DUMULMEORI IS where two rivers, Namhan River and Bukhan River, meet. Dumulmeori is an old name that literally means “the place where two streams of water meet” in Korean. Although the name may sound unfamiliar, looking around, many will notice some familiar scenery. This is because Dumulmeori is where long separated couples in numerous dramas and movies met again. As such, Dumulmeori boasts beautiful scenery with a unique ambience that made it a favorite spot for many movie and drama directors. Let’s go into the details of this unfamiliar, yet reminiscent place.
The history and story of Dumulmeori
In the past, this place was very prosperous. It was the last geographical settlement that connected water from Gangwon-do and Chungcheongbuk-do with that from Seoul. Until 1873, when Paldang dam was constructed, boatmen who transported wood via raft rested here before they went to Seoul. However, Dumulmeori started to decline after the construction of the Paldang dam and the creation of new roads. After the construction of the dam, the surrounding area was designated as a greenbelt zone, and its function as a major waterway ended.
Eat, Pray and Love
Dumulmeori is where one can eat, pray and love. On one side of Dumulmeori, you can find cafés and restaurants selling foods and drinks related to the lotus. The lotus flower hotdog is most popular among visitors. Lotus leaf, lotus roots and lotus seeds are added in the bread of the hotdog and the sausage is also handmade so it is very juicy and crispy. Moreover, various desserts using lotus flowers such as oriental teas, waffles, and bing-soo* are waiting to fill your appetite.
Then, walking around the riverside of Dumulmeori, you will arrive at a rest area where people make a wish. There are two trees called wish trees because it is said that if you make a wish in front of the trees, that wish will come true. In front of the wish tree, there are piles of stones that people stacked up while making wishes. Why not make a wish here, looking at an awesome view?
After you ate and prayed, it is high time you fall in love with Dumulmeori’s beautiful scenery. A tree that looks like a slingshot will catch one’s eyes. It is a famous photo spot for the visitors because it symbolizes the combination of the two waterways, which is the origin of the name Dumulmeori. Following the riverside of Dumulmeori, one can easily spot a boat on the river which makes Dumulmeori more atmospheric. Moreover, a rectangular frame is a very hot photo spot where everyone stops to take a memorable photo. A beautiful scene consisting of mountains, rivers and trees are in the frame, making it very popular. At weekends small concerts and activities are held to make the place more enjoyable for everyone.
Semiwon, a garden of water and lotus
Following the riverside, you will arrive at a beautiful water garden, Semiwon. The name Semiwon means “to see the water, clean one’s mind, look at the flower and make our minds beautiful.”This place was the protection area of source water with barbed-wire fence surrounding it. However, with the polluted floating matters coming down from the upper river, the place became like a dump. As a result, a small group of individuals and organizations began to take action. They started to collect trash and placed lotus flowers on the water, which enhances the water quality. As this story spread, the regulations concerning this area got fixed and revised under Gyeonggi-do’s support, and a beautiful garden of water, Semiwon was established.
Walking around Semiwon, you will encounter the Baedari Bridge. Baedari is a bridge that was formed for people and horses to cross the river by connecting several boats in the river and extending boards over the boats. Baedari, which connects Dumulmeori and Semiwon, is a reproduction of the bridge similar to original Baedari, which was built over the Han River by King Jeongjo of the Joseon Dynasty.
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Dumulmeori is where story, food, sights, and atmosphere of peace and sentimentality coexist. Especially in fall, when one wants to go somewhere not too far but far enough to feel free and peaceful, Dumulmeori is the place. You will definitely not regret coming to the place “where two waters meet.” Hop on the subway and enjoy your trip of this month to Dumulmeori!
From Sinchon to Dumulmeori
In order to go to Dumulmeori from Sinchon station, you have to first go to Wangsimni station by riding the subway line 2. Then, transfer to Gyeongui Jungang Line and get off at Yangsu Station. From Yangsu station, Dumulmeori is only about 15 minutes far.
*Bing-soo: Form of shaved ice usually served with red bean paste, fruits, mochi, and sweetened condensed milk