From traditional clothing to various appliances and food to traditional houses that cover the unique lifestyle culture, Jejudo Island’s nature contain the color of Jeju.
Jejudo Island’s clothing, food,
and housing culture is special
These are dyed clothes using the juice of green persimmons. At first, the material becomes hard and takes the color of red clay, but with more frequent wear, the color changes to brown and the material becomes softer to the touch. It was a perfect item for work clothes as it was not prone to being easily soiled or soaked in sweat.
Made up of the water towel on one’s head, Mulsojungi pant, and Muljeoksam top, this was the clothing that Jeju Haenyeo (female diver) used to wear during Muljil (diving work) before the black rubber clothing from Japan came into place in the early 1970s.
Jeongdang Moja (Hat)
Made of stem of Cocculus roots that grow in the mountains, the hat was mainly worn by shepherd or farmers. The hat block was sized to fit the head of the wearers, while the Gat was made relatively large to block the sunlight.
Heukdwaeji (Black Pork)
People visiting Jejudo Island for the first time often get confused to which restaurant they should go to in order to have the best black pig.
The best answer for this scenario is, “Go anywhere”. Jeju’s black pig cuisine tastes good no matter where you go.
The grilled black pig tastes even better when you dip it in the Meljeot sauce, which is made of anchovies. It gets rid of the oily richness of the meat and invigorates the taste-buds at the same time.
Mal Dish (Horse)
Horse dishes used to be the highest quality cuisine that went into the King’s royal table.
Horse can be applied to Ma Yukhoe (Horse Tartare), Ma Chobap (Horse Sushi), Tangsuyuk (Sweet and Sour Horse), Galbi Jjim (Stewed Ribs), Seanggui (Grilled Horse), and Bulgogi.
Horse meat is lighter in taste than beef and there is a different taste for sections such as intestines, raw liver, and lean meat.
Gogi Guksu (Pork Noodle Soup)
It is easy to see pork noodle soup houses in Jejudo Island.
One can eat pork noodle soup with noodles in creamily infused meat broth, add boiled pork on top, and personalize the flavor to your taste-buds by putting in Cheongyang Gochu (Cheongyang Hot Pepper), chili pepper powder, and powdered black pepper.
It is a great way to fill up your stomach eating thick mid-sized noodles with Suyuk (Boiled Pork Slices).
Pork noodle soup is a great way to cure hangovers but also causes people to have cravings for alcohol.
Just like how drinking the spicy noodle soup makes you want to have a shot of soju, there is a lot of alcohol in the refreshing and meaty pork noodle soup.
Drinking it with the Jejudo Island region soju, Hallasan, would be a great finish!
Seonggeguk (Sea Urchin Soup)
After lightly frying seaweed with sesame oil, boil it with sea urchin and abalone.
Season it with salt, and the sea urchin roe will be yellow-colored and clumped like Sundubu (Soft Tofu), giving it a sweet but light taste.
In Jeju, sea urchin is called ‘Gusal’ so Seonggeguk (Sea Urchin Soup) is often called ‘Gusalguk’.
Hoe (Raw Fish)
Hwangdom (Crimson Sea Bream) is one of the most commonly found fish in Jeju.
It is affordable and savory in taste. It is not easy to find on land so it is highly recommend that you have a taste of Hwangdom (Crimson Sea Bream) in Jejudo Island.
For those seeking something a bit more luxurious than Hwangdom, there is Gatdom (Striped Beakfish).
Okdom (Red Tilefish) ripens at the beginning of spring, and is tastes the best between December and March.
Hanchi (Spear Squid) is loved during the summertime as it is in season during June to August due to its soft chewy taste. Bangeo (Yellowtail) is in season from September to the end of October.
Bengedom (Largescale Blackfish) is another Jeju delicacy that is tastiest from December to March, often caught through fishing. All of these fishes are Jeju must-eats.
Jeongnang and Olle
The traditional house of Jeju begins with the ‘Olle’. In the entrance of the Olle is the ‘Jeongnang’.
The Jeongnang is the three logs that are laid across the entrance. The stone pillar erected on each side of the Olle entrance where the Jeongnang is inserted is called ‘Jeongjumok’.
It is said that the Jeongnang was first made because of horses and cows. According to the tradition of Jeju, people used to put horses and cows out to pasture.
They needed to put up Jeongnang in order to prevent the horses and cows from coming into their house.
The reason why they used logs rather than making a door was because of the wind.
The Straw-roofed house is also another unique residential view that can be witnessed only in Jeju.
First and foremost, it is extremely strong. The exterior is built with stonewall. The wall is applied with soil, which strengthens the stonewall.
The roof is covered with band and tied with a thick rope, like a go board.
The Straw-roofed house of Jejudo Island is the result of the wisdom of Jeju’s virtuous men, who sought to overcome their natural environment, which saw a great deal of rain and wind.
What is unique is that everything resembles the shape of the ‘character, and that there is no Sarangmadang or Sarangchae (main building where the men stay and welcome guests) unlike houses of other regions.
Dottongsi is Jeju’s traditional toilet. It lacks a roof, and only has low stone walls to block out the wind and keep outsiders from looking in.
There is no odor, no need to worry about falling into the basin, and no hazard of night soil splashing onto your feet.
As such, it was a safe and cool toilet that people could use to take care of their business while looking around.