The city of Gwangmyeong is a must for any travel itinerary of the metropolitan area. The city is easily accessible via public transit, taking just 15 minutes from Seoul Station to Gwangmyeong Station, and one hour and 20 minutes from Incheon International Airport. Taking a day out of your Seoul trip to spend in Gwangmyeong will be worth the time. Read on to learn more about the city’s attractions.
Gwangmyeong Cave, an abandoned mine spanning 7.9 km in length and reaching 275 m in depth, has been given new life as a tourist attraction. It is the only cave in the Seoul metropolitan area and has become a top attraction of Gwangmyeong since being included on the 100 Must-go Destinations in Korea list for 2017-2018. The cool air of the cave makes it popular in summer, while the many exhibitions and events held within the cave keep it interesting all year round.
The Wine Cave holds over 170 wines produced at Korean wineries. This is the only location in the nation where you can taste and purchase locally produced wines from across the country. The cave is divided into the wine cellar, where the wines are kept at the optimal temperature, and the tasting room, where visitors can try and buy their favorite wine. Each region produces it’s own unique taste so be sure to try a variety.
One of the most popular sections of Gwangmyeong Cave is the Golden Road, decorated in the theme of gold, including Golden Waterfall, The Palace of Gold, and the Golden Road. This area is home to Aixia, the goddess of abundance and offical mascot of Gwangmyeong Cave. Stories tell that if you touch the golden hammer and gold bars in her hands, you will be granted a prosperous and happy future. Try it for yourself to see if the legends are true!
Take a ride on Gwangmyeong Cave’s Elephant Car, departing from the back gate at Gwangmyeong Cave Parking Lot 3! The journey takes about ten minutes and the road is lined on both sides with a lush forest. The open sides of the car will allow you to take in the fresh air as you travel to the cave in comfort. The car runs in 20 minute intervals from 09:20 to 17:00. The rate for a one-way trip is 2,000 won for adults and 1,000 won for children. Please note that operations cease during winter and on rainy days.
IKEA is a world-famous furniture company from Sweden. The brand is famous for their modern and minimalist Scandinavian style designs at great prices. Another key-point of the IKEA brand is the DIY, flat-packaged items purchasers put together at home. IKEA Gwangmyeong opened in December 2014, and is the first IKEA in Korea. Spanning over 59,000㎡, the large store has more than 8,600 products for sale ranging from kitchen goods to living room and bedroom furniture. IKEA is also located just 10 minutes from Gwangmyeong Cave by car, making it convenient to enjoy a day of touring and shopping! When visiting, be sure to try the Scandinavian menus such as meatballs and tomato sauce available in the food court!
Lotte Premium Outlets Gwangmyeong is a shopper’s paradise, located just next to IKEA. The shopping center has more than 300 designer brands, as well as a cultural complex that holds performances, photo zones, and an outdoor park that caters to groups of various kinds. Teddy bear statues and other cute and enjoyable installments make it a great place for families with children to enjoy the atmosphere while the parents focus on shopping.
*This column was last updated in August 2017, and therefore information may differ from what is presented here. We advise you to check details from the official websites before visiting.