Gamcheon Culture Village (감천문화마을)
Address: 200 Gamnae 1(il)-ro, Saha-gu, Busan, South Korea
It’s an incredible historic and cultural site you can’t miss.
I’ve been twice now, since my first time in Busan was quite short.
If you’re only doing a day trip to Busan, Gamcheon Culture Village is a must visit.
Here’s things to look out for, some basic tips, and how to get to Gamcheon Culture Village.
If you’re new to South Korea, read my South Korea travel guide for beginners.
Gamcheon Culture Village Quick Links:
🌸 Rent a Hanbok to wear in Gamcheon Cultural Village
🚌 Join a Gamcheon Culture Village Group Tour (most affordable)
📒 Take a Hand-flipped Photobook Making Class in Gamcheon Cultural Village
🎫 Browse through dozens of available Busan tours
What is the Gamcheon Culture Village in Busan?
The Gamcheon Culture Village is a town located in the southern part of Busan, just left of the Diamond Tower, and is situated on a hillside.
It’s famously known for its colorful and pastel-hued houses, street art, shops, and cafes that can be viewed above from several bird-eye and vantage points.
Fascinating History of Gamcheon Culture Village
There are different origin stories online, but this area served as a shanty town for refugees of the Korean War in the 1950s.
In 2009, the government and town planners of Busan began the Gamcheon Culture Village Project to transform the village to what we see now.
With the help of local artists, students, and community members, the village is now one of the most popular sites in the country for international and Korean tourists.
While many houses were left abandoned, there are still residents living in the village, notably many elderly people.
When visiting, be mindful not to crowd others’ homes and vehicles, nor be the loud typical tourist. 😉
How to Get to Gamcheon Culture Village
There is no subway directly near the village, but there are many options to get there.
By Subway + Bus
The closest subway stop near the Gamcheon Culture Village is the Toseong station.
Once at the Toseong station, take exit 6, where there will be directionals sign for the village. Turn right on this corner.
Keep walking until you see the bus post. Take the green minibus 2, 2-2, or 1-1. (You can also just take a taxi from here too).
The bus will stop at the Gamcheon Culture Village Tourist Information Center.
Note: these are smaller locals buses and can get quite packed. The journey up to the village is a bit bumpy so hold on tight!
🚌 You can also book a tour to Gamcheon Culture Village that provides transportation to and from the site. Reserve your spot on Klook.
By Subway Only
If you choose to walk to the Gamcheon Culture Village from the Toseong station, it will take around 30 minutes to reach the village, with lots of steep hills leading up to the village.
Even if you love walking, this will be quite the trek! Follow the walking directions on Naver Map.
Taxi will be the easiest, though most priciest option to get to Gamcheon Culture Village (reasonable if traveling with a big group).
Busan Gamjeong Elementary School (감정초등학교)
South Korea, Busan, Saha-gu, 옥천로 130
Two Paths to Gamcheon Culture Village
Make sure to enter the main entrance to the Gamcheon Culture Village (photo above)!
The main entrance and start to the village will be at the left of the bus stop, where you’ll see a small street of cafes and shops,
You can also roam the right side of the village where you’ll see an Art Shop and other amazing viewpoints, but it’s better to start from the main route.
10 Unique Things to Do in Gamcheon Culture Village
1. Pick up a Stamp Map
Head to the Gamcheon Culture Village Tourist Information Center to pick up the stampable and interactive map for 2,000 won ($1.50 USD).
Collect stamps from the sites on the map. There are different routes depending on how much time you have.
This Gamcheon Culture Village map will also help you navigate around the area. For a big village, it’s easy to get lost, but they make it simpler with lots of directional signs.
I bought the Gamcheon Culture Village map the 2nd time I visited, and to be honest, I skipped a lot of locations! But it was still fun using the stamps for the sites I did stop at.
2. Write and Send a Postcard
At the Haneul Maru stop of the Stamp Map, you can write and send a postcard to yourself or a loved one.
If you bought the map, you get a free postcard and only have to pay 500 won to mail it, or 38 US cents.
If you didn’t buy the map you can purchase the postcard for 500 won, or a card for 1,000 won, then the additional 500 won for postage.
It will take 2-3 weeks for the postcard to arrive. (It was so nice receiving mine when I got back from Asia!)
3. Rent a Hanbok and have a photo shoot
There are hanboks rental shops at the village where you can rent and wear traditional Korean clothing and take photos around the village. They also offer school uniforms too. The village’s colorful murals is a perfect backdrop for photos.
4. Do a Flipbook Photoshoot
For 10,000 won, or $7.50 USD, you can do a photoshoot that they will turn into a small flipbook. This would be a great souvenir to capture your time there.
📒 Want to make it yourself? Take a Hand-flipped Photobook Making Class in Gamcheon Cultural Village
5. Pose for a Caricature Illustration
You can either pose or submit a photo to be turned into a caricature illustration. It takes 10-20 minutes and cost around 10,000 won, depending on the size.
6. Take an art class or workshop
Lots of shops inside Gamcheon Culture Village offer workshops to make art and souvenirs like custom stamps. This would be a great gift!
7. Try interesting street food
Towards the beginning of the village path will be individual vendors selling food and drinks. I didn’t try it, but this vendor was shelling water drop-shaped mochi.
They sold frozen beer as well. I wonder what the mochi tastes like!
8. Get a Fortune Egg in Korean
You’ll see these fortune-telling dispensers all throughout South Korea. A fortune egg costs 1,000 won, or about 80 US cents.
The machines only take coins, but there is coin exchange built in. What comes out is a red plastic egg.
There’s a stand across the machine with a hammer to smash the egg open. Note that the paper fortune inside is quite long and in Korean, so you’ll have to run it through Papago or Google Translate!
9. Go to the Hidden Market
Towards the end of the path is the Gamcheon 2-Dong Market. It’s also one of the stops on the Stamp Map.
You’ll find replicas of people selling produce, but also real shops, restaurants, and vendors.
10. See a Mini Model of Gamcheon Culture Village
Towards the end of the village path is a small building where you can look at a small-scaled version of the village. There’s also another Little Prince statue you can take photos with.
Gamcheon Culture Village Tours
If you prefer to take an organized tour, here are two tours to look into:
1. Tripadvisor Full-Day Busan City Tour: includes a visit to Gamcheon Culture Village and other popular sites in Busan.
2. Klook’s One Day Busan Tour (cheapest): Includes Gamcheon Culture Village, Busan Skywalks and Haedong Yonggungsa Temple.
For $39.99 USD, book a tour to Gamcheon Culture Village, Busan Skywalks and Haedong Yonggungsa Temple. Reserve your spot on Klook.
Is it free to enter Gamcheon Culture Village?
Entrance is free. There is no cost to enter the village, nor gates.
What time does the Gamcheon Culture Village close?
The tourist center itself is open from 9am to 6pm, and out of respect to local residents, after 6pm hours are the suggested non-visiting hours.
If you do aim to visit at night, consider joining a locally-led evening group tour. The village looks amazing at night.
How long does it take to tour Gamcheon Culture Village?
If you are short on time, I would recommend a minimum of 2-3 hours. If you’re staying for a longer period of time, maybe do multiple visits to try out the different areas, cafes, and shops.
Best time to visit Gamcheon Culture Village?
To avoid crowds, visit at 9am once the visitor’s center is open. I would not recommend going too late in the afternoon, especially as a first-time visitor. You will need more hours to explore.
Is the Gamcheon Culture Village ADA-friendly?
There are many steep hills and stairs. I don’t consider the Gamcheon Culture Village ADA friendly.
What is Gamcheon Culture Village in Korean?
Is the Gamcheon Culture Village Worth it?
The Gamcheon Culture Village is an incredible site to visit, and it’ll personally take me a 3rd or 4th visit to explore this beautiful site!
I did come back a second time, but there’s still so many activities and shops to come back to.
Prefer a guided tour? For $39.99 USD, you can book a tour to Gamcheon Culture Village, Busan Skywalks and Haedong Yonggungsa Temple. Reserve your spot on Klook.