Every year, fans of the classic Korean drama “Winter Sonata” will make their pilgrimage to the picturesque Nami Island. Many of the scenes from this popular drama were filmed here, and we found many Winter Sonata tributes.
We spent a few hours here exploring the island and reminiscing about the tragic but beautiful love story of Min-hyeong and Yoo-jin. (Yes we are Winter Sonata fans!) If you wish to stay overnight here, you can book a room at the only hotel on Nami Island, the Naminara Hotel. Based on these reviews of Naminara Hotel, it has cosy rooms with scenic garden / river views. The island gets pretty crowded from around 10.30am onward so if you stay on the island you can beat the crowd to take beautiful pictures and revel in the tranquility. Below is a list of 8 fun things to do at Nami Island, enjoy!
Also check out how to get to Nami Island.
1. Revel in the Beautiful Scenery
Nami Island is beautiful. That’s all I can say. Words can’t really describe the beauty and serene nature of this island. We wandered around the island and found loads of awesome photo spots. We even found some cute squirrels that got really close to us. It seemed that they were not very afraid of humans.
2. Try the Famous Pan-Fried Rice Cake!
We had read about the famous Pan-fried rice cake on Nami Island and were really looking forward to trying it. The delicious rice cake is filled with red bean paste and goes for just KRW 1,000. The pancake was crispy and crunchy to the bite, combining with the velvety red bean paste to form a delicious blend of flavours. This was definitely worth the hype!
3. Take a Picture with the Redwood Trees
Every tourist going to Nami Island will take a photo with the majestic redwood trees lining both sides of Metasequoia Road. This was the backdrop for many romantic scenes in Winter Sonata.
I was forced convinced by Raevian that we had to take a photo here too. After several countless tries, we finally managed to get a nice shot without anyone in the background or walking into the camera frame.
Afterwards, I held Raevian’s hand and strolled leisurely along the metasequoia-lined path, reveling in the cool spring air and beautiful scenery.
4. Visit the Various Winter Sonata Tributes
One of the couple snowmen replicas
The real couple snowmen!
As we walked around the island, we stumbled upon many Winter Sonata tributes. The most memorable one was the “Couple Snowmen”, which Min-hyeong and Yoo-jin made together in the drama during their courting period. We came here via the “First Kiss Bridge”, so named because Min-hyeong kissed Yoo-jin here while building their snowmen. Note that there are many replicas of the couple snowmen on the island. The “real” one is located by the lake after the First Kiss Bridge. We also came across two life-size statues of Min-hyeong and Yoo-jin.
5. Tour Nami Island
Even though Nami Island is small, it still takes quite a while to get around on foot between places. It is possible to rent bicycles or take an electric car tour. For more details click here.
6. Take the Zipwire!
Yes, there’s a Zipwire to Nami Island! Instead of taking the ferry from Gapyeong Wharf to reach Nami Island, you can take the zipwire instead. The super fun ride takes less than 2 minutes. The cost is KRW 38,000, which covers the admission fee to Nami Island as well as the ferry ride back. Bulky bags need to be left in the lockers at the reception area. This is definitely a fun way to experience a different view of Nami Island! Find out more about the zipwire ride to Nami Island.
7. Visit Petite France
Evan from the Star
Petite France is a French-themed village located about 25 minutes away from Nami Island station by the Gapyeong Tour Bus. The design of the village is modeled after the French novella, “The Little Prince”, written by Saint-Exupery.
Even though this is not part of Nami Island, we decided to give it a visit as it is relatively nearby. It was also one of the filming locations for the super-popular K-Drama: My Love from the Star. (yes the one with that handsome guy who is an alien)
We saw many pretty pastel-coloured French architectural buildings over here. We also came across various art galleries, museums, as well as a memorial hall celebrating the life and work of Saint-Exupery. This was a nice place to experience European art and culture.
Directions to Petite France
It is easy to get to Petite France. Simply take the Gapyeong Tour Bus to Petit France bus station. See the bus schedule below.
8. Garden of Morning Calm
The Garden of Morning Calm is a large garden with gorgeous colours, thick foliage, and pretty flowers. It is located about one hour away from Nami Island Station via the Gapyeong Tour Bus. You can refer to the bus schedule above. It is beautiful all year round, with different themes for the respective seasons. Find out more about the Garden of Morning Calm in Gapyeong.
This article is part of our completely free and fantastic Ultimate Seoul Travel Guide. Why spend days researching when all your holiday information is simply a click away? 🙂