Saturday, November 20, 2010


Hahoe (pronounce as ha-hway) village reminds me of Beijing's Cuandixia. Totally. Three quarter museum, one quarter residence. Check out the Chinese couplets on the doors and the playground. Instead of corn, they grow cabbage

and oranges which they never get to eat bcos they're too high up on the trees!

The yangban (nobility) lived in tiled-roof houses

while the sangmin (commoners) stayed in thatched ones.

When the Queen visited Hahoe in 1999, the whole village was there to welcome her.

Today, residents are less responsive to visitors. I'm guilty for taking part in this massive intrusion called tourism, depriving them of peace and privacy. No one likes to live under scrutiny.

The folk playground is a fun way to learn about traditional games.

Battle of the sexes on the nol-ttwigi (Korean seesaw)

Remember the happy times playing with your classmates in school? Those were the days~

Tuho (投壶) originated from China. During the Era of the Warring States, kings often invite guests to a game of archery. Tuho was an alternative or substitute to archery for men (scholars especially) who were not good with bow and arrows. Gradually the game became a form of entertainment during banquets.

Yi Hwang was an avid player of the game. The arrows and pot are also also featured on the 1,000W note along with his portrait.

Parents laugh as their frustrated daughter slots the arrow into the pot.

At least children go home knowing what's a swing, not just computers and iphones.

We're going to watch the mask dance!

Both the dance and the wooden masks have been designated as national cultural properties.

Changseung (carved wooden statues) are placed near the entrance of the village or houses to ward off evil spirits. Do visit the mask museum before the performance for an introduction of the mask characters.

Tourists were kept occupied with decorating their own masks as they wait for the show to begin. Again, value add service provided by tour groups.

The characters were well played but the performance can get a bit boring for foreigners as the story line was narrated (through dialogue in Korean) rather than enacted towards the end. The mask dance was originally performed as a social satire by the commoners to poke fun at the yangban. Interesting context.

Applause for the group of performers who are obliged to pass down their skills to the next generation.

Hanging my wish on the 600 year old tree

While the commoners engaged in mask dance, scholars recite poems from boats on the Nakdong River. When each poem is completed, a fireball is dropped from the Buyongdae cliff down into the river.

The fastest (but not the only) way to get across the river is via this boat. The boatman must be the richest person in the village. His boat operates at maximum capacity for every trip he makes.

On top of Buyongdae cliff, we bade goodbye to Andong. Enriching and rewarding trip :)


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