Friday, April 27, 2012

The Republic of Namirara

Nami Island is an oasis for culture and leisure in peaceful harmony with humanity and nature. After a five-minute ferry ride, guests meet a forest of verdant trees holding up the sky and open grassy areas where ostriches, rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, ducks and peacocks warmly welcome visitors in the midst of wild flowers. On Nami Island, artists from all over the world show-off their talents and share the sense of peace of mind the island creates. The island is the site of Nami Island International Children's Book Festival (NAMBOOK) and other cultural events take place every weekend, making Nami one of the main cultural and artistic tourist attractions in Korea. In 2006, the island declared its cultural independence and was reborn as Naminara Republic. They have their own national flag, anthem, currency, passport and phone cards, stamps, orthography and even a certification of citizenship. Nami is home to several galleries and is the site of the Song Museum, which also houses an outstanding collection of international ethnic musical instruments. There are indoor and outdoor stages, facilities for seminars and workshops in addition to a 46-room modern hotel and 10 cottages. 

Nami Island is dedicated to improving the mental and physical well being of children throughout the world. As such, they serve as the main sponsor of the Hans Christian Andersen Award and contribute generously to Unicef. Serving as the location for the internationally famous television series Winter Sonata has helped the island attract 2,000,000 Korean and foreign visitors every year. Naminara is unique in other ways, also. At night, all the lights are turned off on the island so that visitors can harmonize with nature under the light of the moon and stars. Most of wood and bottles generated by visitors to the island are recycled and re-used. Nami has a very open hiring and retirement policy so a diligent and honest person can work until they are 80 years old if they wish. On Nami Island all feel close to nature. Smiling people with peaceful hearts walk, Along the river where a song of love spreads. And become one, With lasting freedom, As poets, painters and musicians.