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Chuncheon (Chuncheon-si) is the capital of Gangwonmarker Province, South Koreamarker. The city lies in the northeast of the country, located in a basin formed by the Soyang River and Han Rivermarker. There are some large lakes around the city, most notably Lake Soyang and Lake Uiam. The area is renowned for its small river islands, such as Sangjungdo, Ha-Jungdo, Bungeo Island, and Wido.

It is now a popular destination among East Asian tourists as it was featured in the popular Korean drama Winter Sonata.

History

The area now occupied by the city was first settled about 1000 years ago by tribal communities. In 637 the city was called Usooju. In 757 it was renamed Saku and again in 940 as Chunju (春州) before receiving its current name in 1413. In 1896, Chuncheon became the capital city of Gangwon province. The city was largely destroyed during the Korean War, but has since been reconstructed.

In 1995 Chuncheon city merged politically with the government of the surrounding Chuncheon county.

Culture

In the spring, the Chuncheon International Mime Festival is organized, as well as the Spring Season Art Festival. In the summer, the Chuncheon Puppet Festival takes place. There is also a festival for Makguksu, a food that Chuncheon is famous for. Also celebrated in the summer, is the International Animation Festival. Every autumn, Chuncheon Marathon takes place. In winter, snow and ice festivals are organized.

Food

Makguksu
Chuncheon is famous for its "dak galbi", or chicken ribs. Despite the name, the dish is usually made from an entire chicken, not just the ribs. It consists of chicken, Chinese cabbage, sweet potatoes, tteok (rice cakes), and scallions, mixed with a spicy sauce and usually cooked in the center of the table.

The city was historically known as a centre for chicken farms. There is even a street in the city dedicated to restaurants serving the dish, with some 25 restaurants populating the area.

The other major dish famous in Chuncheon is makguksu.

Economy

Chuncheon is the market centre for agricultural produce from the surrounding lands. The main products are rice and soybeans. Since the 1960s light industry has become dominant in the city. However, after its huge success of airing TV drama called Winter Sonata, this city has become a major "Korean wave" (Han-ryu, 한류) tour destination. Most of tourists from the East Asia come to visit.

There are hydroelectric powerplants in the area around Chuncheon. The Soyang River Dam is the largest sand gravel dam in East Asia.

Education

Chuncheon is home to 5 universities: Chuncheon National University of Education, established in 1939, Kangwon National University, founded 1947, and Hallym University, established in 1982, Hallym Sungsim University, Korea Politec 3 University.

Transportation

Chuncheon Station
Chuncheon, currently Namchuncheon Station, is at the end of the Gyeongchun Railway Line. This is mostly single track connecting the city to Cheongnyangni Station in Seoulmarker. At present (as of August 2009), a new realigned twin track electrified line is under construction, several new stations are being constructed to replace the existing halts. It is also the northern terminus of the Jungang Expressway, eastern terminus of the new Seoul-Chuncheon Expressway, and various national and regional roads connect it to the outlying regions of Gangwon or Gyeonggi, with Chuncheon Bus Terminal. Highway buses to Daegumarker and Gwangjumarker (both 'metropolitan city') also operates in Highway-bus Terminal, which nears. There are also river transport facilities in Soyangho (Lake Soyang), which connects to Cheongpyeongsa (청평사, Buddhist) temple.

Climate

The average temperature in the city is 10.9°C. The lowest measured temperature was −27.9°C, and the highest was 36.6°C. There is an average of 1,296 mm of annual rainfall.

Sister cities

Chuncheon-si protested against the enactment of "Day of Takeshimamarker" ordinance of Shimane Prefecturemarker and announced to suspend the sisterhood relationship with Kakamigahara in March, 2005.



See also



References

  1. Chuncheon's Dakgalbi (spicy stir-fried chicken with vegetables), Tour2Korea.com, Retrieved on April 14, 2006
  2. A promo page of Gangwon Drama Gallery, Chuncheon City, 2005
  3. Lake Soyang (Gangwon province)


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