This article will take you from one treasure to another in a city that is still being created. Visit the Forest of Wisdom, the Confucian Academy, a hibiscus theme park, and find thousands of kimchi jars at Dweeungbark Village. All this history in the new administrative capital of Korea, Sejong City.
Sejong City is only a 1,5 hour bus ride from Seoul, or a 2,5 hour bus ride from Gwangju. It borders Daejeon and Gongju, if you plan to combine city trips. You can read my article on a day in Gongju HERE – where the highlight is the Gongsan Fortress at night!
I will also advise on places to visit nearby, as there are countless of parks to visit, including the Sejong Lake Park, the Hibiscus park, and many others, that will surely have a colorful spread of flowers, depending on what season you visit.
In this article I will visit 4 places with you,
1. Forest of Wisdom (지혜의 숲)
Arriving in the humble bus terminal of Sejong City, the closest thing to visit is the Forest of Wisdom (지혜의 숲).
The shooting site for “It’s ok to not be ok” (사이코지만 괜찮아), a library that was the setting for the book signing event held in episode 2, 지혜의 숲 – also known as the Forest of Wisdom
The library is on the 2nd floor, and the entrance is 1,000 won per person, and you buy a ticket at the ticketing machine, which is then printed as a coupon, which you can use at the cafe at the back of the library.
BUY A TICKET AT THE ENTRANCE.
THE LIBRARY IN THE DRAMA
From the forest of wisdom you can roam around downtown to find a restaurant to visit for lunch. The library is located down-town. You can also get a great shot from the bridge, as pictured above.
2. Confucian Academy (덕성서원)
Located in the center of the forest of apartment buildings, the hanok style building is a pearl of history among all the new concrete.
After a quick tour, perhaps it is time for a real forest. Or at least a park. The park closest to the confucian academy is the 무궁화테마공원 – The Hibiscus Theme Park.
3. Hibiscus Theme Park (전월산 무궁화 공원)
Hibiscus blooms from March to October, although the last day of September was already too late, as I only found 2 flowers in the whole park. A re-visit is in order for me! Nevertheless it has photo spots, a pavilion, and lots of greenery where people pitch up a tent and pic-nic. It also has access to a hiking spot.
4. Dweeungbark Village (뒤웅박 고을)
The moment I have been waiting for all day – finally, I got to the hangari park- Dweeungbark Village. It is a 20-min drive up, and although there is a lonesome bus stop, I recommend a taxi to make best use of your time. It is located outside the city center, in what looks like a very rural area. You see green houses, farm houses, and hear a dog bark in the distance. Road-side wild flowers greet you as you drive along to the entrance of the park.
Already before entering, you will find perfect photo spots with pottery jars in the background. I could hardly contain my excitement. Due to corona the indoor museum was not open, but the outside gardens were enough to feast your eyes on. The full tour is expected to take 2 hours including the museum buildings.
- Tickets: Child: 8,000 Won, Adult: 13,000 won, Holidays – 15,000 won
- Opening hours: from April to September: 9am – 6:30pm, from October to March: 9am – 6pm.
The different regions have different types and sizes of hangari jars, as explained in the garden. Unfortunately I was not able to lift the lid, so can’t say if they hold kimchi in them or soy sauce!
As you walk around the garden, you will see stone statues of Korea’s traditions – playing the drums, playing chess, etc. There is a cafe in the center where you can enjoy your coffee amidst this magnificent view. It has become my new bucket-list item to visit this place on a snowy day! Can you imagine what those jars in the snow must look like?!