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Getting There

The Gwangju Airport (tel. 062/940-0214) is located 11km (6 3/4 miles) west of the city center in the Gwangsan area of town. It is a domestic airport with flights 10 times a day to and from Seoul, 8 times a day to and from Jeju-do, and 11 times a week to and from Sanghae. Flights from Seoul take just under an hour. You can find out schedules from Asiana Airlines or Korean Air, both of which have offices in the city. Several local buses go from the airport into the city, daily from 5:30am to 10:30pm, costing W700. The airport limousine bus runs daily from 6:20am to 10:10pm and will set you back W1,000. There are, of course, plenty of taxis waiting outside the terminals. Deluxe taxi base fares start at W3,500 and regular taxi base fares start at W1,500, but I recommend taking a limousine bus, since you're likely to encounter traffic due to construction of the city's subway extension to the airport.

There are plenty of trains to and from Gwangju, since the city has two train stations. The Songjeongni Station (tel. 062/1544-7788) is not too far from the airport and the Gwangju Station (tel. 062/514-7788) is closer to the center of town. Trains from Seoul arrive at Yongsan Station and run several times daily. KTX trains are the fastest, run most frequently, and are the most expensive, taking 2 1/2 to 3 hours. While the Saemaeul trains take about 4 hours, the Mugunghwa trains take about 4 1/2 hours.

Buses to and from Gwangju's Express Bus Terminal (tel. 062/360-8114) run much more frequently than trains. Direct buses are available from Seoul, Dong-Seoul, Busan, Daegu, Daejeon, Ulsan, Incheon, Suwon, Wonju, and Jeonju.

Getting Around

Gwangju has a small subway system, currently with only one line, which is pretty inexpensive, but doesn't go to far-flung places. A one-way trip costs W1,000 (or W950 with a travel card) and W400 for children. An extension to the subway is currently underway. Trains start running at 5:30am daily, and run at 8- to 10-minute intervals, except during rush hours, when they run every 5 to 7 minutes.

You can get a Bitgoeul Card (tel. 062/226-5053 or 4), which is good for both buses and subways, at subway stations and Kwangju Bank. The base fee is W4,000 and you can recharge the card in any amount from W1,000 to W500,000. Not only does the card give you a discount on travel (a trip costs W950 for adults, W670 for teens and W300 for children), but it allows you a free transfer from subway to bus (or bus to different bus) within 30 minutes, and a free transfer from bus to subway within 1 hour.

Buses are an inexpensive and easy way to get around Gwangju. They run frequently and take you pretty much where you want to go. Bus fare starts at W1,000 adults, W700 for students, and W300 for children, and the easiest stop to find downtown is the one in front of the YMCA. For more information on bus routes, consult the tourist information center.

Visitor Information

The Gwangju Tourist Information Center (tel. 062/525-9370) runs several kiosks throughout the city, including inside the airport in front of the arrival gates on the first floor (tel. 062/233-3399), open daily 8am to 8pm. There are also tourist information centers at the train station (tel. 062/522-5147), inside the bus station (tel. 062/365-8733), at Songjeongni Station Plaza (tel. 062/941-6301), and on the first floor of the YMCA (tel. 062/233-9370). The city's website is http://eng.gjcity.net.

Fast Facts

Near the main intersection in Gwangju are the police station, post office, a bank, and some accommodations.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.