Not a cult: Why are these South Korean islands drenched in purple?

People living on the “Purple Islands” in South Korea love all things purple. In fact, most of their homes, roads, and bridges are painted purple. But why are the inhabitants of these islands so obsessed with the colour? Read below to find out!

The colour purple

The obsession with purple can be attributed to native balloon flower found on the Purple Islands - or the Banwol and Bakji islands.

(Photograph:Reuters)

Everything is purple

Besides homes, roads, and bridges, the islands even have purple flowers like lavender and asters.

(Photograph:Reuters)

But why?

Residents hoped to turn their islands into a tourist attraction. The government picked the islands, which house barely a hundred residents for a tourism project. As part of this, the Shinan country has invested 4.8 billions won ($4.25 million) to turn the islands purple.

(Photograph:Reuters)

Everybody loves purple!

Since the campaign began in 2019, it has attracted over 487,000 people, as per data from the county office. So far, over 28,000 square metres of roofs have been painted lilac.

(Photograph:Reuters)

Local residents join with excitement

People on the island have taken up the project excitedly, with many restaurants offering purple rice and other food items on purple plates! In addition, three purple footbridges connect the two islands to a larger one nearby.

(Photograph:Reuters)

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