Gangwon-do 3D2N Trip Itinerary

Sunday, 7 June 2015

This is a 3D2N Itinerary for a trip to Gangwon-do. This is one of the regions in Korea that is less popular than Seoul or Busan. If you are looking to experience a different side of Korea, to see something that is entirely polar to the shopping, eating and sightseeing that you have ever experienced in Seoul, this is the place to be! My group and I from WowKorea came up with this itinerary and we hope that it will help you as much as it helped us.

Day 1: Jeongseon, Gangwon-do
Railbike at Jeongseon Auraji
Jeongseon District in Gangwon-do attracts many foreign tourists for rafting and railbiking. It's really well known as the location to go to for an experience in Korea's Hallyu well-being tour. The rail bike in Jeongseon Auraji is a type of leisure sport combining biking along a railway with scenic views. Rail bikes are commonly found in the mountainous regions of Europe. This sport makes use of an abandoned railway track that runs from Jeongseon Auraji to Gujeol-ri. The entire length of this track is 7.2km long and it is a continuous descent that makes it easy to ride along clean valley waters and the crimson red foliage.

There are 2-person (110kg) and 4-person rail bikes (138kg). Despite its large size, a rail bike runs quite smoothly so that it is sufficient for one person to pedal a 4-person rail bike at speeds of 10~30km/h. At the boarding area in Gujeol-ri Station, there is a cafe named 'A Grasshopper's Dream'. Housed inside a train, the cafe is in the shape of a grasshopper. The rail bike journey starts in Gujeol-ri Station and ends in Auraji Station. Riding at a slow speed of 15km/h whilst enjoying the surrounding scenery. On the way back, you will return to Gujeol-ri on a free train for a comfortable ride.

Rental Fees:

2-seater bikes: Individual 25,000won / Group 22,500won
4-seater bikes: Individual 35,000won / Group 31,500won

Inquiries: +82-33-563-6050 (Korean) / +82-33-1330 (English, Chinese, Japanese)

Operating Hours: Subject to change, so please inquire for visiting hours before your trip

10% discount is offered for groups of 10 people or more on both bikes, and you will need to make a reservation. At the ticket counter, you can find your reserved tickets after identification. Passengers have to note that they must arrive at the boarding point at Gujeol-ri Station 20 minutes before the scheduled timing.

Reservations: +82-33-563-8787

Directions to get there by Bus:
- From Dong Seoul Bus Terminal, take an intercity bus bound for Jeongseon Intercity Bus Terminal (3hr 20min)
- From Jeongseon Intercity Bus Terminal, take a city bus to the Gujeol-ri Station (40 min)

Lunch at Unamjeong Restaurant - Grilled Seasonal Fish and Dessert with Traditional Tea
The place is located serves grilled seasonal fish that is fresh and delicious, since the entire Gangwon-do is near the sea. Even in certain countries, grilled fish is known as a Korean dish due to the way it is cooked and prepared.

Location: Sabuk-ri 424-5, Sabuk-eup, Jeongseon-gun, Gangwon-do
Operating Hours:
Restaurant / Lunch 12:00 - 14:30pm, Evening 18:00 - 19:30
Daryegwan / 15:00 - 18:00
Folklore Bar / 15;00 - 18:00
Reservations: +82-033-590-7631/7632

River Rafting at Dong Gang River
The Dong River is a serpentine, 60km long stream flowing through rugged limestone terrain in mountainous Gangwon-do's Yeongweol, Pyeongchang, and Jeongseon. Besides boasting breathtaking scenery, the Dong River is an ecological jewel - as it is the only remaining virgin territory in South Korea, boasting a wealth of rare flora and fauna. It is ofetn compared to Guilin in China, a world famous tourist destination owing to its picturesque limestone mountains; however, the Dong River retains a more pristine and serene atmosphere, according to tourist experts.

Guided by environmentalists and conservationists, this eco-tour is an extraordinary opportunity for Koreans and foreign residents alike to discover the natural backwoods of this nation. The Dong River provides a natural habitat for wild ducks, herons and such endangered feathered species as the painted gooseander or "hosa biori" in Korean. The valley also features certain rare animals such as the otter, which is on the verge of extinction in the southern half of the peninsula. Until recently, the Dong River was relatively unknown to most Koreans. For many years, the Korean government was discussing whether or not to build a dam. However, the government has decided not to build a dam so that it can preserve the natural habitat of the area.

1 Course      - 120 mins (9km)    [25,000w for Individual, 20,000won for Group]
2 Courses     - 150 mins (12km) [35,000w for Individual, 30,000won for Group]
3 Courses     - 210 mins (15km) [40,000w for Individual, 35,000won for Group]
4 Courses     - 420 mins (32km) [80,000w for Individual, 70,000won for Group]

Directions to get there by bus:
- Take an intercity bus from Gyeongbu/Jungbu Bus Terminal to Manjongbungijeom (Wonju) thereafter changing to Jecheon I.C (38 National Road) and finally taking a taxi to Yeong-wol

Call: +82-033-373-0103 / +82-010-7700-9349

1 Night Stay at Mayhills Resort
After that we will stay 1 night in the Mayhills Resort.

8, Mulhalli-gil, Gohan-eup, Jeongseon-gun, Gangwon-do

Day 2: Samcheok, Gangwon-do
Haesindang Park (Penis Park)
The Gangwon-do area of Korea is known for its nice, sandy beaches and gorgeous mountains. The best time for tourists to enjoy the beach here is during July and August.  Located in southern Gangwon-do Province, Samcheok is often referred to as the gateway to the East Coast. The town features beautiful natural sites like caves, valleys, and the sea as well as many historic and traditional attractions, offering numerous places to see and enjoy. Samcheok is home to 82 caves with the two most well known being Daegeumgul and Hwanseongul. It is also home to well known parks like the Jukseoru Pavilion, Haesindang Park, and Isabu Leo (Lion) Park.

Haesindang Park also called Penis Park, located in a small town called Sinnam, about 20km south of Samcheok in the Gangwon Province. The park is famous for its number of erect phallic statues  created by Korean artists on display in the form of "hanging arrangements to three-meter tall trunks of wood", for joy, spirituality and sexuality. A small Folk Museum called "Village Folk Museum"  exhibits many art objects on the "sexual iconography" over the ages in different cultures, shamanic rituals. It also  exhibits folk materials that shows the lifestyle of fishermen of the East Sea. In addition, there is an interesting bronze statue that tells about a legend of a nearby village. The park is built on a big hill overlooking the village and the port, so it has really nice views.

Operating Hours 09:00-18:00
Samcheok Fishing Village Folk Museum
March-October: 09:00-18:00
November-February: 09:00-17:00

Tel: +82-33-572-4429 / +82-33-570-3545 / +82-33-570-3846

Admission Fees
Adults: 3,000 won / Group: 2,000 won
Youths: 2,000 won / Group: 1,500 won
Children: 1,500 won / Group: 1,000 won

Lunch at Janghohang Aura Sashimi House
The food in the sashimi house will satisfy your taste buds with delicious food carefully prepared by the chefs. The fish are fresh and are served in hearty amounts. Honest food with the right recipe, has always been one of the mottos of Janghohang Aura.

Location: Geundeokmyeon Janghori 3-10, Samcheok, Gangwon-do
Operating Hours: 10:00 - 22:00 everyday
Tel: +82-033-572-3719

Janghohang Port
Janghohang Port is just 25km from downtown Samcheok. The port is famous for its round beach line and white sand shore and is known as the “Naples of Korea.” From the beach, Janghohang Port offers excellent views of unique rock formations in the sea. Being that it is a port town, it is a rich provider of seafood such as abalone, seaweed and sea cucumber. In Janghohang Port, visitors can buy fresh seafood year round at reasonable prices . It is also known as an good place for fishing.

Janghohang Port provides many activities for tourists. Every year, about 120,000 tourists visit this area to enjoy canoeing, snorkeling, scuba diving and the other tourist activities Janghohang Port has to offer. Visitors also have the option to hop on a real fishing boat and join the crew for some deep sea fishing, where fresh catches can be filleted on the spot. The port also provides tours of sea farms and the chance to cast off with a cuttlefish angling boat at night in hopes of catching squid. 

One of the local speciality of Samcheok  is Snailfish soup, which usually called Gomchiguk in Korean. It has unique and refreshing taste. It’s also good to relieve from hangovers. In the past, Gomchi Guk was enjoyed only by people living in Gangwon area during winter, but now is considered as a nationwide delicacy throughout four seasons.

Directions to get there by bus:

- From Samcheok Express Bus Terminal, take the city bus 24 and get off at Jangho (1hr 10mins).

Samcheok Expo Town
Samcheok is also famous for its natural caves. There are many caves in Samcheok and if you are someone who enjoys nature and adventure, we would recommend you visit Samcheok. Samcheok Expo Town was opened to the public for the event of Samcheok World Cave Expo 2002. After this event, this place became a famous tourist spot for visitors.

There are 2 areas in the Expo Town: Cave of Mystery Hall and Cave of Expedition Hall.

Cave of Mystery Hall
It was and still is one of the most prominent facilities at the main even site of Samcheok World Cave Expo 2002. The first and second floors of the hall feature world-famous caves, caves in movies, cave culture, dioramas shedding light on the past and present history of caves, dioramas about the destruction and preservation of caves, reincarnation bridges, academic materials, ecology of bats, photographing corner, observatory, and dioramas about the life of bats. You can also experience the fantastic world of caves unfolding on a large I-MAX screen in the theme movie theater on the third and fourth floors. 

Cave of Expedition Hall
Located inside Expo Town, it exhibits cave expedition equipment and plays video footage related to the cave expedition, providing various information about caves. In particular, it offers visitors an opportunity to experience the expedition of the world's 7 major caves through a different perspective.

Admission Fees: Adults - 3,000w, Teenagers & Military (Active) - 2,000w, Children - 1,500w
[I-MAX Theater Screening Times] : 10:30, 14:00, 15:30

Location: 168-3 Seongnam-dong, Samcheok, Gangwon-do

Tel: +82-033-574-6828

Dinner at Gomchiguk Restaurant
One of the best Gomchiguk restaurant that people usually recommend  when visiting Samcheok is Donga Restaurant, beside Gomchiguk, there are many other options for visitors to choose. The price for Gomchiguk is 12,000 won.

Location: Jeonghadong 125-1, Samcheok, Gangwon-do

Tel: +82-033-547-5870
Operating hours: 09:00 - 21:00

1 Night Stay at Taebaek Residential Lodging Village
The Taebaek residential lodging village is operated by Taebaek-si, and is located amongst breathtaking scenery within Taebaeksan Provincial Park. In summer it is cool, so a blanket is needed at night. In winter many individual and group tourists come here to enjoy the fantastic snow-covered landscape. Reservations are strongly recommended. Seventy-three rooms are available at present. Reservations can be made by phone, and the fees can be paid on the day itself. Cooking facilities are available (Guests will have to bring their own cooking equipment).

 Location : 331 Mungoksodo-dong, Gangwon-do
Tel: +82-033-553-7460

Day 3 - Taebaek, Gangwon-do
Breakfast at Taebaek Chicken Rib
Chicken in the Taebaek region differs from that in other regions. The chicken is first grilled, vegetables such as sweet potatoes and shepherd's purse, together with rice cake, are added, and then some water, making a delicious, low-fat, and relatively inexpensive dish.

Hwangji Pond
Hwangji Pond, located at the center of Taebaek-si, is the source of the 420km-long Nakdonggang. Water springing from this pond flows across the huge Yeongnam Plain. This pond is divided into an upper pond, middle pond and lower pond, from which 5,000 tons of water flows daily.

Lunch at Mt Taebaek, Kkulbeol Herbal Deer
These deer strengthen bones by helping increase the blood and preserving energy. They are famous for strengthening bones and tendons. I was unable to find any photos of the herbal deer, probably because it's deer and people might think it's a little cruel...? But I've tried deer meat before and it is extremely delicious.

Location: 11-22, Samsung-dong, Taebaek, Gangwon-do
Tel: +82-033-552-2482

Han River Festival
Period               : Every year on the first Sunday of August
Location           : Geomryeongso, Samsu-dong, Taebaek-si
Organizer         : Taebaek Cultural Center

Information on the Festival
This festival is held to highlight the significance of the source of the Han and the Nakdonggangs, and to commemorate the importance of pollution-free water

Festival Details
Yongsinje (ritual), Water Drinking Contest (Who can drink the fastest? Who can drink the most?
Who can hold their breath under the water for the longest?)

And after this... return to Seoul.

I hope you've had a good time reading about our itinerary for Gangwon-do. You may not have heard about other places except for famous places such as Seoul or Busan, but I do believe that Gangwon-do is a place that is worth going to experience another side of Korea, the nature, the beauty and the serenity. In the words of Koreans, it's a place of healing.

Here's the itinerary for you to follow:

Day 1: Jeongseon, Gangwon-do

08:00 - 11:00 ~ Depart from COEX to Gujeol-ri Station for Railbike
11:00 - 12:30 ~ Railbike Experience
12:30 - 13:30 ~ Travel for Lunch
13:30 - 14:30 ~ Lunch
14:30 - 15:30 ~ Travel to Dong Gang for River Rafting
15:30 - 18:00 ~ River Rafting Experience
18:00 - 19:00 ~ Travel to Resort
19:00 - 19:30 ~ Wash Up
19:30 - 21:00 ~ BBQ Dinner
21:00 - 08:00 ~ Free Time & Sleep

Day 2: Samcheok, Gangwon-do

08:00 - 09:30 ~ Travel to Haesindang Park (Penis Park)
09:30 - 11:30 ~ Haesindang Park Experience
11:30 - 11:45 ~ Travel for Lunch
11:45 - 13:00 ~ Lunch
13:00 - 15:00 ~ Walk Around Janghohang Port
15:00 - 15:30 ~ Travel to Samcheok Expo Hall
15:30 - 17:30 ~ Samcheok Expo Hall Experience
17:30 - 17:45 ~ Travel for Dinner
18:00 - 19:30 ~ Dinner
19:30 - 20:45 ~ Travel to Taebaek Residential Lodging Village
20:45 - 06:00 ~ Free Time & Sleep

Day 3 - Taebaek, Gangwon-do

06:00 - 07:30 ~ Wake Up and Check Out
07:30 - 08:00 ~ Travel For Breakfast
08:00 - 09:30 ~ Breakfast
09:30 - 10:00 ~ Travel to Hwangji Pond
10:00 - 11:30 ~ Hwangji Pond Experience
11:30 - 12:00 ~ Travel for Lunch
12:00 - 13:30 ~ Lunch
13:30 - 14:00 ~ Travel to Han River Festival
14:00 - 16:00 ~ Han River Festival Experience
16:00 - 20:00 ~ Travel Back to Seoul

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