In august 2012 my youngest sister in law got the idea to take us to the city of Asan in Chungcheongnam province. She wanted to show us one of her favorite places in this area. After we visited Asan Bay she took us to Oeam-ri Folk Village (외암리 민속마을).
My first idea was to see a Folk Village like Suwon Folk Village. But I was wrong.
Probably since we visited Oeam-ri Village on a weekday there were only a few cars on the parking. We passed the stone bridge over the stream and at the entrance of the village we already had a picturesque view of the village, which is designated as national heritage.
Oeam-ri Village is a typical farm village, created like 500 years ago by founder Yean Lee. Compared to other folk villages in Korea, this village maintains its original condition and is still occupied by the founder’s family (around 200 people).
The village is made following the Confucian ideology and the artificial waterways, used here to draw water into the houses, are unique in Korea. The artificial watercourse was constructed to ease the spirit of fire from Mt. Seolhwasan, the guardian mountain of the village.
Walking around in this village, often used for TV-series and drama`s, you can feel and experience the traditions of the Joseon Dynasty. There are about 86 houses and straw houses with narrow stone fence alleyways between them. Beside that you can see other handicrafts like totem poles, treadmills, millstones, water mills, and thatched roof houses.
Some houses have pretty gardens with beautiful pine trees and others, such as persimmon trees, apricot trees, chestnut trees, and gingko trees. These distinctive gardens, showing the typical style of the late Joseon Dynasty, cannot be found in other villages of Korea.
At the end of our tour in the village we ate the nearby restaurant. My sister in law ordered haemul pajeon (해물파전), a seafood pancake made of buckwheat flower, with delicious dongdongju (동동주), fermented rice wine directly from a huge earthenware pot or hangari (항아리). I had to admit that my sister in law made up a good choice to bring us to this place.
In the summer of 2014 I visited this place again with some friends and at the end of an exhausting trip we were all happy to relax here and eat the same thing as mentioned above. Good to share good moments with good friends !
Look here to see more pictures of Oeam-ri Folk Village : FLICKR.COM/K-MOOD