Still looking for an excuse to go explore our little town outside of Humphreys? This coming Saturday, June 24th, there are two festivals going on in Paengseong! TWO! I remember growing up and looking forward to two festivals in an entire year in my small town but here in Korea I get to see festivals every week. I made a quick map to help newcomers to Paengseong find wonderful locations for a weekend outing in our backyard.
Every year, Art Camp hosts the MATO Festival on the last Saturday of each summer month. This year, MATO will be running all the way until October and each month will have a new theme. Let the kids play in the free pool area and bounce houses while eating bizarre hotdogs covered in crazy sauces. Visit the information booth to join the festival scavenger hut and to get times for performances. There are booths lining the ville with hands on arts and crafts and local artisans selling their wares and products.
MATO Festival stretches along the Ville’s main road outside the Humphrey’s Walking Gate. The festival hours are 1200-1800 on June 24th.
PIEF opened the doors of Paengseong’s Traditional School to the public for the first time in decades and the events from these past few months are a huge success. Don’t miss out on the last School Celebration for 2017, the theme is Korean Weddings and it’s going to be gorgeous!
The Traditional School Celebration is located right behind Korea Mart. For those using the 20 bus from the Humphrey’s Walking Gate, it is a 5-10 minute ride. Get off when you see the big orange Korea Mart up on the hill. Make sure to press the red stop button or the driver will go right past. It’s ok if you miss the stop, get off at the next one. It is a quick walk back, about a block. The festival hours are 1200-1800 on June 24th.
PIEF is also hosting a free tour of a Traditional Folk Village on Saturday. Contact PIEF for more information on their Event Page. Note: This tour is hosted from the Songtan PIEF branch outside of Osan Airbase.
Have you been to Paengseong’s Parks?
Paengseong has multiple playgrounds throughout the area but I love Neongseong and Namsan the most. Neongseong is a historical site with wide paths and sidewalks surrounding a very large mound, thought to be a fortress wall, hundreds of years old, that was used to protect the village from raiders.
Namsan Park borders a school and has walking trails, a playground, tennis courts and plenty of places to sit and relax. After playing, explore the village of Songwha-ri and enjoy Topresso Coffee, the Colored Pencil stationairy store, Dream Depot, Jump Nori and more!
If you haven’t already downloaded it, the South of Seoul app is a must have for English speaking foreigners in Pyeongtaek. When you are ready to eat, open up the map under the Paengseong heading and find restaurants near you.
Is the day getting too Hot to keep exploring?
If you haven’t hit up a Korean convenience Store you are missing out. Did you know you can buy a pouch of a flavored beverage and pour it over a cup of ice (included with purchase) and walk out of a 7-11 with an amazing beverage for the fraction of the cost of a cafe drink? And have you tried all the Ice-creams and sodas available? The flavors are out of this world! I have had very few misses when trying new beverages and snacks at convenience stores, almost everything I’ve tried is an instant hit.
For the kids, take them to one of the 3 kid’s cafes up in Songwha-ri after finishing the school celebration. They can all be found in the South of Seoul app.
I can’t help myself! There is no better way to discover Paengseong than to follow Pokestops with Pokemon Go. The Pokestops create a line of exploration up and down Songwha-ri and Anjeong-ri. It is a fun and reliable way to explore the area since the Pokestops are mostly only in town. It’s almost impossible to wander into a rice paddy field while playing Pokemon Go. Read my article here in the Humphreys’ Happening on how using fitness trackers and Pokemon Go help make exploring Korea more fun and exciting.