Yangnyeongsi (약령시) Market
This is Korea’s oldest medicinal herb market, and one of Daegu’s biggest attractions. Since 1658,
people have come to Yangnyeongsi (약령시) Market from as far away as China and Russia to purchase herbal
remedies as diverse as ginseng, dried herbs, reindeer horns, ‘magic mushrooms’ and lizard tails. Hundreds
of medicinal shops still offer traditional remedies to life’s aches and pains, and the market hosts an
annual festival, Yangnyeongsi Herb Medical Festival.
Find it by heading to Banwoldang Station (on both lines 1&2), and taking exit 4.
Sometimes known as Yangnyeong Exhibition Hall, this is the place to head to if you want to find out a
bit more about the history of the market, its people and its products. Although there is little English
to read inside the museum, there's enough available to gain an appreciation of both the medicine and history –
if you’d really prefer a tour guide, try asking at the tourist information booth outside. There’s a lot of
interactive stuff in the centre which you don’t always see in museums, and this makes up for the lack of
English signage somewhat.
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As part of Palgongsan Provincial Park, Pagyesa is one of many destinations spread out across the mountain.
First built in 804 by a priest named Simji, it was renovated in 1605 by priest Gyegwan and 1695 by priest
Hyeoneung. With several Daegu Tangible Cultural Properties, 17 buildings and a lot of karma, it’s worth the
uphill trek to reach. Just don’t bring a backpack full of stuff with you – even after the bus reaches the
parking lot it’s a hike of 1.1 kilometers. Uphill.
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Seomun Market (서문시장)
This is an absolutely huge market (the largest traditional market in Daegu, and one of the 3 biggest in
Korea), covering many floors and housing thousands of shops. A major market in Korea since the 1600’s, Seomun
still thrives to this day, although now looks pretty modern. Goods range from agricultural produce, seafood,
and home appliances to textiles and clothes.
See the Galbijim website for a map of the market and a guide to its 6 Districts.
To find it, head to Seomun Market Station (Line 2) and leave from exit 1. After you exit, turn around to face
the other way and then turn the corner. Alternatively, leave from exit 5 and head north.
Note: The market is closed on the 2nd & 4th Sundays of the month.
Mang-U-Dang Park (망우공원)
For nature lovers, a great place to check out is Mang-U-Dang Park (or Mangu Park) in the city’s eastern
district. The large park overlooks the Geumho River (or Kumho River) and includes a rebuilt version of the
city’s historic South gate, which is, unfortunately, all that remains of the fortress wall that once encircled
Joseon-era Daegu. The park is dedicated to General Kwak Jaewoo (nicknamed Mangudang) who fought against the
Japanese army during Hydeyoshi's Invasion in1592, and was the first military leader to successfully resist
the Japanese army.
Ask a taxi driver to take you to ‘Mang U Kong Won’ (망우공원) – ‘Kong Won’ is the Korean word for ‘park’.
Duryu (두류) Park
This huge park is a 15 minute walk from Duryu Station (Line 2) in Seongdang-dong, and covers over 40 acres.
It is the host of many sports, recreational, and cultural activities (such as swimming, baseball, rollerskating
and judo), and is also home to Daegu Culture and Art Hall – complete with performance and exhibition rooms and
outdoor performance spaces. Various hiking trails can also be found here, along with a pretty man-made lake.
Daegu Tower and Woobang Tower Land are also found next to Duryu Park – Daegu Tower being the highest building
(at 202m) in Daegu, and offering nice views of the city; Woobang (Tower) Land (우방 랜드) being an amusement park
and playground built on the area surrounding the tower. Be aware that Woobang (sometimes Romanised as ‘Ubang’)
Land is fairly pricey – costing between 19,000 – 24,000 won for a day pass.
Bullo-Dong Tumuli Park (불로동 고분 공원)
Located slightly north-northeast of Daegu, fairly close to the airport, Bullo-Dong Tumuli Park (sometimes called
Bullo-dong Tomb Park) is a huge space covering over 330,000 square metres. Its position fairly high on mountainous
land makes it one of the best spots in Daegu to watch the sunset or take in the views of the mountains surrounding
the city. You’ll also see many mounds dotted across the valley called ‘tumuli’ (ancient burial mounds dating back
thousands of years). If you’ve been down to Gyeongju, you may be reminded of its scenery when visiting Bullo-Dong.
If you’re into photography, picnics and sunsets, this park makes a relaxing place to spend some time, and is far
less crowded than some other parks in the area.
See the Visit Korea website for more information.
Yangnyeongsi (약령시) Herb Medical Festival
This Festival takes place annually in early May, and celebrates traditional Korean medicine and alternative herbal
therapies. There are various exhibitions and free samples on offer, from the Herb Flower Photography Exhibition, a
Medicine Auction, free medical examinations and a variety of herbal medicines.
Location: Yangnyeongsi (Herbal Medicine Alley) in Namseong-ro, Jung-gu.
In August 2008, Daegu hosted the first ever Asian Bodypainting Festival (Daegu
International Bodypainting Festival or DIBF), a sister event of the World Bodypainting Festival in Seeboden,
Austria. It has been going strong ever since,
and is now one of Daegu’s most famous arts festivals. Events include body art (stating the obvious!), henna, face
painting, exotic foods, nail art, dancing, music concerts, fireworks and various exhibitions.
Read the full review...
Daegu International Opera Festival (DIOF)
This event takes place annually in autumn (usually September) and hosts performances of many famous operas, with
both Korean and international casts. Shows are usually held at weekends over a few weeks, and there are often various
other events beside opera performances – such as the chance to try on opera costumes and take backstage tours of the
See the Daegu International Opera Festival website (in Korean)
Daegu International Musical Festival (DIMF)
Korea’s only festival celebrating musical theatre is held in Daegu every summer (around June/July), and the whole
thing generally goes on for 3 or 4 weeks. As well as having the chance to see new talent and established Korean
performers take to the stage in both new and established work; visitors can also watch musical theatre from around
the world, as many international companies head to Daegu to take to the stage. The festival itself is partnered
with the New York Musical Theatre Festival in the USA.
See the Official DIMF website
There are only two lines on the Daegu subway system, making it very hassle-free to get around the city –
most major attractions can be walked to from a subway station.
See the Daegu subway map.
Taxis, like in most other places in Korea, are abundant and very inexpensive here – most sights will
cost you less than 6,000 won to get to by cab.
Train & KTX
There are two train stations in the city: Dongdaegu (East Daegu) and Daegu Station. Dongdaegu Station is
the main, larger train station. KTX trains stop only at this station and travel to cities such as Seoul, Busan
and Daejeon - usually taking about 1 hour 40 minutes to Seoul and about 45 minutes to Busan. Lower class,
slower trains also run to Seoul and Busan on the Gyeongbu line, and you can also travel this way to places
such as Pohang, Gyeongju and Ulsan.
Daegu station is located in the centre of the city (the Dongsungro/Jungangro areas) and is a five minute walk
from the main shopping and eating areas. Only the lower class trains (not the KTX) stop at this station.
As with most places in Korea, there is an extensive inner city as well as intercity bus structure in place
in Daegu. Buses are inexpensive and reliable, and also connect the city with places like Seoul – at a cheaper
price than the quicker trains.
There are a number of main bus terminals in Daegu – five to be exact! The Express Bus Terminal is located near
to Dongdaegu Train Station, and is made up of three separate buildings. Find it by heading to Dongdaegu subway
station, exit 4.
The other intercity terminals are Bukbu (north), Nambu (south), Dongbu (east) and Seobu (west).
If you have any information on bus schedules for Daegu, please email us at
Daegu International Airport (대구국제공항) is located about a half hour drive to the northeast of the city cent
re, and has some services to Seoul, Jeju, China, the Philippines and Bangkok. A taxi to downtown from here
would cost around 7,000 won, and to Dongdaegu train station, around 3,000 won.
The bulk of the shops and restaurants are in an area called Dongseong-ro (동성로), and if you say
“Sam Dok So Bang So”, or “Sam Dok So Dong So” to a taxi driver, he should take you to the opening
street to a long line of shops, restaurants and bars that begins next door to the Samdeok Fire Station.
Almost every street here has some form of restaurant, coffee shop or bar on it. These will vary from
Korean Galbi (barbeque) spots to Western orientated venues aimed solely at the ex pat community. Most
of the Korean eateries are very reasonably priced and of a good quality. Start from the fire station
and check out some of the following places:
A very spacious Korean restaurant that serves primarily galbi, and various other meats for the Korean
BBQ treatment. The food is good, and as with most such places very well priced. It also has a large
outdoor seating area, very friendly staff and lots of wall mounted TVs inside in case you are eating
with people that you have little desire to speak to(!)
The name is not exactly self explanatory; whilst this place does serve burgers, they are not to our
knowledge anything to do with Gorillas! But the burgers are good. Gorilla Burger is a chain, so they
may well be dotted all over Korea, but aside from slightly flimsy buns, there is not much to complain
about. A good range of burgers, but much closer to western prices, with the average burger being around
8,000won - not including fries or a drink.
Another western bar/restaurant. Holy Grill serves Mexican food, burgers, and breakfasts. Again all
pretty good, but not cheap. However they offer a lot of special deals including all you can drink from
10pm-12am on a Friday night for 15,000 won. Irresponsible and pleasing in equal measures.
Guess what style of food this place serves? Nope, not hot dogs, Korean Sushi. Korean sushi is
different to the Japanese kind, and westerners aren’t as accustomed to it’s style, but this is a
nice restaurant where you get a LOT of food on any of the set menus you choose. Everything on there
is worth trying, including the worlds weirdest salad, which includes almonds, chicken, apricot,
apple and something unidentifiable.
Right across from the infamous Thursday Party this is the only kebab shop in Daegu. It is
pretty popular, which one can assume is solely due to its proximity to places where people are
getting obliterated on cheap alcohol. It is not bad, but it is very, very average – if you are
from Britain (where kebab shops are everywhere!), this place is really quite poor in comparison
to the dives that you may frequent back home!
There are a variety of other places to eat from Vietnamese to Italian and several other places
like Lazy Diner serving club sandwiches and burgers etc.
There are also enjoyable and excellent prices and food to be found in the myriad of Korean
restaurants in other suburbs like Yongsan, Beomeo and Sangin.
The bulk of the shops and restaurants are in an area called Dongseong-ro (동성로), and if you
say “Sam Dok So Bang So”, or “Sam Dok So Dong So” to a taxi driver, he should take you to the
opening street to a long line of shops, restaurants and bars that begins next door to the Samdeok
Its full title is ‘Communes Lonely Hearts Club’, but don't let that concern you. It has
nothing to do with random desperate singles and is not a euphemistic name for a brothel. It is
just a very popular ex pat bar run by a very friendly Korean team who all speak good English.
Not the place to practice your Korean or mix with the locals, but good for sports games, and mid
week events like the Open Mic night on a Wednesday and the once a fortnight Film nights on Mondays.
Mid week this is actually quite a nice chilled bar with a fair few locals, some friendly games
of darts and the opportunity to sit outside and people watch. However on a Saturday night it is
packed wall to wall with American soldiers shoving and pushing for position around the four or
five females who have ventured in for a drink. You might like it, but there’s also a great chance
you won’t. On a side note their table snacks are curry flavoured pop corn and pieces of dried
spaghetti baked and covered in salt. Both odd and yet both quite addictive.
They sell cocktails in plastic bags with a straw (reminiscent of Bar Vinyl in Seoul). It’s a
tiny bar, and mainly populated by people buying a cocktail in a bag to drink on their way to
somewhere else. The White Russians are good, but Mojitos are made with dried Tesco Mint...hmmmm...
Arguably the only proper nightclub in Daegu. There are various bar/clubs that have a DJ and a
dance floor but they are not real clubs. Pasha is. Two floors, with the upper level looking down
over a large dance floor and DJ’s playing impressive house sets. If you really want to dance and
not just jig drunkenly about near a bar of people standing and watching then Pasha is your best bet.
The real name of “The Bus” is somewhat a mystery (and it could well be “The Bus”) ...but regardless,
you would know it when you saw it by virtue of the fact that it is a bus. A bus converted to seat people
eating and drinking traditional Korean things and with a nice relaxed atmosphere. It is also very close
to one of the three Sheesha bars in Daegu. That's the flavoured tobacco smoked in a water pipe...very
enjoyable even for a non smoker. "Garden" is the name of the place, and the entrance is a two-story
staircase lined with candles. There's also a place called "Shisha" on the same street about a block
more towards Banwoldang – it has a red metal staircase outside, and comfy booths to sit in on the inside.
Rather than give fairly repetitive information, here is a very brief list of some of the other major
bars in the area with a few words...
Kush – underground, dark, has a DJ, not bad.
Organ – underground, dark, popular with ex pats, who don't always understand why.
Old School – full of soldiers, plays hip-hop, someone vomited on our contributor the first and last time he went there.
WA Bar – two of them knocking about, spacious, upstairs, lots of foreign beers, mix of Koreans and ex pats.
AU Bar – Daegu's enigma. We can see the people in the windows, but still can't find the entrance and have never got in.
If you find it, let us know. It could be a hallucination.
There is also a foreigner-friendly-bar in the area, with ‘Billabowl’ – a mash-up of pool and bowling,
gone arcade style. Use your cue to shoot pool balls down a bowling alley and try to knock over the pins!
In addition to the obvious places there are lots of more hidden Soju (Korean alcohol) bars and the famous
Korean karaoke spots known as Norebangs. The soju bars serve food but only soju and are a great way to meet
locals. The Norebangs should only be attempted late at night when you are in no fit state to think clearly
or make sensible decisions, but at that point they are great fun.
The bulk of the shops in the Down Town (Dongseong-ro 동성로 & Yasigolmok 야시골목) areas can really be divided
into two groups: mobile phone shops (of which there appear to be far too many to make any business sense), and
clothes shops. Clothes shops in particular do offer quite a range for women. There are a lot of small boutiques
that sell a variety of women's clothes outside of major labels, and for quite a small area, the shopping is
surprisingly good. There are then a host of major brand names that cater to both men and women, from various
sport shops, to a Calvin Klein store, and upmarket jeans shops selling the likes of Evisu, True Religion and
Prada. Not cheap, but again markedly cheaper than back home.
Dongseong-ro (동성로 or Dongseongo) is much like Myeongdong in Seoul except smaller, and once you’re past the
big chain stores a number of side streets begin to open up, and as you might guess, street clothes are a good bit
cheaper than those in the larger chains. While the shopping street here starts near Daegu (Subway) Station and
goes past Jungangno Station, don’t forget about the underground shopping area connected to Jungangno station.
Jungangno (or Jungang-ro) essentially means 'Central Street' or 'Central Area' – much like we'd use 'Main Street'
in many western towns.
Both areas (Dongseong-ro 동성로 & Yasigolmok 야시골목) are also rammed full of hundreds of cafés, bars and
nightclubs popular with young people. The name Yasigolmok (야시골목) means, “the street of cute foxes,” in
recognition of all of the attractive young women the area attracts.
Yasigolmok 야시골목 can be found by exit 2 of Jungangno station (Line 1), and find Dongseong-ro동성로 by
taking Line 1 to Daegu Station, then following the signs to Dongseong-ro / City Hall. A non-numbered exit
will then take you up to street level.
Both areas are close to each other (one stop away on the subway), and connect up with each other easily.
See the Daegu subway map.
Alternatively, if you say “Sam Dok So Bang So”, or “Sam Dok So Dong So” to a taxi driver, he should take you
to the opening street to a long line of shops, restaurants and bars in this area, that begins next door to
the Samdeok Fire Station.
We do not currently know if there are any good gyms or other exercise options in Daegu
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