A 500-year old hackberry tree?
The center of trade with Japan during the Joseon Dynasty?
The dock where Korea's first piano arrived?
The filming site of a movie filmed during the Japanese colonial era?
What do all of these have in common you ask? Well, they all happened here at the Samunjin Naruteo Dock. A small area home to three traditional taverns that give visitors a view of what most of the Korean peninsula used to look like. The ground covering the area of the dock/tavern village isn’t much, but the history it holds makes it seem grander than it is today.
The arrival point of Korea's first piano
The first piano that arrived on the Korean peninsula was thanks to a man named Richard Henry Sidebotham in the early 1900s. After getting a piano from the US to Busan, he successfully transported it via boat along the Nakdong River to this very port. It was from here where he was able to get to his home in central Daegu to present to his wife. Currently, the piano is on display at the Medical Missions Museum of Dongsan Medical Center. The “100 Piano Concert” has been held annually since 2012 to celebrate and commemorate this event. You can see piano themes all around here.
500-year old hackberry tree
It isn’t uncommon to see old trees at the entrance of historical locations. (ie: Otgol Village, Dodong Seowon) In the case of this one, it is so strong that sailors often tied their boats around it whenever the river flooded. At one point it was at the risk of being chopped down for preparation of a four-river project. However, thanks to the people of Dalseong-gun who fought to keep it alive, the tree remained unscathed. Today it is one of the most popular attractions in the area.
Ferry on the Nakdong River and Hwawon Resort
The Samunjin Tavern Village is part of a larger area called Hwawon Resort. From the ferry, I managed to get a photo of the Seongsan Beacon Lighthouse's roof. Hwawon Resort has a few interesting attractions like Hwawon fortress, an underground cave, two pavilions, an old amusement park, a walking trail along the river, and ancient tombs. If you come here, plan on wearing walking shoes.
Like many of the other tourist attractions in Dalseong-gun, taking the city tour bus is the most convenient way to get here. The ferry ride is optional, so you can instead opt to go see the lighthouse, fortress, and other attractions nearby on foot. It’s a short walk past the parking lot.
Address: Dalseong-gun, Hwawon-eup, Samunjin-ro 1-gil 40-3