Cheongju, Korea – At the heart of South Korea, Cheongju is a modern, vibrant city of around one million people and is rich in history, culture, and education. Located on the Geum River, this capital of Chungcheong Province is surrounded by mountainous countryside and beautiful scenery. The forested areas can be enjoyed while walking along the wall of the Sangdang Mountain Fortress. Cheongju has been an important center of culture and commerce since before the 9th century. Visitors can learn about the city’s history at the Cheongju National Museum and the famous Jikji Museum which contains the first metal printing press from the 14th century. Seven major universities are located in Cheongju. It is also famous for the International Craft Biennale Festival which takes place every two years in September and October.
Cheongju has been a Sister City of Bellingham since 2008. To promote friendship and cultural understanding, a pen pal program was set up between middle school students in both cities. Grade school children have come to Bellingham each summer, staying at Western Washington University and taking part in the Kids Camp summer program. Athletes from Cheongju have enthusiastically participated in the Ski to Sea race and parade. In addition, Cheongju has sent delegations from their arts community as well as business and government leaders who have met with Bellingham’s mayor, the City Council, and local business and educational leaders. You can view photographs of Cheongju by clicking here.