This month Pyeongchang, South Korea will host the 2018 Winter Olympics, and with that, it´s going to receive thousands of visitors from all over the world looking to follow their teams and athletes during the competition. However, this is also a great opportunity for the city to show its visitors that there are incredible things to do in Pyeongchang Beyond the Winter Games. Just to hours from Seoul, Pyeongchang has beautiful natural landscapes and a modern city to entice visitors to stay beyond the Olympics and discover a culture that has great food, an incredible history, and a city with much to offer.
Get a Taste of The Pyeongchang Trout Festival
The Pyeongchang Trout Festival in Bu-myeon in the Pyeongchang-gun district, is a festival in which you can enjoy a variety of activities that include ice shows and programs as well as folk activities and games that have become spectacles in their own terms. Participate in sledding or top spinning activities or try your luck at riding on an ATV or snow rafting. Also, the clear and cold waters of Pyeongchang make it perfect for trout farming, so don’t miss the opportunity to go ice-fishing and catch yourself some fresh trout. This year, the festival is going to take place until Feb. 25, so make sure you spare some time to enjoy this experience.
Walk in The Sky at Byeongbangchi Skywalk
You’ll feel as if you’re walking in the sky as you walk across a U-shaped observatory that stretches out from a cliff at an altitude over 1500 feet in Jeonseon-eup. Right between Gyuram-ri and Buksil-ri, this observatory is the best way to take in the gorgeous and breathtaking views of Bamseom Island and the Donggan River that flows through it. Not enough adrenaline for you? Zip down one of the longest and steepest zip-lines in Asia and really feel like a bird flying through the sky as you admire the majestic landscapes.
True Buddhist Experience at the Woljeongsa Temple
For a more spiritual experience, travel to the forested valley east of the Odesan Mountain and enter the Woljeongsa Temple to connect with the true spirit of Pyeongchang. This historical relic of is an ancient temple built during the Silla Dynasty (57 BC-AD 935) and is the main temple of 60 temples and eight monasteries in the district. Here you can get deep into Buddhism by staying at the Temple and meditate in the thousand-year-old fir tree forest while walking along its paths. The tranquility and quiet of the area will allow you to find peace and truly enjoy its natural beauty. Don’t be surprised if you find spiritual enlightenment during your stay.
Buckwheat Delights at the Bongpyeong Five-day Market
After being revitalized during the Bongpyeong Market Project in 2014 with canopy tents and stands, this market was reorganized and has become a major attraction both for locals and tourists. One of its main attractions is all the dishes served here that feature Korean super-food buckwheat, known as memil in Korean. This ingredient is incorporated in many dishes, including noodles, steamed buns, bibimbap and many more. Walk around this market and enjoy its lively culture and have a healthy and hearty feast while doing it.
Beef Lovers Paradise at the Daegwallyeong Hanwoo Town
If you get tired of Buckwheat and start wondering if there are any other delicious things to taste in South Korea, or if you’re in the mood for some good meat, get ready for a special treat at Korean Beef (hanwoo) locales with self-service grills. Considered better than Japanese wagyu beef by some experts, this is a must-try delicacy for all beef lovers. For those of you traveling on a budget, spend a few thousand won and grill this meat yourself along with some kimchi for a mouth-watering delicacy. If you have a few extra bucks to spend, make your way to one of the restaurants in Daegwallyeong and have them prepare you this delicate and fresh meat. Don’t miss this opportunity and forget about your diet for a while.
The Gangneung Coffee Street Experience
Gangneung is a small seaside town that was the first district in Korea to host a coffee festival in 2009 despite the fact that it only produces a small amount of coffee beans every year. As you stroll down the streets of this locale, many coffee shops will continue to appear along the way serving brewed coffee in all its shapes and with many side dishes to enjoy. After the figure skating, hockey matches and curling games taking place in the Gangneung Coastal Cluster for the Winter Olympics, visit the Coffee Museum and enjoy the scenery as you enjoy a cup of what Koreans consider to be the best coffee in their country.