Monday, July 25, 2016

2016 July: South Korea: 6 places to see in Gyeongju in 2 days

Gyeongju is a walkable city when you plan your visit according to nearby target destinations.  Having an available internet for GPS location and maps.google.com is much helpful on your return bus tour to the city.


Transfer to City
From KTX SinGyeongju, take Exit 1.  Take Bus #s 700, 203, 50, 51, 60, 61, 70, 71 will be heading to the city proper, passing by Intercity Bus Terminal.





Day 1 (nearby the city center)

Ancient Tombs and Cheomseongdae Observatory (경주 첨성대)
169-5, Cheomseong-ro, Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do


Cheomseongdae is the oldest existing astronomical observatory in Asia. Constructed during the reign of Queen Seon-deok (632-647), it was used for observing the stars in order to forecast the weather. This stone structure is a beautiful combination of straight lines and curves, and was designated as National Treasure No.31 on December 20th, 1962. [Reference]





Distance between these 2 areas (Ancient Tombs and Cheomseongdae Observatory) is just 15-20 minutes away.  

Next destination, is just 17-20 minute walk away, but you have to take the main road (in yellow) below, not across the greenery.  Apart from this, you can enjoy the water lily and flora display along the way. 

Gyeongju National Museum (국립경주박물관)
The museum is where you can view the cultural history of Gyeongju district. Exhibitions are divided into 4 large areas: the Main hall, Annex I, Annex II, and the Outdoor Exhibit Area (Museum Grounds). [Reference]

Take a chance to attend the English Museum tour on Saturdays (March-November, duration 60 min.)
Departure: The tour starts from the main gate of Gyeongju National Museum.



Day 2 (an hour bus away from the city)


Bulguksa Temple



Seokguram Grotto

If you are watching Arirang station, you must have seen this being promoted on commercials as National Treasure No. 24.  It is located in Tohamsan Mountain with 30 to 45 minute walk from the bus station.  Visitors can visit the grotto, divided by a see-through glass.  The off-tourist area is enclosed by air-conditioned where the temple guards dust-off altar items (e.g. books), and also lights-up the altar.  Photos are not allowed in front of the grotto.  Discussions or explanations are allowed outside the grotto.


To have a better view of what’s inside the grotto, it is recommended to visit a separate museum, roughly 1 hr 20 minutes away by bus.



Silla Arts and Science Musuem

Shows the inside architecture of Seokguram Grotto. 

If you don’t want to take public transportation, check-out if you can join tours 


However, read first the not so positive reviews from Trip Advisor.

Travel Date: July 2 - 4, 2016

Previous City: Busan | Next City: Daegu