This is the second part to my second WOW Korea trip to Gyeongsang Province. My first post was about Andong, and in this post, I will be sharing the places that we went to in Yeongju and Mungyeong City.
These are where we went to in Yeongju:
Buseoksa Temple was definitely one of the highlights of my trip. Although it was a struggle to get there (because we needed to do some hiking), the journey up was worth it!
The temple grounds is huge with many beautiful sceneries to take photos of and see. There’s also a wishing rock for you to throw coins to at the top of the temple. Admissions cost 1,200 KRW for adults, 1,000 KRW for youths and 800 KRW for children. You should definitely go here if you are in Yeongju!
To get to Buseoksa, take bus 27 or 55 from opposite Yeongju Intercity Bus Terminal to Buseoksa (부석사) station.
Seonbichon Village is a Hanok, traditional Korean housing, village that offers a variety of participatory events and traditional culture hands-on programs. The activities offered can change anytime so it’s best if you check their website beforehand.
While we were there, we participated in 2 activities: Korean traditional rice cake making and the Korean traditional wedding experience.
The rice cake making was sadly not really a hands-on activity although we did get to use the mallet to pound the rice. It was more of a demonstration but I guess it would also be hard if all of us made our own separate portions. Here’s a video of the rice cake making activity:
The traditional Korean wedding experience was pretty interesting because we got to role-play as the bridesmaid, bride and the groom! I volunteered to be the bridesmaid and got a chance to wear the hanbok that the bridesmaid would wear in a real wedding 😀
We learned about how the wedding procession goes and the meaning behind each elements in the wedding. Apparently the traditional Korean wedding ceremony is based on the Yin and Yang philosophy where the Bride is the Yin and the Groom is the Yang. Since the Yin represents even numbers while Yang represents odd numbers, the Bride must bow down twice and the Groom only bows once. They said this is not based on gender inequality but.. I wasn’t too convinced HAHA.
Anyway, besides all these activities, you can also stay in the Hanoks if you want to experience a night in a Korean traditional home. We actually did stay in the Hanok for a night and it was a pretty cool experience. Since there were many of us, we got a whole parade square to ourselves.
The rooms were clean and pretty spacious even for 4 of us in one room. The only thing is that the toilet was quite dirty because of the sandy parade square and the shower room is communal – aka jjimjilbang style where there are no curtains. It’s probably good to stay there for a once-in-a-lifetime experience but I probably won’t go back again. HAHA.
After spending one day in Yeongju, we moved on to Mungyeong and here are the places we went to there:
Mungyeong Rail Bike (문경 레일바이크)
A rail bike is basically a 4 seater “car” that is powered by cycling. The bike runs on an old train track that is not used anymore.
We started at Gurang-ri Rail Bike station and we cycled all the way to end before coming back. It took us about an hour for the whole journey. It was tiring but it was quite fun. The sceneries around were beautiful too. It costs 15,000KRW per bike so make sure to go in a group of 4 to make the most out of it 😉
Mungyeong Saejae Provincial Park (문경새재도립공원)
Our last destination was the Mungyeong Park which is apparently a very popular travel destination amongst locals especially couples in Korea. There are several hiking trails that you can choose but since the park is too big and we only had a few hours, we did not go through any of the trails.
Instead we took an electric cart to the KBS Drama Set inside the park. It costs 1,000 KRW per adult to take the cart and the last one is at around 5.30PM so do plan your trip well 🙂
To get into this KBS drama set we had to pay 2,000 KRW per adult for entrance fee, not too bad! Inside, you’ll find a miniature of Gyeongbokgung palace and many other small hanoks. We also got a chance to go through a short Korean tea ceremony there.
All in all, the trip was definitely a memorable and unique one. If you are looking for a less touristy place to visit in Korea, do consider the North Gyeongsang Province as your destination 🙂 Finally, here’s a short clip that summarises my trip: