8 Great, Easy Day trips from Seoul
While undoubtedly one of the world’s most convenient cities, at times Seoul can also feel like one of the most claustrophobic. Luckily, the same brilliant transportation system that gets you all around the city so easily can also get you out of there, whether you want to be on top of a mountain or on a ferry sailing across the West Sea.
Here are a few great and relatively easy day trips from Seoul – with an emphasis on day. Given Korea’s size and high-speed trains you could even technically ‘visit’ Busan on a mad whirlwind day trip on the KTX. But for this article we’ve only chosen places that are doable as actual day trips, about two hours’ journey from Seoul at the most. For these trips, you’ll only need your T-money card and a bit of loose change to be on your way.
The jewel in Korea’s historic crown, Hwaseong is a beautiful sight, with nearly six kilometers of high stone walls, painted towers and imposing gates. You don’t have to be all that keen on defensive military structures to appreciate it either – the fortress encompasses some charming parks and a stream. It’s also located in the middle of Suwon city, so there are plenty of modern distractions around.
How to get there: Seoul’s subway line 1 goes to Suwon station in about an hour (but the line splits so make sure you’re not heading to Guro instead). From Suwon station, you can catch buses to the fortress from exit 4 or 5. Get off at Jongno 4-geori. Alternatively, you can take bus 3000 from Gangnam station, or bus 7700 from Sadang station.
Even island getaways are possible day trips from Seoul, and one of the best is Muui Island, just south of Incheon airport. Muui Island may not be a tropical Thai paradise, but Hanagae beach has swathes of clean sand and blue water, while other parts of the island have green hills or mud flats teeming with crabs and shellfish. It’s a quiet, pleasant place to explore, and if you really like it you can camp or rent a beach-side hut.
How to get there: the island is accessed by a car ferry (last ferry departs at 7pm, or 6pm in winter). Bus 222 runs from Incheon International airport to the ferry terminal. Alternatively, bus 306 runs near the ferry terminal (a 10-minute walk) from Incheon and Dong-Incheon subway stations on lin