My friend and I took a 3 days trip to Gwangju. This post is for the one who wants to visit Gwangju but has no idea where to go. I am going to show you the most popular Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions. Hope you enjoy it! (The picture above was taken at one of the subway stations in Gwangju, I really like the background and the vibes, how about you?😬)
- Where is Gwangju in South Korea?
- How to go to Gwangju from Seoul?
- Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions I: Art & Culture Tour
- Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions II: Shopping Spots
- Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions III: The Most Legendary World Cup Stadium
- Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions IV: Bus Terminal Complex
Where is Gwangju in South Korea?
Gwangju(광주) is located in the southwest of South Korea. It is the 6th biggest city in South Korea and the biggest city in Jeolla Province(the southwest area of South Korea). Which is the reason why Gwangju is a city worth visiting.
How to go to Gwangju from Seoul?
Since Gwangju is a big city, it is quite easy to get there. (NO transfer needed!!!) Let’s see how long and how much it will cost by different transportation (All the information below is according to One Way Ticket & Standard Seat):
- 3hrs 20~40 min
- 19000-40100 won (US$16.5-35)
- The time and price depend on getting on the bus at which terminal in Seoul, departure time, and the quality of the bus.
By Train / KTX
The time and price depend on departure & arrival station.
|Train||Mugunghwa (Slow)||ITX-Saemaeul (Fast)||KTX (High-Speed Rail)|
|Time||4hrs 20~40min||4hrs||1hr 35min ~ 2hrs|
|Price||22300-23000 won (US$19.5-20)||34300 won (US$30)||46800-47100 won (US$41)|
From Gimpo International Airport (in Seoul) to Gwangju Airport:
- 50 min ~ 1hr
- 27200-94300 won (US$23.7-82.2)
- The time and price depend on the airline company and the season. (Better avoid national holidays in Korea!!!)
In my case, my friend and I took a bus to Gwangju. It is the most affordable way. Also, the bus terminal in Gwangju is a nice place to look around, I will introduce this place to you as well at the end of this post. (Or you can click HERE to directly see that.)
Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions I: Art & Culture Tour
Gwangju Art Street
Our first destination was Gwangju Art Street. There are a lot of cute and stylish cafés or stores and we couldn’t help taking pictures in front of them. In the first picture, it is a photo studio with nostalgic vibes. Somehow I like the Korean word (especially the font) in the picture, it looks very artistic.
Since this is an Art Street, it seems that there are some events for the public like Art Show. Also, you will find some stores selling Korean traditional costumes: Hanbok or street vendors selling interesting items!
Gwangju Art Street Directions ➼
On the way to the next destination, we found a pathway surrounded by green. Isn’t it just look like a Runway? With the sunlight, the weather was perfect and it was a waste to not take pictures.
Asia Culture Center
Asia Culture Center is a huge complex that opened to the public in 2015. Since it’s not that old, the whole place especially the architecture looks remarkable. With the green you can find everywhere, it is a pleasant place that you can spend at least half of the day there. Here are what you can do:
- Explore the outdoor area and take some nice pictures.
- Watch shows at ACC Theater.
- In addition to various regular exhibitions, sometimes there is a pop-up exhibition. At that time, we went into a container of LEE LEE NAM MEDIA ART CUBE EXHIBITION without paying any fee, and I got the free postcards.
- There is also an area for children, including the playground, library, playhouse, and so on. Don’t miss visiting here if you are planning a family trip!
- HANUL MADANG is a field full of grass, it’s good to sit on it, take a break and enjoy the moment.
Asia Culture Center Directions ➼
Yangnim-dong Penguin Village
I would like to say Yangnim-dong Penguin Village is the cutest village ever!!! Seemed like a flea market, but the whole village is an ART. All the old items decorate the village, make the village so unique. There is a bench in front of the clock wall, you can sit and take a photo. You can also pay for getting the polaroid photo which the owner will take for you. In memory of this precious trip, my friend and I took the polaroid photo and I am so satisfied with that. 😍
In the evening, the village looks very different with the lighting. See the colorful neon lights on the building? I believe it’s the map of the village, how cool it is! If you explore more, you will see some fancy cafés. One of them has a style of traditional Korean house that looks special and lovely.
Yangnim-dong Penguin Village Directions ➼
Cheongchun Balsan Village
Cheongchun Balsan Village can also be called The Radiating Youthfulness Village(This is how it called in the Google Map), you can tell from the name that the theme of the village is Youth. See the vivid colors all around the village, just like the vitality and energy of young people. There are some Korean words on the walls and stairs. These words are very poetic, for example, one of them says: “Wish Today can be the Youth of Tomorrow.” With the colorful background and poetic words, you can take tons of pictures like you are in a fairy tale. The Second Day was a rainy day, but it wasn’t that bad. Instead, we got some special photos because it rained. 😉
Cheongchun Balsan Village Directions ➼
Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions II: Shopping Spots
Chungjang-ro is where people in Gwangju go shopping and having fun! A lot of clothing stores and cafés are around here. While you can find the latest fashion here, you can also find some Korean traditional costumes: Hanbok. What a pleasure to see those colorful and beautiful traditional costumes! (One of the pictures is the Hanbok of a kid, how cute!💕) I find a tailor store which looks like it has a long history as well. Hope you can find more when you visiting here!
Chungjang-ro Directions ➼
1913 Songjeong Station Market
1913 Songjeong Station Market is a long street with various stores, restaurants, cafés, street food vendors, tailor shops, barbershops, even photo studios! I saw a rental shop that you can wear the uniform of the Korean students in the past. Plus, you can take black and white photos at the nearby photo studio, sounds fun right? With the lights on, the market looks more beautiful at night. Walking down the street in Gwangju can feel the good old-time vibes which is the thing I like about Gwangju.
1913 Songjeong Station Market Directions ➼
SeJung Outlet is another option as a shopping place instead of Chungjang-ro. Interestingly, SeJung is my Korean friend’s name, that’s why I walked into this outlet. 😂 (I believe a lot of Korean girls’ name is SeJung) You will see some well-known international fashion brands, Korean domestic fashion brands here, and you might find something that you like!
SeJung Outlet Directions ➼
Namgwangju Market is a good place to have dinner. It is a traditional Korean market that mainly sells fresh and quality seafood. Besides, you can find Korean food, fruits, clothing and maybe a souvenir of the trip!
Namgwangju Market Directions ➼
Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions III: The Most Legendary World Cup Stadium
On the Third Day, which is also the last day of this Gwangju trip, my friend and I went to The Most Legendary World Cup Stadium: Gwangju World Cup Stadium. I would like to introduce this MUST VISIT spot in Gwangju and tell you why it is The Most Legendary One. In addition, you will see other spots that we went to as well.
Rose Garden in Pungam Lake Park
We found a Rose Garden on the way to the World Cup Stadium. It is a part of Pungam Lake Park which is known for Pungam Reservoir. From the Rose Garden to the World Cup Stadium, you just need to cross the street and walk for a few steps. Pretty close, right? It is good to stop by this Rose Garden before or after visiting the World Cup Stadium!
Pungam Lake Park Directions ➼
Gwangju World Cup Stadium
Now we are at the Gwangju World Cup Stadium, firstly, let’s take a look at this word:
Korea created the legend of reaching the semifinals at the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea·Japan for the first time in Asia.
It is said that Korea had never won any World Cup game before the 2002 FIFA World Cup. What’s even worse is that they were defeated 0–5 not only once at other matches. Korea, as the joint host of the 2002 FIFA World Cup, what they didn’t want to see the most must be losing the game ingloriously. With the GREAT football manager Guus Hiddink‘s help, Korea kept creating the MIRACLES, from winning the first game to becoming Top 16 and Top 8.
What happened next made this Gwangju World Cup Stadium The Most Legendary World Cup Stadium: At that time, Korea and Spain had the game at this stadium. After a long game, including overtime, the score was still 0–0. To determine who will take part in the semifinal(Top 4), they had the penalty shoot-out game. And the LEGEND happened as the word above. Now let’s see the highlight of this Legend and feel the Fever together.🔥
Unfortunately, we weren’t able to go inside the stadium, but walking around here and taking a look from the outside was enough for us. If you are in Gwangju or you are planning to go to Gwangju, it is a BIG LOSS to miss this legendary place. So don’t forget to write it down on your bucket list!📝
By the way, there are Lotte Outlets and Lotte Mart where you can enjoy shopping right next to the stadium.
Gwangju World Cup Stadium Directions ➼
Gwangju Korea Tourist Attractions IV: Bus Terminal Complex
It’s time to say goodbye to Gwangju and go back to our city. We were waiting for the bus at U·square which is a Bus Terminal Complex. There is a book store, movie theater, food court, shopping area, video arcade, even karaoke so you will never get bored while waiting for the bus.
U·Square Directions ➼