Incheon Chinatown

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Incheon Chinatown
FounderPeople's Solidarity for Participatory Democracy

Incheon's Chinatown is Korea's only official Chinatown.[1][2] It is in Jung-gu and was formed in 1884. It claims to be the largest Chinatown in South Korea, and features an 11-meter high Chinese-style gateway, or paifang. As of 2007 few ethnic Chinese live in the Incheon Chinatown.[3] There are both many food and various attractions in Incheon chinatown.[4]

Incheon Chinatown
Buildings in Chinatown, Incheon


The history of Incheon Chinatown is over 100 years old.[5] While not all traditional culture of the first generation has been preserved, the area still harbors many of the flavors of China.[6]

Incheon became a China-friendly city after the modern opening of late 1800s. Korea started modern trade by signing the China–Korea Treaty of 1882 treaty with China in 1882.[7] Incheon's Chinatown area came into being with the opening of the Incheon Port in 1883 and Incheon's designation as an extraterritoriality of the Ching Dynasty.[6] After this, 'Incheon Chinese Society' (華僑) begun in earnest by establishing '淸國專管租界' (Chinese Settlement) in today's Incheon in 1885.[7] An 1883 report indicated that 63 Chinese people lived there. And they increased to 235 people in one year. In 1892, they increased to 637 people, and they increased to about 1000 people in early 1900.[8] Overseas Chinese who currently live in Incheon in 2015 number 50,000 people.[9] 'Incheon Chinatown' improved the relationship of Korea and China .[7] Incheon Chinatown street name will change to China's well-known street or city names in 2016.[10] Today, the Chinese residents of Chinatown are mostly 2nd or 3rd generation descendents of the early Chinese settlers.[6]


Incheon Chinatown provides people with various food, attractions. In Incheon Chinatown, there are many food such as Sweet and Sour pork, Assorted Seafood and Vegetables with Mustard Sauce, Noodles with Black Soybean Sauce(Jajangmyeon), Fortune Cookie, Mooncake, Gongal Bread (Pita Bread) and so on.[11] On the busy streets of Korea's biggest Chinatown in Incheon stands Gonghwachun, one of the most popular Chinese restaurants among tourists to the area.[12] And Moon Cake is a kind of bread, which is baked in a round moon-shaped food. It is a symbol of China's traditional Thanksgiving foods like a rice cake in Korea.[13] And Gongal Bread (Pita Bread) is a kind of Chinese bread. It is called a Chinese pancake. Inside the bread, it is empty and the only outer part of the bread is inflately baked.[14] There are also many places to buy various things such as Chipao, Antique Pottery, Traditional Tea, Jewelry and Accessories, and Tea cup sets.[15] Chipao is a China's traditional costume. All men and women can wear this costume. but, It is usually referred to a dress for women.[16] Also, Incheon Chinatown has many attractions such as Paeru, 義善堂(Chinese temple), History of Three States Mural Street, Korea and China Cultural Center, etc. Paeru is a Chinese traditional gate installed in the village entrance, '義善堂' is temple of Chinese, History of Three States Mural Street is decorated with murals with the explanation of important scenes of History of Three States.[17] Incheon Chinatown is located close to other outing such as Freedom Park, Songwoldong Fairytale town, Wolmido, and so on.[17][18]

Sweet and sour pork
Noodles with Black Soybean Sauce(Jajangmyeon)

Attractions related to China[edit]

There are many attractions related to China. These are a school for Overseas Chinese, The Coast of Catholicism, Korea and China Cultural Center, History of Three States Mural Street, Chinese Village Culture Experience, etc.[19] A school for overseas Chinese is on the second floor in masonry building that was constructed in 1934.[20] The Coast of Catholicism is currently used as an education place of the Catholic Church.[21] Korea and China Cultural Center built in 2005 is a place that plays a major role in the history and cultural exchanges between Korea and China.[22] History of Three States Mural Street means the walls that are decorated with murals and tiles with the explanation of important scenes of History of Three States on both sides of the road.[23]

Attractions related to Japan[edit]

There are attractions related to Japan. They are the Old Japanese consulate general, Japan banks, and an Arched gate.[24]

Nearby Tourist Attractions[edit]

There are Freedom Park, Wolmido Island, Sinpo Market, Incheon Art Platform, Dapdong Catholic Church, Fairytale town, etc. in near Incheon Chinatown .[25]

Fairytale town
Fairytale town landscape


  1. ^ "[인천 가볼만한 곳]차이나타운 한중문화관". 인천시 공식 티스토리 블로그. Archived from the original on 2016-04-05. Retrieved 2015-12-07.
  2. ^ "중구시설관리공단 > 주요사업 > 근대건축전시관". Retrieved 2015-12-07.
  3. ^ Onishi, Norimitsu. "South Korea's Main Chinatown Lacks Only the Chinese." The New York Times. March 2, 2007. Retrieved on March 8, 2015.
  4. ^ "인천 차이나타운맛집 중화요리 담, 여름철 냉짜장-중국식냉면 인기". MTN. Retrieved 2015-12-02.
  5. ^ "인천 차이나타운 '100년 캡슐' 열렸다 : 뉴스 : 동아닷컴". Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  6. ^ a b c "Incheon China Town (인천 차이나타운) | Official Korea Tourism Organization". Retrieved 2015-12-07.
  7. ^ a b c "능허대~차이나타운 '통교'의 역사는 흐른다". 기호일보. Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  8. ^ "주간조선 - 1등 인터넷뉴스 조선닷컴". Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  9. ^ "인천 개항누리길 도보여행". 국제신문. Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  10. ^ "베이징로·난징로…인천 차이나타운에 중국 거리 조성". 연합뉴스 (in Korean). Retrieved 2015-12-14.
  11. ^ "먹거리종류 | 인천차이나타운". Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  12. ^ "[Weekender] Incheon's 100 years of Chinese diaspora". Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  13. ^ "[영상중국] 중추절 앞두고 99.9% 순금 월병 등장". (in Korean). Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  14. ^ "[한국 속 작은 중국, 인천 차이나타운] 100년 자장면의 맛 '만다복' 공갈빵·화덕만두 대명사 '송'". 경기일보. Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  15. ^ "살거리 | 인천차이나타운". Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  16. ^ "중국옷". Retrieved 2015-11-28.
  17. ^ a b "[SN여행] 볼거리와 먹을거리가 가득한 인천 속의 중국 '차이나타운' - 지식교양채널 시선뉴스". Retrieved 2015-12-02.
  18. ^ "이국적이고 동심이 있는 차이나타운·동화마을 오세요". 연합뉴스 (in Korean). Retrieved 2015-12-02.
  19. ^ "Incheon chinatown".
  20. ^ "가톨릭 신문 신문기사 보기". Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  21. ^ "중국관련볼거리 | 인천차이나타운". Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  22. ^ "한중문화관 관광축제 - 2015 문화를 관광하다". (in Korean). Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  23. ^ "The Chosun Ilbo (English Edition): Daily News from Korea - Incheon's Chinatown a Home from Home for Taiwanese Visitor". Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  24. ^ "Incheon chinatown".
  25. ^ "인근관광지 > 자유공원 | 인천차이나타운". Retrieved 2015-12-01.

Further reading[edit]

  • Yi Jung-hee. A Country Without a Chinatown, Joseon Ilbo, 2000
  • Yang Phil-seoung. 2004. A country without a Chinatown: Yesterday and Today in the Overseas Chinese Economy of Korea