Jeongdongjin: A Beach, A Rail Bike & A Tourist Trap?

Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, KoreaKnowing that we wouldn’t be able to spend the whole day on a beach with a 19 month old who would of course love that, but would walk away burned from head to toe, we took a drive from Sungeut Beach to Jeondongjin to take the rail bike trip and have lunch before enjoying the afternoon back on the beach.

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Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Railbike Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea

Jeongdongjin is a beach made famous, especially in photos for the Sun Cruise Resort but before that is was made famous by the drama “Hourglass”. Shot in 1995, this drama was a huge hit and now in the Joengdongjin area you can also visit the Hourglass Park. The actual beach though is 250 meters of white sand and nice clear blue water with some rocky areas popular for divers to swim around enjoying the views. Shellfish, mussels, sea urchins and other sea life make the rocks their abodes which of course makes for lots of happy children and divers in the water. Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Railbike Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea RailbikeIf you hope to ride on the Jeongdongjin Rail Bike, staff highly recommended that you book your tickets in advance. It is a rather popular activity to partake in. If you can’t book in advance, they suggest arriving at 8:30 in the morning when the ticket booth opens to purchase tickets for the rail bike later in the day. We arrived around 10:30am and found that the next available tickets were for the 1:00pm departure. We took the opportunity to enjoy the clear blue water of Jeongdongjin Beach and have Chodang Sundubu for lunch. Chodang Sundubu is a salt water tofu dish that is extremely appetizing. I had it on a trip to Gangneung many years ago and now try to have it every time I’m in the area. Just a bit saltier and tastier than that tofu you’ll find in other parts of the country.Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Railbike

Once 1:00pm arrived, we headed to the departure gate giddy like children to ride on the rail bike. Our giddiness soon turned to disappointment once we realized we’d fallen for a big tourist trap.

The total time for the rail bike is said to be 40 minutes so we obviously expected to be sitting on it, pedaling, for forty minutes. What actually happens though is this: 10 minute instruction and departure sequence, a 2 minute ride to a u-turn location, 8 minute ride to the end of the track where visitors are instructed to depart while the rail bikes are turned around. The platform for departure is flanked on one side with train tracks and another side with tall wire covered fences so no view is a good view of the extremely gorgeous ocean. Also on the platform is a train car with a cafe inside. The coffee isn’t overpriced or anything, but it’s not like you can go anywhere else either. After 10-15 minutes there, we board our rail bikes once again and take the 8 minute trip back.Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Railbike Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Railbike

All in all, we only seemed to be on our rail bike for less than 15 minutes which was disappointing.Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Railbike

Not all of the views were shrouded by wire fences, but about 80% of them were. I expected a longer trip and more riding on the rail bike as well as more beautiful views of the seaside. However, that being said, our little one wasn’t too enthused by the extremely loud noise that is riding on train tracks so to that end at least it turned out to be a short trip. The rail bikes are available in two and four person and are powered by the pedals but also have motors attached if it’s too much work.
Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Railbike

Jeongdongjin Beach, though, was all that and more. It was beautiful and had numerous cafes and restaurants in the vicinity to enjoy a good cup of Joe and some delicious food. The sand was gorgeous, the water crystal clear and plenty of space to spread out. Food vendors cooked up skewers on the shore and umbrella rental was easily accessible. It’s a busier location due to the fact that the station is there and not only does the rail bike start from here but the seaside train also stops by.

It’s a good area to choose to stay around for some activities as well as good food, cafes and a gorgeous beach to sit upon.
Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea

Jeongdongjin Beach


강원도 강릉시 강동면 정동역길 17

17 Jeongdongjin Station Road, Gangdong-myeon, Gangneung-si, Gangwon-do

Amenities: parking, umbrella/inner tube rental, changing room, bathroom, shower room (for a minimal fee), food


Jeongdongjin Rail Bike


강원도 강릉시 강동면 정동역길 17

17 Jeongdongjin Station Road, Gangdong-myeon, Gangneung-si, Gangwon-do

Admssion: 2 person rail bike W12,000; 4 person rail bike W18,000

Hours: Available every hour on the hour from 9:00am – 11:00am and then from 1:00pm – 5:00pm


Jeongdongjin, A Beach A Rail Bike & A Tourist Trip?

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