중앙데일리

Five flamboyant festivals of flowers

May 27,2017
Two young women take a selfie in front of the rose garden at Everland in Yongin, Gyeonggi, at the Everland Rose Festival held last year. This year’s festival theme is pop art. [JOONGANG ILBO]
Although Hadong’s beautiful red poppy is staking its claim to become the representative flower of May, the bright-red rose is still synonymous with the month. Rose festivals are held all around the nation, with a handful of them showcasing other flowers of the season as well. Here are five flower festivals you need to visit this weekend:

Starting from the northern part of the country, just below the demilitarized zone, is the Herb Village Lavender Festival 2017 in Yeoncheon, Gyeonggi. The premises of the Herb Village are a whopping 57,000 square meters (14 acres), with the wide, beautiful Imjin river coming in view. The large area is beautifully mixed with lavender and other ornamental plants.

It not only houses plants and flowers, but also provides opportunities for various activities, living up to its category of being an eco-theme park. Visitors can dine in the Herb Garden restaurant and enjoy aromatherapy as well. It is currently hosting a photo contest where you can win a voucher by uploading a photo to its website. The festival runs until May 31.

A little farther south is the Garden of Morning Calm in Gapyeong, Gyeonggi, which is currently hosting the Spring Festival. The picturesque background of the botanical garden and nearby Mount Chungnyung amazes visitors.

The spring festival is in full bloom in The Garden of Morning Calm, above left. It’s one of the biggest and most diverse botanical gardens in Korea. The 7th International Rose Festival, Gokseong, is currently running in Gokseong, South Jeolla. Both festivals are in their final stages this weekend. [JOOGANG ILBO, GOKSEONG COUNTY]
With the collection of spring flowers, ranging from tulips, daffodils and magnolia to Korean rosebay, plum blossoms and forsythia, not only can you feel the coming of summer with the temperatures rising, but you can see it as well with a sea of vibrant natural colors. More than 5,000 types of trees and flowers over 330,000 square meters greet visitors. The festival continues until May 31.

A little east from Gapyeong, is Namyangju, Gyeonggi, where there’s a flower festival at the Sandulsori Botanical Garden. The garden boasts 100,000 clusters of flowers on its premises.

Although lesser known and smaller than The Garden of Morning Calm, it makes up for it by offering diverse activities. River rafting, rainbow fountains and animal farms give parents and children a chance to enjoy the garden altogether. It also houses a traditional Korean restaurant, a brunch cafe and a gallery, to aid visitors on their lengthy stay. This event continues until the last day of October.

Lower on the map is the nation’s biggest theme park, Everland in Yongin, Gyeonggi, which hosts the Everland Rose Festival. The festival, which is almost a signal for the coming of summer, is now in its 32nd year. This year’s theme is pop art, with the rose garden transforming into a pop art garden.

Exhibitions and special stages stay true to the theme, with fully blossomed red roses dotting the theme park. Of course, the roller coasters and carousels are available to ride as well. The festival continues until June 11.

Last but not least, near the bottom of the peninsula is Gokseong, south Jeolla, where the seventh International Rose Festival, Gokseong, is held at Seomjingang Train Village. The village was chosen as one of the 100 must-visit attractions by the Korea Tourism Organization. The 10-day festival already is in full flight and will look to finish with a bang through this weekend. The theme for this year’s festival is “Scent, Love, Dream,” and roses from many countries will be exhibited. The festival ends Sunday.

BY KIM JUNG-KYOON [kim.jungkyoon@joongang.co.kr]


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