This post talks about my day trip to Jumunjin, Gangwon-do Province in South Korea to reenact a scene from my all-time favourite K-drama Goblin (or Guardian). If you’re a big fan of Goblin, you cannot miss this spot in Korea! Check out how I prepared to look like Ji Eun-tak and what kind of transport options are available. Reading my travelogue, you may find yourself ready to set off to Gangwon for a photoshoot like me. I guarantee it is great fun!
The mega-hit K-Drama Goblin <Guardian: The Lonely and Great God>
K-drama Goblin (‘Guardian: The Lonely and Great God’ for the official English title; ‘도깨비 – 쓸쓸하고 찬란하神’ for the Korean equivalent) is definitely one of the most-watched dramas of recent years in Korea. You can tell it from the fact that its final episode got the highest average viewership (20.5%) among every cable drama so far. It even recorded a peak at 22.1% which was a remarkable figure for cable dramas! Personally, this is the only K-drama where I’ve watched all the episodes repeatedly. Everything was spot on, including characters, actors and actresses, their acting, soundtracks, and the storyline… I can list on and on! (okay, maybe except for too many product placements across the episodes…) Never did I feel this strong about K-dramas before Goblin (Guardian), I really wanted to follow the traces of the Shin-Tak couples.
The must-visit spot from Goblin (Guardian): Jumunjin Breakwater
While the drama Goblin (Guardian) left a lot of atmospheric filming locations, many of them were not ideal to visit in winter. I managed to pick one though, which I would claim is the most representative of the drama. 🙂
Here, Eun-tak and Kim Shin (Goblin/Guardian) met each other for the very first time as she accidentally summoned him. This epic scene was shot in Jumunjin, Gangwon-do Province.
When the drama Guardian had its hottest moment to the public, an endless number of people came to Jumunjin Breakwater (or Sand Protection Dam technically). It was so many that someone with a business mindset appeared, renting out Eun-tak’s red scarf and Goblin’s artificial flowers to these visitors! (How smart…) Despite over a year since the end of the drama, rain, and the cold weather, a fair number of people were still around and queued for photography when I visited this time (Dec. 2017). I didn’t see the guy lending the items there, but it might have been due to the weather or the season. I’ll update if I find any new information on whether he’s still around.
Your Take on Eun-tak and Kim Shin
Because everyone’s purpose for the visit was the same, we didn’t need to worry about how to take the photos. Visitors snapped photos for those before them, and when their turn came the next group photographed them. Taking several photos for a couple in front of us, I looked forward to my turn even more because the frame through the camera looked just perfect! It was so romantic I could imagine what kind of emotion Eun-tak and Kim Shin from Goblin (Guardian) would have had here.
When our turn finally came I took off a long padded winter coat, as I had prepared to look like Eun-tak as much as I could. People in the queue were impressed by my passion and input in this in the middle of winter. (hahaha) I was a little bit embarrassed but knew this moment wouldn’t come back and I couldn’t miss it! As I let myself enjoy the whole experience, it was even more fun.
Tip 1) Have a think about Eun-tak look before you go
I didn’t buy new outfits or accessories just for this but managed to mimic her look, since I happened to have these items: a grey hoodie; a school uniform-style skirt; a red scarf; above-knee socks; and Converses. Having hoped to rent the flowers for a more precise reenactment, the weather and the guy’s absence didn’t help. Still, we improvised to create the general mood using our umbrella! I guess the photos ended up a mix of two different scenes from Guardian.
What was amusing was everyone there was super, super helpful! Particularly, the father of a family of 4~5 volunteered to hold my coat and the rucksack to prevent them from getting damp on the wet ground. We were a bit resistant at first since we felt sorry for them holding strangers’ items. We also thought they’d be fine on the ground for a short time, but everyone else seemed to disagree with us haha… Sounding surprised and concerned as we put the items down, they offered hands for help at which point we gave in. With their sweet and kind help, our mission was completed successfully. 🙂 <3
How to get to Jumunjin Breakwater from Seoul
Now that you just read my short getaway to Jumunjin Breakwater, you may fancy a visit too! 😉 We took express buses for the return journey, and there are a couple more ways to reach the spot.
For most visitors being Korean couples, many people seemed to drive straight to Jumunjin Breakwater. You can also choose this way but finding space for parking near the filming spot might be a struggle. If you copy and paste the below address on Google Maps, it actually shows a seafood restaurant & accommodation (해랑횟집); but you won’t miss the spot as it’s right across the restaurant. A big signboard also tells you that you’ve come to the right place.
- Spot address for a sat nav: 81-32 Gyohang-ri, Jumunjin-eup, Gangneung-si, Gangwon-do (주문진, 강원도 강릉시 주문진읍 교항리 81-32)
By Public Transportation
Don’t worry even if you don’t have a car, since Jumunjin Breakwater wasn’t that difficult to reach by bus. Between 2 destinations (Jumunjin or Gangneung), pick what suits you the best depending on the location of the bus terminal in Seoul, timetables and price.
Note) Due to the COVID-19 at the moment, some bus companies seem to have a reduced service. Once the pandemic is over, I’ll check the TxBus website again in case they return to normal services.
Getting off at Jumunjin Express Bus Central Terminal
I think this is easier than the other option below in finding a way to Jumunjin Breakwater because the spot is within walking distance from Jumunjin Express Bus Central Terminal. 2 bus terminals run transfer services from Seoul to Jumunjin.
A) Seoul Nambu Terminal (as of 19. Jun. 2020 from TxBus)
|To Jumunjin (3 hrs)||From Jumunjin|
|Timetable||7.40 / 11.00 / 17.40||6.50 / (7.50)* / 9.00 / (11.00)* / 12.20 / 13.55 / 15.40 / (17.00)* / 18.45|
|Website Price||Adult: 19,000 krw (one-way)|
Child: 9,500 krw (one-way)
Student (middle/high school): 15,200 krw (one-way)
B) Dong Seoul Bus Terminal (as of 19. Jun. 2020 from TxBus)
|To Jumunjin (2 hrs 50 mins)||From Jumunjin (3 hrs 10~20 mins)|
|Timetable||6.32 / 7.10 / 7.40 / 8.15 / 9.01 / 10.50 / 11.25 / 12.00 / 12.30 / 13.05 / 13.40 / 15.25 / 16.35 / 17.11 / 18.20 / 19.30|| |
6.20 / 7.20 / 8.20 / 9.25 / 10.35 / 11.45 / 12.55 / 14.05 / 15.15 / 16.25 / 17.35 / 18.45 / 20.10
|Website Price||Adult: 18,000 krw (one-way)|
Child: 9,000 krw (one-way)
Student (middle/high school): 14,400 krw (one-way)
☞ To book the bus tickets to Jumunjin, go to the TxBus website
– Use ‘SouthSeoul’ for Seoul Nambu Terminal & ‘EastSeoul’ for Dong Seoul Bus Terminal in the English version
From Jumunjin Bus Terminal to the Filming Location of Goblin (Guardian)
When you come out to the terminal entrance, turn left and you’ll see a bridge with blue beams in distance. Cross the bridge and turn left at the end of it. Basically, walk towards the seaside along the bank, and turn right at the end of the road. You’ll start to see a few breakwaters and march until you reach the 4th one. It has a signpost to indicate this is THE spot in addition to a long queue. I assume there’ll be fewer visitors as time goes but if there are many people waiting at the 4th breakwater, feel free to go to the next one as the view is barely different. The map below is what I’ve just described in case you find it extra helpful. 😉 Please excuse me for having to use the Korean map service, since Google Maps sadly didn’t show the walking route…
Getting off at Gangneung Intercity Bus Terminal
I personally took a bus to Jumunjin and back but you can get off & on in Gangneung if you’d like to browse this city too. In this case, you’ll need to take a bus or taxi to Jumunjin Breakwater from Gangneung.
Dong Seoul Bus Terminal (as of 19. Jun. 2020 from TxBus)
|To Gangneung (2 hrs 20 mins or 2 hrs 50 mins)||From Gangneung (2 hrs 40 mins)|
|Timetable||(2 hrs 20 mins):|
6.32 / 7.10 / 7.40 / 8.15 / 9.01 / 9.35 / 10.50 / 11.25 / 12.00 / 12.30 / 13.05 / 13.40 / 15.25 / 16.35 / 17.11 / 18.20 / 19.30 / 20.05
(2 hrs 50 mins):
6.40 / 10.25 / 12.45 / 13.50 / 16.20 / 17.55 / 20.20
|6.20 / 6.50 / 7.20 / 7.50 / 8.20 / 8.50 / 9.20 / 9.55 / 10.30 / 11.05 / 11.40 / 12.15 / 13.25 / 14.00 / 14.35 / (15.10)* / 15.45 / 16.20 / 16.55 / 18.05 / 18.40 / 19.15 / 19.50 / 20.40|
|Website Price||Adult: 15,600 krw (one-way)|
Child: 7,800 krw (one-way)
Student (middle/high school): 12,500 krw (one-way)
☞ To book the bus tickets to Gangneung, go to the TxBus website or BusTago website
Between Gangneung and Jumunjin
When you arrive at Gangneung Intercity Bus Terminal, you then need to grab a cab which takes about 20 minutes. Please use the above-mentioned sat nav address to directly get off at the filming spot.
Alternatively, you can try the roughly 1-hour long bus journey to Jumunjin. This seems quite tricky for those who don’t speak Korean, but you can try it (read below for the bus route please).
Take #302, #314 or #315 from Gangneung Express Bus Terminal (ID: 252000315, 강릉시외.고속버스터미널), which is just across the road from the terminal. When you successfully get off at Jumunjin Middle.High School (ID: 252000408, 주문진중.고등학교.강릉정보고), a slightly more challenging task is waiting for you. Walk to the direction where the bus would continue to go, and then turn right at the junction (to Hakgyo-gil). After you see a few shops at the beginning of this street, walk alongside the middle & high school on your right side (one with the white fence and then with the green fence). This straight route is about 400m according to the map instruction.
As you reach the end of this street, turn left and you’ll be on Hakgyodam-gil. Next, turn right to the first alley (picture below for the more accurate instruction), and walk till the end of it.
When you reach the seaside, make a right turn, then head for the 4th breakwater. This walk should take about 15 minutes in total, but if this sounds too complicated skip the first junction (the first right turn on the map below) and walk towards the next block. There, turn right and walk straight all the way to the seaside, then look for the breakwater. 🙂
For the return journey, look for a bus stop with the same name on the opposite side of where you got off.
Tip 2) Food & beverage near the filming location of Goblin (Guardian)
1. We stopped by ‘1637 cafe’ intending to warm up ourselves from the cold, rainy day. The atmosphere here looked nice including the sea view, and a lot of couples were enjoying drinks and desserts. I personally didn’t have much fun here, however, as they required us to get 2 drinks even if we said we would go for a take-out then. I could understand the ‘1 drink per person’ policy as it did look busy and it could seem two people taking up space when only one customer was having a drink. But then, for this reason, the rule shouldn’t apply to those who decide to drink outside the cafe. It was just me who wanted to order one, and for neither being impressed by their attitude nor wanting to adhere to their bizarre rule, we just left the shop.
2. The seafood restaurant mentioned briefly above, 해랑횟집 (Haerang Seafood Restaurant), was a lot more pleasant than we had expected. Since it’s literally across the hot spot, I was a bit suspicious it might take advantage of the prime location. However, it turned out I was wrong! Other than the high-quality seafood dishes, the meals were not over-priced as far as I remember. The staff, who was super generous, also advised us which dish would work better for us (so we had abalone porridge). In addition, he gave an extra side dish that needed cooking to Josh who didn’t have many choices to order! Thanks to this experience, our day trip to Jumunjin could end satisfactorily.
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Note) Viewership figure from:
Hello, thanks for your informative post! I want to book bus ticket from Dongseo to Jumunjin, but it seems only local Koreans can book as it requires Resident registration number and Korean phone number?
Hi! Thanks for leaving the comment, and sorry that I checked this only just now! I don’t think the registration number is required, but the phone number seems as you found..hmm.. If you don’t have a Korean mobile number I’d recommend to book it at the terminal. :/ There should be enough seats available for this route even if you book it on the day at the terminal in most cases. If I find out something about this, I’ll update the info!
I followed your instruction on how to get to the breakwater from Gangneung and I did reach the spot. Thanks! 🙂 I just got a bit of stumped with the instruction to go through a small alley ‘coz there are many alleys there that are either deadends or private properties. I took a photo of the small alley that did lead me to the breakwater side. Tweet me if you’d like to have it to add to your blog. 🙂
Hi 마리아, thanks so much leaving this comment after your trip! I’m glad you managed to visit there and hope you enjoyed it! Sorry some of my descriptions were not clear and made you confused :/ and it is so kind of you to help me to improve the guide! I’ll tweet you for the photo and update my blog post accordingly. Thanks so much!
I want to ask one question. Is it walkable distance from the bus terminal to the Jumunjin breakwater? And is it okay if i want to travel half a day since my main purpose is to visit this famous spot only?
Hi Naqiyatul, thanks for the question and I am sorry for checking this so late. I guess you might have sorted it out already by now, but will leave my opinion about your enquiries.
As mentioned in the post, it is in a walking distance from Jumunjin Express Bus Central Terminal, which we took. Of course it depends on individual’s fitness, but the local map says it takes 19mins or so (1.3km) and I think it took around that for us too. 🙂
Yes, assuming you wanted to know about a day trip from Seoul, I think it is doable in half day or slightly longer, getting a coach early in the morning and taking a return one around lunch time. Staying in the Gangnam area will help due to the location of the bus terminals. You can calculate a rough journey time from the above information (3hr outward bus + 40 min walk both ways + 3hr 20mins return bus + 30min photography maybe?). It won’t take all day for doing just this one spot, but would recommend morning+afternoon for this and an early evening/night plan back in Seoul.
Hope you found this useful if you haven’t travelled yet, but if have already, I hope you had a lovely time and took great photos at the special spot! ????
thank you so much for this informative entry. i am planning to visit gangneung in next 2 weeks to visit bts bus stop at jumunjin and i thought i want to drop by this spot too. but i am not sure which transportation to take from seoul whether to use ktx or bus. i wonder if you can suggest me the best way to get to both places? fyi, i am fine with both ways as i will take the earliest train/bus. also is it far from gangneung station to this breakwater?
another question, do you know how to get to jeongdongjin station from jumunjin beach or jumunjin bus terminal or from gangneung station? if it is not too far, i wanna have a quick visit to here.
i hope you see this. sorry for my awful grammar ^^;; and thank you! 🙂
Hi Lia, thank you for leaving a comment. I am not sure how helpful I can be for your enquiry though, since I don’t know where the BTS bus stop at Jumunjin is, and I haven’t used KTX before to go to Gangnueng.. 😮 From both Gangneung bus terminal/KTX station, you cannot walk there (as mentioned in the post, I got off at Jumunjin Bus Terminal and walked there, and Gangnueng Bus Terminal search results show it takes much longer by public transportation).
Jeongdongjin is even further down from Jumunjin (compared to Gangneung – Jeongdongjin distance), so if you’re planning a day trip to all these spots, I personally wouldn’t recommend unless you have a car.
I am sorry I am quite useless to answer your specific questions, but hope you’ve managed to find some solutions in the meantime!???? Happy trip! ????
thank you for your reply. it is helpful. i get the picture now. i’ll follow your footsteps, and i think it’s convenient since i just have to walk to the breakwater from jumunjin terminal. and bts bus stop is also accessible using local bus at the nearest bus stop (if my research is correct). i’m giving up on jeongdongjin cos i feel its impossible to do it in a day.
but i’m interested with anmok beach. i’m not sure on the exact location of this place but i see many articles said to visit anmok beach as part of gangneung attraction. i was thinking if it is near, i want to go there after i done with breakwater. i wonder if it is not too far from the breakwater/jumunjin beach? any local bus from jumunjin beach to anmok beach? i’m sorry if my questions caused you headache ????
Hi Lia! Glad you found the previous response was helpful, and hope it works/worked well with the bts bus stop too. I am not sure if you already visited the area by now, but by looking up on local buses between the breakwater and Anmok Beach it shows me that it can take about 1.5 hours one way. By car it says it’ll take 30 minutes one way. I’m sorry my reply was bit late; I double checked the setting for email notifications if there are new comments, but somehow it hasn’t worked.. :/ Did you already make a trip there? If you’ve done so, it’d be lovely to hear how your trip was! Hope you took a lovely photo at the breakwater and made good memories like I did. 😉
Hi, the bus ticket to Gangneung can buy at the counter or it must book before ?
Hi rosee! Normally, I think you won’t have a huge issue to get a bus ticket to Gangneung at the terminal’s ticket office. Would recommend to book in advance if your trip is during the Seollal (Lunar/Chinese New Year) or Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving Day) periods, or the year end.
So Cool, you took the picture in January?
Thanks Andrick! I took this on Christmas Eve. 🙂
Hi Sehee, I’m going to Jumunjin Breakwater from Gangneung and going back to Seoul from Jumunjin (Seoul-Gangneung-Jumunjin-Seoul). Can we take a bus from Jumunjin to Seoul without reservation? Thanks in advance! 🙂
Hello there! As far as I remember my boyfriend and I also didn’t make an online reservation in advance for the return bus journey. We just checked the timetable at the bus terminal when we arrived at the Jumunjin Terminal so we knew by when we should come back. Then we bought the tickets at the booth after sightseeing. 🙂 Hope this helps and enjoy your holiday!
Hi! Do the buses have toilets in them or do they stop for a toilet break? I’m worried because of the long journey.
Hi JM, as far as I remember coaches in Korea normally don’t have toilets but they stop at services for a break where you can use toilets, buy snacks and stretch your legs. 🙂