Daegu city has many sides to it. Not only does it have its bustling city center and fashion districts but it is also the home to some of the most beautiful temples in Korea. If you have lived here for a while you may have heard about Donghwa-sa temple but very few have made the trek to this visually stunning area.
Like Haeinsa temple, Donghwa-sa is considered to be a jewel of Korea. Donghwa-sa translates to ‘temple of the Paulownia Blossom.’ And as the name indicates it is surrounded by beautiful scenery that changes with the seasons making this place a great location to visit any time of year.
What Donghwa-sa is most famous for is its large stone Buddha. This Buddha, standing 33 meters high is the largest stone Buddha in Asia and perhaps the world. It is named ‘Tongil Daebul’ or ‘The unification Buddha’ which was built in 1992 and is definitely something to see while you are in Daegu. Even if this area didn’t have this stunning Buddha it would be worth the trip for the mountain top views that will take your breath away.
At the top of the mountain there is a spectacular view as well as two restaurants. These have been designed specifically to capture the beauty of the surroundings and allow a 360 degree view while you sip on some Makgolli or eat their bacon fried rice, as well as many other menu options.
This location can get busy but with Buddha’s birthday recently passing it is a great time to head down. The lanterns are still hung for a little while but the crowds have dispersed. This is the perfect place to take someone visiting Korea for a short time or anyone that wants to experience a serene part of Korean culture.
Donghwa-sa also does temple stays that will allow you to experience the real way monks live and will also give you a new level of respect for this countries origins and culture.
There is a bus that runs to and from Donghwa-sa. You can catch the Express bus #1 (red in color) from Feb 28 Park downtown or take the subway, line 1, that heads towards Anshim. Get off at Ahyanggyo Station. Once you arrive at this station you can take the Express Bus #1. The ride will take you about 35 minutes, and it brings you right to the temple.
-Address: 35, Dohak-dong, Dong-gu, Daegu