Travel to Northern South Korea – Episode 485

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Travel to Northern South Korea - Episode 485

Hear about travel to northern South Korea as the Amateur Traveler talks to Katie of about the area of South Korea where she is living.


Katie says “The northern part of South Korea has pretty much everything you want in a travel destination. It’s got cities and countryside and mountains and beaches. It’s very modern but also has tons of history. It’s really a good place for someone if they are coming to Korea for just a week or two because chances are they are flying into Seoul. Rather than spending their one week vacation traveling all the way to the south around the whole country, everything in the northern part is pretty accessible, just a couple of hours bus ride or train ride.”

She takes us on a series of short trips or day trips out from Seoul. First, we head east via Nami Island (the site of numerous Korean dramas) to Chuncheon with its temples, white jade mine, and railroad bikes. We learn why you should try the taste of dak galbi and why you may want to try out the services of a Jjimjilbang.

Katie tells us about the Korean hiking culture as we hike around Seoraksan National Park near Sokcho. Learn about families hiking with full table settings, Kimchi and fermented rice wine (Makgeolli) in brightly colored outfits. she tells us that she has been invited to join a feast at the top of a mountain on more than one occasion. Katie favors the beaches at Sokcho over the better-known ones in the south. But be aware that if you wear a swimsuit you may be the only one on the beach who is.

We head to Suwon near Seoul for a visit to the fortress of Hwaseong, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and to the Toilet Museum… which isn’t. Katie makes a case for staying in a love motel if you are looking for cheap housing in South Korea.

Katie takes us next to Paju near the border with South Korea. You can get there via a bus, the subway or even a foreigner bus from Seoul. You can see North Korea from the Odusan Unification Observatory. You can also try the fried eel the area is known for.

Near to Seoul, Katie sends us to Bukhansan National Park for more hiking and experiencing the hiking culture. She recommends the hike to the Gold Buddha.

We talk about coffee culture, soups, stews, festivals and all the other details you need to know to visit this part of South Korea.

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Show Notes

Around the World in KT Days
Travel to Seoul, South Korea – Episode 157
Gangwon Province
Nami Island
Top 100 Korean Dramas
Cheongpyeongsa Temple
Dak galbi
Gangchon Rail Park
Seoraksan National Park
Ochingo Sundae aka Stuffed Squid fried in egg batter
Abai village (in Sokcho)
Division of Korea
Suwon Toilet Museum
Our Stay at a Korean Love Motel
Odusan Unification Observatory
Travel to North Korea – Episode 361
Bukhansan National Park
Hiking in Bukhansan National Park: Bagundae Peak

Travel to Northern South Korea - Episode 485

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by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast, and a co-host for This Week in Travel podcast.

3 Responses to “Travel to Northern South Korea – Episode 485”

Jennifer Schuitema


Islands, beaches, mountains, national parks, temples, and “museums”, sounds like the perfect itinerary. Always enjoy an episode that involves some culture shock. (Loved hearing the students in the background.)



glad you liked it 🙂

Piotr Kulczycki


Great episode. I plan to visit Korea next year!

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