Best Night City View in South Korea (Yes Not Seoul)
Daegu is famous for its sizzling summer heat. The mountains comprising the Daegu basin trap hot and humid air with little precipitation. They say that if you can endure the sultry summer days in Daegu, you will be able to endure the summer heat anywhere in South Korea.
One of the most popular places to escape the summer heat is the Apsan Observation Platform, located atop Bipasan Mountain at an altitude of 500m in Apsan Park, the largest urban-eco park in the south of Daegu. The observation platform is the bright square hovering high in the distance that you can easily notice looking south on a clear night.
The Apsan Observation Platform or Bipasan Platform is a viewing platform hanging over a cliff’s edge, which gives onlookers a panoramic perspective of the entire city. In commemoration of the 2011 IAAF World Championships in Daegu, it was completed in August of the same year. Standing on the wooden deck of the observation platform with the surrounding transparent tempered glass railing, you can have a bird’s eye view of Daegu, a city of 2.5 million people, unfolding right below. The city seen from the observation platform at night is even more magnificent; the observation deck was recently selected as one of the main attractions for the best night city view by Korea Tourism Organization.
In order to get to Apsan Park, you can take Daegu Subway Line 1 and get off at Anjirang Station and walk out Exit 3. You can then take Bus 410 and get off at Apsan Park or you can just walk up the street towards the towering peaks of Apsan. You can also take Bus 300, 410-1, 750, Dalseo 4 (달서4) or Dalseo 4-1 (달서4-1). One of the main hiking trails that will take you to the observation deck starts from Anjiranggol Valley Entrance (안지랑골입구). The best landmark for finding the trailhead is Daeduck Restaurant (대덕식당). You can use a GPS to help yourself drive there or you can ask a cabdriver to take you there. From downtown, it should take around 20 minutes and cost around 7,000 KRW. Alternatively, you can take Bus 410, Dalseo 4, Dalseo 4-1 or Dalseo and get off at the stop named “Daeduck Shick-dang” (대덕식당). Upon arrival, walk under the overpass and you should see the trailhead with two paths, near Indian Café. You can take either to get started.
Across from the entrance to Anil Temple (안일사), which is a halfway point, you will see stone steps that lead towards the observation platform. This is one of Apsan’s shortest and most direct trails and it should takes 30 to 40 minutes to climb up the trail. If you want to hike the trail during the night for a view of the city lit up at night, you should bring flashlights since the dark rough trail will not be easy to climb up.
Another way to get to the observation deck is by taking the 48-seat cable car at the valley station. You can get to the valley station by getting off at the main entrance to the park in Keungol Valley (큰골), which is also the last stop for the buses. It is short walking distance to the cable car station from the bus stop. Using the public transportation may be a better option than driving to the valley since parking is not free, although there is no admission fee.
The cable cars run every fifteen minutes from 9 am to sunset (5-7 pm) but the hours will soon be extended for one more hour after the sunset on Saturdays. The cable car costs 8,000 KRW for adults and 6,000 KRW for children, round trip.