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Ulsan – Top 10 Sights in the “Rising” City

I have been living in Ulsan so far for 3 months and it’s genuinely a great city. It has all the benefits of living in a city, without being too chaotic like Seoul. Ulsan is one of the most important industrial cities in Korea. This city has the biggest car factory and shipyard.

The fact this place has become a city of shipbuilding reminds me a lot of what Glasgow once was. However, the city has grown in recent decades thanks to its industries. This makes it quite a modern city with touches of nature around.

10. Ilsan Beach

The city has a coastal area and a very good beach with elegant sand. It’s about an hour on the bus away from where I live, but it’s the closest beach to the centre of town. It’s definitely a good place to relax as it has a laidback atmosphere. There’s also a good selection of bars and restaurants lining the beach.

9. Daewangam Park

Right next to Ilsan beach is this bit of nature which takes a bit of walking to get through. It has a suspension bridge which you can walk across and admire views of the city. You can also see the impressive rock formations with a backdrop of the ocean.

8. Ulsan Museum

This small museum is free to visit. It gives a good explanation of how Ulsan has become an industrial powerhouse in recent decades. Moreover, you can see a few historical artefacts and a recreation of the car assembly process.

7. ROKS Ulsan

Close to the area where ships are built in this city, there is a decommissioned Korean Navy ship. It costs 1000 won (about 30p) to enter and it’s quite fascinating to see what a real naval ship looks like inside. You can even sit in the captain’s seat and get a feel for what life is like in the navy.

6. Ulsan Grand Park

This place is a great green space and it’s where I like to sit down and enjoy a coffee. It’s a nice place to take a walk. However, what makes this place quite interesting is the Korean War memorial in the middle of the park. There are a few Korean military vehicles scattered around and also a statue in commemoration of the war.

Inside of the memorial, there is a small exhibition about the Korean War. There’s even some interesting relics such as weapons which both sides used during the war. Moreover, there’s also pictures of what Ulsan look like just after the Korean War and it’s barely recognisable compared to what it looks like now.

5. Taehwagang Bamboo Forest

Bamboo forests are something which all backpackers should check out when in Asia. Close to the bank of the Taehwagang River is this bamboo forest which you can get lost in a maze of bamboo. In addition, it feels very tranquil and the tall bamboo feels otherworldly.

4. Ulsan Donheon and Naea

Although Ulsan is an ultra-modern city, you can still see some traditional Korean architecture. This place which is enclosed in traditional walls was once the location of government buildings during the Joseon period. You can feel the history when you look at these traditional buildings, even though they’ve been recently restored.

3. Seonam Lake Park

This place used to be a reservoir, however it has now become a peaceful area which you can walk around. In addition, it’s one of the best places to enjoy fresh air in Ulsan. Unfortunately you can’t swim in the lake water and I don’t think you’d want to anyway.

2. Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium

This city is home to the current champions of the K League. Ulsan Hyundai are the pride of the city and currently, they are heavyweights within Asian football. They play their home matches at the Munsu Football Stadium which was built in preparation for the world cup. Moreover, the stadium has some really nice surroundings with mountains and lush scenery in the background.

In addition, If you want to see a game here, it’s really easy to get tickets. When I went, it was only a tenner for a ticket and I’d say it’s definitely worth doing if you’re a football fan. Moreover, you can enjoy a beer while sitting in the stand which is something Scotland is yet to embrace.

1. Baekyangsa Temple

There are a good few temples in Ulsan. However, if I had to choose one for this list, it would be Baekyangsa. This is because this temple has stood here for hundreds of years. In addition, the temple has an incredible setting around a hilly area and incredible views of the whole city. The temple itself looks very well looked after and inside you can see impressive murals relating to Buddhist traditions.

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