Gwangju Uprising, and Gwangju being at or near the location of Baekje have led me to want to visit the city at least once. The surrounding towns are also beautiful and less crowded places to visit, which I had to Damyang and Suncheon, and I’m glad I did!
First of all, even the KTX trip down to Gwangju was an eye-opener for a small-city dweller like me, who has never taken a train cross country. I think a ride across the country is always a better experience, no matter which mode of transport (maybe except flying), so that we can view the landscape of the rural countryside.
As the KTX train approached the southern area, the scenery took a turn. the southern areas aren’t as cold as the nothern areas, so there weren’t much snow.
Not long after, I reached Gwangju, and the friendly big guy seated beside me offered his hand to bring my humongous luggage down from the overhead compartment. So I forgave him using up the armrest on my side for the whole journey, leaving me to squeeze within the seat I was assigned to.
Once at Gwagnju…
Its feels different from Seoul. The main difference was the crowd, the number of people. Even in the metro stations.
But i’m not complaining. I quite like the quietness in this city. That night, after settling down in Mr Park’s guesthouse, I went to explore the downtown of Gwangju. Did not bring my camera along for convenience sake, but the things there were mostly more branded and on the more expensive side. After a little walking around, I settled in this random restaurants I passed by. I ordered a beef guksu (noodle soup) with a side order of dumplings, on top of the side dishes. It was so sumptuous I almost couldn’t finish them, likely due to my bad stomach that I had for the first week of the trip.
After exploring downtown Gwangju and having dinner and having bought nothing, I went back for a rest at Mr Park’s. Started to prep for the next day trip to Damyang, the bamboo forest, which I was really looking forward to.
Oh, before going into my trip in Gwangju, I must mention Mr Park and his really glad-to-help attitude! He searched for me on Naver the first and last bus timings (now I know why Naver is so big in Korea, its like google of Korea) and also information on some of the places I wanted to visit, and let me know if my itinerary was okay. Okay or not depending on my goal, which I talked to him about on the first day when I reached his place, that was to not have a rush through the places, but a slower pace suitable for more in depth exploration. His guesthouse is really near the Gwangju bus terminal, about a 10-15 mins walk, which makes it really convenient to travel. Highly recommended if you are travelling around Jeollanamdo~