A hanok village in Jeonju, North Jeolla Province, has drawn more than 10 million visitors annually for the first time.
The Jeonju city government said Monday that the number of visitors to the village stood at 10.67 million, or an average of 29,231 per day, from October 2015 to September 2016, about a 9.5 increase from a year earlier.
Since 2014, the city government has analyzed visitor information based on records of credit card spending, mobile navigation apps and posts on social networking sites.
People in their 20s accounted for 21.41 percent, or 2.28 million, of the total number. Visitors in their 40s came next with 2.14 million, followed by those in their 30s (2.10 million), 50s (1.69 million) and 60s or older (1.36 million).
By region, 33.3 percent, or 3.55 million visitors, were from Seoul, Incheon and Gyeonggi Province, while 5.58 million people (52.3 percent) hailed from Gwangju, South Jeolla Province, Daejeon and South Chungcheong Province located near the city.
Visitors spent a total of W123.4 billion over the period, or an average of W338 million per day, at the village compared to W115 billion in the previous period (US$1=W1,152).
The heritage town of Jeonju in North Jeolla Province has made a Lonely Planet list of Asia’s 10 best places to visit in the next 12 months.
Japan’s Hokkaido topped the list, followed by Shanghai and Jeonju.
“In the middle of Jeonju is one of Korea’s best-preserved traditional villages,” said the travel guide. “The birthplace of Korea’s most famous dish, bibimbap — an arrangement of vegetables on rice, topped Jeonju-style with bean sprouts, mung bean jelly and beef tartar — now lures a younger crowd thanks to its fast-emerging street food scene.”
Other reasons to put the southwestern city on a traveler’s “bucket list” include Jaman Village with its colorful murals and makgeolli or traditional rice wine.