Lighthouses of South Korea: Buan County

For most of its history, Korea was an independent kingdom, or at least an autonomous kingdom under Chinese influence. This came to an end in 1910, when Japan annexed all of Korea. At the end of World War II in 1945, the 38° parallel was established as the dividing line between U.S. and Soviet zones of occupation, and in 1948 separate civil administrations were established in the two halves of the country. The Korean War (1950-53) ended in a draw, with the armistice line falling close to the prewar 38° line. The Republic of Korea (ROK), commonly called South Korea, occupies the Korean peninsula south of the armistice line.

This page covers lighthouses of Buan County in Jeollabuk (North Jeolla) Province, located on South Korea's southwest coast in the region formerly known as Jeolla or Cholla. The coast of Jeollabuk faces west on the Yellow Sea. Buan County is a mostly rural area between the cities of Mokpo to the south and Gunsan and Gimje to the north. The county includes the Byeonsan Peninsula and the resort island of Wido.

Following several recent government reorganizations, navigational aids in the ROK are now regulated by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (MOMAF). In Jeollabuk, the lights are maintained by the Gunsan Regional Maritime Affairs and Port Administration. In Korean, the word for a lighthouse is donghae (등대); dan is a cape, do is an island, and hang is a harbor.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volume M of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
Lighthouse Photos
Photos posted by the Gunsan Maritime Affairs and Port Administration.
Kiso's Lighthouses - Korea
Photos posted by a Japanese lighthouse fan.
Korean Association of Aids to Navigation - Jeollabuk
Photos and limited information for two of the provinces's most famous lighthouses.


Jangeunseo Light, Wido
Gunsan Maritime Affairs and Port Administration photo

Wido Lighthouses

Wido District Lighthouses
Note: Wido is an island about 15 km (9 mi) off the coast near Gyeokpo. The island is a well known resort area readily accessible by ferry.
Sangwangdeungdo (Sangwangdung Do)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 174 m (571 ft); white flash every 5 s. 5 m (17 ft) round white concrete tower. No photo available, but Bing has a distant satellite view that probably shows the light. Located on an isolated high island (one of two) in the Yellow Sea about 15 km (9 mi) west northwest of Wido. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4206.6; NGA 17744.
* Taeri Hang
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); green flash every 6 s. 9 m (30 ft) round white concrete tower. A photo is available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located at the end of the south breakwater at Taeri, a small port near the southwestern tip of Wido. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4206.95; NGA 17727.5.
* Wido
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 22 m (72 ft); white flash every 4 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower, mounted on a square concrete base. M.C. Han's photo is at right, a view from the sea (first photo on the page) is available, and Bing has a distant satellite view. Located at the southwestern tip of Wido. Probably accessible by a short hike. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4206.955; NGA 17727.6.
Georyundo (Koryundo)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 35 m (115 ft); white flash every 6 s. 14 m (46 ft) square cylindrical white concrete tower. A distant view (last photo on the page) is available, and Bing has a distant satellite view. Located on an islet off the western tip of Wido. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4207; NGA 17726.
Baejamyeo (Pejamyeo, Pejamyo)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); two white flashes every 5 s. 16 m (52 ft) tower, painted black with one red horizontal band. No photo available, but Bing has a distant satellite view. Located on a rock about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) off the western end of Wido. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4207.2; NGA 17726.5.
Galmaeyeo (Kalmaeyo)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 17 m (56 ft) tower, painted black with one red horizontal band. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a rock about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) northeast of the Baejamyeo beacon. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4206.7; NGA 17727.
Wido Light
Wido Light, September 2009
Panoramio Creative Commons photo by M.C. Han
Sikdo
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); green flash every 4 s. 18 m (39 ft) square cylindrical round concrete tower. No photo available, but Bing has an indistinct satellite view and Naver has a clearer satellite view. Located on a reef off the south end of Sikdo, a smaller island north of Wido. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4206.75.
* Pajanggeum Hang West Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); two red flashes every 6 s. 8.5 m (28 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is red. M.C. Han's photo is at right, and Bing has a distant satellite view. Located at the end of the west breakwater of Pajanggeum, the port at the northern end of Wido. Accessible by walking the pier. Admiralty M4206.9; NGA 17729.
* Pajanggeum Hang East Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 10 m (33 ft); two green flashes every 6 s. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is white. A photo is available, and Bing has a distant satellite view. Located at the end of the east breakwater of Pajanggeum. Accessible by walking the pier. Admiralty M4207.89; NGA 17728.
Sooechido
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); white flash every 5 s. 11 m (36 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a reef about 1 km (0.6 mi) off the east coast of Wido. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4206.93.
Heukseo
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 20 m (66 ft); white flash every 6 s. 12 m (39 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a rocky reef about 5 km (3 mi) east of Pajanggeum. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4207.3; NGA 17731.
Jangeunseo (Changunso)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); two white flashes every 10 s. 14 m (46 ft) tower, painted black with one red horizontal band. A photo is at the top of this page, and Bing has a satellite view. Located on a rock about halfway between Wido and the mainland and 6 km (3.5 mi) west southwest of Tongpo. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4207.4; NGA 17732.
Pajanggeum Hang West Breakwater Light
Pajanggeum Hang West Breakwater Light, September 2009
Panoramio Creative Commons photo by M.C. Han

Byeonsan Peninsula Lighthouses

Jinseo District Lighthouses
Gomso Hang
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); white flash every 5 s. 13 m (43 ft) round cylindrical red concrete tower. A photo and a distant view (halfway down the page) are available, and Bing has a satellite view. Located just off Gomso harbor, on the south side of the Byeonsan Peninsula. Accessible only by boat, but easy to see from shore. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4207.9; NGA 17740.
Halminyeo
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 10 m (33 ft); two red flashes every 6 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical red concrete tower. The Port of Gunsan has a photo (second photo in second row), and Bing has a satellite view. Located just off Gomso harbor, about 1.6 km (1 mi) west of the Gomso Hang light. Accessible only by boat, but easy to see from shore. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4207.95.

Byeonsan District Lighthouses
* Mohang Hang Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 8 m (26 ft); green flash every 5 s. 9 m (30 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view and Naver has a somewhat clearer satellite view. Located on a short breakwater at Mohang Bay, at the southwestern corner of the Byeonsan Peninsula. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4207.55.
* Gunghang Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); green flash every 4 s. 11 m (30 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower. A photo (third photo on the page) is available, and Bing has a satellite view. Located on a short breakwater at Gunghang harbor, about 4 km (2.5 mi) northwest of Mohang harbor. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4207.52.
* Gyeokpo (Kyongpo) South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 18 m (59 ft); red flash every 7 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical red concrete tower. A photo and a closeup are available, and Google has a satellite view. Gyeokpo is a small port at the end of the Byeonsan Peninsula. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4207.6; NGA 17738.
* Gyeokpo (Kyongpo) North Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); green flash every 7 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical white concrete tower. M.C. Han's photo is at right, a closeup photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4207.65; NGA 17737.
Gyeokpo Northwest
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); six quick white flashes followed by one long white flash every 15 s. 18 m (59 ft) round concrete tower with gallery, upper half painted yellow and lower half black. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a reef about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) west northwest of Gyeokpo. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty M4207.45.
Gyeokpo North Breakwater Light
Gyeokpo North Breakwater Light, September 2009
Panoramio Creative Commons photo by M.C. Han
Wido Northeast
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); two white flashes every 5 s. 14 m (46 ft) tower, painted black with one red horizontal band. No photo available, but Bing has a distant satellite view. NGA calls this light Kokunsan Kundo, an inappropriate name, and the Admiralty lists it as Wido northeastwards; we do not know the official name. Located on a rock about 5 km (3 mi) west northwest of Gyeokpo, in the northern entrance to the strait between Wido and the mainland. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty M4206.83; NGA 17733.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Gunsan | South: Mokpo Area

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Posted January 9, 2008. Checked and revised June 18, 2013. Lighthouses: 20. Site copyright 2013 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.