What do you imagine with the word “Healing Vacation”? 힐링여행 is a term that is commonly used among young Koreans, and it is used when you travel just to relax. So I guess it’s similar to the word “getaway”.
A few weekends ago, my friends and I wanted to spend some time together outside of Seoul, so we decided to go on a 힐링여행 to the nearby city, Daejeon, for a one night trip. From Seoul, it takes one hour by KTX.
Here are five places that I would recommend in Daejeon.
*I recommend going to some of these places by taxi. A ten minute ride would cost around 5,000 KRW. Just to be safe, make sure to have the Korean name or address ready so the taxi driver can enter it on the navigating machine.
Expo Bridge- 대전 엑스포다리
Give the taxi driver the Korean name of this bridge and you’re set!
Hanbat Arboretum- 한밭수목원
This garden is right next the Expo Bridge.
It’s the perfect place for a cute photo session.
The garden is divided into the eastern side and western side.
You can also enjoy some bike riding outside the garden and on the expo bridge.
Seongshimdang Bakery 성심당
Every Korean person that visits Daejeon will probably go to this bakery to get a souvenir. It is known as one of the top 3 bakeries in Korea (excluding big chain bakeries like Paris Baguette). The others are Andong’s 맘모스제과 and Gunsan’s 이성당.
Seongshimdang has several locations within Daejeon. As far as I know there are two in downtown Daejeon
(near Jungang-ro Station 중앙로역).
A is where they have their signature bread.
B is where they serve cakes.
The building above is their cake boutique. If you go further down on the right side of this building, then you’ll see the bakery.
There is also one inside Daejeon station, so you could stop by before you hop on the KTX. There is a separate line for the bakery (on the left) and their signature red bean breads (on the right).
They are most famous for their 튀김소보로. There is a deep-fried, crispy coating on the outside, and some red bean paste on the inside. It’s quite oily so the provided paper bag will eventually be soaked in oil… but it’s delicious.
Daedong Sky Park and Daedong Painting Village- 대동하늘공원
Our taxi driver was not confident about the location. This park is located on top of a hill in Daejeon, so you’ll get a nice view of the city. It was in the middle of a quiet, low-income neighborhood, so we had a hard time finding the entrance. It seemed like there were only tourists there.
If you have time, you can walk from Daedong Station Exit 8. It will be 20-30 minutes uphill, and you can enjoy some neighborhood artwork along the way.
This windmill is lit up at night, so you could also enjoy the night view.
Jungang Market- 대전 중앙시장
This market is located between Daejeon Station (exit 1 or 2) and the river. If you cross the river, you will be in downtown Daejeon.
This is how the entrance at point C looks like. It is right next to the river.
My friends and I had lunch at a place called 개천식당 (Gaecheon Shikdang), which was hiding between some clothing stores. From point C on the previous map, go straight for one block, make a right at the first corner (you’ll see this Korean drum above your head), and you should see it on your right after a few steps. It’s easy to miss because the entrance is narrow!
They are most famous for their dumpling soup (만두국).
It’ s huge so it’s difficult to lift up even with the big Korean spoon.
I recommend going to this Korean snack store in the market! The owner of this store was quite friendly, and he said that we can munch on as many snacks as we want. We just tasted all the snacks there and chose some of our favorites to buy.
Are there any other places that you recommend in Daejeon?
Or any other smaller cities in Korea?