A list of the yearly festivals large and small in and around Jeollanam-do. I no longer have the time to do seasonal previews, so here is month-by-month look at the region's festivals. Visit each festival's links for dates, details, and directions. Or browse my "festivals" category for write-ups from past years. There are several large, well-known festivals in the region, including: the Boseong Green Tea Festival, the Damyang Bamboo Festival, the Hampyeong Butterfly Festival, the Gwangju Chungjangno Recollection Festival, and the Namdo Food Festival. Nevertheless you might find something interesting, or nearby, by scanning the list.
The festival websites' links are notoriously brittle---that is, they break from year to year---so finding current information may take some doing. If the link is broken, I suggest adjusting it to point to the county or city webpage and looking on their tourism (관광) page. Each one will have a section on festivals, and may have pop-ups if one is coming up.
Additionally, this list is compiled from my older posts, and there is no guarantee that these festivals will be held, or advertised, every year. The Yeosu Tall Ships Festivals and Naju Pear Blossom Festivals are two such examples, but they are worth including anyway.
See the longer posts from 2008 and 2009 for information about popular sunset/sunrise-viewing spots in Jeollanam-do.
* Ddangkkeut Sunrise Festival (땅끝해맞이축제) - festivities to mark the last sunset of the year and the first of the next, at "Land's Edge," the southernmost point of peninsular Korea.
* Goheung Namyeol Sunrise Festival (고흥남열해맞이축제) - a sunrise, and sunset, festival in Goheung to mark the new year.
* Hyangiram Sunrise Festival (향일암일출제) - at Yeosu's famous Hyangiram hermitage.
* Muju Resort Bikini Ski Festival (무주리조트 비키니 페스티벌) - here's a short look from 2011.
* Naju Sunrise Festival (나주해맞이) - on the first of the year, on Geumseongsan.
* Wando Winter Swim (건강의 섬 완도 겨울바다 수영 대회)
* Yeongam Lake Sunrise Festival (영암호해맞이축제) - sunrise festival over Yeongam Lake.
* Nagan Daeboreum Folk Festival (낙안 정월대보름 민속한마당 행사) - held at Suncheon's Nagan Folk Village. Daeboreum is the first full moon of the (lunar) new year, and this is one of many festivals around the country marking it. The dates will change each year according to the lunar calendar.
* Gwangju Spring Flower Expo (광주봄꽃박람회) - held indoor, sometimes in March sometimes in April
* Gwangyang Apricot Festival (광양매화축제) - often considered the first spring festival of the year
* Jangheung Pasqueflower Festival (장흥할미꽃봄나드리)
* Jindo Sea-Parting Festival (or Jindo Sea Road Festival, 진도 신비의 바닷길 축제)
* Sansuyu Festival (산수유꽃축제) - flower festival in Gurye
* Ttangkkeut Sani Maehwa Festival (땅끝산이매화축제) - Apricot festival at Haenam county's "Land's Edge," the southernmost point on peninsular Korea.
Cheongsando Slow Walking Festival(청산도슬로우걷기축제) - on Wando county's Cheongsan Island
* Chuwolsan Cherry Blossom Festival (추월산벗꽃축제) - in Damyang
* Goheung Space Science Festival (고흥 우주과학·생태체험전) - in Goheung county, site of Korea's first attempts to launch rockets into space.
* Jeolla Byeongyeong Fortress Festival (전라병영성축제) - at Gangjin county's Byeongyeong Fortress, holding place of shipwrecked Dutch explorer Hendrick Hamel (more here).
* Jeonju International Film Festival (전주국제영화제) - the second-biggest film festival in the country, usually runs through May
* Naju Pear Blossom Festival (나주배꽃축제) - As far as I can tell, this festival hasn't been held since 2007, although some search results say otherwise. Anyway, Naju pears are known throughout the country, and are the city's most famous products. The festival took place at the Naju Pear Museum (나주배박물관), which is entirely in Korean and pretty lame. However, the blossoms in the fields and villages around Naju's Geumcheon-myeon make for a pleasant stroll. And if you're interested in history, underrated Naju has a lot to see (visit Naju's official site and this November 2007 post for more).
* Namwon Love Love Festival (남원춘향축제) - in Jeollabuk-do's Namwon, devoted to the city's connections to the folk story Chunhyang.
* Seomjin River Cherry Blossom Festival (섬진강변 벚꽃축제) - in Gurye county
* Shinan Tulip Festival (신안튤립축제)
* Suncheon Dongcheon Lantern Festival (순천동천유등축제) - sometimes in April, sometimes in May
* Tour de Korea (대한민국자전거축제) - sometimes in spring, sometimes in fall.
* Wangin Culture Festival (영암왕인문화축제) - devoted to Wani / Wangjin, in Yeongam county
* Yeongchuisan Azalea Festival (영취산진달래축제) - in Yeosu
* Yeongrang Culture Festival (영랑문화제) - in Gangjin county, not far from the Gangjin-eup bus terminal
* Yeongsanpo Skate Festival (영산포홍어축제) - in Naju
* Yudalsan Flower Festival (유달산꽃축제) - in Mokpo
Boseong Green Tea Festival (보성녹차대축제) - one of the spring's best festivals, the Boseong tea fields have provided this blog's header for years.
* Chosun University Rose Festival (조선대학교장미축제)
* Damyang Bamboo Festival (담양대나무축제)
* Dasan Festival (다산제) - held in honor of Gangjin's most famous resident
* Hadong Tea Festival (하동야생차문화축제)
* Hampyeong Butterfly Festival (함평나비축제)
* Heukseonsan Royal Azalea Festival (흑석산철쭉대제전) - in Haenam county
* Illimsan Royal Azalea Festival (철쭉문화행사) - in Boseong county
* Jangseong Hong Gildong Festival (장성홍길동축제) - festival honoring a folk hero similar to Robin Hood
* Jeamsan Azalea Festival (제암산철쭉제) - on Mount Jeam in Jangheung county
* Nokdong Maritime Fireworks Festival (녹동바다불꽃축제) - in Goheung county
* Seomjin River Azalea Festival (섬진강 철길 철쭉축제) - in Geokseong county
* Shinan Heuksan Skate Festival (산안흑산홍어축제) - a local festival devoted to hongeo (홍어), fermented skate: a pungent dish and acquired taste
* Slow Salt Village Festival (SLOW 소금마을 축제) - the first, held in 2011, ran from the end of May through mid-July, at the Salt Village on Jeung-do.
* Suncheon Bay ECO International Walking Competition (순천만 ECO 국제걷기대회) - check walking.or.kr for updates about walking events and competitions. This, like many other festivals, uses "international" for no good reason.
* Suncheon Nagan Folk Culture Festival (순천낙안민속문화축제) - a good festival at one of my favorite sites in my favorite city (see here and here for write-ups).
* Wando Jang Bogo Festival (완도장보고축제)
* Yeonggwang Flower Festival (영광꽃누리축제) - I like when Korean URLs are written out in Korean.
* Yeosu Tall Ships (여수국제법선축제) - they only had this in 2009, but I wish they'd bring it back.
* Yeosu Turtle Ship Festival (여수거북선대축제)
Gokseong Rose Festival (곡성장미축제)
* Muju Firefly Festival (무주반딧불축제) - in Jeollabuk-do's Muju county. I've written about it several times: the 2008 version was somewhat disappointing, but it was the first date with my wife.
* Sinan Pomfret Festival (신안병어축제)
* Goheung Mudlympic (고흥선정머드축제)
* Jeongnamjin Aqua Festival (정남진물축제) - in Jangheung county. A pleasant place, it's a festival probably best known (to me anyway) for the nude photo contest
* Marathon Mud Festival (영광갯벌마라톤축제) in Yeonggwang county
* Maritime Culture Festival (목포해양문화축제) - in Mokpo
* Soan-do Anti-Japan Culture Festival (소안항일문화축제) - Held for the first time on Wando's Soan-do in 2004, this is in honor of the island's history of resistance against Japanese occupation. About the only information I can find is on this vague page.
* Tamjin River Sweetfish Festival (탐진강은어축제) - in Gangjin county
* Shinan Island Mud Festival (신안 섬갯벌 축제) - on Shinan county's Jeung-do
* Yeonggwang Mud Marathon Festival (영광갯벌 마라톤축제)
* Yeosu International Youth Festival (여수국제청소년축제)
* Buyeo Lotus Festival - in Jeollabuk-do's Buyeo county, a former capital with a lot of historical significance
* Gangjin Celadon Culture Festival (강진청자문화축제) - one of the region's best-known festivals, this one's dates vary throughout the summer and fall from year to year.
* Muan Lotus Festival (무안연꽃축제)
* Bulgapsan Sangsahwa Festival (불갑산상사화축제) - in Yeongam county, devoted to the red flower with leaves and flowers that never meet each other, a Buddhist symbol.
* Damyang Goseo-myeon Grape Festival (담양고서포도축제)
* Fig Festival (무화과축제) - at Yeongam county's "Fig Village" (무화과마을).
* Gokseong Flower Festival (심청효문화축제) - at Gokseong's Train Village
* Gwangju Biennale (광주비엔날레) - held every other year from September to November.
* Gwangju World Music Festival (광주월드뮤직페스티벌)
* Gwangyang Jeoneo Festival (광양전어축제) - the "gizzard shad" festival
* Hadong Cosmos Festival (북천코스모스축제) - in Gyeongsangnam-do's Hadong county, which borders Gwangyang to the east.
* Hampyeong Kkotmureut Festival (함평꽃무릇축제) - also devoted to the symbolic red flower that goes by the name Kkotmureut or Sangsahwa.
* Imshil Cheese Festival (임실치즈페스티벌) - in Jeollabuk-do's Imshil county at its "Cheese Village"
* Jangsu Beef and Apple Festival (장수한우랑사과랑축제) - in Jeollabuk-do's Jangsu county
* Jindo Arirang Festival (진도아리랑축제)
* Maryang Beautiful Harbor Festival (마량미항축제) - in the small village of Maryang in Gangjin county. It's pretty.
* Mokpo Gayo Festival (목포가요제) - singing contest put on by Mokpo's KBS affiliate, going on since the early 1990s. The registration deadline is usually a month before.
In September the government announces the peak times for viewing fall foliage throughout the country. Several times I've posted about the region's best spots: here's a look from 2010.
* Bannam Tombs Chrysanthemum Festival (반남고분군국화축제) - in Naju at Bannam Tombs, a series of large mound graves
* Beolgyo Ark Shell Festival (벌교꼬막축제) - in Boseong county's Beolgyo-eup
* Damyang Beef Festival (대숲맑은담양한우축제)
* Gochang Chrysanthemum Festival (고창국화축제) - in Jeollabuk-do's Gochang county
* Gokseong Simcheong Festival (곡성심청축제) - in and around Gokseong's Train Village
* Gurye Pansori Festival (구례동편소리축제)
* Gwangju Chungjangro Recollection Festival (추억의 7080 충장축제)
* Gwangju Kimchi Culture Festival (광주김치문화축제) - celebrating the region's, um, celebration of Korea's signature dish. Here's a look from 2009, mostly at a neat pop-art exhibition.
* Gwangju International Community Day (광주국제교류의 날) - stay tuned to the Gwangju International Center and GwangjuBlog for more information.
* Gwangyang Bulgogi Festival (광양전통숯불구이축제) - visit Gwangyang's webpage for information, although this festival was always poorly-promoted
* Hampyeong Chrysanthemum Festival (대한민국 국향대전) - runs through November and sometimes into December
* Jangheung Chrysanthemum Festival (장흥국화페스티벌)
* Jeonju Bibimbap Festival (전주비빔밥축제)
* Jeonju International Sori Festival (전주세계소리축제)
* Jindo Chrysanthemum Culture and Art Festival (진도국화문화예술축제)
* Korean Grand Prix (F1 코리아그랑프리) - F1 race held on track built in Yeongam county, since 2010.
* Korean Traditional Art Festival (한국민속예술축제) - in Yeosu
* Mokpo Rodeo Drive Festival (목포로데오거리축제)
* Namdo Food Culture Festival (남도음식문화큰잔치) - at Suncheon's Nagan Folk Village
* Namwon Heungbu Festival (남원흥부제) - in Jeollabuk-do's Namwon, a festival relating to a well-known children's story
* Naro Seafood Festival (나로도수산물축제) - in Goheung county
* Palma Cultural Festival (팔마문화축제) - held in Suncheon since the early 1980s.
* Piagol Maple Festival (피아골단풍축제) - fall foliage festival held in Gurye county, at Piagol Valley on Jirisan.
* Rejoice in the Slaughter Thousands of Dirty Japanese Festival (명량대첩축제)
* Seopyeonje Boseong Sound Festival (서편제보성소리축제) - celebration of the region's ties to pansori music.
* Sinan Mudflat Fishingi Festival (신안뻘낙지축제)
* Sinan Pickled Shrimp Festival (신안새우젓축제)
* Suncheon Bay Reeds Festival (순천만갈대축제)
* Thousand Island Chrysanthemum Festival (천사의섬국화축제) - Held in Anjua-myeon, which is the reason for the "English"-language name I've seen, "1004 Shinan Anjwa Chrysanthemum Festival".
* Tour de Korea (대한민국자전거축제) - sometimes in spring, sometimes in fall.
* Yeongam Wangin Chrysanthemum Festival (왕인국화축제)
* Yeonggwang Salted Fish Festival (염산젓갈축제)
* Yeongsan River Culture Festival (나주영산강문화축제) - in Naju; also called the Yeongsan River Fall Festival (영산강 강가의 가을축제)
* Yeosu Marching Festival (여수마칭페스티발) - marching band festival
* Jangseong Baekyang Maple Festival (장성백양단풍축제) - on near Baekyangsa on Baekyang mountain in Jangseong county. It, like other fall foliage festivals, will vary from year to year.
* Gwangju Human Rights Film Festival (광주인권영화제)
* Yeosu World Fireworks Festival (여수세계불꽃축제)
* Boseong Tea Plantation Light Festival (보성차밭 빛의 축제) - runs from December through February
* Gwangju International Film Festival (광주영화제)
* Eseul Village Happy Christmas Festival (제4회 이슬촌의 해피크리스마스축제) - at the "Christmas Village" at Eseul Farm in Naju.
For Google: Jeollanam-do festivals, Suncheon festivals, Gwangju festivals, Yeosu festivals, Korea festivals, 전남축제, 전라남도축제