A Winter Day Trip in Gapyeong: Nami Island, Petite France & Garden of Morning Calm

From Seoul, Gapyeong is one of the most popular destinations for a countryside trip, even in the cold winter months.

More than 50 kilometers away, Gapyeong is home to Garden of Morning Calm and is the gateway to the half-moon shaped Nami Island, which you’ll recognize if you have watched the Koreanovela Winter Sonata.

Here’s everything you need to know about Gapyeong County for a convenient day tour this cold season:

 

Transportation from Seoul to Gapyeong

 

Transportation Around Gapyeong

Upon arrival at Gapyeong, go to the bus stop and wait for the shuttle bus to arrive. You can purchase a day pass for KRW 6,000, which gives you the privilege to hop on and off from various stations in Gapyeong. Otherwise, if you’re simply going to Nami Island, it’s recommended to take a taxi.

 

What Can You See in Gapyeong

  • Nami Island (Namiseom Island)
  • Petite France
  • Gangchon & Gapyeong Rail Bike (best taken during warmer days)
  • Garden of Morning Calm

 

Nami Island

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Nami Island from fall going to winter

Before Winter Sonata made it famous, Namiseom Island played an important role in Korean history as the place of burial of General Nami, a 15th century hero. Back then, the place was still attached to the mainland. Nami Island would only be formed in the 1960s upon the construction of Cheongpyeong Dam.

The half-moon shaped island today is one of South Korea’s most sought after parks, famous for its perfect line of trees. During winter, the island can be covered in snow – a stunning picturesque view on the backdrop of a mighty river. Activities such as biking, picnics and an 80-meter zipline ride can be enjoyed during this season.

Fees (as of December 2018):

  • Entrance: KRW 13,000, includes the ferry ride from Namiseon dock
  • Zipwire (zip-line): KRW 44,000
  • Bike: KRW 4,000 for 30 mins

For more information, visit Nami Island’s website here.

 

Petite France

Petite France Gapyeong Korea Seoul

Sitting along the route between Nami Island and Garden of Morning Calm, this French mountainside village provides a spectacular view Cheongpyeong Lake, like that of the Piedmont Alps or a Mediterranean Cost. The village features several Little Prince references.

Fees (as of December 2018):

  • Entrance fee: KRW 10,000

For more information, visit Petite France’s website here.

 

Morning Calm Arboretum

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Best to end your trip in Gapyeong with a stroll of the 30,000-sqm Garden of Morning Calm (or Morning Calm Arboretum). The park features 300 autogenous plants of Mt. Baekdu in about 20 themed gardens.

During the winter season, the park decorates the gardens with lights that bring everything to life at night. This runs from December to March everyday from sunset to 9:00 pm (during Saturdays, they extend until 11:00 p.m.) If you’re catching the shuttle tour bus, just make sure you finish your stroll before 8:00 p.m. as the last trip back to the nearest train station is at 8.

Fees (as of December 2018):

  • Entrance fee: KRW 9,500

For more information about the Garden of Morning Calm, visit their website here.

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