From Seoul to Nami Island
I was so confused while trying to search for the way from Seoul to Nami Island. There are quite a few permutations. I wish for a fuss free travel with our baby, but even that has its limitations. So hard to find a perfect way!
Here, I try to give an overview with a step by step guide of how to get from Seoul to Nami Island. Hope you find a way that suits you.
Step 1A: Travel by Subway
Subway (all the way) to Gapyeong Station
You can travel by subway/metro all the way from your nearest station to Gapyeong station. That will take longer than the following ITX option. However this is debatable.
Certain websites recommend not to take ITX because many passengers missed their train, waited 30 minutes for the next one and ended up late for this booked activity. According to them, not much time is saved with ITX anyway.
Subway, and then ITX train to Gapyeong
ITX train is a high speed train that shortens your travelling time to Gapyeong or Namchuncheon Station.
From Seoul, you can take ITX train from your nearest ITX station.
- Search for the fastest available route through platforms such as www.rome2rio.com and KakaoMetro mobile app. From the results, you will find out which is the nearest station.
- Another tip: Find out how long and how much to get from one station to another at www.seoulmetro.co.kr/en/cyberStation.do#wayInfo.
Can’t find a suitable departure timing from your station? More timings are available if you depart from Yongsan or Cheonggyani Station.
Step 1B: Take ITX Train
Duration (For Reference)
- Yongsan > Gapyeong Station: ~55 mins
- Cheonggyanni > Gapyeong Station: ~40 minutes
You can check the train schedule as if buying the tickets. Here are the options to select at www.letskorail.com/ebizbf/EbizBfTicketSearch.do*:
- Travel Category: Normal Type
- Travel Type: Direct
- Departure Date: Choose your travel date
- Departure/Arrival: Yongsan/Gapyeong
- Train: ITX-Cheongchun
*If you cannot access the link, go to www.letskorail.com and select ‘Rail Tickets’ tab at the top.
You can purchase ITX tickets at the station, but many online blogs highly recommend booking ITX ticket in advance. Here’s a detailed post on how to buy online: budgettravel2korea.com/2015/12/how-to-purchase-itx-train-ticket-to-nami-island.html
- Price from Yongsan: ₩5,200 (S$6.50, US$4.70) (allocated seating); ₩4,900 (S$6.00, US$4.50)(standing/non-assigned)
- Price from Cheonggyanni: ₩4,300 (S$5.30, US$3.90) (allocated seating)
Step 2: Take Bus from Gapyeong Station to Wharf
From Gapyeong Station, you need to take a bus to the wharf for Nami Island. There are two types of buses: City Tour Bus and Intra-City Bus. The bus stops for these two buses are different. So don’t get to the wrong one.
City Tour Bus
- One day pass is ₩6,000 (S$7.50, US$5.50) (Single trip ticket is unavailable)
- Stops at the popular attractions — Nami Island, Petite France, Garden of Morning Calm and Gapyeong rail park**
** Different from the Gangchon rail bike park.
Intra-City Bus (Green Bus)
Since we are only going to Nami Island, one out of the four popular attractions, intra-city bus (green bus) works better for us. Two single tickets are still cheaper than City Tour Bus’s day pass. Moreover, it takes longer to travel with City Tour Bus as the bus arrives only every hour, and has more stops than intra-city bus. Also, if the popular City Tour Bus is full, you have to wait for the next one.
Take the intra-city bus (green) at the bus stop opposite of Gapyeong Station. The bus numbers are 33-5, 33-24, 33-36. To be sure, ask the driver if he’s heading to ‘Namisum’.
- Single trip is ₩1,300 (adult). Transfer discount if you take the subway to Gapyeong. You can use your T-money card to pay the fare.
- Stops only at Gapyeong bus terminal, train station and Nami Island.
- From Gapyeong station, it takes 5-10 minutes to reach Nami Island.
- Bus arrives at about every 20-30 minutes.
Bus Timetable for leaving Nami Island (7:50/8:40/9:20/9:50/10:20/11:00/11:40/12:20/12:50/13:20/13:50/14:20/14:50/
If you are in a rush, take a taxi at about ₩3,500 to ₩5,000 (S$6.20, US$4.50).
Important Tip: Alternative Routes
By now, you’ll see how complicated it is to travel from Seoul to Nami Island. You can take a taxi to save you the trouble, but that’s expensive.
Hence, you might want to consolidate Step 1B and 2 into a direct bus ride, bringing you direct from Seoul to the ferry wharf. You can book a bus that departs from Seoul: Insadong, Namdaemun or Myeongdong.
- Book direct with the bus company for one way ticket: namisum.com/en/location
- With the recent increase in the ferry prices, this Klook package (of direct bus and ferry) seems to be more worth it. Moreover, booking through Klook saves you the hassle of getting the tickets individually.
- Otherwise there many other highly reviewed Nami Island tours from Klook to consider.
For Klook, get further S$10 off using this code on Klook app: NDP2018. Use by 30Dec18.
Step 3: Take a Ferry or Zipline to Nami Island
As you alight at the Nami Island bus stop (Gapyeong Wharf), you have two ways to get to Nami Island. You either take a ferry or zipline across the water. Zipline is only one-way, you’ll return from Nami Island by ferry. If not for baby, I think I would consider the zipline! It’s an interesting mode of transport.
Admission Ticket (Visa)
- Ferry + Entrance (Adult): ₩13,000 (S$15.90, US$11.70)
- Zipline + Return Ferry + Entrance (Adult): ₩44,000 (S$53.70, US$39.40)
- Discounted rate ₩10,000; Special rate ₩7,000
- Admission ticket (visa) includes the ferry fare and entrance fee.
- If you’re a tourist, bring your passport to get a discount.
- For Zipline hours and information on discounted and special rates: namisum.com/en/information
Ferry Schedule from Gapyeong Wharf
- Every 30 minutes from 7:30AM to 9:00AM; 6:00PM to 9:40PM.
- Every 10-20 minutes from 9:00AM to 6:00PM.
Step 4: Explore Nami Island
Enjoy the scenery, take tonnes of photos, cycle with rented bikes or electric tri-way (rental rates towards the end of page), and have a delicious lunch. If you have luggage with you, store them in the lockers in Nami Island and free up your hands. One can spend two hours to a whole day at Nami Island.
Step 5: Going from Nami Island to Gangchon Rail Park
After taking the ferry back, it’ll be time for us to head to Gangchon Rail Park! I was contemplating which is better — Gangchon or Gapyeong Rail Park. Not many blogs have a definite conclusion, so after putting all the bits and pieces of information together, I decided on Gangchon Rail Park.
These reasons convinced me to go for the rail bike at Gangchon Rail Park: ‘Running Man’ was filmed there (I’m an avid fan!), the scenery is better, more tunnels are being passed through, less distance to cycle as the last part is a scenic train ride, and lastly, there’s an option for VR experience!
TO BE CONTINUED IN MY NEXT POST.
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