ENGLISH STAMP TRAIL part3
Suseong & Gachang area
This is the third and final installment of blog posts about the English version of the Daegu Stamp Trial. For the previous two sections of the book, which cover seven locations from the stamp book, please click the following links: http://globaldaegu.blogspot.kr/2014/05/tourpress-article-daegu-stamp-trail.html (part 1) and http://globaldaegu.blogspot.kr/2014/06/tour-daegu-stamp-trail-part-2-downtown.html (part 2).
Part 1 covers locations in the Palgongsan area and part 2 covers locations in the downtown area. This post will cover the locations in the Suseong/Gachang area of the English stamp book. The locations in this area are the National Museum, the Art Museum/World Cup Stadium, and Herb Hillz/Spa Valley.
In the case of the Art Museum/World Cup Stadium and Herb Hillz/Spa Valley, you may choose to visit either one of the two in the set. They are located very close to one another, but it gives more flexibility to the stamp trail and allows participants to choose based on their own interests. This post will discuss the Art Museum and Herb Hillz but will also mention how to get to the alternatives in each set.
It is very possible to visit both the National Museum and the Art Museum in the same day. They are just on opposite sides of a mountain. If you do this, please be warned: you should plan to bring food because there aren’t many options at either of the museums. The Art Museum does have a convenience store and café, but neither of the museums have any real restaurants. Both are a bit far from subway stations. The closest subway stop to the National Museum is Manchon Station on the green line. Go out exit 3, and take your first right. There should be a bus stop just in front of you. Transfer to bus 427, and get off at the National Museum stop. It’s just a short bus ride. Walk to your left when you get off the bus, and you’ll come upon the main entrance to the museum on your right.
The National Museum is free for the permanent exhibits. The only ticket you may need to buy is for any special exhibit that may be happening during your visit. You can purchase tickets right outside the main entrance door. Just inside the museum, you’ll find an information desk where you can get your stamp.
The National Museum is a rather large building surrounded by a nice park area. The park features stone relics and is a great way to relax and take in some history. Inside the museum, there are three permanent exhibits: ancient culture hall, medieval culture hall, and textile and clothing hall. All three halls are located in the western wing of the building. They detail certain aspects of the history of this part of Korea, and there are many artifacts from various time periods on display.
The medieval history room focuses on the history of Buddhism and Confucianism in this part of Korea. The textiles room has displays of beautifully embroidered fabrics and clothing used in traditional Korean celebrations and ceremonies. Clothing from other Asian countries is also featured in this exhibit.
The eastern wing is where the special exhibits are held. To see what exhibit will be showing during your visit, check the English version of the National Museum website: http://daegu.museum.go.kr/contents/siteMainLang.do?lang=ENG.
The National Museum is not a very large museum, but if you’re interested in history, it’s an interesting place to visit, especially if you wish to learn a little bit more about Daegu and the surrounding area.
When you’re finished at the first museum, cross the street and take bus 427 back to Manchon subway station. Take the green line to Daegu Grand Park Station, just a few stops ahead. Go out exit 5 at Grand Park Station, and the museum offers a free shuttle service directly from there! It runs every half hour and is very convenient. There is also a shuttle that goes to the World Cup Stadium if you choose to go there instead for a tour or to see a match.
The Daegu Art Museum only costs a few thousand won entrance fee to see all the exhibits. You can get your stamp right at the front desk where you purchase your tickets.
The Art Museum is a large, modern building with exhibits on the first and second floors. The exhibits rotate a lot, so be sure to check their English website (http://www.daeguartmuseum.org/eng/main/) before you go to get information about what is currently being shown. In addition to seeing a variety of artists and types of art, the museum also has a peaceful outdoor area for you to relax in. The building is connected to a wedding hall and located at the top of a hill, offering lovely views of the city and surrounding mountains. The variety of exhibits and artists makes the Daegu Art Museum seem like a different museum each time you visit.
The final location in the English Stamp Trail is Herb Hillz/Spa Valley. They are both about 40 minutes outside the downtown area, and you should take a full day and just visit one or both of these. You can get to either by taking bus 704 or geubang 2 from downtown, but there are a number of other bus options as well. Herb Hillz is just one stop before Spa Valley on the bus. When you get off the bus at the Herb Hillz stop, you’ll be at a gas station. Walk straight up the hill behind the gas station. That hill is part of the parking lot for Herb Hillz. Take your first right when you’re on the hill, and you’ll see the entrance to the park and the ticket office.
The entrance fee is 8,000 won per person. Be aware that there are experience programs and rides within the park that also cost money. After buying your ticket, someone will check it right at the entrance. That person should also be able to give you your stamp.
Herb Hillz is a nature theme park where you can do various activities and enjoy the great outdoors. As you enter the park, you’ll see a tent where you can make herbal products, like herb soaps. Walk up the steep hill next to that tent to get to the main attractions.
You will first come upon a romantic herb and flower garden with various displays built in for you to take pictures with and of. They play classical music over loud speakers as you walk around or drink beverages from the café there. Connected to the garden is the ecoadventure area of the park.
Ecoadventure is a zipline and high ropes course that was completed in 2008. There are several ecoadventure courses to choose from that range in difficulty and length. The shortest course is only 8,000 won to do, and the other three longer ones are 15,000. Ecoadventure is definitely a fun activity for those who are looking for a more active day. Participants are given a short safety lesson, but be aware that it is all in Korean. That being said, the staff can speak some English, so they will help to make sure you understand, and the demonstration is fairly straightforward.
The actual zipline and high ropes course is completely self-directed though, so there are no staff members to help once you get off the ground. Continue up the hill and you will come to an area where you can stop and eat lunch. There is a chicken restaurant as well as a café with ice cream and smoothies.
Also in that area is the herbal gift shop, an air-conditioned tree house where you can relax, and a tent where you can cook herbal foods, like pizza and cookies. If you continue past the food stalls and turn left, you come to an area that is made to look like a Korean folk village.
There, you can play traditional Korean games and browse the agricultural artifacts in the small museum. If you turn right after the food area, you can go up the hill or down. Down the hill is a fountain for you to wade in during the summer months and a picnic area and stage where various performances are done during the week.
Up the hill is zoo zoo land. Zoo Zoo Land features various farm animals as well as some other, more uncommonly seen animals. The best part of Zoo Zoo Land is the open, elevated platform where two goats and many rabbits play. You can pet them and purchase carrot sticks to feed them. Children love the chance to interact with the animals. Zoo Zoo Land also has an animal performance stage, a restaurant, and a boat-swing amusement park ride. No matter your age or interests, Herb Hillz has something for you to enjoy.
Again with these three final locations, the Daegu Stamp Trail teaches tourists and locals alike about Daegu’s culture and history in a fun and interesting way.
The English version of the Daegu Stamp Trail is now complete, and you can claim a souvenir prize! After you have received a stamp for all 10 locations in the book, you can send your book to the Daegu Department of Tourism and Culture.
The address is: 대구광역시 중구 공평로 88 대구광역시청 관광문화재과 앞 / Post code: 700-714.
Include a note with your name, email address, phone number, and home or office address for this coming November (the book is due in October, and souvenir prizes are sent out in November). The book will be returned to you after it is checked.