Welcome to our extraordinaryJeju Small-Group Dark Tour, designed for those seeking to uncover the fascinating and poignant history of Jeju Island. This immersive experience will take you on a captivating journey through time, spanning significant events from the Korea Dynasty to the Japan invasion during World War 2, the cold war division into north and south, and right up to the present day. As we explore this storied island, you’ll encounter numerous historical sites that have withstood the passage of time, serving as powerful reminders of its past. Join us on this remarkable adventure, and together, we’ll unveil the hidden treasures of Jeju Island’s history.
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AVAILABLE PICK UP AREA
Begin your day with pick up service between 8:30~9:00am, at your hotel in Jeju city downtown area. Your exact pick up time will be informed before the tour date.
Gwandeokjeong Hall, which is located at the center of downtown Jeju, serves as a meeting ground as well as a milestone. It is designated as Treasure No. 322 and is familiar sight to the resident in Jejudo Island. Jejumok-Gwana Government Office was located near Gwandeokjeong Hall (Treasure 322), and used to be an area where government offices were located. From the Tamnaguk to the Joseon Dynasty, the Jejumok-Gwana served as the center of administration in Jeju. Gwandeokjeong Pavilion was built by Pastor Sin Suk-Cheong in the thirtieth year of King Sejong’s reign (1448) as a training ground. On 1 March 1947, people joined the ceremony to commemorate the Independence Movement of 1 March 1919. When they left the protest site, 6 were killed and 8 were injured due to a shooting by the police. This resulted in an unprecedented general strike and later, many Jeju Islanders were detained and tortured in the police station at this site.
The Jeju 4.3 Peace Park is a place dedicated to remembering and commemorating the tragic events of the Jeju 4.3 Incident and the hardships faced by the civilians on the island. It also serves as a symbol of reconciliation and a vision for a future of peace and coexistence, emphasizing human rights.
The establishment of the Jeju 4.3 Peace Park was one of the community’s efforts towards collective compensation for the Jeju 4.3 Incident. In the late 1980s, various civil society organizations were actively involved in the movement to uncover the truth behind the incident. Alongside truth-seeking efforts, they persistently called for the creation of a memorial park. Responding to these demands, Jeju Island announced the construction plan for the Memorial Park in August 1995.
In December 1997, presidential candidate Kim Dae-jung proposed a special law to uncover the truth and compensation for the incident. Public hearings on the memorial project were held by the 4.3 Incident Joint Committee, and during his visit to Jeju, President Kim Dae-jung pledged special funding support for the park’s construction in 1999. The special law was enacted in 2000, and as a result, the groundbreaking ceremony for the Peace Park took place on April 3, 2003, followed by the opening of the Peace Memorial Hall on March 28, 2008.
The Jeju 4.3 Incident holds significant historical meaning, serving as a place to reflect on the honor and rights of the victims, as well as the values of peace, human rights, and reunification. It is also utilized as a site for human rights education, making it a destination of peace and unification and an educational platform.
Gwaneumsa, an ancient temple located on Jeju Island, has a mysterious origin dating back to the Korea Dynasty, though exact details are unknown. According to folklore, it may have existed since the time of the Tamna Kingdom, with legends of various temples like Gwanamjeol, Gaenamjeol, Donggwanamjeol, and Eunjungjeol appearing in local myths and stories. Over the centuries, Gwaneumsa maintained its legacy as an important spiritual site. During the Joseon Dynasty, a monk named Lee Hyeongsang was responsible for overseeing numerous shrines and 500 temple buildings on the island. However, during King Sukjong’s reign, many of these temples were closed down, and Gwaneumsa fell into ruins. The present-day Gwaneumsa Temple was established in 1908 by Venerable Angyeom, also known as the Venerable Anbong Leegwan. Originally, it was called Beopjeongam, which was considered the precursor to Gwaneumsa. At the time of its founding, the temple’s statues and paintings were brought from Yonghwasa and Gwangamsa temples. After facing numerous challenges, Gwaneumsa was reconstructed, but in 1939, a fire broke out, adding to the temple’s troubled history. The temple’s unfortunate fate continued during the tragic Jeju 4.3 Incident in 1948. Positioned on the mid-slopes of Mount Halla, Gwaneumsa became a battleground between guerrilla forces and military troops, resulting in its complete destruction by the military. It was even used as a military base at some point. Despite this devastation, Gwaneumsa was finally restored in 1968. Today, it stands as a testament to resilience and determination, showcasing its rich cultural heritage and historical significance on Jeju Island. Visitors can explore the temple’s history, admire its beautiful architecture, and learn about its profound impact on the island’s modern history.
Lunch menu – Jeju local cuisine
: Altteureu is a pretty name which means “field underneath,” but the concrete buildings that stand here and there are far from pretty. The vast field of Altteureu was used as an airport during the Japanese Imperialism. Altteureu and Jeongtteureu airport, which is now used as Jeju International Airport, are both the representative military facilities of Japanese Forces during Japanese Imperialism. Starting from the mid 1920s, Japanese Forces used residents of Moseulpo as workers to construct runways, hangars, and magazines for ten years. After that, they expanded the facility once more. During the Second Sino-Japanese War, Japanese Forces used Altteureu as an outpost, and when aircrafts from Japan laid over at Altteureu for fueling, they could conduct airstrikes on Shanghai, Beijing, and even Nanjing. Japanese Forces were expanding their frontline to the south and when the war broke out between the United States and Japan ignited by the Pearl Harbor Airstrike, they militarized the south coast and expanded Altteureu airport, which was 66㏊, to 264㏊. When their defeat was certain, Japanese Forces trained their suicide bombers here. Thus, it has a frightening but also very sad past. The hangars were built to resist any airstrikes, so they have not moved a single inch until today. There are about 20 hangars placed in between lettuce farms and potato farms, and entrance is allowed.
Seodal Oreum is a place in the western region of Jeju Island, South Korea, where suspected communist sympathizers were subjected to mass killings shortly after the outbreak of the Korean War. From late July to late August, several large-scale mass shootings took place in areas such as Jeju-eup and Mosulpo in Seogwipo. This period coincided with the People’s Liberation Army’s advance southward, confronting the UN forces on the Nakdong River front on August 8. It seems that in the midst of a crisis where the People’s Liberation Army might occupy the Gyeongsangnam-do and Busan regions, they decided to use Jeju Island as a potential communist stronghold and took action against the suspected sympathizers. Those who were subjected to preliminary detention were held in a sweet potato warehouse under the jurisdiction of the Mosulpo Police Station and a fishing cooperative warehouse under the jurisdiction of the Hanlim-ji office. The individuals confined in the Mosulpo sweet potato warehouse were executed by firing squad on August 20, 1950, at 5 a.m., while those held in the Hanlim fishing cooperative warehouse were executed on the same day at 2 a.m. The execution site was a cave used as an ammunition depot during the Japanese colonial era, located in Sangmori, Daejeong-myeon, Namjeju-gun, known as “Seosul Oreum.” Although it was the same location, the positions of the victims taken from Mosulpo and Hanlim were slightly different. The incident came to light as local residents witnessed the executions on the day of the killings. Around 400 to 500 family members gathered to recover the bodies, but they were prevented from doing so by military personnel from the security agency.
Songaksan Mountain is also called 99 Bong (99 Peaks) due to its 99 small peaks. The road from Sanbanggulsa Temple in Southern Jeju to Songaksan Mountain is a famous coastal drive with breathtaking scenic views. Though not as enormous as Hallasan Mountain, the view from the peak of Songaksan is truly scenic. From the summit, one can see nearby islands such as Marado, Gapado, and Hyeongjeseom, and as far as Hallasan Mountain and the Pacific Ocean.
This is a Japanese military installation that was built in Daejeong-eup during World War 2. There are many traces of underground military camps around Songaksan Mountain. Japanese forces dug huge underground tunnels and established underground military camps. The tunnel near Al Oreum Volcanic Cone of Songaksan Mountain was built big and wide enough so that the military supplies could be transported through it. Also, other tunnels in other regions were connected with each other like a spider web. There are 15 artificial caves at the Songaksan Mountain coastal cliffs. These caves are about 3m – 4m wide and about 20m long. Like the one near Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak, these caves were made for hiding torpedo boats from the Allied Forces.
After finishing the tour, our driver will send you back to the hotel. Tour will end around 18:00.
Fascinating and Poignant History of Jeju Island
To maintain the quality of the tour, we limit 15pax per group.
WHY YOU MUST CHOOSE CORE TRAVEL
WHY CHOOSE CORE TRAVEL FOR YOUR JEJU VACATION?
You can make a cash payment 125USD(=150,000KRW) when you meet our guide at the designated pickup point.
If you cancel the reservation, the penalty must be paid.
※ Please request changes or refunds during business hours.