Discovering Gwangju - The City of Historical Reflection

Gwangju, one of the city in the Jeonla Province and Korea's sixth largest city. This city known as the modern democratic movement in Korea as well as the history of its civil resistance potrayed and preserved here. Gwangju also has the long history of arts which shines through every corner of the city. Gwangju also claim to have the largest and most modern bus terminal in Korea.

Its not my first time visiting Jeonla Province, but honestly i never expect too much about Gwangju until last week. From Penguin village to the 1912 Songjeong Station Market, Gwangju is not without substantial charms and attractiveness for visitors. 

Penguin Village 펭귄마을 

Dont expect to see any penguin here, there are lot of penguins statues which are scattered all over the village but this village actually named after the elder who used to live in the village walk like a penguin. This hidden village maybe quite overlooked by the visitors but for me this lil artsy village decorated with the secondhand stuffs and graffity is a great place with full of encourangement. 

Gwangju Penguin Village 광주 펭귄마을 
Cheonbyeoncha-ro 446beon-gil 7 Nam-gu Gwangju
광주광역시 남구 천변좌로 446번길 7

Soswaewon Garden 소쇄원

This private garden build by Yang San Bo from Joseon Period. Soswaewon was made based on 'anbinnakdo' the traditional korean word for righteous path life and  honesty.

The bamboo grove located at  entrance of the garden, symbolized the purity because bamboo is always empty and clean in the middle while its part always remain straight.

The sound of the stream that passes through the middle of the garden surely give the soothing and mind relaxing atmosphere here. 

Its only me? but it reminds me of arashiyama bamboo forest, the famous tourist spot in Kyoto.
Damyang Soswaewon 담양 소쇄원
Jeonlanam-do Damyang-gun, Namyeong Soswaewongil 17
전라남도 담양군 남면 소쇄원길17
Operation Time 09.00-19.00
Admission : Adult 2000 krw/Teenagers 1000/ Children 700 krw

Pottery Making at Pyeongchon Ceramic Studio 평촌도예공방

Gwangju is also known as one of the three biggest pottery center in the country along with Yeoju and Icheon. Here visitors will get to see the traditional kilns and opportunity to making a pottery. We didnt have time to make the complicated pottery just flat plate without the potter wheel and draw the plate with the white clay.  It was superfun though

Pyeongchon Ceramic Studio 평촌도예공방
Chunghyo-dong 270beonji Buk-gu Gwangju
광주광역시 북구 충효동 270번지
Operating time : 09.00-18.00
Reservation and Info : +8210-3632-8211 / +8262-266-8008
Website: pcdy.co.kr

1931 Songjeong Station Market 1931송정역시장
Located just across the KTX station make this market easy to find. This more than 100 years market turned out to be a street dedicated to recreate the nostalgic atmosphere of the traditional market with modern twist and warm light glow.

Our main purpose for visiting this market was for food but at that time they were holding a halloween street party. Good market concept huh?

Our first street food that night was 삼뚱이 2000krw , Samddungi a bacon wrapped vegetable and kimchi aside from its visual nothing much to expect. 

Our second dish were German styled sausage (wurst) 15000 krw  and ham hock (sweinshaxen) at the restaurant called 족발쏘시지 which is taste surprisingly good. 
We also tried the garlic butter shrimp 갈릭버터새우구이 3500krw love it ,
various kind of chocopies at 쑥's초코파이 ssuk's chocopie for @1500-2000 each (must try), similar to the jeonju chocopies but less sweeter and better variations.  And Strawberry mochi for 2000krw. This market surely a place that you dont want to be missed while in Gyeongju. 

Recommended Itinerary 

From Gwangju Junghap Bus Terminal 광주종합버스터미널 to Penguin Village  take Cheomdan-09 (Gwangcheon Terminal ) 첨단09(광천터미널) and stop at Jeonnam University Hospital 전남대병원 정류장 (17min, 8 stations) and walk to penguin village. click the map here for directions to the bus station 

From Penguin Village to Soswaewon, you need to walk to Namgwangju Bus Station take Jinwon 17(Namgwang Station) 진원 17(남광주역)  Bus {17 min, 7 stations} and get off at Sansu2dong juminsenteo (sanseo2-dong community center) 산수2동 주민센터 from this bus station you need to walk around 100m to Jangwonchogyeo bus station 장원초교(서) 정류장  and take "Chunghyo187(Jangwonchogyeo) 충효187(장원초교(서)) Bus" and stop at Yusangyeo Bus Station 유산교 정류장 (37min, 15 stations) walk 300m to Soswaewon.  Click here for the map

Soswaewon to Pyeongchon Ceramic Studio is less than 1 km so you can walk there. For maps and directions click here or here for google maps

From Pyeongchon Ceramic Studio to 1913 Songjeongstation Market, walk to the Dalkmoe Bus Station 닭뫼 정류장 take Chunghyo187(Dalkmoe) 충효187(닭뫼) and get off at Seobang Market 서방시장 정류장 then  use bus number 160 (나주,나주역, 영산포,나주) to Gwangju Station, walk around 5 min to the market. click here for the map

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