Summers in Seoul get pretty hot, and this year is no exception. A lot of us like to travel out of the country in summer, but it doesn’t look like that’s a possibility with the virus. It is annoying that we can’t travel, but we can still make the most of the situation to visit Korea.
When the weather gets hot, it’s pretty tempting to stay home with the AC on, but that’s not the best you can do. Though we all know it’s tough to get out on a lazy, hot day. Once you get to the destination, you don’t want to leave. There is a huge need to refresh yourself, so we’ve got a few places that will give you shade, water, and a whole bunch of fun!
Dongho Beach (동호해변)
What can we say about Dongho Beach? Well… It’s one of the best places in the world. Only a two hour drive from Seoul (which isn’t that much for the east coast), Dongho Beach will guarantee that you get a great day. The beach is probably the closest of the east coast, and the water is always crystal clear. The sand is soft and white, and the beach is purely amazing. If you’re there on a week day, it’s going to be like a private beach. Swimming in the water is really refreshing, and it feels so good to be able to swim again after a long winter.
One of our favorite things about Dongho Beach is the food. 상운메밀촌 is one of our favorite restaurants in Korea. It is very close to the beach, and serves the best 막국수 and 수육 in the world! For those of you who don’t know what 막국수 is, it’s a cold bowl of buckwheat noodles, served either with more water, 물 막국수, or spicy sauce, 비빔 막국수. It’s delicious! 수육, is boiled pork, served with multiple sauces and 명태 (pollock.) The 명태 is served in this red sauce (don’t freak out. It’s not very spicy) that’s sweet and the taste is almost meaty. Overall, the restaurant is amazing.
If we were to describe Dongho Beach in one word we would probably say… Paradise. So whenever you feel like you want to be in heaven, pack your bags and take a trip to Dongho Beach!
Address: Dongho-ri Sonyang-myeon Yangyang-gun Gangwon-do
Water Garden Park in Namyangju
You may think that going to a park isn’t the greatest way to refresh yourself, but in Water Garden, it is. If you walk near the river in the first part of the park, you will see lots of big trees leaning into the river. Under them, you will receive the greatest natural shade possible, and you’ll be able to sit there for hours! The trees are also super easy to climb, so you could easily spend the afternoon climbing, too!
Address: 398 Bukhangang-ro Joan-myeon Namyangju-si Gyeonggi-do
Gapyeong Rail Park
The other areas of the park are beautiful as well, but it may be a little hot to visit them all. One of them is the bicycle trail, where you can rent bikes and ride for dozens of kilometers in both directions. It’s refreshing, too, because you can feel the breeze, which you can’t when you’re just walking.
Water Garden is one of our favorites to refresh ourselves, and as the summer will only be getting hotter, visiting Water Garden can only be a good idea!
Rail biking is one of the greatest trips you can make with friends, or just with family. It’s really fun, and everyone will have a great time.
Address: 14 Jangteo-gil Gapyeong-eup Gapyeong-gun Gyeonggi-do
Our favorite rail park is in Gapyeong, because it has beautiful views, and is right by the river. When you rent your rail bike, you can even get an electric one, so even if you’re lazy, rail biking is still an option! The trail is 4 kilometers both ways, so eight in total. It’s amazing to pedal and just watch the scenery go by. The rail bike even goes over a river, and pedaling over a bridge is really nice. It’s just loads of fun!
Right near the Gapyeong Rail Park, the Waterparks are amazing. There’s at least four on both sides of the river, and they’re so much better than indoor pools. Especially in large groups or with kids, the Waterparks are your best option. Most of them have a kind of parkour over the water, which can include slides, trampolines, and inflatable challenges. You get wet pretty fast, and you could practically spend an entire day there!
Also, the Waterparks have many boat pulled activities. You can learn to water ski or wakeboard, or you can try lots of fun rides like Hurricane, Disco Bang Bang, and many more. At these Waterparks, you are never bored, and they will provide you with lots of fun for everyone.
Address: 662 Seocheon-ri Namsan-myeon Chuncheon-si Gangwon-do
If you’re stuck in Seoul, and want to get to some greenery, try Nodeul Island!
Surrounded by the Han River, Nodeul provides you with a view of the entire city. There is also a little river breeze and just being near water is pretty refreshing in the city.
The island is full of greenery, but there are a few restaurants and convenience stores around as well. It’s just lovely to feel like you’re in nature when you’re really right in the middle of Seoul. Nodeul is one of our favorite places, especially when we can’t get out of the city.
Address: 445 Yangnyeong-ro Yongsan-gu Seoul
Have fun and enjoy your summer!