Wednesday, November 22, 2017

[One Day Korea Tour] Hwawon Dongsan & Samunjin Ferry

A Wonderful Day Along River in Korea

Hwawon Dongsan & Samunjin Ferry

A home of many animals, plants and fish including threatened species, Nakdonggang River passes through two major cities in Korea: Daegu and Busan. Nakdonggang River is actually the longest river in Korea! Once in Korea, spending time riverside is a “must” to understand how Korean enjoy their leisure time and, most importantly, to fully enjoy Korea yourself! With no further due, let’s head to Hwawon Dongsan and Samunjin Ferry along Nakdonggang River!

Hawon Dongsan

Take a riverside trail
One of the best ways to enjoy the Dongsan is walk along the riverside trail.

Ride an electric duck car
Hawon Dongsan is a mount located near the river. If you’d like to save yourself form walking, you can ride an electric duck car to head to the top. The duck car circulates the entire mound in 20 minutes.

─  Price:
Weekdays Adults 3,000KRW, Children 2,000KRW
Weekend Adults 4,000KRW, Children 3,000KRW

Your eyes will never get tired
From Kid’s café, zoo, tombs to 500-year-old tree, you will never get tired of the view on your duck car ride. There is also Hwawon Mini Land for kids where kids can enjoy electric cart, merry-go-round, mini train and bumper cars. Those attraction costs around 1,500 - 3,000KRW each.

Enjoy river view from the very top
Whether you walk or ride an electric car, you are here at the very top of the hill! Here is an observatory where you can take a bird-eye view of Nakdonggang River and Dalseong-gun area. The observatory is a 4-floor-building: cafeteria on 1st, resting place on 2nd, observatory area on 3rd and 4th. The observatory is free.

Let’s play some piano
There is a piano stairs to play with your friends!

Samunjin Ferry

Meal tastes even more delicious
After some exploration, we need to feed out stomach a great meal. Samunjin Tavern Village is conveniently located right by the beginning of Hwawon Dongsan. Here, you can eat from noodles, gukbab(beef stew with rice), jeon(Korean fried pancake) and alcohol. Surprisingly, they cost only from 4,000 – 5,000KRW even if it is a highly tourist spot!

Let’s really dive into the beauty of river
If you are a true explorer, you might want to consider taking a ferry. Round-trip takes about 40 – 45 min. It takes to you the famous the Arc in Gangjeongbo.

─  Price:
Weekdays Adults 8,000KRW, Children 5,000KRW
Weekend Adults 10,000KRW, Children 7,000KRW

Don’t miss out beautiful sunset over river

Lastly, enjoy X-mas lights! 
Once sun goes down, Samunjin Ferry turns into a beautiful spot to see Christmas lights! Actually, these lights are up all year around ;) However, if you come after early December, you will get to see Samunji’s beautiful Christmas tree!

─  Address: 40-12, Samunjin-ro 1-gil, Hwawon-eup, Dalseong-gun, Daegu, Korea
─  Address(KR): 대구광역시 달성군 화원읍 사문진로1 40-12

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

[One Day Korea Tour] Amusement Park: Roller coasters, date, festival, etc

One of the Biggest Amusement Parks in Korea: E-world
Enjoy thrilling roller coasters during day and Korea’s biggest light festival at night

Cozy cafes, bustling shopping malls, winter food specials.. This is the time of the year we have been waiting for! Korea’s winter is full of festivities and activities you can do! From enjoying winter sports like skiing to conquering smoking hot winter foods, Korea has its own unique fun during winter! Daegu is a great city to get the best out of your Korea trip since it’s warmer than other bi cities and.. above all, it’s the place that holds Korea’s biggest light festival ever! Let’s take a look at how we can spend a wonderful day at one of the best amusement parks in Korea!

Let’s take a cable car to the 4th floor of 83 Tower! Because E-world is located on the uphill of a small mountain, it’s more convenient to let the cable car take you to top so that you can walk downhill to explore! Plus, the view from the top is awesome! Why not miss it?

From a merry-go-round to a thrilling roller coasters, this amusement parks has a number of attractions for anyone!

Simple snacks are what makes a day at a theme park more fun!

If you like to treat yourself a good meal, you can also check out Food World located at 83 tower where you can find restaurants and cafes.

If you are with your kid, you can also check out ZooZoo Farm.

As a day progresses, lights start to lit up!

Look at this spectacular lights! This year 10 million lights celebrate winter time with you starting from 17:00 everyday.

One last thing you should not miss is Sky Station, which is the place where the cable car stops! Here.. you will see a park of Korea you will never forget! 

Image: E-world
After a full day at a fantastical park, we need to treat our belly with famous ddukbboki! 15 minutes away from E-world is Yetnal Dalddeok which went viral after it was broadcast on a national TV. 1 portion of ddukbboki costs only1,000KRW. Menu includes ddukbboki, deep-fried/steamed/king mandoo(dumpling), soondae(Korean sausage) and boiled eggs. 

─  Hours: 10:00 – 22:00 (close at 23:00 on Nov 18)
*Lights lit up at 17:00
─  Location: Duryu Station(Line2)
─  Address: 200, Duryugongwon-ro, Dalseo-gu, Daegu

─  Address(KR): 대구 달서구 두류공원로 200

Yetnal Dalddeok 옛날달떡
─  Hours: 11:00 – 24:00
─  Location: Duryu Station(Line2)
─  Address: 25, Yaoeeumakdang-ro 39dong-gil, Dalseo-gu, Daegu, Korea

─  Address(KR): 대구 달서구 야외음악당로39동길 25

Monday, November 20, 2017

Night at Dongchon Resort: Duck Pedal Boat, Sunrise Bridge, Restaurants! (Daegu, Korea)

The Charm of Winter Trip: Night Out @Dongchon Resort

Dongchon Resort is a place that is very popular among Koreans but expats don’t really know about. Located by Geumho River, it presents you a beautiful riverside scene, especially a night scene. Throughout the year, many people come to this area for relaxation at park or simply to treat themselves a nice meal!

Come for food!
Yes, Dongchon Resort area is known for its food town. From a very traditional Korean meal, grilled meat to trendy pasta/pilaf place, you will find something you’d love to eat! Moreover, there are a plenty number of cafes if you need a dessert of daily dose of caffeine in your system!

Ride on a night river.
Duck boats are a very Korean thing to do at a river or lake. Here in Dongchon Resort, you can actually choose from various types of boats: duck pedal boat, electric duck boat, whale boat and paddle boat.

Duck pedal boat: 10,000KRW for two people, 15,000KRW for 3-4 people
Electric duck boat (up to 4 people): 20,000KRW
Whale boat (up to 4 people): 17,000KRW
Paddle boat (up to 2 people): 10,000KRW

The charm of winter lies in this Sunrise Bridge!

Many people know Ayang Railroad(20min from the resort by foot) but not this beautiful Sunrise Bridge! Whether it be a sunset or a night view, the river and the bridge combo really presents a quite a view!

─ Location: Near Dongchon Sation(Line1)  Exit 2 and 3
─ Address: 73, Hyodong-ro 6-gil, Dong-gu, Daegu, Korea
─ Address(KR):  대구시 동구 효동로 6일 73 

Friday, November 17, 2017

[Botany Garden in Korea] Daegu Arboretum

Daegu, South Korea
대구수목원 Daegu Arboretum
Blog by Jenikah Joy

A preview of the arboretum awaits at the exit of the Bus Terminal at Dong Daegu Station

Winter blues got you down?

One of the most surprising things I’ve learned about Korea is the vast amount of color that seems to appear all throughout the cold winter seasons. As a California girl, I’m used to only seeing beautiful flowers blooming in the springtime, but here in Korea you can see them any time of the year. It was this alluring concept that brought me down to Daegu this weekend to experience it in person at the infamous Daegu Arboretum. Nature travel has always been one of Korea’s most well known activities, but this is the first year I was able to check it out for myself.

I was introduced to a whole new world of color.

Daegu Arboretum

This arboretum is the perfect place to visit if you want to do a little hiking, or sight-seeing, while enjoying rare botany and exotic plants. The park has a variety of sites and green houses that hold special collections of plants from all over the world.

Located near Daegok Station, the arboretum is just two bus stops away on local yellow bus #5. Get off at the Central Government Office and you can walk right in.

 When you first arrive, there is a large parking lot for families and visitors who are able to drive in. The walk in is lovely in and of itself as the streets are lined with tall trees that are turning beautiful shades of yellow and red in the late fall season. You can either walk on a dirt path or a paved path on the other side which is convenient for people with strollers, kids with scooters, or the elderly. Now this time of year there is a very impressive flower festival going on as well, although it only runs for a short time in November I was fortunate enough to enjoy it.

The Chrysanthemum Festival

After walking up the hill there’s a big display of interesting floral figurines in all shapes and sizes. The overwhelming amount of colors and flowers is really something to behold. However, this event was extremely popular among natives and tourists alike, so getting photos was something of a challenge!

Exotic Flower Greenhouse
Since the festival is only there for a short amount of time, we decided to check out the greenhouses that are there year round. The first one we stopped into was the exotic flower house which was gorgeous! The vibrant colors and abundant pedals made every flower unique and special in its own way. I have never seen so many varieties of the same types of flowers all in one place together.

Desert Greenhouse

Now this was one of my favorite places in the entire arboretum. Perhaps because it reminded me of my hometown in California. I have always been a huge fan of succulents, and was impressed by the collection of plants inside the greenhouse. While walking through I could tell many of these plants were foreign to other visitors who had not seen these in person before.

A Beautiful Day for a Walk

Outside of the greenhouses on this side of the arboretum, is a path that winds around the outside and is perfect for a leisurely stroll or power walking. Although there is a full hike routed here, it was closed when we were visiting, so many people opted to walk the back paths instead. The trails are lined with beautiful trees that are changing colors and the ground is covered with leaves. 

Plants and More Plants!

If you explore farther in, there are more and more greenhouses which house other plant varieties.

That’s Not All

Although we did not make it to every single greenhouse, there was also a traditional Korean garden, a tropical fruit tree greenhouse, a bamboo forest, fountains, a play area, open grassy areas, a museum, and street performers. Many people were having picnics in the shade, or playing in the fallen leaves. You could easily spend an entire day at the arboretum and I know they host many school trips and tourists groups. I can only imagine how often this place changes with each season. I would love to go back and walk more of the trails in the snow or come back in spring when even more flowers are blooming.