Monday, October 30, 2017

South Korea: Gangwon-do: Chuncheon: Nami Island


Options on how to reach Nami Island



Insadong - Nami Island Limousine Shuttle (2011)

The booking on Nami Island bus tour from Insadong to Gayeong Wharf starts a month before your desired date of travel. You can contact then through email namibus[@]naminara.com. We choose a one-way bus trip and requested that we pay it on the ground, directly to the bus driver.

From Exit 1 of Jongno 3(sam)ga Station (Line 03), we passed by some coffee shops and McDo (where we took our breakfast). We turned right after Pagoda (Topgol) Park, and look for our bus.

We had a hard time communicating with the driver, he is making us pay 42000won. We understand that aside from the ticket he would like for us to buy the Visa Ticket (round-trip fare for the boat ride). Then, when he showed us a piece of paper saying that we need to be in the meeting place by 3:30pm as the bus returning to Insadong will be leaving by 4pm, only then that we understand that the ticket he was selling is a two-way bus ride. We ended up paying 2 pieces one-way bus ticket and Visa Entry for 29000won (1160php).

We saw a lot of greenery along the way to Nami.


After the Visa entry check, people are gathered on the gate. Try to be in front so that you can still get a seat on the boat. The Welcome note for the Philippine Flag says ‘Tanggapin’, we’re we are used to say ‘Mabuhay’ (Long Live!)

Taking the commuter Train

From where yo are in Seoul, make your way to Gapyeong Station.  Then, hop to Gapyeong City Tour Bus to Nami Island.



The Arrival


Since we are carrying bags packed for our 2 days stay in Nami, it is hard for us to walk until the Hotel area. We skipped the golf cart like transportation that costs 5000won. Once I saw the mini-train that only costs 2000won (80php), I told my sister that we take it as it costs a cheaper price. Same train was taken by Bianca Gonzales and Kim Bum in their fan-idol show World Date (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Hu0sFhHv1Y) in Nami. The earned fares of the train is mainly used to help UNICEF projects.


Since the check-in time of the Hotel is still 3pm, we had to leave our bags on the Hotel Information counter (around 5 minutes walk from the Main Building). We ate at Pizza Restaurant in Baplex Complex.



We were able to visit a naughty-like clay art works that has a theme of ‘Happiness’ and a separate ‘Glass Exhibition’ sponsored by Japanese Artists in the same Complex.

After, we roam around the Island, visited the Winter Sonata Photo Studio, Glass Making House, Souvenir Shop, Yu Qing Cheng Sculpture Gallery and take a lot of photos of the environment.



Spending some time reading the notes in Nami Historium will let you understand that Nami Island is not only about Winter Sonata, but on the care of nature and believing in that love within yourself.

To quote some writings in the museum:
Since Winter Sonata was aired internationally until 2005 the Japanese were the majority of foreign tourists to Nami Island. Recently, tourists from Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, The Philippines and other Southeast Asian regions begun to visit in greater number.

Winter Sonata inspired many people to realize the true meaning of love. Director Yun is remembered for saying, “If you are in love, confirm that love.”

Those who long for and believe that love lasts forever visit Nami Island and create their own sonatas. Winter Sonata on Nami Island is more than a famous television series - it’s a true icon of love.




Naminara Island is named after General Nami who believed was buried in the island. After sometime, a bank president bought the island and planted a lot of trees. The island is not visited not until Winter Sonata became popular in Asia and in the world. Being a self-governing island, they have their own constitution, local passport and Naminarian locals. The employees in the island are staying in a dormitory like building and is able to do multitasking, the people you see in the counter are also trained to plant trees and are responsible in keeping the island clean.

The room we booked in Nami Hotel (namihotel[@]naminara.com) is an ondol-type for 2 nights that costs 77000won (3080php). And with our stay in the hotel, I must say that I got what I paid for. We had very clean sheets; art-themed for Room 106; books for entertainment; glasses, free two bottled water and refrigerator; hair dryer and hangers; toiletries, classic bathroom with bath tub and hot water.


Some factors they need to improve on are having: non-english television channels, wifi being unavailable in rooms, expensive American breakfast (for 12000won) which is served late from 8:30-10am.





The sun sets late in South Korea, like 8pm. We took dinner from a simple coffee shop in the Island, had sandwiches and green tea latte – and we called it a day.



Roaming Around Nami Island

The following morning, we get up at around 6.30am, since breakfast will be available the earliest at 8am and most of the restaurants/shops will open at 9am – we grab the opportunity that those who will roam in the island are only hotel visitors. Meaning, less or should I say no co-travellers will be included your photo opportunity.

We started the day by sending our postcards in Nami Hotel front desk. Then we roam around the Island…



Anemone, Condo-style Bungalow


Metasequioa Lane, Winter Sonata




Dodamsambong Dodam Pond and Meta Pond

Cherry Tree Lane and Hotel Jeonggwanru Reception


Since we had a long walk early in the morning, we go back to the hotel for breakfast. Check out our view while eating.





Ginkgo Tree Lane



First Kiss Bridge, Glass Sequoia



This is near Meta Wharf, we were seating at a bench at the end of Metasequioa Lane eating pizza. While people watching, I found this lucky coin 100won (4php).




2017 Oct: Updated photos of Nami Island for Autumn Season (Oct 26, 2017)