Gangchon Rail Bike is Korea at its best! I mean, who doesn’t love pedaling along old train tracks?
Up until 2010, it was a fully functioning train line before being converted into the famous Gangchon Rail Bike Park.
It’s a major attraction and allows visitors an opportunity to take in the beautiful Korean countryside in a unique and fun way.
Situated just over an hour from Seoul, Gangchon Rail Bike is arguably the best rail bike park in South Korea. It makes for an awesome activity, no matter the season!
Want to know why?
Well, keep reading as I’ve covered absolutely everything you need to know about Gangchon Rail Bike (including why you should choose it over Gapyeong Rail Bike, which is close by).
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Gangchon Rail Bike overview
- Distance from Seoul: 1 hour
- Course length: 6 km on rail bike, 2.5 km on train
- Price: Check prices here
- Time needed: 1.5 hours
- Best time to go to Gangchon Rail Bike: Autumn or spring
Introduction to Gangchon Rail Bike
If the Gapyeong region is part of your South Korea itinerary, you’ll have two rail bikes to choose from: Gangchon Rail Bike or Gapyeong Rail Bike.
This guide details everything you need to know about Gangchon Rail Bike Park, including why I chose it over Gapyeong Rail Bike.
Both bike parks are close to Nami Island and Garden of Morning Calm, so I highly recommend that you pair your trip with these attractions. You can also book a day trip like this, which includes all three of these attractions.
Gangchon Rail Bike course
Gangchon Rail Bike departs from Gimyujeong Station.
The 40-minute course passes rice paddies, rivers, and mountains with picture-perfect scenery throughout the trip.
It’s best to visit during spring or autumn when the weather is not too hot or cold.
My favorite part of the Gangchon Rail Bike are the themed tunnels.
We started off with the “Bubble Tunnel,” where we were surrounded by bubbles and cute, happy music.
Next was the “Party Tunnel” with strobe lights and disco music.
For all the romantics out there, the Gangchon Rail Bike also has a “Love Tunnel” with appropriate music and lighting to go with it.
The final stretch ends with a “VR Tunnel” where you’re able to shoot imaginary monsters and villains!
Scenic Train Ride
At the end of the Gangchon Rail Bike course, you reach a rest stop where you can purchase drinks and snacks.
From here, you hop onto the “Romantic Train”.
It’s a short 15-minute train ride along the Bukhangang River and is a great, relaxing way to end off your Gangchon Rail Bike experience.
You will arrive at the Old Gangchon Station, which is no longer functioning. Don’t confuse it with the official Gangchon Station, which is nearby.
Shuttle bus back to Gimyujeong Station
From the Old Gangchon Station, you need to catch the free shuttle bus back to Gimyujeong Station.
I headed back to Seoul, so I gave the shuttle bus a miss and went straight to Gangchon Station to catch the Seoul Metro.
To get to Gangchon Station from the Old Gangchon Station, turn left as you get off the “Romantic Train”. Follow the road for about 15 minutes, and the station will be to your right.
Difference between Gapyeong Rail Bike & Gangchon Rail Bike
Yes, there are two rail bikes located within 20 minutes of each other, both situated close to Nami Island.
So, which one is better? Gapyeong Rail Park or Gangchon Rail Bike?
Why You Should Choose Gapyeong Rail Bike
Gapyeong Rail Bike is the closer of the two rail parks to Nami Island and is conveniently located 2 km away from Gapyeong Station.
On the other hand, Gangchon Rail Bike is 20 km from the Gapyeong Station.
If you’re short on time and trying to fit a rail bike into your day trip from Seoul to Nami Island, then Gapyeong Rail Bike may be your best option.
But, one of the cons of Gapyeong Rail Park is that it covers a distance of 8 km, and you end where you started.
At the halfway point, you turn around and begin pedaling back along the same route you’d just come from.
You can read reviews for Gapyeong Rail Bike here.
Why Gangchon Rail Bike is the best rail bike park in Korea
On the other hand, Gangchon Rail Bike offers an 6 km one-way route which means you don’t pass the same settings twice.
On top of this, Gangchon Rail Bike has more fun tunnels than Gapyeong Rail Bike.
For these reasons, Gangchon Rail Bike is said to be a longer and more exciting route than Gapyeong Rail Bike.
Gangchon Rail Bike ticket price
Tickets for the Gangchon Rail Bike are 40 000 KRW ($30) for the 2-seater bike or 57 000 KRW ($40) for the 4-seater bike.
You need to book your Gangchon Rail Bike tickets in advance if you want to get a seat in your preferred time slot.
It’s an extremely popular rail bike, so don’t be surprised if you arrive unprepared and everything’s sold out.
The 2-seater and 4-seater bikes depart separately, so if you’re traveling with a group of 6 people, it’s best to get 3 x 2-seater bikes.
This way you’ll be able to ride together.
How to go to Gangchon Rail Bike
Gangchon Rail Park is located just outside Gimyujeong Station in Gapyeong, close to both Nami Island and Chuncheon City.
Just walk out of exit 1 and turn to your right. You can’t miss it!
How to get from Seoul to Gangchon Rail Bike
If you’re coming from Seoul to Gangchon Rail Bike, you can either take the Seoul Subway, or the ITX fast train.
The easiest way to get from Seoul to Gangchon Rail Bike is with the Seoul Metro to Gimyujeong Station.
From Myeongdong Station in Seoul, it should take about 2h 20min to reach Gimyujeong Station.
If you’re looking for a faster route, take the ITX from Yongsan or Cheongnyangni Station to Namchuncheon Station.
From Namchuncheon Station, you need to hop onto the Seoul subway line back to Gimyujeong Station.
Taking the ITX to Gangchon Rail Bike Park may be quicker, but it’s a more complicated route.
After getting off the ITX at Namchuncheon Station, you need to ensure you get your timing right, as the subway runs every 20-30 minutes.
If you miss the train to Gimyujeong Station, you could wait 30 minutes for the next one and possibly be late for your booking.
How to get from Nami Island to Gangchon Rail Bike
The easiest way to get from Nami Island to Gangchon Rail Bike is via the Seoul Metro.
- First, you need to take a 5-minute taxi from Nami Island to Gapyeong Station.
- From here, take the subway to Gimyujeong Station.
READ MORE: WHERE TO STAY IN BUSAN
All-inclusive tour packages
I spent 2 days in the area, so I had a bit of extra time to spare in case I got lost or missed the train. And yes, both of these happened to me!
If your time is limited and you’d like to visit the other attractions in the area, it’s best to book an all-inclusive tour package from Seoul to Gangchon Rail Bike.
For just under $35, this full-day package is great value for money and is the best way to explore everything in one day.
Not only does it include round-trip transport from Seoul, but you’ll also be able to experience the Gangchon Rail Park as well as Nami Island and even Petite France.
Best time to ride Gangchon Rail Bike
The Gangchon Rail Park operates throughout the year.
Every season brings with it a different experience, so whether you do the Gangchon Rail Bike in autumn (fall) or summer, you’re guaranteed to have an awesome experience.
Gangchon Rail Bike in Autumn and Spring
The autumn season is the best time to plan your trip to either Gapyeong or Gangchon Rail Park.
These months of September, October, and November are warm and sunny with gorgeous autumn foliage.
Spring in Korea is stunning, and it’s also a great time to plan your rail bike tour.
The mild temperatures are perfect for a day outside and you’ll see bright flowers and cherry blossoms.
READ MORE: WHERE TO STAY IN JEJU ISLAND
Gangchon Rail Bike in Summer and Winter
The Korean summer and winter seasons are extreme.
Summer (June to August) is hot and humid, with most people choosing to stay indoors. Considering the rail bikes are outside, you may not enjoy it as much as you would in autumn. Bring lots of water, a sun hat and sunscreen.
If you do the Gangchon Rail Bike in winter, there’s a high chance of snow!
Peddaling alongside the countryside covered in snow will be breathtaking but cold. Dress warmly and bring a blanket so that you’re prepared to brave the icy outdoors.
Gangchon Rail Park operating hours
Gangchon Rail Park is open daily from 09:00-18:00, with sessions starting every hour.
Public holidays and weekends are the busiest times, so plan ahead. The rail park is also open throughout the year but is more popular in the warmer months.
Where to stay near Gangchon Rail Bike
If you’ve read my post on Nami Island, you’ll see why I chose to stay in Chuncheon during my visit to the Gapyeong region.
Chuncheon is the dakgalbi capital of Korea and is located just 10 minutes away from Gangchon Rail Bike, so I highly recommend you stay here as well!
Budget travelers will love Sh Guesthouse in Chuncheon. Situated in the city centre, it’s close to many shops and restaurants.
Families visiting will love The Castle Stay. It’s situated in a quiet neighborhood and includes a simple breakfast.
Other things to do near Gangchon Rail Bike
Gangchon offers other fun activities apart from just the famous Korean rail bike.
There are ATV (quad bike) trails, go-karting, bungee jumping, and even paintball.
It’s not necessary to pre-book any of these, and you can just pop into one of the stalls once you’ve reached the Old Gangchon Station.
If you’re visiting in winter, check out my guide to the best ski resorts in Korea, most of which are close to Gangchon Rail Park and can easily be added to your trip.
Is Gangchon Rail Bike worth it?
Yes! I really enjoyed the Gangchon Rail Bike experience. I highly recommend visiting Nami Island while you’re in the area.
FAQS about the Gangchon Rail Bike
How long does it take to ride a Gangchon Rail Bike?
It takes 40 minutes to ride the Gangchon Rail Bike. After that, you hop on a scenic train ride for 15 minutes and then take the shuttle back to the starting point.
Is the Gangchon Rail Bike tiring?
No, it’s not tiring, and you don’t need to be fit. You pedal along very slowly, and the course is completely flat.
Have you done a rail bike experience before? Did you love it as much as I did? Let me know in the comments section below!
Looking for more Korea travel information? Check out my other posts!
- The Ultimate Packing List for Korea
- Things to do in Jeju: 5 Day Itinerary
- 24 Strange Things About Korea
- The Best Busan Itinerary For 3 Days