s observatory

Changdong is coming alive again

No. of visitors grows by 30% thanks to flea market every Saturday at arts town

The Changdong(창동) and Odongdong(오동동) districts in Masanhappo-gu(마산합포구) became ghost towns following the outflow of businesses in the 1970s and the ’80s but life is coming back to them.

Visitors make toy characters and a variety of artifacts at the flea market at the Changwon Arts Town. The flea market has been held every  Saturday since September.
Visitors make toy characters and a variety of artifacts at the flea market at the Changwon Arts Town. The flea market has been held every Saturday since September.

The opening of the Changdong Arts Town last May and the launching of a flea market in September is increasing the flow of human traffic in the area.
When the flea market opens on Saturdays, as many as 1,000 visitors head for Chang-dong. There are a wide variety of programs for first-hand experiences and many people come with their children.

A child looks at animation characters with his mother at the artist's at Changdong Arts Town. An artist is making a variety of animation Characters in board for children.
A child looks at animation characters with his mother at the artist’s at Changdong Arts Town. An artist is making a variety of animation Characters in board for children.

These activities take place along the streets where the Changdong Arts Village, the Changwon Handicraft Association and the merchants club are located.
At the handicraft flea market, artists from the Changwon Handicraft Association present natural dyed items, traditional Korean paper, wire works, textiles, ribbons and other forms of handicraft and help visitors with first-hand experiences and product purchases.
There are demonstrations for creating artworks using water mills, seven treasures and glass which are then exhibited for viewing and sale.
As for the merchants club, it engages in the sales of regional specialties, including anchovies, deodeok (a wild root) and seaweed, which are distinctive of South Gyeongsang Province and there are restaurants along the cultural streets of Odong-dong.
The city government is planning to increase the number of recreational facilities to attract more visitors to Chang-dong. There will be floral paths and CCTV will also be installed to boost safety. All such initiatives will be completed by February.

A female artist paints the body of a lady at the Changdong Arts Center. Many artists work here for visitors.
A female artist paints the body of a lady at the Changdong Arts Center. Many artists work here for visitors.