Korea has 4 distinct seasons and it’s best you make the most of the weather that accompanies each month. Spring is for cherry blossoms, summer is for beaching, autumn is for hiking and winter is for skiing. And so, as soon as the colder weather approached, I went skiing at Daemyung Vivaldi Ski Park in Korea to avoid the crowds that will flock there over the next few months.
About Vivaldi Ski Resort in Korea
90km from Seoul, with a 1.5-hour drive east of the capital city, lies Daemyung Vivaldi Ski Park. Notably a crowd favorite, it has been voted the most visited ski resort in Korea for 7 consecutive years.
Together with its easy accessibility from Seoul and the world-class ski facilities, Vivaldi Ski Resort continues to grow in its popularity. There are constant upgrades to all facilities and amenities to cater for the needs of the ever-growing number of visitors, which can reach 20 000 people!
Cafes, restaurants, and food stalls are dotted all over the ski park, offering both Korean and westernized food at reasonable prices.
However, with this title comes thousands of tourists and avid skiers in search of the best slopes to go skiing in Korea. This means crowds, queues for the ski lifts and busy slopes.
The Ski Park
Vivaldi Ski Park is home to 12 slopes: 2 beginner, 5 intermediate, 4 advanced and 1 expert. There are 10 ski lifts, which also include a gondola.
With a total slope length of 6.7km, it may be a smaller ski park than what you’re used to in Europe or America, but overall it makes for a fun day out.
If you’re looking for a bigger ski park in Korea, I suggest you visit High1. Although its further from Seoul, the park has the longest slopes, with the best skiing in the country. You can find out more about it here.
What makes Vivaldi Park Unique
The slopes are named after different music genres with speakers blaring the music that accompanies each slope name. If you’re looking for a more relaxed and easy slope, then “Blues” is just right for you. “Reggae” is stepping it up a notch, whilst “Techno” is one of the more advanced slopes.
Rule of thumb, the faster the beat, the more advanced the slope is.
My favorite was “Hip-Hop”. It is a steep slope (from my point of view) and wider than the other slopes. I also enjoyed “Jazz” as it is a nice wide slope, but tends to get a bit busy as it caters to intermediate/beginner skiers. Check out Vivaldi’s website for more information on their slopes varieties.
The Ski Slopes at Vivaldi: How Buzy Are They?
As I hadn’t skied in over a decade, I thought I’d warm up on the beginner slope. This was an extremely popular slope with mostly young children and first-timers waiting in the 15-minute queue for the lift.
If you hate waiting in queues, Bears Town Ski Park in Korea is a good alternative to Vivaldi Ski Resort as the slopes are quieter. Find out more about my time at Bears Town here.
The waiting time for the other ski lifts varied from 2-15 minutes, depending on which one you wanted to go on. The more challenging slope had a shorter queue (so I headed straight for this one, obviously overestimating my ability).
The gondola is another way to reach the top of the highest slope and the waiting time is the same, if not quicker, than the ski lifts.
Throwing myself into the deep end lead to a few hard knocks and falls, accompanied by a constant screeching sound as I flew past many snowboarders with little control of where I was going. Having lasek eye surgery in Korea a few months back really saved the day. Not having to worry about my spectacles or contact lenses drying up was a game changer.
Snowy Land at Vivaldi Ski Resort
Snowy Land is a perfect alternative for the kids or adults who would rather spend their day doing other snow activities instead of skiing at Vivaldi Ski Resort.
Navigating Your Way Around Vivaldi Ski Park
Being a tourist hotspot, Vivaldi caters for foreigners and all their information and signage is in both Korean and English.
If you chose to visit the ski park independently, it is easy to navigate your way around and you’ll find a staff member who will be able to assist you.
Vivaldi Park Prices And How To Get To Vivaldi From Seoul
Vivaldi Ski Park offers a free shuttle service from Seoul for all foreigners. This bus leaves from Seoul at 08:00 and arrives back around 20:00.
Once at Daemyung Vivaldi Ski Resort, you will need to purchase a lift pass for 75 000 won ($60) and equipment rental (ski/snowboard) will cost you 36 000 won ($30). Additionally, you’ll need to hire your ski jacket and pants for 24 000 won ($20). A total of 135 000 won ($110) for a day on the slopes.
Most ski parks in Korea offer discounts for foreigners so be sure to enquire about this when booking.
Vivaldi Tours: Package Costs
My initial plan was to book directly with Vivaldi and make use of their free shuttle, but then I found a deal with Trazy, which is cheaper and all the admin is done for you.
For 72 000 Won ($68), Trazy offers a full-day ski package which includes transport for Seoul, a lift ticket as well as ski equipment and clothing rental. All of this is arranged by the Trazy team which saves you the stress of having to find your way around the ski park in search of the various ticket offices or gear outlets. Klook also offers great packages so be sure to check them our aswell.
Vivaldi Ski Equipment And Gear Rental
Vivaldi Ski Park offers great gear and equipment for rent. It is all good quality, clean and mostly new.
You will need to bring your own ski gloves, scarf/buff, and beanie. If you don’t have these then you can buy at the ski park.
Good quality waterproof ski gloves, scarves, and beanies are on sale from $18 each. They also sell ski goggles, jackets, sweaters, pants – basically anything and everything you need. Their selection is also very big with many different styles and designs.
My Overall Impressions Of Vivaldi Ski Park
It’s an well-managed ski park and operates extremely smoothly. The queues weren’t as bad as I thought they would be but this could be because I visited Vivaldi before peak season (beginning of December).
My advice, if you don’t like crowds and waiting in long lines, avoid Vivaldi on a Saturday afternoon in January and February. But this also applies to other parks such as Oak Valley which are extemely popular destinations during winter in Korea. There must have been around 4 000 people at the ski park on the day I visited, and the lines were only just bearable. I can’t even imagine how busy it must be when they are at full capacity of 20 000 people!
Key Information When Planning Your Visit To Vivaldi Ski Resort
- There are lockers available where you can keep your bags but I’d suggest you take some money with you on the slopes so that you can stop and have lunch or coffee at the high point.
- Wear sunscreen and reapply often! I made the mistake of only putting on in the morning and after a full day of skiing, I arrived home with a bright red nose and face!
- For those first timers, ensure you wear thick socks and thermal layers under your ski jacket and pants.
- Vivaldi Park offer ski and snowboard lessons at an additional cost which you are able to prebook.
- If you’re questioning whether it’s worth traveling all the way to Vivaldi Ski Park, or any ski park, for only one day, well yes, it is! You will be exhausted afterwards, but if you arrive at the park by 10:00, you will have at least 6 hours of skiing ahead of you. And in my opinion, that’s just the right amount of time.
Practical Information about visiting Vivaldi
- Costs: $70 for a day trip with an organized tour
- Distance from Seoul: 1.5 hour drive
- Time needed: Full day
- Best time to go: During the week when it’s less busy or beginning of December
Looking for more Korea travel information? Check out my other posts!
- A Guide to Oak Valley Ski Resort in Korea
- High1 Ski Resort: A Complete Guide
- A Day At Bears Town Ski Resort In Korea
- 24 Strange Things About Life In Korea
- Why Gangchon Rail Bike Is A Must Do