One of the have-to-go destinations for a day trip out of Seoul, Jeonju is the capital of the Jeollabuk-do province located in the south-west of Korea. There are many cultural attractions in the small town to visit and several photo-taking spots, but personally, I feel the best thing that Jeonju has to is the food. After all, Jeonju happens to be the birthplace of Bibimbap, one of Korea’s star dish. Since it was a day trip, we could only visit a limited number of places in our trip for a one-way trip from Seoul’s Express Bus Terminal to Jeonju Intercity Bus Terminal takes approximately 3 hours. Thus, it is important to start the day early so as to return in time to catch the last metro back home.
Jaman Mural Village 자만벽화마을
Our first stop upon arriving in the city is the Jaman Mural Village. It is a residential district with many beautiful murals along the buildings and walls up, with paintings of popular movies, shows as well as artists.
There are also cafes around the area for visitors to relax in and enjoy the beauty of the place.
Jeonjuhyanggyo Confucian School 전주향교
After a rest stop at the café, we took a stop to the Jeonjuhyanggyo Confucian School, which was of a walkable distance from the mural village. Established during the Joseon dynasty, the school was a national education centre during the Joseon period.
Jeonju Hanok Village [Slow City] 전주한옥마을 [슬로시티]
Thereafter, we set off to Jeonju’s main attraction. One of the must-try snacks in Jeonju is the Choco Pie, which is mentioned by some to be the icon of Jeonju. Contrary to the Choco Pies from Orion or Lotte with marshmallow fillings, the ones sold in Jeonju are filled with strawberry jam and white cream and are definitely a sweet treat worth trying.
There are a lot of other snacks sold in the village and it is simply impossible to try them all. From interesting buns like the Bibimbang to hotteok and fruit mochis, our tummies were kept full throughout the visit.
Jeondong Catholic Cathedral (전주 전동성당)
We were intending to visit the Gyeonggijeon Shrine (경기전) but were extremely unfortunate to only reach and be greeted by a banner at the front of the entrance to see that the place was closed to public on the day of our visit of maintenance ☹ Disappointed at our luck, we headed to our next location of interest, which is the Jeondong Catholic Cathedral. A church built in honor of Roman Catholic martyrs of the Joseon Dynasty on the very same spot the martyrs lost their lives, it is a beautiful and serene place of worship.
Gajok Hwegwan 가족 회관
After a whole day of exploring attractions of Jeonju, it was finally time for dinner! After searching up on some popular bibimbap places online, we decided to go for this bibimbap restaurant located in the heart of the downtown area near the city’s hanok village.
It is undoubtedly the best bibimbap I have ever tasted in my life. The side dishes provided were plentiful and quality. The restaurant even provided free flow of hot beverages, which tasted even more amazing after venturing the whole day out in the cold.
This is definitely one of the places to go for a good bowl of bibimbap in Jeonju.
While we were disappointed to find the Gyeonggijeon Shrine closed for the day, this trip to Jeonju was filled with fun and was indisputably a great destination for a day trip from Seoul.