A wonderful walled city

Suwon Travel Blog

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Me in the dugout of Suwons World Cup Stadium

People i met here who contributed to, and improved my trip:

I woke up later than expected on Thursday and had the decision of whether i could be bothered to go to Suwon or if i was going to spend the day trying to catch up with my travel blog, which was slowly but surely not getting updated enough! Thankfully the sensible and active side of my brain kicked into action and i found myself aboard the subway a little after 13.00 and on my way.

Something always strikes me as both peculiar and funny aboout Koreans on the subway. Basically they will all rush to get a seat, but whenever they reach an empty seat next to me, there's a look of desperation and 99% of the time they just turn around and stand somewhere else! The people seem absolutely petrified to sit next to a Westerner, and usually it will be some old man or woman that has probably fought in a great war that musters up the courage to take up the challenge and plonk themsleves down :p Bless them.

Suwon City Wall

The previous night i had been to watch FC Seoul play Suwon in the football and after a quick look in my book i realised that they had a World Cup stadium also, so plans of walking around the walled city were immediately put on hold! The tourism office by the station were incredibly helpful and gave me a map, cards with Korean writing on to show bus drivers and all the relevant information i needed to co-ordinate my trip there. I was soon on a bus heading into the suburbs and within no time found myself outside the Suwon Football Stadium.

After paying 1,000 won ($1), a nice man showed me into the football museum, which had an interesting collection of memorablia. Things which caught my eye included boots worn by David Beckham and a shirt worn by Luis Figo.

A Gateway of Suwon City Wall
There were many more fascinating things too, but i won't go into too much detail or bore you any further! In the 2002 World Cup, games that took place here included Brazil 5-2 Costa Rica, Spain 1-1 Republic Of Ireland, Senegal 3-3 Uruguay and USA 3-2 Portugal, so the hallowed turf had seen many famous names do their stuff here.

After 30 minutes wandering around the museum, i was ready to go and take a look inside the ground and figured i would just get shown into the seating section. But the nice man instead walked me down the players tunnel and took me pitch side, where i got to pose for photos and sit in the managers dug out! It was a very nice experience and i always get a buzz with pretty much anything to do with football - or soccer as you silly Americans choose to call it, pfff.

A view of Suwon from the City Walls

So after receiving my football fix for the day, i caught the bus down to Paldalmun Fortress Gate, from where i began my walk around Hwaseong - Suwons fortress wall. The wall stretches for 5.7kms and begins with a steady climb up to 143m, where there are some nice panormaic viewes on offer. The wall has been fully restored over recent years, but it does nothing to take away from its beauty and charm.

At regular intervals the wall has observation towers, command posts, fire beacons and a few very impressive entrance gates. I spent nearly 3 hours clambering my way up and down steps and i was in my element, i absolutely loved this place! Many of the passers by had a smile and a polite bow to exchange with you and i just couldn't stop grinning like an idiot! Why was i the only foreigner there, why wasn't this place clambering with national and international tourists? Im damned if i know the answer to that, because i was blown away by it.

Suwon City Walls

Some of the views of the city were also enchanting, with one towering church dominating a section of the skyline. There were also smaller churches and a mosque that were on view as well as the World Cup Stadium. But what really struck me was the contrast between new and old. Towering skyscrapers rose above the small tiled roofs of older buildings and the mixture was something to behold. I thought Korea wouldn't have much to see or do, but my first week in the country had made me eat my words and i was now just itching to get to see some more! I had a date with Soju back in Seoul, so i caught the subway back to the capital around 18.30, drawing to an end a thoroughly fascinating and enjoyable day trip.

Deats says:
The rugged good looks... yes. The smell.... hmm, debatable ;)
Posted on: Apr 14, 2008
eejot says:
Don't be shy Phil.. just admit you wanted to show me your rugged good looks :P
Posted on: Apr 13, 2008
portia says:
OK, for the record, you were always presentable and good for a hug when I saw you :) On the other hand, when you saw Andee, you sure didn't look that great.
Posted on: Apr 12, 2008
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Me in the dugout of Suwons World C…
Me in the dugout of Suwons World …
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A Gateway of Suwon City Wall
A Gateway of Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Walls
A view of Suwon from the City Walls
Suwon City Walls
Suwon City Walls
Memorabilia in the Suwon World Cup…
Memorabilia in the Suwon World Cu…
South Korea football player cut ou…
South Korea football player cut o…
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Me at Suwon World Cup Stadium
Me at Suwon World Cup Stadium
Me at Suwon World Cup Stadium
Me at Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon World Cup Stadium
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Large bell on Suwon City Wall
Large bell on Suwon City Wall
Pagoda on Suwon City Wall
Pagoda on Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Cherry blossom and colourful plant…
Cherry blossom and colourful plan…
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Rooftops and a Church
Rooftops and a Church
Brightly painted gate on Suwon Cit…
Brightly painted gate on Suwon Ci…
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Canon on Suwon City Wall
Canon on Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
River running through Suwon
River running through Suwon
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Brightly painted gate on Suwon Cit…
Brightly painted gate on Suwon Ci…
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
A view of Suwon from the City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Bird sat on Suwon City Wall
Bird sat on Suwon City Wall
A view of a Suwon Church, seen fro…
A view of a Suwon Church, seen fr…
Gate on Suwon City Wall
Gate on Suwon City Wall
Brightly painted gate on Suwon Cit…
Brightly painted gate on Suwon Ci…
A view of Suwons impressive Churc…
A view of Suwon's impressive Chur…
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
River running through Suwon
River running through Suwon
Suwon City Wall
Suwon City Wall
Suwon
photo by: Morle