Andong has a reputation of being a city of Neo-Confucian scholars and an important center of Korean intellectual culture. It houses many cultural heritage sites such as Hahoe Folk Village and Dosan Seowon Confucian Academy as well as many museums. Andong also boasts a variety of foods, many of which enjoy nationwide fame. Let’s take a trip to Andong, a rich repository of cultural artifacts and foods from different epochs.
Hahoe Folk Village
A representative single-family-name village in Korea, Hahoe has been the home of the Pungsan Ryu clan for over 600 years. It is the birth place of Ryu brothers, Un-ryong who was a prominent Neo-Confucian scholar and Seong-ryong who served as prime minister in the Korean royal court during the Imjin War in the late 16th century. Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom visited the village in 1999. In 2010, Hahoe Folk Village gained worldwide recognition when it was included on the UNESCO World Heritage list. In short, the village offers a perspective on Confucian culture, Korean tradition, and the history of the Joseon dynasty. The village is strewn with well-preserved tile-roof and thatched-roof houses and buildings, such as Byeongsan Seowon, Yangjindang, and Wonjijeongsa, that allow a peek at the life of its residents in the past. The traditional performances like the mask play Hahoe Byeolsingut Talnori are also maintained from old times.
The village offers a variety of experiential activities. Visitors can take a class on traditional weddings and etiquette, learn traditional cooking and calligraphy, listen to a lecture on world heritage, and watch a mask puppet show. The admission fee is 3,000 won for adults, 1,500 won for adolescents, and 1,000 won for children. There is no charge for seniors the age of 65 and older.
·Hahoe Folk Village Tourist Information Center: +82-54-852-3588, +82-54-840-6974
This Confucian academy was built in 1574 in memory of the scholarship and virtues of Yi Hwang whose pen name was Toegye. Composed of Dosan Seodang and Nongunjeongsa, the old Confucian academy has Andongho Lake in the front and a thick pine forest in the back, forming an ideal harmony of buildings and natural landscape. The admission fee is 1,500 won for adults, 700 won for adolescents, and 600 won for children.
·Dosan Seowon Tourist Information Center: +82-54-840-6599
Korea’s largest wooden bridge, Wolyeonggyo commemorates a beautiful love story of a lady who pulled out her own hair to make a pair of shoes in memory of her deceased husband. The bridge is 387m long and presents a superb night view when it is lit with lights at dusk. The Wolyeongjeong Pavilion stands in the middle of the bridge.
# Diverse Foods of Andong
A great number of dishes in Korea carry the word “Andong” in their names. These include Andong Soju, Andong Korean Beef, Andong Jjimdak, Andong Salted Mackerel, and many others.
Andong Soju is a liquor enjoyed by local people since the Silla period about 1,200 years ago. The distilled liquor (at 45 degrees) is made according to a traditional recipe with high-quality rice grown in the clean water and fertile land of Andong. Its biggest merit lies in the subdued scent and excellent palatability. In the past, local people also used it as medicine to treat cuts, stomachaches, and indigestion. Andong City houses Andong Soju Museum (website: www.andongsoju.net, Tel:+82-54-858-4541) as well as several venues to taste and experience making Andong Soju.
Andong Salted Mackerel originated from the practice of peddlers salting fish so it does not go bad while being transported to Andong from the east coast where it was caught. The dish is made by disemboweling, cleaning, and marinating mackerel. Its taste differs depending on how the fish is salted.
Chicken boiled with various vegetables and seasonings, Andong Jjimdak is not greasy and boasts a clean taste. The dish can obtain different flavors depending on additional ingredients. There is a Jjimdak alley inside the old market of downtown Andong.
Meat from Andong cows, which are raised in a clean, natural environment, has fat evenly distributed throughout. The rich taste of Andong Beef can be appreciated even more if accompanied by vegetables and seasonal dishes. Andong Hanwoo Beef Alley is located next to Andong Station.
·Andong Tourist Information Center:+82-54-856-3013, +82-54-840-6591
Lee Hyun Woo firstname.lastname@example.org
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