Other sites for lotus viewing:Sangnim Park (Natural monument No.154)
Lotuses blossom across a 16.3-acre field in Sangnim Park in Hamyang, South Gyeongsang province. The park has about 240 varieties of water lily, blooming until late this month, according to Kim Seung-mee, a Hamyang county government official.
It’s been only three years since lotus flowers were planted in the park, which is itself more than 1,100 years old. Sangnim, which literally means upper forest, was planted as an embankment by scholar Choe Chi-won during the Silla Kingdom, in order to prevent flood damage. Choe was at that time the governor of Cheollyeong, now Hamyang. The river banks were built to detour the river and trees were planted along the banks. As time passed, the middle of the banks was destroyed, dividing the park into Sangnim and Harim (meaning lower forest). In the park, more than 20,000 trees of 120 different species grow. Admission is free.
For more information, call the Hamyang county government at (055) 960-6431.
Cheongsan Arboretum in Taean, South Chungcheong province, holds its annual lotus festival through Aug. 20. The arboretum has 200 kinds of lotus that Shin Se-cheol, its president, collected around the world over about 30 years. The arboretum is only open to the public during the festival, but the number of visitors is limited to 2,000 a day in order to protect the plants.
The aboretum is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and it takes about 2 hours to walk the entire area.
Entrance costs 3,000 won ($3) for adults and 2,000 won for students. For more information, call (041) 675-0656.
The Lotus Flower Festival at Gungnamji Pond in Buyeo, South Chungcheong province, has finished, but there are still lotuses blooming on the pond. It has about 20 species growing across 33,060 square meters.
The pond is the oldest artificial pond in Korea, and was built in 634 during the Baekje Kingdom. The pond was named Gungnamji because it formed the southern part of the palace. At that time, Buyeo was the capital of Baekje. The pond has an arbor, Poryongjeong, in the middle and a bridge that connects to the arbor. There is a saying that if a couple visits the pond together, they will fall in love.
For more information, call the Buyeo Cultural Center at (041) 830-2523.
by Park Sung-ha