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- 17 Jan 2021, 3 nights
- 2 Guests
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The House Hostel is a three-minute walk from Sokcho Intercity Bus Terminal, around the corner form Sokcho City Hall.
Budget accommodation in central Sokcho.
South Korea is known for its 'ppali ppali' (‘hurry, hurry’) culture, but in Sokcho things slow right down. This East Sea city is located just 40km or so from the heavily guarded North Korean border and is the jumping-off point for the Seoraksan National Park, home to one of the country's highest peaks. Head to Sokcho to wander around colourful Buddhist temples, try adventurous seafood fresh from the water and hike to jagged peaks alongside locals in their neon sports gear.
Hostels in Sokcho include spots with common areas decked in quirky artefacts – from stuffed animals to international banknotes – and sleek spaces with minimalist, all-white decor. If you're here for a quick trip, choose a Sokcho hostel right by the bus station with free city maps to help you find your way around town. The internet in Korea regularly tops best-in-the-world lists, so make the most of lightning-fast download speeds by picking a place with free Wi-Fi.
The city's central Jung District is where you'll find Sokcho Jungang Market, a covered area with stalls serving traditional Korean food and snacks like hotteok (a sweet, crispy pancake-style dessert). At one of Sokcho beach's low-key seaside cafés, you can sit with a green tea latte and take in a view of the golden sand with gleaming skyscrapers in the distance. The traditional Abai Village is an intriguing place to visit – it's home to North Korean refugees and is known for its seafood.
Hiking in Seoraksan is Sokcho's main pull, whether you choose the tough but rewarding Ulsanbawi Rock trek or take an easier walk to the Gwongeumseong Fortress. If you prefer to take the weight off your feet there's the Seoraksan Cable Car. It operates winter and summer and offers a bird's-eye view of the park. Sokcho sometimes feels more like a fishing town than a city of one million people, so get involved in the local culture by renting rods and heading off to Jodo Island to angle for your supper.
You can fly into Seoul then head to Sokcho Intercity Bus Terminal from Dong Seoul Bus Terminal (Gangbyeon Station Line 2). Buses leave every 30 minutes and take about 2.5 hours. In the city, hop on local buses to get around. The No 7 or 7-1 for Seorak-don takes you to Seoraksan in about 30 minutes. Taxis are also handy as you can tap your debit or credit card to pay.