One of the most convenient ways to travel between cities in Korea is by train. Bus schedules can vary depending on traffic, but that is hardly the case for the railroad, allowing passengers to make more exact travel plans and move to destinations on time.
Korean trains are classified based on their speed and the amenities offered onboard. There are generally seven classifications: KTX express trains, KTX-Sancheon, Saemaeul, ITX-Saemaeul, ITX-Cheongchun, Mugunghwa, and KORAIL tourist trains. The two main railway lines are Gyeongbu Line and Honam Line but other railway lines also include Jeolla and Gyeongjeon Lines, which reach as far as Yeosu and Changwon on the southern coast.
For an affordable vacation traveling around Korea, the KORAIL Pass, an exclusive railway pass for foreign visitors, allows unlimited use of all trains, including KTX express trains, for a select number of days.
Major Train Stations in Seoul
One of the most important railway stations in Seoul, Seoul Station is the starting point of the Gyeongbu Line, a double-track line that connects Seoul to Busan. Major stations on the Gyeongbu Line include Daejeon, Dongdaegu, Singyeongju, and Busan Station. Many other rail lines also start from Seoul Station, including the Jeolla∙Honam Line, with stops in Jeonju, Gwangju, Mokpo, and Yeosu.
- Address: 405, Hangang-daero, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Yongsan Station is the start of the Honam Line, a double-track line that runs from Seoul to Mokpo. Major stations on the Jeolla∙Honam Line are Nonsan, Gwangju-songjeong, Mokpo, and Iksan Stations. Travelers can also access the Gyeongbu Line from Yongsan Station.
- Address: 55, Hangang-daero 23-gil, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Cheongnyangni station is for non-express trains headed to the eastern provinces for tourist sites such as Jeongdongjin and Jeongseon in Gangwon-do, Andong and Gyeongju in Gyeongsangbuk-do, and the ITX-Cheongchun train for Chuncheon. Express trains and KTX trains do not pass through this station.
- Address: 214, Wangsan-ro, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul
Yeongdeungpo Station covers the travel needs of passengers in the southwest part of Seoul. All non-express trains passing through Yeongdeungpo Station make stops here.
- Address: 13, Gyeongin-ro 102-gil, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul
From Gangnam to various major cities in the nation, a new express train known as SRT (Super Rapid Train) was introduced in December 2016. Presently, the SRT offers train services from Suseo Station in Seoul to Busan and Mokpo Stations.
- Address: 99, Bamgogae-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
Korea Train Express (KTX)
Korea’s express train, aptly named the KTX, began operations in April 2004. This high-speed train has been designed to reach speeds of up to approx. 305 km per hour.
Operating on Gyeongbu, Honam and Gyeongjeon Lines, this train runs in place of regular Saemaeul trains, running at a slightly faster speed.
Mugunghwa has been in operation since the 1960s, making it the oldest passenger train in Korea. This train is the most common train type in Korea, making stops at smaller stations that the KTX or Saemaeul trains would bypass.
Super Rapid Train (SRT)
A super rapid train, known as the SRT, operates on the Gyeongbu and Honam Lines from Suseo Station.
Detailed Information about Trains
- KORAIL website: info.korail.com (Korean, English)
- KORAIL PASS page: www.letskorail.com (English, Japanese, Chinese)
- SR Website: etk.srail.co.kr (Korean only)
* Currently only available in Korean; foreign language versions planned to open later
- KORAIL Customer Service Center: +82-1599-7777 (English, Japanese, Chinese)
- SR Customer Service Center: +82-1800-1472 (English)
Information and photos of major train stations courtesy of KORAIL
Suseo Station and SRT train photos courtesy of SR
This page was last updated on September 15, 2017, and therefore information may differ from what is presented here.