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South Korean island paints the town purple to attract visitors

March 17, 2021 08:10 IST
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Roses are red, violets are blue. This island is purple to attract me and you.

A South Korean farming community has reinvented itself by transforming into an attraction perfect for the Instagram era.


Banwol Island, off the west coast of southern South Korea, has become known as "the purple island" after painting the roofs of some 400 buildings a lovely shade of lilac.

Check out this beautiful small island:

Inspired by their native balloon flower, residents of the Banwol and Bakji Islands, known as the 'Purple Islands', have painted their houses, roads and bridges in shades of the hue, and planted purple flowers such as lavender and asters to transform their town into a tourist attraction. Photograph: Shinan County Office

Tourists walk on a purple bridge at the Purple Island in Shinan, South Korea. Since 2015, Shinan county has invested 4.8 billion won ($4.25 million) to turn the islands purple, including painting more than 28,000 square metres of roofs lilac. The campaign has drawn over 487,000 people since its official start in 2019, according to the county office. Photograph: Daewoung Kim/Reuters

A general view of the Purple Island. The tiny islands have fewer than 150 total residents. Photograph: Daewoung Kim/Reuters

Tourists walk on a purple street at the Purple Island. The additions including a hotel, a cafe, a restaurant, and a bike hire shop have all been put into place for tourists. Photograph: Daewoung Kim/Reuters

Residents dressed in purple clothing take a break at the Purple Island in Shinan. Those wearing purple are even allowed free entry to the islands. Photograph: Daewoung Kim/Reuters

A purple bridge is illuminated at the Purple Island in Shinan. Visitors can walk between the two islands via -- you may have seen this coming -- another purple bridge. Photograph: Daewoung Kim/Reuters

Jung Soon-shim, 88, and other residents dressed in purple clothing pose for a photograph at the Purple Island in Shinan. Banwol's risky but beautiful move seems to be paying off. Photograph: Daewoung Kim/Reuters

An aerial view shows purple-coloured bridges at the Purple Island in Shinan. Photograph: Daewoung Kim/Reuters

It is said that painting the cities in colorful shades is a local tradition, similar to the blue city of Chefchaouen in Morocco or India’s Jaipur and Jodhpur and even Spain's Júzcar. On the other hand, Mexico's Izamal has been painted yellow. Photograph: Shinan County Office

Banwol has 21,500 square metrs of lavender fields. Photograph: Shinan County Office
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