Created in the middle of the Han River following the construction of the Cheongpyeong Dam, Namiseom is a picturesque island shaped like a half moon. This independent republic is renowned for its artistic culture and experiences that allow you to connect with the natural world.
Things to do
Namiseom declared its cultural independence from South Korea in 2006 and has invented its own passport, currency, stamps and telephone cards for visitors to collect. The Naminara Republic has also been declared a UNICEF Child Friendly Park, with a variety of family-oriented events taking place each weekend.
The most exhilarating way to access Namiseom is along the Namiseom Zip Wire, one of the largest of its kind in Asia. From the 80-metre-high tower in Gapyeong, you’ll fly 940 metres across the waters of the Han River to a tree-filled grove on Nami Island.
If you’re a fan of Korean pop, visit the Song Museum, which explores the history of K-pop and its most popular songs. The museum also houses an impressive collection of ethnic musical instruments from around the globe, together with indoor and outdoor stages where performances are regularly held.
Follow one of the walking trails that meander beneath the chestnut trees that line Namiseom, while keeping an eye out for squirrels, peacocks and ostriches. At night, all the lights are turned off on Nami Island so visitors can look up at the sparkling stars that illuminate the sky.
Namiseom is just a five-minute boat ride from Gapyeong-gun, which is a one-hour drive from Seoul and connected by trains along the Seoul Metro system. The island is small enough to explore on foot, with plenty of well-maintained walking trails.