There’s no doubt South Korea is a fascinating place to visit, with millions of tourists coming in every year.
But the bulk of these tourists goes to cities such as Seoul and Busan and smaller cities often don’t receive many visitors. Daejeon is one such city, one that is definitely worth visiting.
Make sure you include Daejeon in your list of places to visit when you come to South Korea!
So, what can you do in Daejeon?
You can visit the National Science Museum, explore the Expo Science Park, buy delicacies from Sung Sim Dang bakery, have fun at the Daejeon O-World amusement park, shop till you drop at Daejeon Skyroad, and take a relaxing footbath at Yuseong Hot Springs.
In a nutshell, there’s a lot you can do in this amazing city!
Read on to find out more about the places you can visit and explore in Daejeon. Have fun and happy reading!
What to do in Daejeon
Pay a Visit to The National Science Museum
Heading over to the National Science Museum is an excellent way to start your tour of Daejeon. The museum opened in 1926 and attracts thousands of tourists each year.
Previously, the National Science Museum was located in Seoul, but it was shifted to Daejeon in 1990. Now it sits just across the road from Expo Park and houses lots of intriguing artifacts.
The museum contains many galleries that showcase items related to science and technology, Korean history, biological sciences, and many other realms.
Popular exhibits include an F-86 Sabre jet from the Korean War, dinosaur models, and a magnetic levitation train.
Take a Walk in The Expo Science Park
Across the street from the National Science Museum is the Expo Science Park.
The park was originally built for the 1993 Daejeon Expo, an international exposition spanning a period of three months.
Although most of the expo buildings were removed after the exhibition, the park is still a bustling tourist attraction, with about a million of them coming each year.
The primary attraction of the park is the futuristic Hanbit Tower which is shaped like a cone with a circular observation platform around its center.
Other attractions in Expo Science Park include the Daejeon Expo Memorial Hall and the Daejeon Traffic Culture Institute.
Grab a Bite to Eat at Sung Sim Dang Bakery
If you’re hungry during your tour of Daejeon, head over to the Sung Sim Dang bakery.
There are three locations of this bakery in Daejeon and the main one is in the middle of the Jung-gu area near Jungangno Station.
The place is immensely popular among tourists and locals alike and offers a plethora of mouth-watering snacks.
Sung Sim Dang bakery sells unique Korean delicacies as well as traditional baked items such as chocolate rolls, macarons, pies, croissants, and a huge variety of bread.
The bakery is highly-rate on Tripadvisor, with loads of positive reviews. Tripadvisor even rates it as the number one bakery in Daejeon!
Take a Ride at The Daejeon O-World Amusement Park
Another amazing tourist spot that should be on your list is the Daejeon O-World amusement park. This amusement park is huge and is divided into three areas: Flower Land, Zoo Land, and Joy Land.
Flower land is a botanical park featuring fountains, greenhouses, and gardens featuring displays of a large variety of flowers.
Zoo Land, as its name implies, is a big zoo containing around 600 animals from over a hundred species. Joy Land is a theme park that offers lots of rides, many of them children-friendly.
One of the biggest attractions here is the Viking Ship ride. The park has recently introduced a fourth attraction, the Bird Land which houses birds of many different species.
Visit the Yuseong Hot Springs
If you want to relax and take a short break, look no further than the Yuseong Hot Springs. This is an outdoor spa located at the center of the city, surrounded by Chinese fringe trees.
The water here rises up from about 200 meters beneath the surface and has an average temperature of around 42 degrees Celsius.
The water is rich in minerals such as potassium, calcium, zinc, and sulfur.
Yuseong Hot Springs is known to have healing properties and is a popular spot for tourists to visit. The public space is free of charge and has footbaths as well a beautiful, winding waterway.
Shop to Your Heart’s Content at Daejeon Skyroad
For those who love shopping, Daejeon’s Skyroad is a famous shopping spot for tourists. The Skyroad is a shopping street with a large LED display mounted at the top.
The display is in the shape of a canopy and is lit up with commercials, promotional videos, public service messages, and other video content at night.
Both sides of the street are lined with shops, boutiques, clothing stores, and fashion outlets, so you are guaranteed to find something you like.
The Skyroad also has many restaurants and coffee shops in case all that shopping makes you hungry.
Check out the Daejeon Jungang Market
Another spot worth checking out is the Jungang Market in Daejeon. The market is located near the Daejeon Station and opposite to the Daejeon Skyroad.
It is huge and features lots of shops, covered walkways, and indoor halls.
This market isn’t usually bustling with tourists but is a popular choice among locals for getting their daily groceries. All the more reason to visit it!
The shops at Jungang Market sell anything you might possibly want.
You’ll find shops selling fresh produce, clothing, kitchen utensils, meat, electronics, household items, and medicine. There are also numerous eateries that sell delicious street food.
Explore the beauty of Jangtaesan Recreational Forest
If you’re willing to head a bit south of Daejeon city, you can take a walk in the beautiful Jangtaesan Recreational Forest.
This forest is located about 12 kilometers from the city center. It is a great place to relax, get closer to nature, and have a wonderful time with family and friends.
The forest is covered with bald cypress and ginkgo trees and is surrounded by beautiful hills and valleys. It also has walkways, recreational areas, as well as a botanical garden.
For breath-taking views of the mountains and valleys, you can climb the Sky Tower.
Walk on The Futuristic Expo Bridge
The Expo Bridge was also built in 1993 for the Daejeon Expo and is one of the best tourist attractions in the city.
The bridge is a footbridge built over the Gap River and is located south of Expo Park.
While it isn’t that busy during the day, it comes to life at night with enchanting lights and mesmerizing fountain jets dancing at the sides.
The river itself offers lots of activities for tourists and locals such as canoeing and paddleboarding. You can even ride a bike along the banks of the river!
Where to Stay in Daejeon
Daejeon offers plenty of accommodation options for tourists. So, whether you’re on a tight budget or not, you’ll have lots of options for staying at hotels or hostels.
These hotels and hostels are neat, clean, and offer lots of amenities. Here are our choices for the best hotels and hostels in Daejeon.
Please keep in mind that all the prices we mention are those at the time of writing and may change depending on the time of the year or on holidays.
When it comes to hotels, you’ll be spoilt for choice and will be able to find one that fits your budget.
Hotel Onoma Daejeon, Autograph Collection. This is one of the best hotels you can stay in at Daejeon.
It costs about $156 or about 202,156 Korean Won per night. It is a 4-star hotel and offers all the amenities that a modern hotel should offer.
It has an indoor swimming pool, sauna, laundry, and dry-cleaning services, as well as concierge services.
Yousung Hotel. The Yousung Hotel is another 4-star hotel that costs about $135 or 174,942 Korean won per night.
Again, it offers all the amenities and services you’d expect and even more! The hotel is located close to the Daejeon O-World amusement park.
Hotel Gaytone Dunsan. This hotel is a more budget-friendly option and is considerably less expensive than the hotels we previously mentioned.
It offers the usual services and facilities and a standard double room costs about $45 or 58,314 Korean won.
Lotte City Hotel Daejeon. The Lotte City Hotel is located close to the Expo Bridge and the National Science Museum.
It costs about $88 or 114,098 Korean won per room on average. It offers free Wi-Fi and free self-parking among other facilities.
Daejeon has plenty of hostels for tourists looking for budget-friendly accommodations. Here are some of the best.
Sanho Guesthouse. The Sanho Guesthouse is located in the Jung-gu district of Daejeon. It has received a 4-star rating on TripAdvisor and has been described as a clean, comfortable place to stay by tourists.
Daelim Tourist Hotel. The Daelim Tourist Hotel is another excellent option for those looking for inexpensive hostels in Daejeon.
It is a clean, cozy hostel with neat, nicely furnished rooms and services such as air-conditioning, Wi-fi, laundry, parking, a restaurant, and a conference room.
The hostel has a no-pets policy and smoking is not allowed inside.
The hostel is highly rated on hotelsclub.com, with many reviews from tourists praising the cleanliness, facilities, and staff.
Daejeon Guesthouse Sky Garden. Another budget-friendly hostel you can reside in is the Daejeon Guesthouse Sky Garden.
This hostel is situated at the center of the city and is and is close to Bomunsan Park and Hanbat Stadium. Expo Park and Daejeon Zoo aren’t far either.
The Sky Garden costs about $32 or 41,496 Korean Won on average for a twin room for one night.
It offers free parking, laundry facilities, as well a buffet breakfast, and free Wi-fi in public rooms.
What Is Daejeon Known For?
Daejeon is one of the largest cities in South Korea, the fifth-largest metropolis to be exact.
It has a population of around 1.5 million (2019) and is situated at the center of the country near forests and the Geum River.
The city is known as one of South Korea’s largest research and innovation centers, as well as a major technology hub.
It is also a major transportation hub since many of the country’s rail and road networks pass through it.
Moreover, the city is linked to the capital, Seoul, by the high-speed rail system Korea Train Express (KTX), and the travel time is only about 50 minutes.
The city is also known for its great natural beauty since it is surrounded by mountains, valleys, rivers, and springs.
Many of these natural attractions are free for public use, including tourists.
Daejeon also has about 23 colleges and universities and is also an important technology center.
This is why it is also known as Asia’s Silicon Valley.
Daejeon is also known for hosting the Daejeon Expo in 1993, a months-long exposition that was centered around sustainable development.
The city also has numerous museums, research institutes, science centers, parks, and arts and culture centers. Check out Daejeon city’s website over here.
To sum it up, Daejeon is a very promising and exciting tourism destination, one that should be on your travel bucket list.
It has plenty of great tourist attractions, including impressive science museums, beautiful parks, bustling shopping streets, and bakeries you’ll never want to leave once you set foot in.
When it comes to accommodation, Daejeon offers several options for tourists with all kinds of budgets.
Whether you want a bit of luxury with affordable prices, or you want to strictly cut down on your living expenses, you’ll always find a reasonable option within your budget.
In this guide, we’ve explored many of Daejeon’s tourist attractions in detail and have also mentioned some of the best hotels and hostels you can stay in.
Do visit Daejeon the next time you’re in South Korea!