Monday, October 31, 2016

A Quiet Hike in Apsan to a Bird’s-Eye View of Daegu

On a clear day, nothing beats the panoramic vista of Daegu from atop Mt. Apsan. However, for those seeking a different, quieter side of the mountain, this challenging trail leads to one of Apsan’s lesser-known - and less-traveled - lookout points, with equally stunning views.
To begin, start at the Gosangol Valley entrance and follow the tree-lined pathway (Metasequoia Road). Look for signs depicting a leaf character holding a camera, and follow them until you reach the beginning of the trail. Just past the compressed air station, you should see a clearing in the trees along with what will be the start of a rather steep, but straightforward, climb aided by a series of wooden stairs.
The trail to the lookout point doesn’t reach the summit of the mountain, but at times it certainly feels as if it does! You will know you have almost reached the top once the wooden steps give way to a rocky dirt trail. Continue uphill, climbing over and through giant boulders that every so often provide a glimpse of the city below. Just when you think you can’t take another step, look up and you’ll notice a cantilevered glass platform floating over the treetops. 
A few steps more and you’ll be rewarded with a stunning bird’s-eye view of Daegu, the perfect place to stop for a picnic before continuing on toward the summit, or to sit for a while and watch a sunrise or sunset. From time to time a hiker or two will stop by, but for most part, surrounded by mountains, with birds soaring above and the city shimmering below, this view belongs only to you.

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Trail Description: The trail starts near the Gosangol entrance, right after the air compressor station used to spray dirt off shoes and clothing. Take the steps uphill and follow the signs depicting a leaf character holding a camera. The trail continues uphill for about 2km via a series of steep staircases. Once you reach the lookout point, you can continue on to the summit of Mt. Sanseong, or follow one of many trails back down the mountain.
Directions: The trail is accessed via the Gosangol park entrance. Parking can be found at the Gosangol parking lot or on the street. From the parking lot, cross over the bridge and turn left. The trail entrance should be on your right. If approaching from the street access, the entrance will be on your left. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

Indoor rock climbing at Donseongro Climbing Gym.

Rock climbing for some, isn’t the most accessible past time to try your hand at. You either need to have your own ropes and equipment, or befriend climbers so you can tag along with them while you soar to new heights. This is why it has taken me until now to explore the world of boulders, but once I heard of this indoor climbing gym right in the heart of the city, I was sold. No need for your own gear, this gym was free climbing with a bunch of variations and challenging walls to climb.
I was delighted. Without having to get so much as a subway, I simply walked into Dongsengro Climbing Gym, conveniently situated in down town Deagu, and entered the rock climbing gym on the second floor. The walls aren’t that high, but we are talking about free climbing here. I found that they were definitely high enough, while I was clinging on for dear life looking down at everyone’s faces below me.

The ticket costs only 12,000 won, and this allows you to climb for as long as you wish(although beginners like me won’t be climbing for the day by any means!).  My arms gave out on me after about two hours of swinging and hanging around the gym.
I give huge props to people that do this on a regular basis, tackling the more advanced climbing routes with their legs in the air and their arms reaching the hardest of angles. Well done guys, I tip my hat off to you!

I would say that I’ve found a new passion to explore and perfect. This is only the start of my rock climbing adventure and I can’t wait to get back and try it again. I recommend this place to anyone that is interested in trying something new, physical and fun. It’s cheap and you don’t even have to travel far from Deagu. It is also open late during the week, so for those that want to distress after a long day at work you can do that at Donseongro climbing gym. Enjoy! 
 Follow them on Instagram - @dsr_climbing_gym or facebook - d.climbinggym

Visit Baekse Bridge at Songhae Park

We introduce you Songhae Park, becoming one of the popular visiting place after finishing construction in early this month. Songhae Cloud Bridge, four observatory, gold cave, music fountains, artificial island, fan rest place, Songhae plaza.... there are number of places to see and enjoy at Songhae Park.
Baekse Bridge, located in Songhae park is a S shaped bridge, symbolizing Taeguk mark. The Okyeon Pond has very clean water and decorated with gazebo and waterwheels. It is such a great place to track, to rest and to date. 'Baekse' literally means 100 years old, and it is said that if you walk along the bridge, you'll live to 100!
You can get a great view at the night as well. Orange-colored lights illuminate at Okyeon Pond. It is very recommended to be on the gazebo on Baekse Bridge and enjoy the sight of Songhae Park. It is good idea to bring your car since there's enough parking space.

Address : Daegu Dalseong-gun Okpo-myeon Gise-ri Okyeon Pond

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Autumn Stamp Tour 2016: Healing Daegu Event

From the 24th of October until the 6th of November, there is an event named Healing Daegu.  One portion of the event includes visiting the following locations the receive stamps. After visiting only two of the locations, you may redeem the stamps at one of three Tourist Information Booths to collect a souvenir.
The locations are:
In Heung Village
Otgol Village
Jeil Church
Gyeongsang-gamyeong Park
Missionary Museum
*Keisung Middle School*A must see!
Kyungpook National Hospital Museum (reservations required)
Suseong Lake
While speaking with the tourist information guide at the Herbal Medicine Tourist Information Booth, we found out that the building at Keisung Middle School is rarely open to the public.  This sounded like a special opportunity.  We were right!
In the basement of this building, at the beginning of the Independence Movement in Daegu, the organizers of the movement secretly printed copies of the Korean National Flag known as Tae Gu Ki.  The basement is known as Adam’s Basement.  I will write a separate article on this location in the coming days.
While we were waiting for the attendant to return from her lunch break we were meeting several of the students and staff of the middle school. Yes, it is still used today.  They were kind and talkative young girls and boys.
This place is usually opened to the public only on March 8th.   It will be open until November 6th.  So, I recommend visiting there if you can.

After visiting at least two destinations, you may report to one of three Tourist Information Centers to collect your souvenir.  There are only two to choose from and supplies are limited.  There is a very cool umbrella hat or a beautiful coffee mug.  Here my daughter Min Hee helped me show off our souvenirs.
We visited five of the locations, but, you need only visit two!
The tourist information booths where you can redeem your stamp books are: 
In Heung Village
Otgol Village

Tourist Information Booth located at the foot of the March 1st Independence Movement Road

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The 10th Chinese Cultural Festival with Min Hee

Recently Min Hee went to the 10TH Chinese Cultural Festival in downtown Daegu, Not far from the Herbal Medicine Street.  It was an event filled with music, food, costumes, culture and just plain fun!
As soon as we arrived, Min Hee spotted a vendor selling whole coconuts.  She wanted to try the taste of coconut milk.  Her dad is always happy when she tries new things.
“Daddy, this isn’t tasty.”
“Min Hee, it is naturally sweet. No extra sugar.”
“Is it real?”
“Yes, it is.  It is very healthy for you.”
There were drinks for all ages and drinks for adults.  There were drinks for children and then there was the food!
Min Hee loves makchang and she loves rice cakes.  Makchang and rice cakes would be amazing.  Sadly, her five-year old taste for spicy food has not developed enough to try this tasty looking dish.
In a hidden courtyard we heard singing.  
“Daddy, I want to go in there.”
We had arrived at the beginning of a contest for singing.  This contest allowed both Chinese and Korean songs.  We stayed for a while, but Min Hee wanted to see the artists and more.

In one of the booths was a woman who would teach and assist people in making stick candy art.  She was a famous artist from China.  She did not speak English or Korean, BUT, there was a translator who spoke all three!  She fell in love with Min Hee’s cuteness and may have snapped more photos than we did. In the end we paid a small fee and Min Hee and mommy walked away with butterflies on sticks that were handmade (with help!) by our little artist, Min Hee.
One of the booths had traditional clothes that we could try on and have our photo taken. Min Hee had to try on one and we snapped some photos.  We will make an effort to visit more cultural events so we can see the different costumes from different countries.
There were several Chinese artists there with different skills.  Min Hee was interested in the man who was displaying the Lunar Characters. Do you know what Min Hee’s character is?  It is the rabbit!

All in all we had a fun three hours at the festival and will be at the next one for sure!

We hope to see you out and about in our Colorful Daegu and if you happen to see us, please say HI!  If you would like to see more of Min Hee’s activities, please visit her facebook page and give her a LIKE (thumbs up)!  Here is a link:

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Ideas By Daegu To Protect Our Environment

Solar-powered Recycling Bins

Have you seen these recycling bins installed near Dongseong-ro? When the can is full, it compresses trashes automatically and stores up to 120 tons which makes it six times more efficient compared to normal recycling bins. Attached solar batteries are fully charged only in 4 hours of sunlight each day.

Take-out Cups collector

These cans are installed to let people to throw away take-out plastic cups. It is designed to recycle plastic cups more efficiently without being mingled with other trashes. The instruction is written at the front saying Pour remaining drinks below and throw away the cup in the box.

Rainwater Bank

Rainwater banks are designed to reuse rainwater for toilet, landscaping or cleaning and allow to save tap water. Daegu have supplied rainwater banks in 24 places including apartments and daycare centers.