What To Expect
Travel to Yeoju to try your hands to make ceramic pieces like cups, jars, pendants, or vases under careful guidance of master. Yeoju has long been the cradle of Korea's high quality porcelain. There is a well established workshop where you can test your own pottery-making skills. The clay is ready at your turn table.
Pottery is made by forming a clay body into objects of a required shape and heating them to high temperatures in a kiln to induce reactions that lead to permanent changes, including increasing their strength and hardening and setting their shape. Prior to some shaping processes, air trapped within the clay body needs to be removed by wedging. Wedging can also help to ensure even moisture content throughout the body. Once a clay body has been de-aired or wedged, it is shaped by a variety of techniques. After shaping it is dried before firing. The potter's most basic tools include the potter's wheel and turntable, shaping tools (paddles, anvils, ribs), rolling tools (roulettes, slab rollers, rolling pins), cutting/piercing tools (knives, fluting tools, wires) and finishing tools (burnishing stones, rasps, chamois).
After the program, visit Silleuksa temple from the Silla dynasty (BC 57 - AD 935). Most Korean temples were built high in the mountains to avoid worldly noise and trouble. But, it is a rare temple that is perched on a riverbank amid an attractive waterfront whose cove forms a snug and cozy enclosure for this ancient sanctuary. The temple houses Amitabha Buddha, Samantavhadra, the Boddhisattva of Practice, and Avalokitesvara, the Bodhisattva of Compassion. Judgement hall is enshrined with Ksitigarbha and the ten kings of the Hell. Attending the kings are various servants and behind them are the pictures of the different hells with their tortures. Incense burning in the temple and sights and smells mixed offer visitors a really magical experience. To the east of the monastery is a hill on which a seven-story brick pagoda stands. It is a 9.4 meters high and is the only existing Goryeo brick pagoda (918-1392).
Lastly, visit Yeongneung, one of 119 royal tombs of Joseon dynasty. The tombs have different names of 42 Neung, 13 Won and 64 Myo, which were given based on the status of their owner. Yeongneung is a tomb of royal couple of King Sejong, who promulgated Korean Alphabet in the 15th century. This tomb is the first one to have separated rooms for each coffin inside. First, you will enjoy seeing the celestial globes, sundial, water gauze, and many other inventions by the king including a fascinating museum that features his life. The entrance to this tomb is phenomenal. You enter through an avenue of trees and climb up to the tomb. Near the tomb and all around it are life-sized statues of warriors and horses, put here to protect the King. UNESCO bestowed the honor to the 40 Joseon Dynasty Royal Tombs in Korea as World Heritage sites.
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German, French, Spanish or Russian speaking guides are available at an additional cost.
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2 hours and 30 minutes