***This article contains sexual references…if you think this will offend you, we suggest you stop reading now…OK, wait, you can read the first half of the article pretty safely but after that, you should probably leave. Don’t say TKW didn’t warn you and don’t email us complaining, please…Hi Mam!***
Did YOU know that there’s a park dedicated to toilets and poop near Seoul? Or a theme park dedicated to sex down south?…South Korea that is.
If not, then read on, my friend, read on.
There used to be a time when I would scrunch up my face at the mere mention of going to a sculpture park. I would say, ‘Ew, what? A sculpture park? And what can we do there? Will there be a rollercoaster? Candy? Alcohol? No? Then what’s the point?’. But alas, no more. Now, ohhhhh now, living in Korea has changed all that. Now, when someone mentions an excursion to a sculpture park I say, ‘What kinda sculpture park?’
Let me explain. You see here in Korea, we have a plethora of weird and wonderful sculpture parks. From the wonderful ice sculptures of Taebaek:
To the weird bronze sculptures outside shopping malls:
Let’s start with the toilet park.
Based in Suwon, a mere 40 minutes from Seoul, and opened this past July 4th, ‘The Restroom Cultural Park’ is a park dedicated to all things…well, toilet related. There are bronze statues of people doing their business in the open:
And in a traditional house:
Also included on the trail around the park are ancient Korean flush toilets, Roman-style toilets, European bedpans and all the fun facts about poop you can just about stand.
Now, you maaaaaaay be thinking, WTH? But alas, this actually does have an interesting backstory to it. Firstly, the park is dedicated to the former mayor, Mayor Sim Jae-Duck, who died in January 2009. Mayor Sim was lovingly nicknamed ‘Mr. Toilet’ by the Korean people and not without its merits. Word has it, Sim was born in a toilet in his grandmother’s house and while in office, he became obsessed with public restroom cleanliness and hygiene. Everyone’s got a hobby, let’s not judge.
He founded the World Toilet Association in 2006 and devoted his life to ensuring everyone had access to clean public toilet facilities right up until his death. He was so enamored with toilets and all things toilet-related that he had his original house demolished and rebuilt as the world’s only toilet-shaped home.
Although that’s not where the toilet-fun ends on a trip to Suwon. The town also boasts many public restrooms as tourist attractions as seen in this tourist map:
I do have to say, having gone to pee in many a bathroom here in Korea, my favorite one was the one at the top of Seoul Tower. Not only is the view FANTASTIC, the place is clean and has some kinda glittery, disco ball feel to it. The Canadian One tells me in the men’s, the urinals are against the windows so you can go about your business and not miss any of the view.
Another interesting park Korea has to offer is, Loveland, a sex theme park situated on Jeju Island, an island off the south coast of Korea.
‘As the only sexual theme park in Korea Jeju Loveland is a place where sexually orientated art and eroticism meet. Jeju Loveland breaks the traditional taboos surrounding sex, and is a place where the visitor can appreciate the natural beauty of sexuality.’ – from their website
That pretty much sums it up really. I went there on an organised trip during a five-day break to Jeju around two years ago and found it an incredibly intriguing experience. Opened in November 2004 and designed by Hongik University students, Loveland truly is a MUST-SEE attraction if you’re in Jeju!
I also once went to a sex museum in Amsterdam but that’s probably a story for another time.
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