Folks looking to get a taste of past and present Busan are in for a treat when Gamcheon Culture Village hosts its 9th annual community festival from April 26 to 28.
Gamcheon Culture Village, now a popular arts and history destination in Saha-gu (district), was originally a refugee haven during the Korean War. The village was developed quickly to house a lot of people. This resulted in a place that was densely jam packed.
As those homes had long-developed noticeable signs of wear, many of them were repaired and refreshed several years ago. They ultimately received vivid, artistic coats of paint that have become synonymous with the location and are just one of the reasons Gamcheon Culture Village has gained wide interest, not only from local residents but from people around Korea and around the world.
The 9th annual festival will welcome visitors with nearly two dozen kinds of performances and programs this year. A festival parade will be held twice-a-day that will encompass the entirety of the village. Diverse fashion styles will be represented by residents during the parade including school uniforms, hanbok (Korean traditional clothing) as well as retro styles from the 1970s and 1980s. Percussionists will also perform, as well as elementary and middle school students who will participate in band, orchestra, and musical performances. A play, traditional wedding custom performances, and a singing contest are also on tap.
Buskers are expected to perform at the Gamcheon community center, local artists will show off some of their best works at an exhibition.
Historical activities such as carrying water while utilizing an “A-Frame” device will help to connect people with the past. And, of course, there will be plenty of food and souvenir booths set up along the way.
Houses are packed in tight in Gamcheon Culture Village. Its colored roofs comprise varying hues and its maze-like alleys and more make a visit here an experience unlike many other neighborhoods in Busan.
Last year, more than 60,000 patrons attended the community festival.
Dates: April 26 – 28
Location: Gamcheon Culture Village
How to get there: Toseong Station (Metro line 1), exit 6. Take minibusses 1-1, 2 or 2-2 and get off at Gamjeong Elementary School. Walk straight to the entrance of the village.