Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul: Ant Village in Seoul, South Korea

A few years ago, while I was living and working in South Korea, I visited an area in Northwestern Seoul called Gaemi Maeul which literally translates to “Ant Village“.

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

It is a small community of around 400 residents who live high above the city at the foot of Mount Ingwangsan. They received that name which truly describes their hard work. Elderly workers go up and down the winding roads and alleys and just keep a busy pace all day long. It is also one of the last “moon villages” in the country because at that height you can see the moon clearly and feel much closer to it.

I learned that back in the 1950’s, when the city was rapidly expanding following the Korean War, they were among a group of people who had arrived there because they had nowhere else to go. They were fiercely opposed to the construction of high rises in the area. Therefore they set up tents and marked their territory. Authorities let them stay and that led them to build their homes and some have been living in precarious conditions since then.

Unfortunately, residential developers have not given up and they still want to grab their hands on this very valuable piece of land. So it is only a matter of time before the inevitable happens.

In 2010, a group of art majors from neighboring universities were asked to help beautify this area, so they happily volunteered and let their imagination soar! They created some amazing art which definitely brought back the village to life and injected new energy.

This helped to draw visitors from all over the city and the country! The location was perfect for movies and documentaries broadcasted on national television.

For photographers and art lovers, like me, it was a real feast for the eyes!

One important thing I learned is to be more humble about where I live, what I have and not complain. The way these people still live today is simply admirable. They make the best they can with whatever they have!

If you are ever in Seoul, I highly recommend you go on a day trip!

Now let me take you on a photography (and colorful) tour of Gaemi Maeul: Ant Village in Seoul, South Korea

Gaemi Maeul or Ant Village is a traditional village in Seoul, South Korea which has withstood the test of time and also modernization. Local university students beautified the walls and houses to make it more lively and preserve the essence of this community.

through the following images.

Enjoy!

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, orange flower, photography

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, Colorful, yellow wall, balloons, photography

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, Colorful wall, photography

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, Colorful wall, photography, sunflower

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, Colorful wall, photography, rose. giant rose

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, Colorful wall, photography, flowers

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, orange flower

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, Colorful wall, photography, mural, painting, sunflowers

ballons, mural, Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography

lotus, lotus flower, Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography,

sunflower, Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

Gaemi Maeul, Ant Village, Seoul, South Korea, Art, colorful wall, photography, background, view, painting

I hope you enjoyed the tour.

Now I am curious and would like to know something,

 

Would you travel just to see some awesome art? 

If so, tell us where and why!

Until next time

Love always,

Kay 🙂

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16 thoughts on “Gaemi Maeul: Ant Village in Seoul, South Korea

  1. Tom Stockwell (@waegook_tom) says:

    How on earth did I spend almost 4 years in Korea and KNOW NOTHING ABOUT GAEMI MAEUL?!? It looks like EXACTLY the kind of place that I’d enjoy visiting! The street art reminds me of the artwork around Cheonan’s old town area. So colourful, and the designs make you feel happy just looking at them! Although one of the walls in Cheonan did feature an ajumma having a giant poo. That was….special.

    • traveller soul says:

      You sure would have loved going around and admire these murals.

      I read that there are over 50 around this tiny enclave!

      Getting there is a good workout (going uphill) but it’s totally worth it as you can see.

      Believe it or not it is only 3 stations away from Gyeongbokgung Palace!

      Oh yes, i read about Cheonan too. Never made it there ;( That graphic image you described must be a major attraction 😉

      TYVM for stopping by!

  2. travelideaz (@travelideazblog) says:

    It’s really inspiring for me how Korea has turned the tides and gone for the better. I remember when they had almost nothing, trying to rebuild a nation that was torn apart by war. Now they are wealthier than ever. Their art and determination really defines them as a country.

    • traveller soul says:

      South Korea is an amazing country.

      I lived there for two years & would do it again in a heartbeat!

      Learning about its past made me respect them more. Their strength, determination and values are inspiring!

      Thank you for visiting 😉

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