Planning a Trip
The province has no airports, so the best way to get here is by bus or train.
The Gyeongbu Line skirts around the eastern edge of the province, connecting from Seoul to Cheonan, Jochiwon through Daejeon, continuing down to Busan, via Gimcheon and Daegu. The older Junghang Line connects to the Gyeongbu line at Cheonan and continues west and south through the province, ending at Janghang. Part of the Honam Line starts from Daejeon going though Dugye and continuing down through Jeolla-do, ending in Mokpo. If taking a train into the area, it's best to stop at Daejeon or Cheonan and transfer to a bus to outlying areas.
Buses to Buyeo leave only from Seoul's Nambu Terminal, every 22 to 40 minutes daily from 6:30am to 7:20pm. Costing W11,200 ($12/£6), the trip takes about 3 1/2 hours. Nonstop buses to Cheonan run every 10 to 15 minutes from Seoul's Express Bus Terminal daily from 6am to 9:20pm. Costing between W4,200 and W6,100 ($4.50-$6.55/£2.25-£3.30) with a travel time of about an hour. From Seoul's Nambu Terminal, buses run to Cheonan about every half-hour, daily from 6:40am to 7:40pm, costing W4,200 ($4.50/£2.25) for 80 minutes of travel time.
Buses to Taean go from Seoul's Nambu Terminal every 20 minutes daily from 6:40am to 8pm, costing W9,600 ($10/£5) for a ride of 2 hours and 20 minutes. Buses also run from the Dong Seoul Bus Terminal, only three times daily from 7:40am to 5pm. Although it's only W500 (55¢/25p) less, it takes almost twice as long.
Buses to Geumsan only go from Seoul's Express Bus Terminal every 40 minutes, daily from 7am to 6:40pm. Fares run W9,400 to W13,700 ($10-$15/£5-£7.50) with about 2 hour and 40 minutes of travel time. Buses also go to Yeongi from this terminal every hour daily from 6:30am to 8:30pm, costing between W5,900 and W8,700 ($6.35-$9.35/£3.15-£4.70) for an hour and 40-minute ride.
Nonstop buses to Hongseong only go from Seoul's Nambu Terminal 18 times a day from 6:40am to 7:30pm. The 2-hour ride costs about W9,100 ($9.80/£4.90). Also from the Nambu Terminal, express buses run to Nonsan 10 times daily from 6:50am to 6pm, costing W10,200 ($11/£5.50) for a 3-hour trip. Buses to Seocheon run only twice a day from the Nambu Terminal at 7am and 4:40pm, costing W14,600 ($16/£7.85) and taking almost 4 1/2 hours. Buses run from this terminal 13 times daily to Yesan, 7am to 7:05pm, costing W7,100 ($7.65/£3.80) for about 2 hours and 20 minutes of travel time.
From the Seongnam Intercity Bus Terminal, buses run on an irregular schedule (about every hour), daily from 6:20am to 7:15pm. The 1-hour ride costs about W4,600 ($4.95/£2.45). Buses to Geumsan only run daily at noon, costing W11,200 ($12/£6) and taking about 3 hours. Buses to Asan run about every hour, daily from 7:50am to 6:50pm, costing W6,000 ($6.45/£3.25) for a 90-minute ride. Buses to Iksan run daily at 7:30am, 8:40am, 9:30am, 10:30am, noon, 1pm, 2pm, 4pm, and 5:50pm. Costing about W11,000 ($12/£5.90), the travel time is about 3 hours. Buses to Gimje leave daily at around the same time, but cost W13,000 ($14/£7) and travel time is an additional 30 minutes. Buses to Buan take about 4 hours and run daily at 7:30am, 8:40am, 10:30am, noon, 2pm, and 4pm, costing W14,000 ($15/£7.50).
The Seohaean Expressway (road 15) runs from Seoul down the western coast outside of Boryeong and continuing down Mokpo in Jeollanam-do. The Gyeongbu Expressway (road 1) cuts through Daejeon and continues down to Daegu and Busan in Gyeongsang-do. When roads 17, 25, and 30 are completed in Cheonam, it will be faster to get through parts of the province with Gongju serving as the intersection for these new expressways.
The only ferry port in the province is at Boryeong (tel. 041/930-5000), which has domestic service to nearby islands Anmyeon-do, Oeyeon-do, Godae-do, Nok-do, Sapsi-do, Wonsan-do, Janggo-do, Ho-do, and Hyoja-do. To get to the ferry terminal from either the Daecheon Train Station or Bus Terminal, take any bus heading for Sinheuk-dong or Daecheon Beach. Get off at the last stop (about a 20- to 30-min. ride). Taxis should take about 15 minutes.
There are local buses available that can take you to most tourist attractions. Being such a rural area, though, many of the buses don't have numbers and will just have their destinations written in Korean. Most small-town bus stops are right in front of local grocery or convenience stores. So, ask the owner which bus to take. Tip: Buses don't always stop at bus stops, so be sure to raise your hand to flag down the driver.
Taxis are available outside of intercity bus and train stations, or can be flagged down on the street. Taxi drivers in the region generally don't speak English, so be sure you can say the name of your destination or have it written in Korean for them to read.
The province's main Tourist Information Center, 112-1 Munhwa-dong, Cheonan-si, Chungcheongnam-do (tel. 041/950-4016; http://tour.chungnam.net), is located next to Cheonan Station. Open all year daily from 9am to 6pm, there are maps and brochures for the region, and some English speaking staff.
In Buyeo you can find the Buyeo Tourist Information Center, 112-1 725 Dongnam-li, Buyeo-eup, Buyeo-gun (tel. 041/830-2585), at the entrance to Busosanseong. There are also a couple of tourist info booths in front of the Buyeo National Museum and inside Jeongnimsaji.
In Asan, the Tourist Information Center, 69-10 Oncheon-dong, Asan-si (tel. 041/540-2517), is located in front of Onyang Oncheon Station. The Boryeong Tourist Information Center, 321-2 Daecheon-dong, Boryeong-si (tel. 041/932-2023), is in front of Daecheon Station.