Suncheon or Suncheon City (순천시, 順天市) is the second-largest city in Jeollanam-do. It is comprised of 1 eup, 10 myeon and 12 dong and in 2004 had a population of 270,833. It is located in the southeastern portion of Jeollanam-do is bordered by Gwangyang city on the east, Boseong and Hwasun counties on the west, Gokseong county on the north, and Suncheon Bay on the south.
Suncheon has a number of popular tourist destinations, including two temples on the 884-meter-high Jogyesan mountain: Seonamsa and Songgwangsa. Dongcheon, a stream, runs through the city and has walking and biking paths as well as a duckie boat rental area. Notable parks include Jukdobong and Jogyesan Provincial Parks. It is also a relatively convenient place to do shopping, as there is an E-Mart, and two Home Plus one in Jorye-dong and another in Pungdeok-dong. Suncheon is dubbed the "City of Beautiful People" by its city council and the city's slogan is "Aha! Suncheon."
The city is currently experiencing strong development due to being included as part of the Gwangyang Bay Free Economic Zone, one of three newly created Free Economic Zones (FEZs) in South Korea due to open within the next decade.
For more information on the neighborhoods that comprise Suncheon, please visit Administrative divisions of Suncheon.
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Jogyesan mountain is 884 meters high and is a popular hiking spot in Jeollanam-do. There are two well-known temples on the mountain: Seonamsa and Songgwangsa. Nagan-eupseong Folk Village is an oft-visited traditional walled village in Nagan-myeon. Suncheon Bay, to the south, is ecologically significant and known for the numerous bird species that frequent the reeds along the water.
Aside from the local tourist destinations described above, there are a number of small parks. The two most notable areas in urban Suncheon are Jukdobong Park, located atop a small mountain on the eastern side of the city, and Dongcheon, a stream which runs through the city and into Suncheon Bay. Dongcheon is bordered by biking and walking trails and has a number of fountains and exercise areas, plus a place to rent duckie boats.
There is awesome coffee in Yeonhyang dong (inner Dongsung park)
named "Hasta Siempre Roasteria"
After the departure of McCarthy's owner, Harold Lear, Suncheon has her very own Latin bar/restaurant. SAN ANTONIO LATIN BISTRO is owned and operated by Jose Rosal, a native of Spain who made his way to the USA and later Mexico. He recently took over the old McCarthy's and has now transitioned it into a Bistro bar. San Antonio's menu items include Burgers, Burritos, Quesadillas, Nachos, home-made Salsa, Refried Beans (real Pinto beans) and Guacamole, and will add more flavor to the menu in the future. Some drink options are Mojitos, Margaritas, Sangria, Guinness(draft) and many other international bottled beers. It is located in Jorye-Dong (조례동) very close to HomePlus. Directions can be found on their Facebook page.
Another bar frequented by foreigners in the past (and some now) is Elvis Bar. It is located in KeumDang-dong (금당동) near Suncheon Jeil Hospital. (순천 제일병원)
Another popular spot opened is T.G.I.?. located 3 blocks west from the Home PLUS and 4 blocks east of Cho-eun Plaza. While the menus are only in Korean, the manager and some of the staff speak limited English and will be very helpfull.
While more of a traditional Korean Hof Song's Beer has its own mirco-brewery featuring wheat beer and a dunkel at a great price. Across the street from Blank Cafe and down the road from Outback Steakhouse.
Now located close to Shidae is a new korean style hof called Cool Luck. In the basement are billiard tables and the menu offers pricy food options. The alcohol selection is varied with many Korean and imported beers and hard liquors available. They also offer a Hookah.
There is a Megabox Cinema located in Lotte Mall a short walk from the Homeplus and Emart in Peudeukdong.
There is a CGV movie theater located in the old downtown Shinei area.
Suncheon, like most medium sized cities in Korea has many huge department stores. Among the most popular destinations are two Home Plus stores (one was formerly a Homever), and an E-Mart. New Core Outlet caters to high-end fashion addicts and is located in Jorye-dong. There is also a Kim's Club, which carries all kinds of groceries. In Jungang-dong, near the Medical Rotary, is Fashion Street, several markets, and an underground shopping center.
Suncheon takes about an hour to reach from the city of Gwangju. Further south from Suncheon is the city of Yeosu along the coast about 40 minutes away, and Gwangyang is about 20 minutes to the east.
Suncheon is well serviced as all buses in and out of Suncheon are now serviced at the Suncheon Jong-Hab Bus Terminal (순천종합버스터미널) formerly known as the Shiwae Bus Terminal. Note, this is the same facility as the old Inter-city bus terminal. Inter-city Buses run frequent services mainly to nearby cities in Jeollanam-do such as Gwangju, Yeosu, and Mokpo. The Express buses run several-a-day bus services to large cities throughout Korea such as Seoul, Daegu, Busan and Suwon.
There are plenty of tourist motels, love motels, youth hostels, and home stays throughout Suncheon. There are large clusters of love motels located in the Yeonhyang (new downtown) and Geumdang areas, as well as nearby the train station. There are also several tourist motels located around Shinae (Jangcheon-dong - old downtown), these seem to be somewhat over-priced for the accommodation they provide, and you're probably just as well booking into an up-scale lovel motel. There are also plenty of 24 hour jjimjilbangs and saunas providing a cheap overnight sleeping spot for the budget conscious traveler. Please browse this list for more detailed information about each location.
Jogyesan, above Seonamsa temple
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