In the south-western-ish pocket of South Korea lies a very special place. A sacred place. An incredibly wonderful establishment. A god damn cheese theme park that nobody has even thought to tell me about until today and I’m not angry, I’m just disappointed.
The Imsil Cheese Theme Park has been going strong in Imsil-gun, South Korea since it opened back in 2004. That’s 15 years you lot had to alert me, the cheese lover, about a fucken CHEESE THEME PARK. Ah whatever it’s fine, we’re here now.
While it’s not quite Wallace & Gromit‘s moon visit, it still looks incredibly magic and very camp.
Within the rinds of the theme park, you can learn about cheese, help make cheese, take photos of cheese-shaped buildings, go inside the cheese-shaped buildings, visit the Cheese Castle (!!!), explore the science of cheese, and of course, eat cheese.
Also The Smurfs are there, for god-knows reasons why.
And this Sound Of Music and/or weird cult setup.
You can even ride down a big slide that zips you past the goats (!!!) that I presume they milk to make goats cheese.
According to Atlas Obscura, cheese was actually introduced to South Korea in the late 1950s, when a Belgian missionary came to the area and began to raise goats and make cheese from their milk.
The governor of the area was so impressed by this whole “cheese” business that he asked the missionary to teach locals the skill and now Imsil is essentially the home of cheese in all of Korea.
And now, we get photos like this.
Located around 30mins south of Jeonju in the Jeollabuk-do region, the Imsil Cheese Theme Park is just a single part of Imsil, the Cheese Capital of Korea.
There’s farm tours at the Cheese Factory, where you can ride a tractor and feed the cows (!!!) and learn how to make cheese. There’s also the famous Ji Junghwan’s Imsil Cheese Pizza that’s a full chain around the country, so getting around a slice at the pizza’s home is ideal.
The Imsil area is stunning too. away from the chaos of the cities, the Korean countryside is all rolling hills (though it’s a bit bloody dry out there), making the Cheese Theme Park – which nobody told me about until like an hour ago – almost as stunning as a postcard.
Imsil Cheese Theme Park is open from 10am – 8pm Tuesday to Sunday, and closed on major holidays.
Now, someone bloody take me on a holiday there thank YOU.