Gwangju, a Trip to a New City

Travel is almost the only way I get rid of my stress. So, I try to travel as much as I can and try to travel any time I feel like going to another place. As like most of the students feel, the beginning of the school term makes us tired and stressful. I also was getting a hard time of making out new friends and the relations didn’t come out to be as expected I just decided to travel.

  1. The Destination

Deciding the destination wasn’t hard. One of my friends is studying at  Chonnam National University (전남대학교) which is at Gwangju (광주) so I decided to meet my friend who is suffering loneliness. I didn’t care about the people who came together but luckily there were two friends that shared my intention so right after my class finished at Friday I went to the station.

  1. How to Get to Gwangju

There are several ways to go to other provinces in Korea. You can take the bus, train, and of course car if you have one. But there are some differences in taking these transportations. Taking a bus takes about 3 hours from Seoul (서울) to Gwangju but the price of the ticket is 20000 Won. The train take about an hour and a half from Seoul to Gwangju and the fee is 40000 Won which is twice the price of the bus. Specifically there are two trains many people ride which is the SRT and the KTX. SRT is a new train which is as fast as KTX, provides free WIFI, and roomy seats. But SRT has few stations that pass by so it is hard to say that SRT is always the best choice. For me the destination and the stop of the SRT station was not far so I decided to take SRT train.

  1. What to Do

Songgeong Market (송정시장)

The station we got off the train was near to Songgeong Market (송정시장). This place is a traditional market which has reformed as a trendy tourist attraction. Songgeong Market has some interesting spots I arranged about 4 places to look around. There weren’t many people in the market even it was Friday night. But we could see a bakery with a long line of people. The name is Ttoya Bread (또야식빵) and sells fusion bread. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to buy the bread because of the long line.

 

The place we went as an alternative is GangSonyeon (갱소년). The shop sells fusion traditional Korean jelly (Yang-gang; 양갱).

Usually Yang-gang (양갱) is made of red beans but at this shop we could eat various flavors of jellies. Also we could eat milk teas with jellies inside. There was also a shop that sold one Ssam (쌈; pork warped in lettuces leaves) at the price of 1000 Won. I saw this shop in the internet ago and after I saw this I reality it was cool.

After looking around the market we had to eat dinner. We searched places to eat and in the market we could find a famous and delicious house to eat dinner. The name was Yeongmyeong Gupbap (영명국밥) and sold soondae (순대; Korean sausage). Most of the 순대 is made of artificial sausages but this restaurant served real pig’s tripe. It was much softer than the artificial one and for me it was the best soondae ever had. I wish all of the soondae lovers would come and try it out!

 

Chonnam National University (전남대학교)

My friend is studying in the best school in 호남 province which is 전남대학교. The size of the school is larger than Hanyang University (한양대학교). We looked around the campus and there was a small lake, several statues about the pro-democracy movement and there were more cherry blossom trees. Most of all, there were no hills on campus, which is very different from Hanyang. I really liked the campus and was jealous that my friend studies in a nice school.

 

Chungjang-Ro (충장로)

Chungjang-ro (충장로) is a main street like Myeongdong (명동) or Hongdae (홍대) in Seoul. This is a place where many youthful people come and have some fun. Shopping, eating, drinking most things are available here. I do not want to say more about this place it’s the same as most of the main streets in Seoul.

 

  1. What I Felt

Gwangju is a nice place. There weren’t as many people like Jeonju (전주) where many tourists are crowded and many of the places were commercialized. Gwangju was a place still not dominated by commercialism and was maintaining their historical legacy. Well it is not worth going twice for a tour but I should go to see my lonely friend.

 

Article by Jonghyuk from Korea, a Sophomore in Business Administration

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