Yongma Land is an abandoned theme park in Seoul, South Korea. It went out of business in 2011, but much of the park remains intact. It is very easy to enter, a man at the entrance charges KRW10,000 (the equivalent of about $10USD). Unlike other urban exploration sites, this place is actually quite well known amongst the locals. The day I went there were at least 15 other people there. Koreans LOVE photo shoots. If you ever visit Korea, you will notice that they go all out for their photo shoots... costumes, props, tripod stands, everything, all for the ‘gram! There was a wide range of professional photographers with models, to groups of friends with their iPhones. It was super cool to explore. Although I do admit, having others around, plus not having to sneak in, made it lack the eeriness that other abandoned sites I’ve been to normally have. But it is still definitely an off-the-beaten-path thing to do in Seoul. This is actually the third abandoned amusement-type park I've been to, and I always find it interesting to see how nature and decay have affected these brightly colored, man-made, objects of fun, over time. There are quite a few rides and piles of other remnants to see. If you are into urban exploration or photography I would still highly recommend checking it out! Here are some of my favorite shots:
South Korea is just full of things that make you smile, sometimes in a confusing manner. Here is a photographic journey of some of the random, strange, quirky, weird, odd, or just plain cool things I saw when I visited in 2018:
1. Glass MuseumThe Jeju Glass Castle Theme Park is more of a sculpture park or museum, per se. You can spend an hour walking around the interesting glass objects they have arranged in peculiar ways. Jeju Island has over 100 very randomly themed parks and attractions.
2. Poop CafeSouth Korea has many themed cafes and poop is one of them. It's located in the Insadong area of Seoul. Everything from the decor to the food and drinks is poop-themed. There is a stall just outside the cafe that sells poop-shaped choco-bread.
3. Sex Theme ParkLove Land is another one of Jeju Island's interesting "theme parks" (which are more like sculpture parks). It was definitely one of the most unique experienced I had in this country. Here are just a couple photos, but I highly recommend you check out my full post on Love Land for more!
4. Ramen GarbageThis garbage is for ramen soup and nothing more.
5. Rainbow VillageGamcheon Culture Village is located in Busan. It's a beautiful, colorful little village on a mountainside that you can meander throughout and get lost in. It used to be a shanty town, until the government recently decided to give it a face lift and turn it into a tourist attraction.
6. Gangnam StyleGangnam is actually an area of Seoul, known for being a bit "posh". They have a little tribute to Psy on one of the main intersections. Tourist pose photo is an absolute must.
7. SeaweedWho knew there were so many types of seaweed. This was taken at a market in Seoul. This is seaweed drying.
8. Colorful LanternsThese were taken at the Jogyesa Temple in Seoul. They are so pretty!
9. Crab MailboxJust plain cute. This was found on Jeju Island.
10. Photo ShootsWe all know Asians love taking photos (I am Asian, so I'm allowed to say this non-offensively), but Koreans take it to the next level. They really LOVE their photo shoots. At the temples you can rent out a hanbok or other traditional dress to take photos in. It's sometimes quite entertaining to watch people take a bagillion photos of themselves. This particular photo was taken at Changdeokgung Temple in Seoul.
11. Abandoned Theme ParkYongma Land in Seoul has been closed since 2011, but the defunct park remains. Unlike most abandoned sites, this one is quite easy to access. A man at the gate charges the equivalent of about $5 for entrance. It's also quite a popular attraction with the locals. The day I went, there were at least 20 others in the park, many of whom were there solely for the purpose of taking photos of themselves. Koreans take their photo shoots seriously. They come with costume changes, props, accessories, and selfie sticks, all ready to go.
12. Huge SandcastlesWhile we were in Busan the annual Haeundae Sand Festival was happening. Some of these sand sculptures were huge!
13. FishI love markets and I thought the fish market in Seoul was very interesting. This fresh sashimi was sooo delicious and the equivalent of about $10. Amazing!
14. Random creatureWe found this guy in Yeouido Hangang Park in Seoul. I think the sign said he's from some movie.
15. Shell MuseumIf you like seashells, you will love the World Seashell Museum. It's another one of Jeju Island's random attractions. The 2 level museum is filled with interestingly arranged seashell exhibits. It's kind of weird to have an entire museum on seashells, but I like it.
16. Mickey Mouse labelsNo idea what kind of drink it is, but just thought the labels were cute.
17. So Much KimchiNever have I ever seen so much kimchi. This was taken at a local market in Seoul.
18. Seaside TempleNothing weird about this, just a beautiful temple! This is Haedong Yonggung Temple in Busan. There were these cute little figurine scenes scattered around the temple.
19. Block BurgerA delicious lego-shaped burger in the Hongdae area of Seoul.
20. Mural VillageMullaedong, or Mullae Art Village, is an interesting little neighborhood in Seoul. Judging from the name, I was expecting beautiful mural pieces on all the walls. There are some and they are okay, but I found the little details in the sculpture street art most fascinating. See what I mean below. The area is full of cafes and artsy shops that make it quite cool to wander around. As mentioned, South Koreans love photo shoots. Here is a couple in costume posing. I saw many girls dragging around the boyfriends for photos in the area. It's quite funny!
21. Cotton Candy with FaceI'd seen these cotton candy sculptures previously online, but watching this kid eat it was a whole new level of cute.
22. Cute Volcanic Stone StatuesThese guys are known as dol hareubang and they can be found on Jeju Island. They are carved out of volcanic rock and are meant to be guardians of the island. How nice!
23. Hostel with personal computer bunk bedI just find it so interesting that at the Incheon Airport Transfer Guesthouse each dorm bed comes with it's own personal desktop computer underneath. That's somethin' you don't see everyday at your average hostel!
24. Message in a Bottle LightbulbThis is just a nice photo I didn't want to leave out. It was found at Yeouido Hangang Park in Seoul.
It's called Love Land. By the way, some of these photos are NSFW. Love Land is located on Jeju Island, an interesting little island just south of the mainland, which seems to have either a theme park or museum on the most obscure topics. Love Land is mainly a sculpture park. There are countless dirty sculptures, some in very impossible sex positions. It's a great way to spend a couple hours. Be sure to read the names of each of the pieces for even more of a laugh!
There were a few interactive crank toys like this one scattered throughout the parkNotice how the hills are boobs, and the penis in the background. This section of female dominance was a bit weird... "The Terminator" The little details around the park made it even more awesome. There is a whole exhibit of these little miniature sex scenes. All of them are super funny.