After investing 40 minutes and 1,050 KRW, I arrived at Eunhaeng-dong. At once, I realized that Eunhaeng-dong is worth visiting. The weather was dreary at the time, yet people seemed to be enjoying themselves in this brightly lit part of the city. For them, the pouring rain and the ominously dark sky did not matter at all. They were enjoying shopping, eating gourmet food, and simply enjoying the presence of one another in the bustling environment. One of the stereotypes of Daejeon is that there are not many places to hang out. In fact, I have heard a plethora of KAIST students complaining about the dullness of the city or the inaccessibility of the core parts of the city. Nevertheless, there are definitely places to hang out and those are more reachable than expected. Simply hop on the KAIST shuttle bus, and get off at Wolpyeong Station. Take the subway to the Jungangno Station, and there you will be overwhelmed by all of the shops and the people. Good thing that you do not have to worry about getting lost in Daejeon’s subway since there is only one subway line.
One of the biggest reasons to visit Eunhaeng-dong is probably to go shopping. People can find shopping areas that suit their respective budget and style. For example, there are the NC department store and Miliore 21, shopping complexes that sell clothing. The average age of people shopping here seems to be higher than that of people shopping in the underground shopping area. The underground shopping area comprises of small individual stores that sell rather inexpensive clothes ranging from 10,000 KRW to 30,000 KRW. The main customers there are teenagers and those in their early twenties. These trendy shops were bustling with energy. Moreover, there are more shops above ground in the eneungjeongi road, otherwise known as the culture road.
When you are at eneungjeongi road, make sure to look above at the “skyroad”. Skyroad is a light-emitting diode (LED) image system that is 214 m long, 13.3 m wide, and 20 m high. The tall structure hovers over its passengers like a roof. Many types of media are projected on skyroad such as music videos, natural sceneries, and animation of galaxies. Skyroad lights up the eneungjeongi road from 7 to 11 p.m. during the summer season and between 6 and 10 p.m. during the winter season.
As a famous Korean proverb goes, “A loaf of bread is better than the song of many birds.” Eunhaeng-dong hosts a wide array of restaurants that specialize in various cuisines - Korean, French, Japanese, American - you name it! There are franchise restaurants and local restaurants that serve quality food. In this article, we will go take a look at the local restaurants. The most iconic local restaurant in eneungjeongi street is Robocook , an Italian restaurant. The outer interior resembles the steel surface of a robot. It is renowned for its luxurious atmosphere, with couples in their 20s and 30s as its main customers. The prices range from 7,000 to 18,000 KRW. Another popular restaurant is Nuri Handmade Dumpling, which serves Korean food. The prices range from 4,000 to 10,000 KRW. As you enter the restaurant, you can see the owner making the dumplings himself. Because customers can see the actual process of making dumplings, they can be assured of their quality.
You can also visit the iconic bakery of Daejeon, Sungsimdang. This bakery is famous for their quality pastries; it even featured in the Michelin Guide in 2011. The must-try items of this bakery are fried soboru and leek bread; they even have their own patents. Even Papa Francisco enjoyed the baked goods made by this bakery during his visit to Korea. Thanks to its popularity, this bakery earns more than 10 billion USD a year. The original Sungsimdang is definitely worth trying while you are at Eunhaeng-dong.
There are lots of cafes in the vicinity as well. Each cafe has its unique style and atmosphere. The cafe Her Coffee Cup serves its drinks in jugs. Café ANDORH is located in the renovated building that used to be the old city hall of Daejeon under the Korea Empire 100 years ago. This cafe, not surprisingly, is well known for its antiqueness.
While exploring parts of Eunhaeng-dong, I was amazed at the variety of activities and choices that I was surrounded with. I must add, as a newcomer to the Daejeon area, that I have never seen a place so similar to the “hot-spots” in Seoul such as Gangnam. I ensure you Eunhaeng-dong is definitely worth visiting.