ITX Train

If you are on holiday to South Korea, maybe this is one of the must-visit tourist destinations. Nami Island, or Nami Island is certainly already very familiar in the ear, especially for lovers of Korean dramas. Nami, the island with its distinctive trees does look very beautiful and romantic in winter, located in the Cheongpyeong Dam area, in Chuncheon-si area, Gangwon-do. The tiny island has a diameter of 6 kilometers and an area of about 460,000 m2, is in a semicircle or like a bowl.

Nami Island itself gets its name taken from the name of one of the heroes of South Korea, namely General Nami. The mausoleum of the jederal is also on this island. But the name of the island is becoming increasingly popular as a tourist attraction after being used for shooting the drama series “Winter Sonata” starring Bae Yong-jun and Choi Ji-woo. I still remember once the “Winter Sonata” started reaching Asia, including Indonesia, my female friends who love Korean artists are so crazy about Bae Yong-jun. Since the drama produced in 2002 exploded, so did visitors who came to Nami Island.

I happen not to come to this island in the winter. So what I enjoy is the greenery that stretches around Nami Island. At that time I came on the weekend, so no wonder if the island is quite crowded with the crowd. But I finally managed to find a rather quiet spot, walking around the island and enjoying the serenity, along the path that lies on the edge of the lake.

Indeed Nami Island is very attached to the image of “Winter Sonata”, around the island various locations that have been used for shooting will be given special marks and information about the scene in the series that is immortalized in the place, including the statue of the main cast. But for me who never watch “Winter Sonata”, the visit to Nami is driven by curiosity and curious as to what is the most popular island in South Korea.

That afternoon I was taking a walk to visit Gyeongbok Palace in Seoul, suddenly remembered that the next day had a plan to go to Nami, and had not had time to come to the Naminara Republic representative office. Upon looking at the watch, it was close to 5 pm and seemed to be overtaken if you had to go to the Insadong area, where the office is located.

Finally I decided to call the office and was surprised to hear that the bus that goes from Insadong every day is full and there is only an empty bench on Monday, or 2 days later. But before I give up and hung up, suddenly on the other side there was people said if for 2 people there is still a bench. Of course I am very happy! And it is said the next morning I stay to the bus waiting at Tapgol Park

The journey from Seoul to Nami takes about 1.5 hours. Naminara Republic Bus, which is provided only one bus every day, departs at 09.30 am. Around 11 noons we arrived at Gapyeong Pier. Here we have to go to the counter to make a ‘visa’ alias ticket to go to Naminara Republic. Yes, it is also funny Nami is considered as a country of its own, a fantasy land. After purchasing tickets and snack on corn on the cob, we headed to the ferry that will take across the Han River, for about 10 minutes. These ferries are dotted with flags from various countries around the world.

In addition to the memorabilia around “Winter Sonata”, this island is quite interesting to visit. Like the country itself, when we enter the island, on the front there is also a small building which is a bank, where we can exchange Won with the currency of this Naminara country. Also a large board containing welcome “Welcome To Naminara Republic”. On both sides of the road there is various welcome board, including those from Indonesia. Naminara is really a small country that upholds friendships with all the countries of the world.

HOW TO GO TO NAMI ISLAND:

1.With Train
A few days earlier, my friend had been to Nami by train from Cheongyangni Train Station in Seoul, to Gapyeong Train Station which is not far from Nami Island. Travel by train will take about 75 minutes. From Gapyeong station, the journey is continued by taxi to Gapyeong Pier. Taxi rates are about 3,000 won.

2.With ITX Express
Now also has opened a new line of train ITX (Intercity Train Express) with the route from Yongsan Station in Seoul to Chuncheon, Gangwon-do province. You can ride from Yongsan Station (Line 1, dark blue) or from Cheongyanni Station (Line 1, dark blue / Jungang Line).
The journey from Cheongyanni Station to Gapyeong Station (the closest station from Nami Island) takes approximately 45 minutes, while from Yongsan Station will be much longer. The ITX train ticket is 5,700 Won. Later stay to continue taxi ride to Nami Island from Gapyeong Station.

3.With Shuttle Bus
As I mentioned earlier, I decided to take the Naminara Republic Shuttle Bus. Each day the bus departs from Tapgol Park / Pagoda Park at 09.30 am and returns from Nami Island at 16.00. To join this Naminara Republic bus we have to pay the ticket of the bus for 15.000 Won PP, and later to go to Nami must pay the ticket or the term Visa Entry of 8,000 Won for foreign tourists. While for Koreans have to pay tickets for 10,000 Won.

A Note to Remember:
– We recommend you call a few days in advance, especially if you go on weekends.
– Payment can be made by bank transfer, or cash which will be given directly to the bus driver.
How to get to Tapgol Park / Pagoda Park at Insadong:
– Take Line 1, 3 or 5 to Jongno 3 (sam) -ga Station and exit Exit 1, go straight to see Tapgol Park / Pagoda Park.
– Take Line 1 to Jonggak Station and exit Exit 3, go straight to Tapgol Park, where you will see the buses parked beside it.

Finally my curiosity paid off already, visiting the most popular tourist spot in South Korea, Nami Island. Although until this moment I have not had time to watch an episode of “Winter Sonata”, but I also can enjoy this interesting island.

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