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  • Day 3: Suwon Hwaseong Fortress - South Korea



    Woke up quite early to head out to Suwon.  


    Too early and too little time to head out.  So, I just got a sandwich from the convenient store below where I was staying.  Yummy.

    There are 3 different trains that takes between half an hour to an hour to reach Suwon Station.  Cheapest is just take Line 1 to Suwon Station that cost about 1700 won if I remembered correctly.  However, that would take an hour!  That's way too long for us.  So we took the second option of the 2700 won train.  No idea what that train is called.  Just go to the ticketing counter in Seoul Station and ask the staff to print out the different trains to Suwon.  It will have all the departing time and ride duration on it.  Then the staff will tell you how much each train fare cost.  The 2700 won train takes about 30min.  So, just about a thousand won more, I get to arrive half an hour early.  Not to mention I get an assigned seat as well.  The 3rd option is KTX which also takes about half an hour, but the cost is multiple times.


    After buying the ticket, just head to the platform which is just next to the ticketing counter.  There is no one to check your ticket....so, you can kind of just get on the train without paying...not recommended.



    There are many platforms and many trains going to different directions~  Luckily, we kept meeting friendly people to let us know it's time to board our train.


    One last time to check that no zombie is running onto our train...


    Inside of the train.  The ride felt shorter than 30min.  Before we knew it, we were already there at Suwon Station!


    We wanted to get some food before heading to the Fortress, and just walked around the station to find many restaurants and shops.



    Korean BBQ again!  Find it amazing that we never get tired of Korean BBQ.


    One of their banchan is those raw marinated crabs which my stomach totally can't handle.  Cho loves it though and got free refills.


    We order 2 servings of pork as minimum order to start the stove is 2,


    It may not seem a lot, but it's very filling.


    Cho ordered raw beef.  Something I don't enjoy.  The thought of cold raw beef...sounds kind of gross.  The taste is fine though.  I just don't like the thought that it's totally raw.


    I needed some carb, unlike Cho.  Ordered a cold noodle.  Refreshing for that hot hot day.


    Saw a pretty look church from afar and decided to take a look.  It about a 10 min walk up on a slight hill from Suwon Station.


    From the church/hill, we can see those walls surround the fortress?  It seems the whole city is part of it.  


    We took a bus to Paladmun bus station. Can't really remember which bus number we took.  We took the wrong bus, went the wrong way.....we somehow learned how to read the different bus routes that's on each bus stands and reached Paladmun.  Best chance to get on the right bus is to ask people before boarding and then double check with the driver.  I find that the instruction on the official Hwaseong Fortress was not correct about the bus numbers...that's how we got lost in the first place.

    This is where the Paladmun bus stop is at.


    Upon arriving the Hwaseong Fortress area....we already wanted to cry...those long steep stairs!  No idea where it leads to but on google map, it says it's part of Hwaseong Fortress....


    There isn't a gate at the bottom of the stairs, but there is a little ticketing booth next to it.  Many people didn't notice and tried walking up without paying.  Then the ladies in the booth would yell out asking people to pay first.  It's 1000 won to walk up and 3000 won to take the tourist trolley.  However, that trolley is on the other side of the Fortress.  It was so hot that day.  We were tired from being toasted under the sun and decided to just walk up.....a very bad decision!



    Never ending stairs!


    Cho walking backward to trick her body that she isn't going uphill.....


    Resting a bit in the middle of the stairs hiking.


    We gave up half way on the stairs.  It's just 1000 won.  It seems a waste of effort to come all the way to Suwon without seeing and walking through the entire Fortress.  However, after arriving, I realized it's just a big park with lots of trees and some traditional looking buildings.  If I wanted to see some traditional buildings, shouldn't I just go to Gyeongbokgung?  To someone like me, that isn't really into history, it really makes no difference whether I visit Gyeongbokgung or Hwaseong Fortress.  Especially when all I wanted to do was to take a few pictures.






    If you are not a history fanatics, just stay in Seoul.  Not much exciting things to see or do in Suwon, in my opinion.

    Hwaseong Fortress is at point H in Places Part 3 on the map below:



    Chi

    Day 1: Premium Plaza Lounge at T2 Hong Kong International Airport > Check in at Airbnb (Seoul Station)
    Day 2: Ikasan Seodong Festival > Korea BBQ at MyeongDong 명동황금목장黄金牧场 > Hangang Park
    Day 3: Suwon Hwaseong Fortress > Suwon Station > Majang Meat Market
    Day 4: Tongin Market > Hanbok at Gyeongbokgung > Jungnang Rose Festival > Pork Bone Soup 용산 원조 감자탕  > Sobok Ice Cream > Myth Jakbol
    Day 5: Shopping at Jamsil Station > Lotte Mart at Jamsil > Songpa Naru Park > Bongeunsa Temple > Itaewon > Busan Galbi
    Day 6: Sky Hub Lounge at East Wing Incheon Airport

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