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Quench Your Thirst in Jeonju: Discover the Tasty Water of ‘Ssangsaem’ that Even King Taejo Lee Seong-gye Couldn’t Forget

“Ssangsaem of Jeonju Hanok Village,
Finally Restored in 2022″

Good day, all!
Though there are innumerable beautiful attractions in Jeonju Hanok Village, there are still many diamonds in the rough. So today, I’d like to introduce you to the relatively lesser-known ‘Ssangsaem Square’, which was finally restored last year (2022).

As a drone enthusiast, I frequently capture the stunning scenery of Jeonju from the air. This time, I chose to showcase the dynamic beauty of Ssangsaem Square through close-up and drone shots.

The original Ssangsaem was located between Jaman Village and Jeonju Hyanggyo, but it vanished in 1997 due to a road construction project, only to be restored last year. The name Ssangsaem comes from the fact that there are two wells, one above the other. (In Korean, ‘ssang’ means ‘double!’)

“A Beautiful Bird’s Eye View,
Blended with the Surrounding Hanok”

Ssangsaem was once the lifeblood of Hanok Village residents. In fact, King Taejo Lee Seong-gye, the founder of the Joseon Dynasty, tasted the water in Ssangsaem and couldn’t forget it for the rest of his life.

A married woman who drinks the water from this well was believed to give birth to twins. This story is thought to have originated due to the wells’ identical appearance, much like twins.

Ssangsaem was always famous for its pure, pristine water that’s perfect for making delicious mung bean jelly as well as acorn jelly. According to locals, the water tasted so good and savory that no additional seasoning was required to make the jelly taste better! This enchanting spot has earned the nickname “Muksaemgol( “Muk” in Korean means ‘acorn jelly!’)’ and now boasts a charming well and a vibrant square.

Next, get ready to explore the wonders of Ssangsaem Square! With the help of an informative board, you’ll quickly grasp the layout of the surrounding facilities. Capture the essence of this picturesque location through the lens of a drone, revealing a harmonious blend of the spacious square and traditional hanok buildings.

Although the square may seem somewhat confined from ground level, the bird’s-eye view showcases a refreshing oasis hidden among the buildings and houses.

Dive into close-up drone shots of Ssangsaem Square’s unique features, starting with the small pond perfect for kids that love splashing around during hot summer months. Just watch your step, as the warning sign indicates that surfaces can be slippery in winter!

As I wandered past the pond, I eagerly headed towards the wells. Ssangsaem Square boasts both a round well and a square well, each with its own unique charm. First up, I checked out the round well. I found out that it was actually a shallow, decorative structure without water in it.
Safety concerns may have influenced the design, but the round well certainly maintains a nostalgic, traditional atmosphere of a traditional well thanks to its stacked stones.

“The History of Majungmul”

There were two traditional-style pumps next to the round well. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen such manual pumps, which brings me the nostalgia of childhood visits to my grandparents’ cottage.
For the first time, I learned the term ‘majungmul,’ which refers to the water poured into the pump beforehand. These classic-style pumps are now uncommon, as most homes have running water. Without a clear explanation, children these days may not even know what they are!

“Experience Drawing Water
from the Square Well”

Next, I ventured to the square well. Cleverly designed with a roof to prevent contamination from rain or falling debris, this well is much deeper and filled with water compared to its round counterpart. Interestingly, while the top is square, the structure becomes round as it goes deeper.

The water isn’t suitable for drinking, but you can still enjoy the experience of drawing water from this well. Fair warning though – the water was heavier than I anticipated! It might be a bit risky for children, so make sure to keep an eye on them during the experience.

There is an intriguing decorative structure. At first, I couldn’t quite grasp its purpose, but as I stepped inside and took in the view, everything clicked. The sight of trees and blue sky beyond a fence, perfectly framed by the doorway, was simply mesmerizing.

So there you have it – my adventure at the restored Ssangsaem Square. The area was more spacious than I’d imagined, and I truly enjoyed the unique opportunity to interact with traditional wells.

I highly recommend a visit to Ssangsaem Square for a different and memorable experience. It’s especially great for families with children, as it offers an on-site educational opportunity as well.
That’s a wrap for today, fellow adventurers. Wishing you all safe and exciting journeys!


<Ssangsaem Square>

Location: 49-6, Gyo-dong, Wansan-gu, Jeonju, Jeollabuk-do

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