Welcome to Buyeo, the center of Baekje culture! It’s where you can find the impressive tradition and beautiful culture!
Buyeo District is a district of South Chungcheong Province , South Korea .
Buyeo District is located in the lower Geum Valley in a hilly region south of the Charyeong Mountain range . The main hills are Seongtaesan (631 m), Wolmyeongsan (544 m) and Mansusan (432 m). Buyeo is 60 km west of Daejeon City and 40 km east of the Yellow Sea . It has been crossed by highway 151 connecting Gongju to Seocheon since 2009. It is served by a bus network that puts it 2 hours from Seoul . There is no train.
The population of the district is currently in rapid decline: it fell from 95,213 inhabitants in 2000 to 71,809 in 2014. There were 195,843 inhabitants in 1964. It includes an eup (the capital) and 15 communes ( myeon ) .
The climate of Buyeo is of the humid continental type ( Dwa according to the Köppen classification ). Rainfall is concentrated in summer while winters are dry. The average temperature rises from −1.9 °C in January to 25.5 °C in August. Buyeo is part of the Central Korea Deciduous Forests ecoregion .
Symbol of Buyeo
By taking the image of phoenix on top of Gilt-bronze Incense Burner of Baekje, it represents the strong will of enterprising Buyeo residents who will soar in the 21st century and expresses Buyeo that will go global.
In the village of Songguk-ri , remains dating from the Mumun period (-850 to -300) have been found. At the time of the Three Kingdoms , Buyeo served as the capital of the Kingdom of Baekje between 538 and 660. It was then known as Sabi . The corresponding archaeological sites ( Busosanseong Fortress , Gwanbuk-ri Administrative Buildings, Jeongnimsa Temple , Neungsan-ri Royal Tombs and Naseong City Walls ) have been included in the World Heritage List within the Historic Areas Group of Baekje. Gungnamji Pondwas also created at this time in the royal gardens. Since 1954 , this past has been celebrated every autumn in the framework of the Baekje 1 cultural festival . The Buyeo National Museum is also entirely devoted to him, as is the Baekje Cultural Park ..
Buyeo 10 Scenic Views
Nakhwaam Rock at Mt. Buso
Mt. Buso is a mountain in Buyeo with the altitude of 106m, extended throughout Ssangbuk-ri, Gwanbuk-ri and Gugyo-ri area, Buyeo-eup. It stands tall in the flat area. The east and north are steep and touch Baengmagang. The name of Mt. Buso first appears in King Sejong’s Treatise on Geography. Buso means pine tree in Baekje language. There is a strong theory that Mt. Buso is ‘Solmoe’.
Mt. Busa usually acted as the backyard of Baekje palace. During war, it kept the last of the capital Sabi.
Some of the most famous sites on the mountain include Sajaru Pavilion, Baekhwajeong, Sajaru, Samchungsa Temple, Seoboksaji, Yeongillu Pavilion, Goransa Temple, Nakhwaam Rock, and Gunchangji. The mountain is known for its beauty and history.
According to Samgukyusa, Nakhwaam is where the royal court women of Baekje jumped off to kill themselves when the kingdom of Baekje was defeated during the invasion of Sabiseong Fortress by the Shilla-Tang Alliance.
The rock was later called Nakhwaam which literally means “the cliff of falling flowers”. Joseon Scholar Song Siyeol wrote the name on the cliff, which still remains clearly. The cliff is seen well on the ship sailing on Baengmagang.
Gungnamji Lake is where the legend of Princess Seonhwa of Silla and King Mu takes place.
Samguksaji records that “A pond was made to the south of the palace in March, and it drew fresh running water through a 20li-long pipeline. The pond has an island with a pavilion surrounded by willow trees on it to imitate Bangjangseonsan.” Looking at this record, it can be known that it is a royal garden made during King Mu’s reign. At the hill on the east of the pond, stereobate stone, roof tiles, and earthenware pieces were excavated, which hint that a palace was nearby.
Gungnamji with the pavilion in the middle was the first garden to express the Taoist ideology. It shows that among the three states, Baekje most excelled at decorating gardens.
All four seasons are beautiful. In July, thousands of lotus flower line up for Seodong Lotus Flower Festival. In October and November, the Goodtrae Chrysanthemum Festival takes place to display various artworks.
Cheonjeongdae is a place with a story that shows one aspect of mountain spirit worship during Baekje. According to Samgukyusa, people wrote the name of prime minister candidates and place them here. They waited for a seal to be placed on one of the names and appointed the chosen one as the prime minister. For this reason, it was called ‘Jeongsaam’. Appointment of a prime minister is a very important event for the country, and this practice shows the ancient political idea of depending on god in making a big decision.
Under Cheonjeongdae flows Baengma River, and you can see Joojangsan Fortress and Busosanseong Fortress, the center of Baekje capital, at once at this bedrock. There are numerous oddly formed rocks like Imgeum Rock and Sinha Rock.
Near Cheonjeongdae, roof tiles including convex roof-end tiles with lotus flower pattern were found. It is assumed that there used to be a building here.
Baekjebo (311m) of Geum River took ‘return of General Gyebaek’ as the theme to describe General Gyebaek who came back to protect Baengma River. At the floodgate is the image of General Gyebaek looking over the river on a horse.
A multicultural space Geum River Cultural Center at Baekjebo are 4 river promotion zone, Geumg River special zone, and other spaces. At the observatory, you can have a great view of Baengma River.
Baekje Cultural Heritage Complex
Since Baekje’s capital Buyeo was designated the special region for Baekje culture in 1993, this complex was prepared over 17 years from 1994 to 2010.
It has Korea’s first reproduction of Baekje palace during the period of the Three States. Beam on the pillar structure of palace and temple, and the graceful and elegant dancheong are the representative construction style of Baekje. Realistic reproduction of buildings in Sabi based on artifacts and historical sites will help understanding the culture and history of Baekje.
Not only Baekje Historical Cultural Center, but also Sabi palace and the famous temple Neungsa, residential culture village that shows the housing culture of each class, the initial royal palace Wiryeseong, and tombs display the life of Baekje, the great cultural country 1,400 years ago.
Also Baekje Historical Cultural Center that opened in 2006 is the only museum on Baekje history. It has the permanent exhibition that shows the history and culture of Baekje at a glance as well as other exhibitions and education facility including the featured exhibition and i-Baekje trial room.
Seodongyo Theme Park
It is the filming set for Korea’s first drama on Baekje history Seodongyo. It was built on 10,000 pyeong land.
In the open set are Baekje and Silla palace, palace village, Taehaksa, Haneuljae, and the downtown. Famous TV dramas like The Great Seer, The Legend, Gyebaek, and Joseon Shooter were filmed. The wide view of splendid scenary is as beautiful as a painting.
Deokyong Reservoir that surrounds the set is a nice place for a morning walk – not too steep -that anyone can enjoy.
Five storied stone pagoda of Jeongnimsa Temple site
Five storied stone pagoda of Jeongnimsa Temple site is a pagoda built in the early 6th century when Baekje transferred its capital to Buyeo. The low, thin foundation, pillars in Beheullim Technique, and thin yet wide roofs stick to the basic formation of wooden building. However it is sophisticated and creative. The entire shape is grand and beautiful.
Along with Iksan Mireuksaji Temple Stone Pagoda, it shows the characteristics of pagodas made in early Baekje. The organized form, grand yet sophisticated beauty show off the skills of Baekje artists.
Many pagodas in Chungnam imitated the format of this pagoda.
General So Jeongbang from Tang who destroyed Baekje by allying with Silla left a comment on the pagoda. It is a precious historical resource that conveys the situation of the time.
Baekje Royal Tombs Park in Gobun-gun, Neungsan-ri
It is the royal tombs from Sabi period (538-660).
It is locate right outside of eastern Naseong. With seven tombs in the center, a group of tombs are located on the east and on the west. There are three big groups of tombs. Looking at the size and the location, the tombs in the center are assumed to be the tombs of kings from the Sabi period. The location of tombs in the center matches the geographical features of propitious site for a grave that Feng-Shui suggests. There is a possibility that Feng-Shui ideology already existed during Baekje.
Since the beginning of Japanese colonical era, 1915, the tombs were investigated several times. However there were barely any grave goods remaining. There were only some pieces of crown decorated with gold and lacquer.
Recently, a temple site located in the valley between Naseong and the tombs was investigated for it was a temple to pray for the repose of the deceased. There, the gilt-bronze incense burner of Baekje (National Treasure No. 287) and stone sarira case with inscription of Changwang in Baekje (National Treasure No. 288) were excavated. It served as an opportunity to realize the excellence of Baekje culture.
Baengma River water tour
The name Geum River was given because the silk-like river surrounds Buyeo, touching every corner. It reaches Buyeo and is called Baengma River (16km – Cheonjeongdae in Hoam-ri to Banjowon-ri). Following the river are Cheongjeongdae, Nakhwam Rock, Wangheungsa temple site, Gudurae, Subukjeong, and Jaondae.
Under Baengma River Bridge, canoe and yacht class takes place every year from June to October.
Canoe and yacht program offers fun, relaxing experience.
Muryangsa Temple in Mt. Mansoo
It is told that Muryangsa Temple is built by Beomilguksa (810-889) in the late Silla and reconstructed several times later. However, the actual year of foundation is unknown.
At the end of Silla, an old monk Muyeomguksa (801-888) temporarily stayed here, and it was expanded in the Goryeo Dynasty.
It is also where the genius poet Kim Siseup, who lived in seclusion all his life and criticizing Grand Prince Suyang for killing his cousin Danjong to become a king, spend his later days and passed away. Once in Joseon Dynasty, a famous monk Jinmuk stayed. During the Japanese Invasion of 1592, all buildings were burnt down, and the hall of Paradise was rebuilt later. And the name of Yeongsanjeon (Provincial Cultural Property No. 413) and Myeongbujeon (Provincial Cultural Property No. 389) are not found after the Japanese
Only records on Geukrakjeon (Treasure No. 356) are found. Danganjiju (Provincial Cultural Property No. 57), Seokdeung (Treasure No. 233) and Seoktap (Treasure No. 185) take the style of early Goryeo, there for it is considered a temple from Goryeo Dynasty. There are other artifacts from the temple including Kim Siseup portrait (Treasure No. 1497) and Mireukbul painting in Muryangsa temple (Treasure No. 1265).
Mt. Seongheung Love Tree
Mt. Seongheung Love Tree is a 400-year-old zelkova tree that has been designated as Buyeo-gun Local Relic No. 88. Seongheungsan Fortress built during the reign of King Dongseong surrounds the tree.
Located in Seongheungsan Fortress (altitude of 240m), this zelkova tree is called the love tree.
It can be easily identified from afar, thus it acts like a symbol for Mt. Seongheung. It is 22m in height and 125cm in circumference at breast height. It is assumed to be about 400 years old. Standing by this tree, you can see the entire Imcheon-myeon as well as Nonsan, Ganggyeong, Iksan, and Seocheon at a glance.
It is where several scenes from the drama Seodongyo (2006; Hyeonjae Cho and Boyeong Lee), Korea’s first drama on Baekje history, was shoot. It is where Jangyi and Princess Seonhwa begin to have feelings for each other. It is where Jangyi builds a house for the princess who was thrown out of the place. It is where the scene on the relationship between annual ring and climate, and ondol were filmed.
The beautiful last scene of KBS drama Great King Sejong (2008) where two characters stand by the big tree was filmed here.
The set is a popular filming location for various dramas and films (Gyebaek, Iljimae, Scent of a Woman, Faith, and The Great Seer).
Baekje Cultural Festival
- Location : Gudurae in Buyeo-eup and the entire Buyeo-eup
- Period : Early, mid-October every year
Baekje Cultural Festival began in 1955 in Buyeo soon after the Korean War. Buyeo natives initiated a steering committee to host the festival.
Buyeo residents voluntarily made donations to build Samchungsa Shrine at the foot of Mt. Buso to enshrine three loyal subjects (Seongchung, Heungsu, Gyebaek) and held a sacrificial rite. Also a suryukjae took place to console the spirit of Baekje women who threw themselves off the cliff when Buyeo was being demolished.
Back then, Baekje Cultural Festival only included rituals to console despair over Baekje’s ruination. However, people from other regions grew interested in the festival and the festival was overcrowded with people who came to watch.
The beginning of Baekje Cultural Festival was rituals to console despair over Baekje’s ruination, but over the years, local cultural events were added.
- Location : Entire Eunsan-myeon, Buyeo-gun
- Period : Every March
Eunsan Byeolsinje is Chungcheongnam-do’s first Important Intangible Cultural Property of Korea and the ninth Important Intangible Cultural Property of Korea, which was designated in 1966.
Byeolsinje is a ritual for local god that each region in the country has. Buyeo’s Eunsan Byeolsinje has its base in traditional shamanism, however it has characteristics of military ceremony, which makes the event more unique. It is one of the famous Byeolsinje in Korea, and people from different areas come to see the 20-day-long ritual that starts with the tree cutting to the ritual for village guardian post (Jangseung).
However, the event is simplified now, and it is held every other year (one big, and one mall). The big ritual takes 6 days.
Mt. Yuwang memorial service
- Location : Mt. Yuwang, Amsoo-ri, Yanghwa-myeon, Buyeo-gun
- Period : August 16th and 17th of the lunar calendar (2 days)
- Host : Mt. Yuwang memorial service steering committee
- Event：Eve festival (ritual for King Uija and displaced people of Baekje), reenactment of Mt. Yuwang tragedy, bier play, street gut, seated gut, and Mt. Yuwang game, etc.
- SummaryIt is an event to commemorate and console King Uija and 12,800 people of Baekje who were taken as captives in 660 to Tang Dynasty. It takes place at Mt. Yuwang, Amsoo-ri, Yanghwa-myeon, Buyeo-gun.
Mt. Yuwang was where the people of Baekje met for the last time. Until 1949, women who live within 100 li came together on August 17th of the lunar calendar to say hello to each other and have fun – so called Mt. Yuwang game. Mt. Yuwang memorial service is the new version of this game which was revived in 1997.
- Location : Seongheungsanseong Fortress, Gunsa-ri, Imcheon-myeon
- Period : End of April(every year, 2 days)
- Host：Imcheon-myeon Cooperative
- Event：Signal fire ritual, mountain spirit ritual, ritual for loyal subject, lotus light parade
- SummaryThis is the memorial service for unknown soldiers who fought against the allied forces of Silla and Tang China at the Seongheungsanseong Fortress in 700 when Baekje demolished.
This was started in 1979 and takes place for 2 days at the end of April. On the first day, the lotus light parade to Seongheungsanseong Fortress takes place and the signal fire ritual is held at the beacon mound.
The next morning are history and culture parade, opening ceremony, and the ritual for loyal subjects. And in the afternoon various events such as traditional music performance, tug of war, gateball competition, and singing competition take place.
By visiting this beautiful city you will learn a lot about Korean history and traditions, especially with the visit of the Busosanseong fortress, being able to walk in nature and admire beautiful landscapes. And then there is also the little boat trip on the Geumgang River.
you would find the city of Buyeo quiet and uncrowded. Without the crowds it was nice to visit. In addition, the different sites are not too far from each other.
Buyeo is less well-known than the former capital of the rival Silla Kingdom, Gyeongju, but it has no shortage of cultural assets and sights, many of which are World Heritage Sites.
In July, there is the Seodong Lotus Festival at Gungnamji Pond. In September-October, the kingdom of Baekje is reborn thanks to the Baekje Cultural Festival. And for those who really want to step back in time, Baekje Cultural Land is a site where a life-size royal palace, temple, tombs and period village are recreated.
But if you don’t have the opportunity to go to Buyeo during your stay in South Korea, you can always visit the Seoul Baekje Museum which is located in Seoul’s Olympic Park. FREE ENTRANCE !