Story by: Tim Park, Photos by: Lee Dae-hyun
If you think Jeonju is too distant from Seoul for a day trip, think again. The KTX can get you there in two hours flat, leaving plenty of time to take in one of Korea’s most beautiful and well-preserved cities.
Groove Korea recently teamed up with the folks at HiTok, a popular smartphone app, to take a day trip to Jeonju. Highlights included bibimbap, Hanok Village and sundae.
Here’s what a few of the participants had to say.
Samuel Okyere, Ghana
Exotic side dishes, a wide range of carefully selected vegetables and a hot pot of bulgogi sum up my Jeonju bibimbap experience. It lived up to the hype. Even though I am not a big fan of kimchi, Jeonju’s kimchi was just perfect. It was very fresh and not too spicy. The pajeon (a pancake-like Korean dish) coupled with meat was fantastic. Don’t leave Jeonju without trying this dish.
Sarah Timm, U.S.
For lunch, we had sujeonggwa, a refreshing cinnamon and persimmon tea, pajeon, savory beef with glass noodle japchae, and specially prepared bibimbap. After climbing cherry blossom-covered hills and exploring the extensive Hanok Village, we enjoyed sweet red bean patbingsu shaved ice. After finishing at the outdoor market and trying the surprisingly delicious sundae blood sausage, (a type of Korean sausage), we headed home well-fed, satisfied and looking forward to returning to Jeonju some day.
Kristian Johnson, U.S.
Jeonju is a place packed with quintessential Korean beauty and all the dainty pleasures that come along with it. We satisfied our healthy appetites to our heart’s content with legendary local fare — patbingsu (shaved ice with red beans), sundae (blood sausage), and of course, bibimbap. What trip to Jeonju could be complete without it?
My favorite experience in Jeonju was without a doubt the sundae we got from a place in Nambu Market called 조점례 피순대. Its flavor and color was richer and darker than ordinary sundae. I suppose that has something to do with blood being one of the main ingredients. The sausage is tender and melts in your mouth. Make sure to enjoy it with the green onions and the salted shrimp sauce it comes with.
Getting to Jeonju by train: From Yongsan Station, take either a slow train (Mugunghwa) or express (KTX) to Jeonju Station. The Mugunghwa will take about 3 hours and 30 minutes, while the KTX will get you there in two hours.
Getting to Hanok Village from Jeonju Station: Go to the bus stop in front of the wedding hall adjacent to the station. The following buses will get you there: 12, 60, 79, 109, 119, 142, 508, 513, 536 and 542.
Getting to Jeonju by bus: Board a bus to Jeonju at Central City Terminal in Seoul. It operates between 5:30 a.m. and midnight. Express buses cost 12,800 won and premium buses cost 18,700 won. Both take two hours and 45 minutes.
Getting to Hanok Village from Jeonju Terminal: Board either 5-1 or 79. Both buses will take 15 minutes to reach the village.