The Naminara Republic, which declared its cultural independence from the Republic of Korea, has its own diplomatic and cultural policies.
Naminara Republic celebrates the imagination and shares its beautiful fairy tales and songs with guests from all over the world.
The Origin of Namisum (Namiseom)
In the past, Nami Island was called ‘Namseom(南島),’ which literally translates to an island in the front. The name ‘Namisum’ originates from General Nami, whose body is believed to be buried in the pile of stones on the northern hill of Nami Island. Dasan Jeong Yakyong wrote about this myth about General Nami and recorded Nami Island as ‘Namisum(南怡苫)’ and ‘Namiseo(南怡嶼)’ in his books, Cheonugihaeng(穿牛紀行) and Sansusimwongi(汕水尋源記). ‘Sum(苫)’ means an island, ‘Do(島)’ refers to a larger island, and ‘Seo(嶼)’ is an island too small for people to inhabit. In 1965, Sujae Minn Byeong Do, the founder of Nami Island, erected a monument to honor General Nam I along with an epitaph written by Nosan Lee Eun-sang and inscribed by Iljung Kim Chung-hyeon. Meanwhile, the actual grave of General Nam I is known to be located in Namjeon-ro, Bibong-myeon, Hwaseong-si, Gyeonggi-do.
UNICEF Child-Friendly Theme Park
In December 2010 Naminara Republic, Nami Island was designated a UNICEF Child Friendly Park. This was a first for Korea and only the 14th park in the world to receive such a designation. Nami was selected for this honor as a result of our ongoing financial support of UNICEF and cultural activities for children such as the Nami Island International Children’s Book Festival (Nambook). Nami Island has also been designated an “Easy Place” by The Human Rights Forum of Persons with Disabilities in Korea (PWDK) due to the ease of access we offer to all visitors.
Naminara Republic is a cultural tourism brand by Nami Island for visitors traveling its imaginary world. The Naminara Republic, which declared its cultural independence from the Republic of Korea, has its own diplomatic and cultural policies. Naminara Republic celebrates the imagination and shares its beautiful fairy tales and songs with guests from all over the world
Nami Island, Inc.
Nami Island, a tourism company that owns and manages the island, is located in 1 Namisum-gil, Namsan-myeon, Chuncheon-si, Gangwon-do. Nami Island has emerged as one of the must-visit places not only among Korean tourists but also among foreign tourists, with a growing number of them visiting the island. In fact, in 2016, 1,300,000 foreign visitors from 122 countries came to the island, and the island has 3,300,000 visitors in total annually.
Nami Island was formed as a result of the construction of Cheongpyeong Dam in 1944. In 1965, Sujae Minn Byeong Do purchased and started to forest this wasteland. In 1966, Kyeongchun Tourism Development, Inc. was established to build the tourist facilities. In April of 2000, it changed the company name to Nami Island, Inc. to overcome the 1997-98 Korean Financial Crisis.
Since 2001, Nami Island has expanded contents related to environment, art and culture. For the environment, Nami Island has cooperated with environmental organizations such as Environmental Education Center, YMCA and YWCA to operate programs including hands-on recycling programs, environmental education programs, environmental monitoring and eco-friendly development. For the community, education and welfare, Nami Island has supported regional high schools, multicultural single mother support centers, and the Heritage of Korean Independence. For culture & arts, Nami Island has sponsored international institutions such as UNICEF and UNESCO, and has provided opportunities for artists in various fields including fine arts and festivals.
In 1960 ~ 90, Nami Island was known for Winter Wanderer by the novelist, Choi In-ho and Gangbyeon Song Festival. Then, as the shooting location of the 2001 KBS television series Winter Sonata, there was a dramatic increase of tourists especially from Asian countries including Taiwan, Japan and China. Today, Nami Island is known as an international tourist spot with beautiful natural environment that attracts more tourists from all over the world.
On Nami Island, there are a variety of cultural spaces – The Song Museum, Liuseum – The Liu Collection of World Musical Instruments, Pyeonghwarang Gallery, Nami Gallery, Kid’s Land (International Children’s Library), Culture House, Nami Island Handicraft Studio, Yu Qing Cheng’s Happy Garden Sculpture Gallery, UNICEF Hall and Andersen Picture Book Center. Also, Hotel Jeonggwanru features guestrooms by different artists including painters, craftsmen and craftswomen, writers and even singers – each of whom added his or her own distinctive touches. Nami Island Arts & Education is also host to over 600 performances, exhibitions and festivals annually. This is a remarkable number among the domestic tourist spots.
Just like any other independent nation, Naminara Republic has its own flag, stamps, currency and written language.
Enjoy discovering the symbols of Naminara Republic when you visit!
National FlagsThe moon and compass-shaped star portray the Oriental sentiment and environmentally-friendly image of Nami Island.
National AnthemName of our national anthem is 'The Island in the Sky' which refers to Naminara as a place that celebrates the imagination and the power of fairy tale.
PassportThe General Passport can be used for a year from the date of issue. During this period, you can visit anytime you want and there’s no limit on the number of visits. The Citizen Passport is only given specially recognized citizens.
NamijjaNaminara Pictographs (Namijja) originated from the work of Zhang Yun ling of the Yunnan Nationalities Museum located in Kuunming City, China and are also known as the Dongba script. We use our pictographs on the signs posted on Nami Island as well as decorative elements in our souvenirs. There is also a guidebook to the use of Namijja entitled Naminara Pictographs南怡象字 (2006).
Commemorative CoinsIn celebration of Naminara Republic’s foundation, commemorative coins engraved with images of the moon and stars, the symbols of Nami Island, have been issued. Two types of coins, in denominations of NM1,000 and NM5,000, are available at the Tourist Information Centers.
Postage StampNaminara has four types of postage stamps featuring Naminara’s national flag, the island’s autumn foliage as well as images of winter and summer and these are on sale at the Tourism Bureau and Whatever Center.
Naminara Republic National Brands
Art Craft Studio
International Children's Book Festival
Chairman Minn Byeong-do
Retire at 80
Forest Crimson Foliage
The Tomb of General Nami