Things to see and do in Suwon
Fortress Walls tour, Korean Folk Village tour.
Hwaseong Fortress is Suwon's main attraction and a UNESCO World Heritage listed site. Hwaseong Fortress was built in 1796 on the orders of King Jeongjo to house the remains of his mentally-ill father, Prince Sado - who was starved to death by his own father King Yeongjo in Changgyeonggung Palace in Seoul.
Most of the 5.7km castle wall is walkable and offers superb views over the sprawling town below. The castle grounds are open to traffic, which does not result in a peaceful environment unfortunately. Noted sights within the walls are the Paldalmun Gate and the Hwaseong Haenggung palace building. Admission to the castle is free and there are great views of the city from the castle walls.
There are a number of buses to Paldalmun Gate from Suwon railway station (#11, #13, #36 & #39).
There are free shuttle buses (30 mins) from Suwon's tourist information center at the station to the interesting Korean Folk Village, 20km away. Traditional Korean life and culture is "re-created" in this interesting theme park. The emphasis is on performance - there are farmers' dances, horse-riding shows, a wedding ceremony and traditional games.
Also reached by bus (#6000) from Suwon Station is the massive Everland theme park. As well as the many and varied rides, there's a zoo, the nine-hole Glen Ross public golf course, restaurants, a speedway track, the Samsung Transportation Museum (Tel: 031 320 9900; Korea's only automobile museum) and the Hoam Art Museum (Tel:031 320 1800), with around 15,000 pieces of Korean art on display.
Another big draw at Everland is the Caribbean Bay water park, which opened at the resort in 1996.
Caribbean Bay, the "biggest water park in the world", has both indoor and outdoor pools, an artificial beach, a sauna, a spa and water slides. From Seoul take bus # 5002 from Gangnam.
Suwon Public Toilets
To help put Suwon on the tourist map in the run-up to the 2002 World Cup, City Hall decided to upgrade and beautify the nearly 800 public toilets in the town. 16 brand-new public restrooms were also built, not just at the soccer stadium but at strategic places around Suwon. The new restrooms had their own name and were built ina mix of traditional and modern styles. Piped music, individual names such as "Firefly", solar power, bidets and frequent inspections have made Suwon's public restrooms the pride of the nation. Join a free tour or pick up the toilet map to see for yourself.
Nightlife & Eating Out in Suwon
Station area for bars and restaurants, Rodeo Street for a lively youth scene. Suwon is known for its galbi (barbecued ribs).
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Tel: (0331) 229 2147 more Suwon stadium info
This 44,047 capacity soccer-specific stadium, nicknamed the "Big Bird", now home to the K-League's Suwon Bluewings, is a design masterpiece with one stand covered with an amazing bird-wing roof. Colorful seats done as a mural. Shuttle buses from the station.
There is plentiful hotel accommodation in Suwon for all budgets. Here are some recommended places to stay: The 4 star Ibis Ambassador Suwon offers fully air-conditioned rooms with tea/coffee making facilities and a flat-screen TV, as well as sauna facilities, a beauty shop and meeting rooms, the 3 star Novotel Ambassador Suwon has banquet facilities, a fitness centre and a video game area and for budget accommodation in Suwon try the Hotel Diamond.
To see a full listing of hotel accommodation in Suwon see here.
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