I took a day off on Monday wondering should I get out of Seoul. Laziness was lurking all around me that made me barely wants to get out of bed. But, I’m glad that I beat my evil side and head out to Petite France for a short day trip. It’s been quite a while since I’ve wanted to come to this place, and finally!
Forecast said it might rain in Seoul, so I just want to escape the rain.
Probably because of my introverted character, I tend to be paranoid of losing my way around or talking to people, or miss the transportation. And lastly, I found out that coming to Petite France wasn’t that complicated as I expected it to.
Moreover, I have only 25,000 won in my wallet. Drop dead. I need an ATM, like real bad. But failed to find any. No choice but to move on with what I have.
Since I’m living in Yongsan area, I’ve decided to take ITX from Yongsan station (rather than the usual Cheongnyanni station), which costs me 800 won more per way. I should have just went to Cheongnyanni instead, since it’s cheaper.
I was kinda lost in Yongsan station like where to get the tickets. Fortunately they installed some ITX sign on the top and I just followed it. I bought the tickets (heading to Gapyeong) from the vending machine and waited for the 11am train to arrive. There are dozens of trains come and goes in Yongsan, just spot the ITX train and hop onto it. Check the time as well!
Upon arriving in Gapyeong, I was shocked by the number of people that exit the train. Holy crap! Will I be able to get the ticket back to Yongsan today?? Where do I stay if I’m stucked here? I can’t afford being stuck here as I need to work tomorrow. There goes ms. paranoia again. Afraid that it might run out of tickets, I hurriedly booked mine right after I passed the gates. Phew!
Since I’m short of cash, I chose to take the shuttle bus instead. I only know the taxi fees going to Nami Island is 3,000 won per trip, who knows how much it will cost for Petite France. I don’t want to risk any cents at this moment. Saw a queue right in front of Gapyeong tourist information centre, and yep, that’s the shuttle bus stop. Petite France is just the next stop after Nami Island.
Road to Petite France is too winding, bring something along if you have motion sickness.
There’s no way you will miss this sign when you arrived at the place! But I missed it. I searched for it when I’m heading out. Tee hee~
Anticipated a lot when I came down from the bus, after getting the ticket (8,000 won) from the counter, I started walking in slowly and my camera ready!
The weather that day was sizzling hot. Sizzling? Yep! It’s no joke, since I’m there at around 2pm. I’m glad I applied some erm… expired sun lotion before heading out. Especially on my tattoo!
First thing that caught my sight, it was breathtakingly beautiful. It’s not the buildings, rather it’s the nature itself. That view is enough to make you forgot how hot the weather was. Green hills, blue skies, peaceful lake… It looks so much like a sight that you might only find in New Zealand! If you omit the fact that you’re in Korea, you might really think that you’re in a suburb french village with a stunning river-hill kind of scenery.
I begin exploring the village, walking through alleys, climbing stairs, taking shelters in shades that I can find. Of course, taking pictures with 3 gadgets of mine. More than a hands full.
Being submerged in my photographing mode, I climbed another stairs in order to search for more places to walk. Huh? Isn’t this the place I came by moments ago?? Oh yes, I came here moments ago indeed. Only to realized that I’m done exploring this village.
Maybe there’s a reason why they named it Petite France. This place is indeed petite compared to how it looks on TV (wonder how did they make it looks so massive in movies). I only spent an hour more to finish my expedition in this whole “village”! You can imagine how small it is…
Fine. But my train ticket heading back to Seoul was 6.28pm! How am I supposed to spend my 2 hours here? I don’t even have enough money to buy a Nami Island entrance ticket. No other options but to wait.
I sat in the shade and observing the visitors, couples, couples, and more couples (with selca-bong)! Oh, and there’s this one guy who plays the accordion real good. He doesn’t play long, maybe 15 minute or more, but he definitely kept me entertained during the wait.
I planned to catch the shuttle bus back to Gapyeong at 4.20pm. Waited and waited, it doesn’t come. My fear of not being able to catch the train kept growing. 4.30pm… 4.45pm… 4.50pm finally! The shuttle bus came! There goes ms paranoia again. You don’t need to buy the ticket again, just show the driver the ticket you’ve bought when you first board the shuttle bus.
So my thought about Petite France?
It’s a peceful place to spend your time at, but you’ll have to travel out of Seoul, rather tiring. I’ll come here again only if I’m going to Nami Island or other places around Gapyeong, but not visitng Petite France on it’s own.
My recommendation: Nami Island > Petite France > Garden of morning calm (depends on time)
|Transportation (ITX) – Yongsan to Gapyeong||4,800 won (Bought with credit card)|
|Transportation (ITX) – Gapyeong to Yongsan||4,800 won (Bought with credit card)|
|Shuttle Bus||6,000 won for a day’s ride|
|Petite France entrance fees||8,000 won|