Guesthouses in Jeonju Hanok Village: Omokhun and TheHanok
Jeonju Hanok Village has more to offer beyond sightseeing, walking around in hanbok, taking instagrammable photos, and eating local delicacies and creative street foods. After a hectic day, when the dusk sets in, you may choose to rest at one of traditional Korean guesthouses with beautiful tile roof, granite-paved courtyard, and traditional beddings. The guesthouses of Jeonju Hanok Village, once used to be homes of the locals, are renovated to accommodate visitors from around the world. Today, I’ll introduce the most distinctive ones.
Taking ‘professional’ photos at “Omokhun”
Omokhun is the guesthouse managed by a master photographer with four decades of experience. If you love taking photos or appearing in photos, this is the place to stay. The manager will take dozens of or even hundreds of photos for you until you’re happy with them. Sounds surreal but it’s true, because I myself spent a night there.
Omokhun is accessible from the main street of the Hanok Village. Did you notice the photos of the hanok buildings? I can already sense something special here.
Omokhun used to be the residential home, before renovated into a guesthouse. The rooms are named after the major attractions of Jeonju, such as Gyeonggijeon, Pungnammun, Omokdae, Hanbyukru, Hyanggyo, and many more.
The rafters, pillars, and lightings resembling Korean traditional lantern give antique and elegant air to the place. The beddings were white and clean.
The room seemed convenient enough for those visiting Korea for the first time. All the rooms have private bathrooms. I spent in the room “Omokdae” about two years ago. I was happy with everything, although the bathroom was a bit small. Now. I’ll introduce the photography service for the guests of Omokhun.
The manager of Omokhun is the member of the Professional Photographers of America (PPA). He earned the title of “master” photographer in 2013. He takes free photos for those staying at the guesthouse. This has drawn many visitors to the guesthouse. Even the locals spend a night here to be photographed by the manager.
Occasionally, the manager even takes 200~300 photos for the guests. He started guiding people around the Hanok Village’s photogenic spots, because it was regrettable that the visitors seemed to be missing all the fascinating sights over food. His favorite spots are hanji (Korean traditional paper) factories, mural villages, Omokdae Pavilion, and Chungyeonru Pavilion.
The guesthouse is popular among people all over the world, including England, Philippines, Thailand, Mexico, and others. Those stayed in the guesthouse tend to stay in touch with the manager.
The guests often spend one to two hours with the manager, walking around the Hanok Village to take photos. He sometimes buys warm tea and desserts to the guests. When there are many guests, he even takes photos until 11pm at night, carrying illuminating devices.
I stayed at Omokhun during the middle of winter. Even then he guided me and my friends around the Hanok Village to take photos. His aim is to take photos for the guests until they are tired. In 2017, he received the “Guest Review Award” from the Booking.com.
I highly recommend Omokhun for the accommodation and photography experience!
Address: 76 Eunhaengro, Wansangu, Jeonju
Contact: 063-288-2662 / 010-3659-4449
Authentic Korean experience at “TheHanok”
Jeonju Hanok Village was formed about a century ago, as part of the local resistance against the Japanese colonial invasion. Now the Hanok Village is a bustling tourist center, featured in the “Lonley Planet” and other prominent travel magazines around the world.
More than 10 million people are visiting the Hanok Village every year. However, only a decade ago, the Hanok Village was a quiet and old residential neighborhood with the locals actually residing in the traditional hanok buildings.
Trying local delicacies and taking photos in hanbok must be on your to-do list. But since you’re in the Hanok Village, you shouldn’t miss the authentic hanok experience!
As its name indicates “TheHanok” is a traditional Hanok accommodation. The buildings are facing south, ideal for enjoying the ample sunlights pouring into the room during the day.
Until very recently, the buildings used to be a real residential home before being renovated.
The guesthouse has the clay-granite courtyard. Traditional Korean homes don’t cover the courtyard with lawn, since it was considered that the lawn is for tombs. During the colonial era, Japan deliberately covered the palaces’ courtyards with lawn to transform the palaces into ‘parks’.
The owners of the guesthouse didn’t plant trees in the courtyard to let the wind blow through the buildings. Also, it’s healthy to walk barefoot on the granite pebbles, which radiates infrared rays at night.
On the corner of the courtyard is the 80-year old mortar and thresher.
You’ll find many elegant antiques that makes you travel back in time. Let’s have a look at the inside then!
The name of this wide two-storied room is “Eoulrim”. This is probably the biggest guesthouse room in the Hanok Village, hosting up to 20 people.
The owners didn’t compartmentalise the wide room to preserve its original form. I really loved the antique furniture, such as the calligraphy and folding screen in the room.
The Joseon-era porcelains are exhibited in the cabinet. I start wondering if the whole guesthouse should be designated as an official cultural heritage.
The building interior is made from red clay, cypress tree, and hanji (traditional Korean paper) wallpaper. The woods are lacquered with a natural substance. The beddings are white and clean. Some rooms even have the automatic massage chair.
Believe it or not, according to the owner of the guesthouse, the site has really good energy. Among the people who used to live here, three have received doctoral degree and one high school student was admitted to the Seoul National University. Those who stay here are exposed to such good energy.
The guesthouse even has the seminar room with a small library. The room has been popular for the meetings of academics and writers.
I really loved the breakfast with fresh rice cake, honey, fruits, and tea. In 2018, TheHanok is acknoweldged by the Korea Tourism Organization for its excellence in hanok stay. The owner couple is fluent in both English and Mandarin.
Address: 68-15 Eunhaengro, Wansangu, Jeonju
Contact: 010-2189-4002 , 010-4727-4002
If you’re visiting Jeonju Hanok Village, why not try one of the authentic hanok guesthouses? I can guarantee that this will be a forever memorable experience!