South Jeolla Province

Soar over Mokpo on the Mokpo Marine Cable Car

On a day with a clear sky, why not see the many islands surrounding Mokpo by taking the longest cable car ride in Korea?  – On Yudalsan mountain, the cable is 3,2 km long over the sea, with 2 stops, observatories, and hiking trails. Soar over Mokpo in a red cabin and get a bird’s eye view of the port and surrounding islands!

Mokpo is a port city in South Jeolla province, (전라남도), that was a crucial port during the Japanese occupation, for its strategic location between the Nagasaki and mainland China.  It is surrounded by many small islands, protecting it from tsunamis.

Read more: A day in Mokpo – Walk on Water and Watch the Sunset

Arriving on the early train from Gwangju, I was surprised to see some European influences as well as Japanese ones scattered across town.  European-style bakeries and houses catch your eye amid the narrow alleyways of tin-roofed houses.  The city is small and calm, but has many attractions to see and places to eat.    

Getting to the cable car

You can take the public bus that will stop a few minutes walking distance from the North Port cable car station, or if you decide to walk up the mountain road, you can spot a few sites along the way.

Buses:

From Bus Route Get Off at … Bus Stop
Mokpo Station City Bus Nr 3, Nr 15 Seobu Primary School
City Bus Nr 1 Mokpo Sea Cable Car
Car-free street opposite Mokpo station City Bus Nr 6, Nr 13 Seobu Primary School
Mokpo Bus Terminal City Bus Nr 1, Mokpo Sea Cable Car
City Bus Nr 3, 15 Entryway to Fisherman Park
City Bus Nr 13 Seobu Primary School

Landmarks on the way to the cable car if you walk up from the town center:

  • Filming site for Hotel Del Luna – the former Japanese Consulate, now the modern history museum (목포문화회관) served as the facade of hotel del luna
  • Yudalsan Sculpture park

The cable car experience

The cable car operates in Summer (March -October) from 9am-10pm (sun-thurs), and 9am -11pm on Friday and Saturday nights. 
In Winter (November-February) from 9am-9pm (sun-thurs) and 9am-10pm on Friday and Saturday.   
You can buy your tickets as of 8.30 am.  Last tickets sold one hour before closing.

Arrive at North Port Station and get your tickets:

  • Economy (red) cabin: 22,000 for adults, 16,000 for children (1,000 discount if you are a group of +20pax)
  • Cristal (white, glass floor) cabin: 27,000 for adults, 21,000 for children.
    These are round-trip fares.  One-way tickets are also available, for 3,000 won less than the round trip price, but I recommend a round-trip for the full experience. 

The Cable Car Trip is from North Port – Yudalsan Station – Gohado Station.  Each cable car can seat about 4-6 people, and has windows on 4 sides for the economy cabin, and a glass floor on the cristal cabin.  Each cabin has a Korean phrase written on the window, which are a nice touch on your photos.  If you’re lucky you get a different phrase every time you get on a cabin again ?

Yudalsan Observatory

At Yudalsan station you can get off to take pictures from the observatory on the 3rd floor, or do some hiking (stair climbing) to get a better view.  You can take a well-deserved rest at a picturesque pagoda once you are up, and watch the cable cars drift by.  There are arrows guiding you to different sites to see along your hike up, including Yudalsan temple.  I didn’t make it to the top, unfortunately, but I challenge you to!  There also is a Pascucci café, dunkin donuts, and snack booth.

Endless stairs at Yudalsan station

Once you are ready to take the next trip, be sure to keep your ticket handy, as it is scanned every time you get in the car.  Also, quite impressive, during corona times, every cabin is sanitized before you enter it.  The ride to Gohado station is the longest stretch, as it crosses the sea on to the next island.  There you can see the 목포대교 Mokpo bridge and islands as far the sky will let you see. 

Towards Gohado station

Getting off at Gohado will also give you a great observatory view, a chance to shoot a music video with a 360degree rotating camera, and take stunning pictures.  I’ve only seen it during the day but they boast a great sunset view.  You can have a smart photo taken and framed, (2 for 15,000) or have a coffee at Bulk Coffee, dunkin donuts, or lounge at the rooftop garden.  You can get on a sea-shore deck road, and follow the 1,5km Goha-do trail that connects to the Head of Dragon.

Should you not be able to catch the sunset while on the cable car, do not worry.  Mokpo has other great locations, such as Sunset Park (노을 공원) or the Yudal recreation area.  The marine university faces the ocean as well, with a picturesque café (café del mar) nearby that promises clean windows with a front-row seat of the sun setting over the bridge. 

For more info check out the website (only in Korean): www.mmcablecar.com

🇧🇪 Aline Verduyn

Belgian third-culture kid living in my favorite country, South Korea. Currently mastering in Korean, excited to explore and share Korea's beauty with you. Greetings from Gwangju!