Gurye Sansuyu Festival
Every year in mid-March, the Sandong-myeon area in Gurye, Jeollanam-do takes on yellow hues all around from its yellow sansuyu (cornus fruit) flowers. Seen from afar, sansuyu looks like forsythia. Up close, however, it is a very small flower with petals only about 2 millimeters long. The flower itself is not so fancy on its own, but when seen by the thousands, they become a sight to behold.
Gurye Sansuyu Festival 2014 is held in the hot springs district of Jirisan Mountain in Gurye from March 22-30, when the refreshing spring breeze blows from the Seomjingang River. Gurye accounts for more than 70 percent of the nation’s sansuyu production, as it offers optimal conditions for sansuyu cultivation, such as good natural drainage and a wide temperature difference between day and night. The area most famous for sansuyu is Gurye Sandong Maeul Village. The name “Sandong” was given because, about a thousand years ago, a Chinese maiden from Shan Dong, China came to marry a Korean man in a mountain village in Jirisan. Upon her arrival, she planted a sansuyu tree that she brought from China. In particular, the groves of sansuyu are dense in the areas around Gyecheon-ri, Wonchon-ri, and Wian-ri in the town of Sandong-myeon, so the whole area takes on the yellow hues of a bright spring jacket.