By 10 Media on July 2, 2012 | 2:21 pm | 0 Comments
Words by Barun Sarkar
As much as it sounds like a dinosaur, celadon isn’t anything of the sort. It refers to the distinctively unique jade-green glaze ceramics that originated in ancient China. It became popular over a millennium ago in Gangjin, South Jeolla province. The region produces 80 percent of Korea’s valuable celadon porcelains, and Gangjin’s annual July festival has become a must-see event.Designated as the 2010 “Most Excellent Festival” by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the Gangjin Celadon Festival does not disappoint. The ride to Gangjin alone is a scenic route of mountain ranges, grassy plains and breathtaking seaside views. Each year, the festival grounds appear to have sprung up from a grassy field, surrounded by green and swaying in the wind. Exhibitions of celadon ceramics both new and old will be open for all to admire.
Upon arrival, head straight to the pottery-making tent to create your own celadon masterpiece with an expert volunteer. While you wait for your art to dry, check out the various performances – from the typical big stage singers and bands to the hilarious cross-dressing rural clown plays. Bring your cash to one of many colorful open markets, featuring everything from celadon masks to entire furniture sets made of local dark wood. Or perhaps take in a demonstration of a slap chop cutter in the food stalls while devouring a chicken that’s been entirely
Other hands-on activities in Gangjin include sea fishing, a boat tour of the local bay, and the opportunity to carve your immortality into celadon clay bricks, all for minimal fees.
Getting There Most major cities have direct buses to Gangjin. Otherwise, transfer from Gwangju to an Intercity Bus to Gangjin.
TIP Find out the return bus schedule from Gangjin to your final destination ahead of time.
Dates The 2012 Gangjin Celadon Festival will run from July 28th to August 5th.
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