본문

Dark Tourism: Painful memories of Jeju Island - Korean Independence (Aug. 15) and the Jeju Hangil Anti-Japanese Movement

The emerald sea and vast expanses of pasture, the fields of fragrant springtime canola flowers, and the windy island paths marked by basalt stone walls. This is undoubtedly Jeju scenery, and peaceful scenery at that. However, during the Japanese Occupation of Korea from 1910 to 1945, Jeju was used as a strategic outpost due to its proximity to Japan. Particularly at the end of World War 2, Jeju became an area where Japanese forces prepared to make a last stand, resulting in the island being caught up in the final frenzy of the war. This year marks the 72nd anniversary of the end of World War 2, and so in remembrance, here are a few of the wartime occupation sites that you can view for yourself and learn more about this tragic event in Jeju’s history.

Detail

  1. DEL

    Dark Tourism: Painful memories of Jeju Island

    Korean Independence (Aug. 15) and the Jeju Hangil Anti-Japanese Movement

    The emerald sea and vast expanses of pasture, the fields of fragrant springtime canola flowers, and the windy island paths marked by basalt stone walls. This is undoubtedly Jeju scenery, and peaceful scenery at that. However, during the Japanese Occupation of Korea from 1910 to 1945, Jeju was used as a strategic outpost due to its proximity to Japan. Particularly at the end of World War 2, Jeju became an area where Japanese forces prepared to make a last stand, resulting in the island being caught up in the final frenzy of the war. This year marks the 72nd anniversary of the end of World War 2, and so in remembrance, here are a few of the wartime occupation sites that you can view for yourself and learn more about this tragic event in Jeju’s history.

    The scars of war covered in verdant fields

    Altteureu Airfield


    Amid farmers’ fields in the Songaksan area are some rather odd structures. The area’s large plateau is perfect for farmland and pastures. In fact, Altteureu means “wide garden below”. However, it was also seen by the Japanese military as a strategic place to build an airfield for its military objectives in the region. 

    And so this farmland, which would otherwise be life-giving, was turned into an instrument of war and death. From the 1920s, the residents of nearby Moseulpo were ordered by the Japanese military to begin construction on an airfield there. Reinforced concrete aircraft hangars, too, were strategically placed around the 660,000 square meter airfield. This was then expanded during the Pacific War to 3 million square meters. From here, Japanese forces launched attacks on China and sent off squadrons of Kamikaze pilots to defend southern Japan. 

    Today, just 19 of these hangars remain to serve as a reminder and education tool for future generations of this terrible time in the history of mankind. 


    Altteureu Airfield



    Address Sangmo-ri, Daejeong-eup, Seogwipo-si
    Bus From Jeju City Intercity Bus Terminal take bus 750-1 and get off at the Igyo-dong Intersection. Total travel time is about 1 hour and 48 minutes.
    Parking Free parking available




    A tragic secret hidden by nature
    Japanese-made Cave Encampment at Sesal Oreum



    The place is otherwise idyllic, with its gorgeous views of  Hyeongjaeseom Islets, Sanbangsan Mountain, and Hallasan Mountain to the north. It is a typical Jeju scene… peaceful and calm. And yet built underneath was one of the Japanese occupations largest military encampments and cave systems in Jeju. It is made up of a 1.2-kilometer-long network of tunnels with six entrances, all engineered to hide crucial military facilities underground and protect them from air raids by Allied Forces during the Pacific War.
    These facilities included a command HQ, soldiers' barracks, fuel storage, aircraft repair facilities, communication rooms, and more. This site is of significant historical importance in demonstrating the realities of war. In terms of its educational value, this site is designated Cultural Property No. 310.


    Japanese-made Cave Encampment at Sesal Oreum



    Address 316 Sangmo-ri, Daejeong-eup, Seogwipo-si
    Bus From Jeju City Intercity Bus Terminal take bus 755 and get off at the Hamo Exercise Park bus stop, then transfer to bus 951 and get off at Sanisu-dong bus stop. Total travel time is about 1 hour and 35 minutes.
    Parking Free parking available




    Marks of mankind left on nature

    Japanese-made Coastal Cave Encampment at Songaksan Mountain


    Carved into an otherwise pristine coastal cliff at Songaksan Mountain are Japanese military caves built in 1945 — the tail end of their Pacific War campaign. It was part of their final attempt to defend against approaching Allied troops, a so-called “Operation No. 7” to hide and protect its military equipment, including small submarines and anti-aircraft guns.


    There are 15 man-made caves carved into the rock in a variety of shapes. The longest is 57.3 meters. These are now designated Cultural Property No. 313 and serve as a sad reminder of the damage and death which war inflicts on current — and future — generations. 

    Japanese-made Coastal Cave Encampment at Songaksan Mountain



    Address 195-2 Sangmo-ri, Daejeong-eup, Seogwipo-si
    Bus From Jeju City Intercity Bus Terminal take bus 755 and get off at the Hamo Exercise Park bus stop, then transfer to bus 951 and get off at Sanisu-dong bus stop. Total travel time is about 1 hour and 35 minutes.
    Parking Free parking available



    Painful history remembered

    Jeju Peace Museum


    This museum has an exhibition hall with real items and documents from the Japanese occupation and war effort. On site is also the Gama Oreum Japanese Underground Fortress (registered Cultural Property No. 308 in December 2006.) The total length of this man-made cafe is more than 2 kilometers with a three-floor structure. There is also a theater which seats 1,200 people and shows video testimony of individuals involved in the war and occupation, a poignant reminder of the the misery of war and indisputable evidence that there are no winners or losers, only victims.


    Jeju Peace Museum



    Address 63 Cheongsuseo 5-gil, Hangyeong-myeon, Jeju-si
    Hours 08:30~18:00 (summer) 08:30~17:00 (winter) (Tickets available until 1 hour before closing time)
    Fees Adults 6,000 won, Youth, Children 4,000 won
    Bus From Jeju City Intercity Bus Terminal take bus 702 to the Gosan Post Office bus stop, then transfer to bus 952 and get off at Pyeonghwa-dong Hwaegwan bus stop. Total travel time is approximately 2 hours and 23 minutes.
    Parking Free parking available
    Web www.peacemuseum.co.kr
    Phone 064-772-2500



    The starting point of Jeju Anti-Japanese Movement

    Jocheon Manse Memorial


    Jeju Hangil Memorial Hall was built to commemorate the March First Anti-Japanese Movement, which began in the Jocheon region, starting on March 21, 1919. Jeju Hangil Memorial Hall houses the March First Independence Movement Monument, the March First Independence Movement Memorial Hall, the Pillar of Peace, and an outdoor stage. The memorial hall honors the anti-Japanese movement of Jeju every Samiljeol (March 1st Movement Day), and events that recreate the independence demonstrations of the times, as well as a marathon that reflects on the anti-Japanese movement, are held there. The memorial hall collects, preserves, and displays historical material regarding Jeju’s anti-Japanese independence movement. It has successfully commemorated the noble self-sacrificing spirit and the independent spirit of those who gave up their lives in Jeju for the anti-Japanese movement. It serves as an educational space to cultivate a sense of patriotism in future generations and ensure that they are aware of their history.





    Jocheon Manse Memorial



    Address 1142 Jocheon-ri, Jocheon-eup, Jeju-si
    Bus From Jeju City Intercity Bus Terminal take bus 701 to the Jocheon Gymnasium bus stop. Total travel time is approximately 33 minutes.
    Parking Free parking available
    Phone 064-783-2008



    Stronger than the wind and waves, the will of the women divers

    Jeju Haenyeo Hangil Movement Memorial Park


    The anti-Japanese movement as carried out by the women divers of Jeju Island began when on Jan. 7, 1932, the local fishing union started giving Japanese merchants unfair price advantages, to the detriment of the livelihoods of the haenyeo. They organized peaceful protests all around the island and prompted the then Jeju governor to promise to address the matter. However, Japanese officials saw fit to investigate and arrest these women in large numbers. The demonstrations continued for a few more weeks until on Jan. 27, when the movement was completely halted in its tracks.


    The Jeju Haenyeo Hangil Movement Memorial Park in Gujwa-eup, Jeju City, was created to commemorate these women and their participation in the anti-Japanese movement. Inside the Jeju Haenyeo Museum, you can learn more about their efforts and see important historical items, writings and photographs from that time. 


     



    Jeju Haenyeo Hangil Movement Memorial Park



    Address 26 Haenyeobakmulgwan-gil, Jocheon-eup, Jeju-si
    Bus From Jeju City Intercity Bus Terminal take bus 701 to the Haenyeo Museum Entrance bus stop. Total travel time is approximately 80 minutes.
    Parking Free parking available
    Web www.haenyeo.go.kr
    Phone 064-782-9898





Notice
※ The above information was written on 2017-08-11. Please confirm the information prior to your trip.
※ Unauthorized use of the content above (text, photos and videos) is prohibited and subject to copyright by the Jeju Tourism Organization.