Luxury Course “Wellbeing & Entertainment”
Gyeongju Luxury Course combines both things to see and do, and health-related activities, offering a complete “wellbeing and entertainment” experience. Feast on delicious foods at luxury restaurants while immersing yourself in Gyeongju’s history discovered at Gyeongju’s old homes. Also, enjoy the entertainment facilities at Bomun Tourist Complex. And, on the last day of your tour stop by Korea’s traditional Oriental hospital to relieve the fatigue that’s built up from traveling. Take care of your health while having fun on your trip. → For more information on the historical city, Gyeongju, click!
09:00 Depart from Seoul Station
You can take either the bus or the train to Gyeongju from Seoul. A direct train is available on a deluxe train called the Saemaeul departing 4 to 5 times everyday, and it takes about 4 hours and 30 minutes. The quickest way to get to Gyeongju is to take the KTX, which travels at 300 km per hour to Dongdaegu (East Daegu), and then transfer onto a Mugunghwa (an ecomony class train) or a Saemaeul to Gyeongju. Although you have to transfer, you can reach Gyeongju in three hours. Then, take a ten-minute taxi ride from Gyeongju train station to Yosukgung. If your bags are heavy, leave them in the lockers available at the train station. → For more information on the transportation, click!
12:30~14:00 A Magnificent Lunch at Yosukgung (瑤石宮, 요석궁)
Yoseokgung is Gyeongju’s most luxurious restaurant, visited by former presidents and social elite figures. This restaurant was once the home of Princess Yoseok of the Shilla Dynasty, which was then inhabited by the famously rich Choi family of the late Joseon Dynasty. The Choi family’s cooking skills have been handed down to today’s Yoseokgung. This restaurant offers the best food with the best atmosphere. The more than 200 years old house maintains its original exquisite Hanok structure, along with antique furniture and pictures. Reservations are a must.
Business Hours 11:30~21:30 / Closed on Seollal & Chuseok / Menu: Hanjeongsik ￦20,000~100,000 (per one serving, 10% VAT included) / Inquiries & Reservations: +82-54-772-3347 (Korean) yosukgung.com (Korean) / Directions: Take a taxi from Gyeongju train station (10 minutes)
14:00~16:00 Visit Gyodong House
As you head out of Yosukgung, visit the Choi family’s old house located right next door. Gyodong (校洞) has been inhabited by the Choi family for generations, and the Hanok’s history is well-exemplified. The Choi family is known for the production of Gyeongju’s popular drink “Gyeongju Gyodong Beopju (경주 교동법주, 慶州校洞法酒)”. Even if you don’t enjoy alcoholic beverages, you can still enjoy the history found in the old house. The descendants still live in the house, therefore it is requested that you show good manners while touring their house. You may even be able to have conversations with the Choi family’s daughter-in-law who now oversees the house or the elder grandmother if you are lucky.
16:00~20:00 Tour of Downtown Historical Sites
Gyeongju’s downtown historical sites are closely located, therefore easily accessible from site to site. Take a taxi from Gyodong to Daereung-won Tumuli Park and tour on foot or on a bicycle. A bicycle tour is recommended on fine-weather days. Bicycle rent shops are located at various locations surrounding Gyeongju Bus Terminal and the downtown historical sites. The bicycle rentals are ￦3,000 per one bicycle per one hour, and about ￦6,000 to ￦8,000 for full-day rentals per one bicycle (prices may vary depending on the shop).
The recommended course is an approximately a three-hour course from Daereung-won Tumuli Park (Cheonmachong Tomb) – Cheomseongdae Observatory – Gyerim – Anapji Pond (Imhae Jeonji) – Gyeongju National Museum.
Downtown historical sites provide nightlights, and are even more beautiful after sunset. Begin your tour in the late afternoon to enjoy the night view of the historical sites from 7pm to 8pm, when the nightlights come on. Note, Gyeongju National Museum is closed on Mondays.
[Click for a Preview of Downtown Historical Sites]
20:00~21:00 Accommodations at a hotel in Bomun Tourist Complex
Bomun Tourist Complex is centered on Bomun Lake. The complex facilities include luxury hotels, an amusement park, international conference halls, hot springs, water rides, and other convenience facilities. Bomun Tourist Complex provides hotels and condos, whereas the surrounding areas of the bus terminal and downtown provide motels and private lodgings. Find out more! → Low to medium priced accommodations in Gyeongju → Bomun Lake Resort
09:00~12:00 Tour of Bulguksa Temple & Seokguram Grotto
Both Bulguksa Temple and Seokguram Grotto have long histories, and are representative relics of Gyeongju and UNESCO-designated World Cultural Assets. It is about a 15 to 30-minute taxi ride from Bomun Tourist Complex. To complete tour of both sites, set aside a good three hours. → Go to Bulguksa Temple → Go to Seokguram Grotto
12:00~14:00 Hilton Hotel Lunch Buffet
After the morning tour, head back to Bomun Tourist Complex for lunch. Hilton Hotel’s Lakeside Buffet Restaurant on the first floor provides great food with a beautiful view of Bomun Lake.
14:00~18:00 Ride a Hot Air Balloon or an ATV at Sky World
Sky World is an entertainment facility, offering fun rides on a hot air balloon as well as ATV vehicles (four-wheeled autocycles). First, get on the hot air balloon, which can carry a maximum of 30 people up 150 meters in the air. Take in the scene of Bomun Lake and Golf Course, and the surrounding tour sites spreading out before your eyes. You float in the air for about 15 minutes. After the hot air balloon experience, hop on an All Terrain Vehicle (ATV), a four-wheeled autocycle and ride along the ATV course. You can ride the ATV alone, or with one other person. Those over 13 years or older are permitted to ride an ATV.
Opening Hours: From sunrise ~ sunset / No holidays, except in rain and/or severe wind weather conditions / Hot air balloons & ATV rentals: ￦15,000 each / Inquiries +82-54-743-0010 (Korean) skyworld.co.kr (Korean)
[Entertainment Facilities at Bomun Tourist Complex] 1.Spring Dome : Hot springs theme park at Hanhwa Resort. Facilitated with water rides, hot springs, restaurants, a swimming pool, etc. Recommended for tourists traveling with children.
Opening Hours Weekdays 13:00~20:00 Saturday 09:00~21:00 Sunday 09:00~18:00 / Admissions Weekdays 18,000 Weekends ￦24,000 / Inquiries +82-54-777-8900 (Press 3 when you hear a recording in Korean to connect to English service) springdome.co.kr (Korean, English)
2. Gyungju World : Representative amusement park in Gyeongju. Facilitated with a wide variety of fun rides including “Mega Drop” falling from 70 meters, “Grand Canyon Exploration” on a boat in fierce water currents, and the thrilling Viking” and “Roller Coaster”. Recommended for tourists traveling with children.
18:00~20:00 Dinner at Korean Beef Cattle Specialty Restaurant ‘Geogu (巨龜) Jang’.
This popular Gyeongju restaurant is especially well-known for its delicious mouth-watering Korean beef cattle sirloin. If you are a meat-lover, be sure to stop by this restaurant for dinner.
Business Hours 8:30~21:00/ Menu Korean beef cattle galbi: ￦18,000 per one serving, Bulgogi jeongol: ￦12,000, Samgyeopsal: ￦7,000 per one serving / Inquiries +82-54-745-7551 (Korean)
10:00~17:00 Try a Korean traditional Oriental medical examination & medical treatment at Conmaul Gyeongju Oriental Hospital.
Chase away your travel-fatigue with a Korean traditional Oriental medical treatment as the last stop of your three-day course at Gyeongju at Conmaul Gyeongju Oriental Hospital. The traditional Hanok structure providing the setting for the Korean traditional Oriental medicine experience offers the most relaxing health check-up. An examination and treatment with lunch is ￦150,000. This 1-Day Package begins at 10am and finishes around 5pm in which reservations are required to enjoy this package.
[Detailed Information] Business Hours: Make reservations before your visit / Closed on Mondays / 1-Day Package: ￦150,000 / Inquiries +82-54-775-6600 (Korean, English) conmaulkj.co.kr (Korean) / Directions: A ten-minute taxi-ride from Gyeongju train station or the bus terminal, and a 15-minute taxi-ride from Bomun Tourist Complex
Frenchman Mathew’s Conmaul Experience Story!
Mathew, who loves to ride motorcycles, experienced Korea’s Oriental medicine for the first time. Mathew’s physical examination consisted of both Western and Oriental medical methods, after which he received his Oriental medical treatment. He loved the fact that he was able to relieve his fatigue from the trip while learning more about his health. But the scent of Oriental medical herbs was very new to him, and communication proved to be somewhat difficult. Step 1. Ultrasonography & Blood Test Results
First, you begin with the Western medical examination, finding out the general state of your health through ultrasonography and blood tests. Step 2. Five Oriental Medical Examinations
Next, you begin your Oriental medical examinations. Your general consultation will cover your history of illnesses and lifestyle. Then, the doctor will confirm the state of your red blood cells, and also further examine the state of your pupils, blood circulation, and your stress level. Step 3. Final Consultation with the Doctor
Once all test results are in, you will have your complete consultation with the doctor. The “O-Ring” test is actually fun and interesting, and you also learn about your physical constitution. When holding specific articles in your hand, if the items’ fit your physical constitution your hand naturally responds with a strong grip. If the item goes against your physical constitution, your hand naturally looses its grip. Step 4. Oriental Medical Treatment
After the doctor’s consultation, you are taken to the treatment room. The treatment consists of acupuncture, buhang (a cupping glass heated and placed on places where your blood circulation is weak), moxibustion, and other Oriental medical treatments. Once your treatment is completed, you are also presented with medical tea made to balance out your physical constitution.
Good Option! Recommended Stops for Your Travel Itinerary!
Beans? Meat? Well-being Restaurant ‘Dayu (다유)’
The restaurant recreates the taste of meat with beans. The fact that you can taste chicken, beef, and pork in the bean dishes is in itself amazing. The restaurant is perfect for health-conscious people or vegetarians.
Business Hours 10:00~22:00/ Holidays Seollal & Chuseok / Menu: Bean-meat rice: ￦10,000, Sweet pumpkin rice: ￦6,000 / Inquiries +82-54-773-8866 (Korean)/ Directions: Take a 15-minute taxi ride from the downtown area or a five-minute taxi ride from Bomun Tourist Complex
“Shilla Millennium Park” Theme Park
This theme park was designed based on the fact that Gyeongju was the capitol of Shilla Dynasty. You can discover so much about Shilla’s history and culture during the eighth-century BC. The main performance shows a vivid recreation of the battle scenes. You especially don’t want to miss the horseback military arts performance.
Budget Course. “A Trip on a Bicycle & a City Tour Bus”
There are three major tour sites in Gyeongju: Gyeongju downtown area, Bomun Tourist Complex, and Bulguksa Temple and Seokguram Grotto. Gyeongju’s downtown and Bomun Tourist Complex are ideal to tour around on a bicycle. The City Tour Bus is recommended for your visit to Seokguram Grotto. The downtown historical sites are closely located to each other, therefore perfect for a ride on a bicycle or even a stroll on foot.
The Budget Course is a tour of downtown Gyeongju on a bicycle, and a City Tour Bus tour of Seokguram Grotto. Staying at a motel and jjimjilbang (sauna) are highly suggested for accommodations if you are on the “Budget Course”.
→ For more information on the historical city, Gyeongju, click!
09:00 Depart from Gangnam Express Bus Terminal
You can take either the bus or the train to Gyeongju from Seoul. A direct train is available on the Saemaeul (deluxe train) 4 to 5 times everyday, and it takes about 4 hours and 30 minutes. The quickest way to get to Gyeongju is to take the KTX, which travels at 300 km per hour to Dongdaegu (East Daegu), and then to transfer onto either a Mugunghwa (economy) or a Saemaeul (deluxe) train to Gyeongju. Although you have to transfer, you can reach Gyeongju in three hours. If you prefer cheaper transportation, then take the express bus. It takes about 4 hours and 30 minutes to reach Gyeongju, and buses are available every thirty minutes from 6 am to 12 pm at Gangnam Express Bus Terminal. It is ￦26,000 for a bus ticket (deluxe seat). → For more information on the transportation, click!
13:30~14:30 Arrive at Gyeongju Bus Terminal & Check-in at a Nearby Motel
The most ideal accommodations for the budget tourist in Gyeongju are available at the motel areas located behind the bus terminal. There are about 20 motels, offering you with a wide range of choices. You do not need to make reservations, unless you are visiting during the vacation season on weekends (July to August). The rooms are equipped with a TV, refrigerator, and air conditioner, and the rates are between ￦40,000 and ￦50,000 per night (for 2 persons) per room. The facilities and rates are similar, so check out the rooms before making your final decision.
Built recently, the facility is one of the cleanest. The rooms come in two types: western style bedrooms (single or double) and Korean style ondol (under floor-heating) rooms. All rooms are equipped with an A/C, a computer, a DVD player, and more. The motel is also located right next to the bus terminal, therefore easily accessible.
Inquiries +82-54-777-3311 (Korean) / Located immediately next to the bus terminal.
→ For more information on the low to medium priced accommodations in Gyeongju
14:30~16:00 Lunch at the Ssambap Alley
Enjoy your lunch at the Ssambap Alley located between Daereung-won Tumuli Park West Gate to Cheomseongdae Observatory. “Ssambap” is a dish of rice and sauce, which you wrap together with various types of vegetables. About 20 different banchan (side dishes) are laid out. Although the restaurants are not fancy, the food is delicious and filling, and the prices are ideal for those travelers traveling on a budget. Price: ￦7.000 ~ ￦8,000 per one serving.
Recommended! Daereungwon (대릉원) Ssambap
Located at the West Gate of Daereung-won, this ssambap restaurant’s green sign immediately catches your eye. Though not the fanciest of facilities, the restaurant does offer endless side dishes cooked with care by the owner.
Business Hours 12:00~21:00 / No holidays / Menu: Ssambap jeongsik: ￦7,000 Haemul pajeon (seafood and green onion pancake): ￦5,000 / Inquiries +82-748-6865 (Korean) / Directions: Located centrally on the Deareung-won ssambap alley
16:00~20:00 Bicycle Tour of Downtown Historical Sites
Most downtown historical sites are closely situated, and easily accessible on a bicycle or on foot. The bicycle is especially appealing since it is a cheap mode of transportation. Bicycle rental shops are easily found near Gyeongju bus terminal and downtown historical sites. Rental fees are ￦3,000 per hour for one bicycle, and ￦6,000 ~ ￦7,000 for full-day rentals (prices may vary). Pick up a tourist information brochure at the bus terminal or the train station, and learn about various tour courses. Remember, the Gyeongju National Museum is closed on Mondays.
Recommended! Three-Hour Bicycle Course
Tour Daereung-won Tumuli Park (Cheonmachong Tomb) ~ Cheomseongdae Observatory ~ Gyerim ~ Anapji (Imhae Jeonji) ~ Gyeongju National Museum for about 3 hours on a bicycle. If you take out the Gyeongju National Museum from your itinerary, the tour will take about 2 hours to complete. Daereung-won Tumuli Park, Cheomseongdae Observatory, Anapji, etc, have installed streetlights, making these sites even more beautiful after sunset.
Begin your tour in the late afternoon around 4 pm, and enjoy the night view around 6 and 7 pm when the streetlights come on after sunset. The tour sites are open until 8 to 9 pm to allow visitors enough time to enjoy the night view of the locations.
[Click for a Preview of Downtown Historical Sites]
20:00 ~ Rest & Sleep
As your make your way back to your motel, purchase a box of Gyeongju snacks, which you can also enjoy for breakfast. Choose from snacks such as Hwangnamppang bread, Gyeongjuppang bread, or Chalborippang bread. Hwangnamppang bread and Gyeongjuppang bread both have red beans inside, while the Chalborippang bread tastes like smooth sponge cake.
Price: 1 Box of 20 costs about ￦10,000.
10:00~17:00 Gyeongju City Tour Bus Tour
If you toured the downtown area on Day 1, then head out a little bit farther on Day 2. These locations are difficult to access for individual travelers, therefore the Gyeongju City Tour Bus tour is recommended. The rates include transportation and admissions. Take along something to drink and snack on the bus. The bus tour leaves from the “Cheonma Plaza” located next to the bus terminal. You must make reservations providing the details of your selected tour course and number of tourists.
Inquiries: Cheonma Tour 054-743-6001 (Korean, English) cmtour.co.kr (Korean)
A Course (08:30~18:00, ￦23,800): Bulguksa Temple, Folk Crafts Village, BunhwangsaTemple Site, Gyeongju National Museum, Cheomseongdae Observatory, Daereung-won Tumuli Park,
B Course (10:00~17:00, ￦18,000): Seokguram Grotto, Gameunsa Temple Site, Golgulsa (Stone Buddha) Temple, Underwater Tomb of King Munmu
Recommended! A Tour of Seokguram Grotto & Golgulsa Temple on the B Course!
If you toured the downtown historical sites the day before, then go for the B Course which takes you to distant tour sites of Seokguram Grotto, Gameunsa Temple Site, Golgulsa Temple, and the Underwater Tomb of King Munmu. These sites are not easily accessible for the individual travelers via public transportation. You do not want to miss Seokguram Grotto and the Golgulsa Temple built out of solid rocks, which are both UNESCO-designated World Cultural Heritage Sites.
18:00~22:00 Rest & Sleep at Cheomseongdae Jjimjilbang
On Day 2, if you don’t mind much, a jjimjilbang (sauna) is an adequate acommation place for one night in which you can experience the unique Korean culture. A jjimjilbang provides hot rooms in which you can sweat out your fatigue and also get some sleep. If you want to save some money on your accommodations, then stay a night at a jjimjilbang.
Gyeongju’s most popular jjimjilbang is “Cheomseongdae Jjimjilbang” which gets its name because of its Cheomseongdae-shaped jjimjilbang. You can also take a hot bath, rest in a lounge equipped with a TV, sleep in a sleeping room, watch a movie in the DVD room, use a computer in the PC room (￦500 for 30 minutes), or relax in the outdoor facility. Even foreign tourists visiting a jjimjilbang for the very first time will find the facilities quite comfortable. Although you don’t have your own private space like the motel rooms, the wide range of facilities accessible for ￦8,000 is worth the price and also satisfactory.
Business Hours: 24 hours / Admissions 13 years and above: ￦8,000, 12 years and under: ￦5,000 (per 24 hours, additional costs will be added for the time after the initial 24 hours) / Inquiries +82-54-777-7600 (Korean) hanjeung.com (Korean) / Directions: Take bus #11 in downtown Gyeongju and get off at Cheomseongdae Jjimjilbang. If you are using the City Tour Bus, tell the driver your destination and the driver will drop you off at a nearby location.
08:00 Wake Up & Eat Breakfast
Enjoy a light breakfast of eggs and drinks at the jjimjilbang. It is ￦1,000 for 3 boiled eggs, and drinks are also ￦1,000 each. Then, pack your belongings and check out. Head for the Gyeongju Folk Crafts Village located next to the jjimjilbang. If your bags are too heavy, you can request the information counter of the jjimjilbang to keep your bags for a while.
09:00~11:00 Traditional Cultural Experience at the Folk Crafts Village
Built on a 20,000 pyeong of land at the foot of Mt. Tohamsan, the Folk Crafts Village carries on the traditional culture of Gyeongju. About 20 craft masters live in this village, creating pottery, metal crafts, jewelry, embroidered goods, and more. You can also tour the master’s working area, a Hanok home, and an exhibition hall. The works on display are also for sale if you like what you see. The village also houses the Shilla History Science Hall, exhibiting Seokguram Grotto-related items and more.
Opening Hours 09:00~17:00
After completing your tour, take bus #11 at the bus stop in front of the Folk Crafts Village and go to Gyeongju train station. The bus terminal is a basic taxi fare (￦1,800) ride from the station.
Recommended! Bulguksa Temple Tour
If you have some time on Day 3, take bus #10 at the bus stop in front of the Folk Crafts Village to Bulguksa Temple. The City Tour Bus tour from the previous day does not cover this site, and for the visitors who wish to see Bulguksa Temple, you have to visit it on your own. It takes only about ten minutes from the village to the temple and the tour of the temple take about one hour. To head back to the downtown area, take bus #10 from Bulguksa Temple. → Go to Bulguksa Temple
Another Good Option! Recommended Stops for Your Travel Itinerary! Make Traditional Snacks & Tteok
Experience some of Korea’s traditional culture at the “Mundam (문담) Tea Ceremony Institute”. The institute provides various programs such as learning traditional tea ceremony manners, making traditional snacks and tteok (rice cakes), traditional dye, and more.
The tea ceremony and eating snacks takes about 2 hours. It is ￦10,000 per person, and you can enjoy the snacks you cooked along with some tea after the hands-on program. Reservations are a must.
Opening Hours 11:00~17:30
Inquiries +82-54-774-8545 (Korean)/ Directions: Take bus #10 or #11 at the bus stop across the street from Gyeongju station or bus terminal. Get off at Mullaebanga Rest Area. The institute is located in the front entrance of Gyeongsangbukdo Tourism Organization.
Temple Food at ‘Baru’
Baru, a temple food restaurant, is located near the front gate of the Tomb of King Muyeol. Baru originally refers to the wooden bowls used by monks. Baru’s most popular course is the ￦10,000 (jeongsik course), a full course meal, which includes sweet pumpkins, mushrooms, deep fried sesame leaves, fried mushrooms, salad, and porridge. The course is completed with a bowl of sanchae-bibimbap (bibimbap with wild vegetables). The servings are plenty and the taste is pleasing.
Business Hours 12:00~21:00 / Menu: Baru jeongsik: ￦10,000 ~ ￦15,000 Sanchae-bibimbap: ￦5,000, Nokdu bindaetteok: ￦7,000 / Holiday: Every second & fourth Friday of every month / Inquiries +82-54-774-5378 (Korean)/ Directions: Take bus #300 from the bus stop across the street from Gyeongju station or the bus terminal, and get off at the Tomb of King Muyeol. As you face the main entrance of the tomb, follow the road to the left up the hill about 300 meters. Baru is to the right as you pass the three-way intersection.
Hwangnampppang vs. Gyeongjuppang vs. Chalborippang
The bread makers selling Hwangnamppang bread, Gyeonjuppang bread, and Chalborippang bread are located around the downtown area of Gyeongju and the bus terminal.
Hwangnamppang bread filled with red beans was first introduced in 1939, and has the longest history of the three types of breads. Gyeongjuppang bread is also filled with red beans, and looks similar to Hwangnamppang bread, but the red beans are harder and less sweet than Hwangnamppang bread. If you prefer sweet things, then it’s best to try Hwangnamppang bread. If you prefer something less sweet, then try Gyeongjuppang bread.
Chalborippang bread is round and flat, and tastes similar to a sponge cake.
All three breads are about ￦10,000 per box that consists of 20~25 pieces.