Gwangju Blog

GFN K-Pop Singing Contest

GFN (Gwangju Foreign language Network) is hosting a ‘K-pop Singing Contest’ targeting foreigners residing in Gwangju and Jeollanamdo during the Gwangju World Kimchi Culture Festival 2014.
Anyone can apply to perform a K-Pop song on stage!

K-Pop Singing Contest

Check out these details:

1. Preliminary Round:

  • Date: September, 20th (Sat) 14:00
  • Place: GFN Studio 3F
  • If unable to participate in an audition, send us a VOD file

2. Final Round:

  • Date: October, 4th (Sat) 18:30 ~
  • Place: Gwangju World Kimchi Culture Festival stage (Gwangju Jung-oe Park)

3. How to apply:

  • Download and complete an application form at
  • Then, email the completed form to

4. The application period will be from September 1st(Mon) 19th (Fri)

1st place: 500,000won (1 team)
2nd place: 200,000won (1 team)
3rd place: 100,000won (1 team)
4th place: 50,000won (1 team)
5th place: 50,000won (1 team)

Essentials with JD # 153 **GWANGJU CHUSEOK PLANS!!**

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Spent all your money on your summer vacation and left it too late to make plans for this long weekend? Or just don’t want to get caught up in the traffic craziness that is about to descend on Korea in the next couple of days? Well the City of Gwangju has many artistic and traditional things happening this Chuseok vacation to keep you cultured.


First – Happy Chuseok and for many it might be your first Korean Thanksgiving here so be prepared for increased volumes of people into Gwangju as many people from other regions return to the city to spend time with families.


For non-Korean’s though this family holiday adds up to some free time which is great as the 10th Annual Gwangju Bienalle also opens this weekend. Under the title of ‘Burning down the house’ it aims to bring back the essence of what the Bienalle aimed from the outset. To be a leader in contemporary art in Asia. Located in JungAe park in Maegok dong, Bukgu and is easily accessible from all over Gwangju through public transport or just by telling the taxi driver Gwangju Bienalle. Tickets for adults cost 14 000won and features art from all over the world in 5 event halls. Definitely a must see for this weekend. More information can be found on their website.

Directions: bus no. 83 or 64 and get off at the Biennale Exhibit Hall.

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Also while in the park you might want to wonder around to the Gwangju Folk Museum which is situated right next to the Bienalle. Here you can partake in traditional Korean festivities, cooking as well as games – in the aim of helping local and foreign citizens to enjoy the spirit of Chuseok. All events cost around 10 000won and you can make songpyeon – rice cake stuffed with redbean or honey and sesame seeds and also play traditional games. ( online reservations might be needed – ask a Korean friend to help you with this – )


Events occur outside of the Museum and run from 10am – 5pm daily until 10th of September.


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Stay safe and Happy Chuseok.




Mudeung Mountain’s Dakdoritang

Dakdoritang served in a local restaurant in Mudeung mountain -

Dakdoritang served in a local restaurant in Mudeung mountain – Photo by Joe Wabe

A trip to Mudeung mountain national park, whether for hike or a short visit, would not be completed without trying out one of the many local and traditional “chicken restaurants”. On March 4th, 2013, Mudeungsan was appointed as Korea’s 21st national park, adding a fourth national park to Jeollanamdo and recognising Gwangju’s “mother mountain” as a natural treasure of the country. Since it became a national park, the creation of new restaurants is prohibited, leaving the existing restaurants as part of the history and tradition of the mountain.

One of the most popular dishes from these restaurants is Dakdoritang (닭도리탕 ) or Dak-bokkeum (닭볶음). Dakdoritang is a chicken dish that’s cooked in a spicy red pepper sauce along with potatoes, carrots, and onions. Cutting up a whole chicken into small pieces, and cooking it on a stove with a slow cooker. The sauce is slightly sweet, and it mixes well with white rice on the side. The potatoes soak in the flavor and it gives the dish a warm, starchy, comforting quality.

Daktdoritang 닭도리탕 was the old name for this dish, but there has been a backlash against the name because it has Japanese origins. These days there is a movement to call it Dak-bokkeum 닭볶음. Regardless of the name, it is delicious and one of my favorite dishes.

Meet Art and Culture at the Daein Night Time Ark Market, ‘Byeoljang Project’



Korea’s first night time art market constructed in the local traditional market space, ‘Byeongjang Project’, taking place once a month in Daein Market in the Dong-gu district of Gwangju is gaining popularity among nationwide visitors and artists.

Since its initial establishment last year, artistic goods and street music performances, as well as food vendors and outdoor restaurants, have been garnering attention among nationwide tourists, Gwangju citizens, and media personnel in capital regions.

Artistic items on sale include hand-made accessories ranging from ear rings, rings, necklaces, bracelets, clothes, lifestyle commodities, such as candles and soap, as well as artistic pictures taken by local photographers and paintings and frame works.

The entire structure of the traditional market has been remodeled to promote greater convenience among visitors.

Foods and beverages that can satisfy visitors from diverse backgrounds are being sold at the Byeoljang Project in the Daein Nighttime Art Market.

Visitors can also make their own artistic items with the help of artists and sellers at the market and enjoy street music performed by indie and jazz musicians based in Gwangju while eating and shopping at the market.

The next Daein Nighttime Art Market Byeoljang Project will be opened from September 4th to the 6th on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and operation hours are set at 7 p.m. to midnight.

Free Bike Terminal is Now Back in Service: Ride Bike on Gwangju and Yeongsan River as Much as You’d Like from September


Starting in September, bikers in the city of Gwangju can take advantage of the free bike terminal constructed and available for the biking course on Yeongsan River and Gwangju River.

A total of seven bike tunnel service areas were expected to be in operation until this June, but with the arrival of sweltering hot summer days the tunnels were closed for the summer season.

Gwangju Metropolitan City previously constructed a total of 7 bike tunnels under the various bridges established on the Gwangju and Yeongsan River and all bike tunnels and its operations will resume from September to November.

Operation hours of the bike tunnels are set at 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on every Sunday of the week, and bikers can use the free repair service for any broken or damaged bikes at the tunnel.

Bike tunnels are also equipped with temporary storage space for bicycles and various biking path guidance maps across the Gwangju and Yeongsan River.

From March to June this year alone, more than 8,000 bikers across the city took advantage of the bike tunnel service.

Bike tunnels are located in Namgwang Bridge (Nam-gu) and Gwangju 2 Bridge (Seo-gu) on the Gwangju River and Cheomdan + Sandong + Uhdeung + Geuklak  Bridge (Gwangsan-gu) and Seungchonbo (Gwangsan-gu).