Photo courtesy of Doldam-gil Hanbok

Photo courtesy of Doldam-gil Hanbok ()

Gyeongju City, known as the capital of the ancient kingdom of Silla (57 BC-935), is a unique destination brimming with UNESCO World Heritage sites. Visitors can forge a special connection to Korea’s rich history while exploring every corner of the city often referred to as a museum without walls.

You can appreciate this blending of the past and present in Downtown Gyeongju. Here are three activities in the city’s downtown area that will undoubtedly make your trip unforgettable!

1. Wearing a Silla hanbok

Wearing hanbok, Korea’s traditional clothing, is a must-try experience at many historical sites around the Peninsula. In Geongju, you’ll find two types of hanboks, Joseon hanbok and Silla hanbok, which is available only in this city. The Silla hanbok is more luxurious and features more elaborate designs than those of the later Joseon Dynasty.

Rent a Silla hanbok and take some stunning photos at beautiful historical sites, such as Daereungwon Ancient Tombs and Woljeonggyo Bridge, as if you are Silla royalty.

Hanbok rental usually includes hairstyling service. Most shops don’t offer rental service during rainy weather. Late March to June and September to November are ideal times to try this activity. Wearing hanbok in hot or cold weather isn’t ideal, so make sure to check the weather before your visit.

・Doldam-gil Hanbok

Located near Daereungwon, they rent hanboks originally designed by them. Reservation is recommended (Naver or phone)

Address: 30-5, Cheomseong-ro 99beon-gil, Gyeongju-si, Naver Map+ Booking

Hours: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. (Closed on Tuesdays)

Phone: 054-743-9458

Prices: 15,000 won for an hour (10,000 won is charged every one hour) / All day 50,000 won (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.)

・Gyochon Hanbok

It’s located near Gyochon Hanok Village and reservation by phone call is recommended.

Address: 39-6, Kyochon-gil, Gyeongju-si, Naver Map

Hours: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Phone: 010-5875-0852

Prices: 15,000 won for an hour (10,000 won is charged every one hour)

2. Bicycle trips

Downtown Gyeongju is a cyclist’s dream as it is easy to explore via bicycle and most destinations are a short ride away.

Tasila (타실라) is a public bicycle service operated by Gyeongju City, with over 100 rental stations in the downtown area. You can easily rent one and return it to any station. The one-day pass is only 1,000 won and bikes are easy to rent with the mobile app. However, only Korean service and Korean credit cards are currently available, so you may need help from your Korean friends or use a regular shop.

Recommended course: Daereungwon Stone Wall Trail ➟ Hwanglidan-gil Street ➟ Cheomseongdae Observatory ➟ Gyerim Forest ➟ Banwolseong Fortress ➟ Gyochon Hanok Village and Woljeonggyo Bridge ➟ Bunhwangsa Temple

・Silla Bike Rental (Regular shop)

Address: 8 Gyerim-ro, Gyeongju-si, Naver Map

Hours: 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. (Closed when raining)

Prices: 5,000 won for two hours

3. Hanok café tours

Hwanglidan-gil Street is a true gem in Gyeongju. This street is home to a variety of cool cafés and restaurants in traditional Hanok houses. Many places offer unique fusion food and desserts that will please not only your taste buds but also your eyes.

・Skunk Works

One of the most beautiful hanok cafés in Gyeongju with ice cream and coffee.

Address: 1058-3, Poseok-ro, Gyeongju-si, Naver Map Hours: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.

・Uhmamooshi (Hwangnam Branch)

Offering delightful tiramisus mixed with traditional ingredients like black sesame and injeolmi powder.

Address: 25-6, Cheomseong-ro 99beon-gil, Gyeongju-si, Naver Map

Hours: 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.

For more information about Gyeongju, including trip planning and destinations, please check this out.

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