Gyeongju Transportation for Tourists [2022 & 2023]

Gyeongju, which is known as ‘the museum without walls’, was the capital city of the ancient Silla Kingdom, which ruled over a large part of the Korean Peninsula for 1000 years, roughly from 57BC to 935AD. As a result there are a large number of historical sights, with many UNESCO World Heritage Sites, along with many Josean era attractions. Gyeongju is located north of Busan in the south east of South Korea.

Gyeongju attractions are mostly clustered around the central Gyeongju Historic Area. Further afield to the south are the amazing Bulguksa Temple, Seokguram Grotto and Golgulsa Temple which are definitely worthwhile to include in your visit.

In this article we will provide an overview of the Gyeongju transport system, including which bus lines to use to access the major attractions, along with day tour options.

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Arriving in Gyeongju

When you arrive in Gyeongju you are likely to arrive at one of the following locations and then need to travel to your Gyeongju accommodation. Here are the public transportation options to get there.

  • Gimhae International Airport in Busan. To get from Gimhae International Airport to Gyeongju, options include either a direct Intercity Bus (3 services daily) or by catching the the Light Rail to Ssang Station, then catching a bus to Gyeongju. Note that the latter option is easier as the buses depart every 30 minutes. Expect the trip to take approximately 1:30 hrs. You can then either walk, catch a bus or taxi to get to your Gyeongju hotel.
  • Singyeongju KTX Station. Singyeongju Station is located a 30 minute bus trip west from the central area of Gyeongju. You can easily catch a bus or taxi to get to your hotel in Gyeongju.
  • Gyeongju Intercity Bus Terminal and Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal are located side by side in central Gyeongju. You can either walk, catch a bus or taxi to get to your Gyeongju hotel.
Silla Kingdom Burial Mounds at Tumuli Park in Gyeongju
Silla Kingdom Burial Mounds at Tumuli Park in Gyeongju

Tourist Map of Gyeongju

To help you better understand where each tourist attraction is located in Gyeongju we have put together a detailed map below. You can zoom in and out and click on each attraction to see more details without leaving this page. In red are the major transportation hubs so you can more easily see where things are in relation to those key points.

Getting Around Gyeongju

You can easily get around Gyeongju using the local bus system. For local public transportation options, just use KakaoMap (Google Play Store and Apple App Store) and you will quickly see all public transportation options to travel between places by bus. Google Maps also works well for public transport options (but not for driving).

Korea Transportation Card

The main local transport card for Gyeongju is the Cashbee card. You can also use the Railplus Transport card or the T-money card to get around in Gyeongju and all for all other local transport within cities throughout South Korea. You can purchase and load credit to your local transport card at any convenience store or train station.

The transport cards are very easy to use, you just tap on and off as you go and recharge your credit as required with cash only. You can easily obtain a refund of your remaining credit before departing from South Korea at convenience stores and train stations.

Donggung Palace & Wolji Pond Night Illuminations in Gyeongju
Donggung Palace & Wolji Pond Night Illuminations in Gyeongju

Gyeongju Bus System

Use the KakaoMap app to work out how to get from place to place by public transport. Main bus lines which you are likely to use are detailed below.

Gyeongju Bus 700

Gyeongju Bus Line 700 is a great option to travel around Gyeongju if you are arriving at the Singyeongju KTX Station. This bus route takes 30 minutes to get to the Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal, then continues on to the Gyeongju Historic Area, Hanwha Resort Area (which includes the Gyeongju Hilton Hotel, other accommodation options, Gyeongju World Theme Park and Gyeongju World Culture Expo Park) and then on to Bulguksa Temple.

The total trip from end to end for this route is around 2 hours. This is the longer route to get to Bulguksa Temple, however is handy depending on where you are staying and whether you plan to visit the resort area.

Gyeongju Bus 10/11/60/61/603/604/605/607

Gyeongju Bus Line 10/11 and 60/61/601/603/604/605/607 are great options to travel around Gyeongju. Bus line 10/11 travels all the way from the Gyeongju Express Bus terminal to Bulguksa Temple without needing to change buses. Bus lines 60/61/601/603/604/605/607 also travel part of the way. The route goes through the Gyeongju Historic Area, and you could easily travel direct to the Gyeongju National Museum, and then work your way back to the Bus Terminal or your accommodation.

  • The trip from Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal to the Gyeongju National Museum will take approximately 10 minutes.
  • The trip from Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal to Bulguksa Temple will take approximately 1:10 hrs.

Gyeongju Bus 12

Gyeongju Bus Line 12 enables you to travel the windy roads from Bulguksa Temple to the Seokguram Grotto and return. The trip takes 25 minutes each way, however this route only operates every two hours. As a result when visiting the Seokguram Grotto make sure you know what time you need to be back to catch the return bus.

Gyeongju Bus 100-1

Gyeongju Bus Line 100-1 enables you to travel the windy roads from the Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal to Golgulsa Temple and return. Golgulsa Temple is a great destination due to their very popular TempleStay program and daily displays. The trip takes 1:50 hrs each way, however this route only operates at select times. As a result when visiting Golgulsa Temple plan your bus trip ahead of time.

Golgulsa Temple in South Korea
Stone stairs leading to a shrine with Big Buddha carved into a rock in Golgulsa Temple in South Korea in autumn.

Gyeongju Tours

Alternatively there are many Gyeongju day tour and experience options available through Trazy as detailed below:

  • The Gyeongju 1 Day Bus Tour enables you to more easily visit the major attractions. There are three courses, which each run on different days with pick ups and drop offs from local hotels, the Express Bus Terminal and the Singyeongju KTX Station. Note that entrance fees are not included in the tour cost, and this tour is transport only, with a Korean tour guide (no English). Click here to check out and book these tours through Trazy.
  • The Gyeongju Private Taxi Tour is a great option for small groups of up to 4 people to visit Gyeongju with a personalised itinerary and a driver with basic English. You will be picked up and dropped off at either your hotel, Express Bus Terminal or the Singyeongju KTX Station. Note that entrance fees are not included. Click here to check out and book this tour through Trazy.
  • The Gyeongju Private One Day Tour is a great option for groups of up to 7 people to visit Gyeongju, either locally or from Busan, with a personalised itinerary and a driver with excellent English. You will be picked up and dropped off at either your Gyeongju or Busan hotel, Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal or the Singyeongju KTX Station. Note that entrance fees are not included. Click here to check out and book this tour through Trazy.

Gyeongju Tours from Busan

To visit Gyeongju as a day trip from Busan, the best option is to book a one day tour to make the most of your visit. There are several day tour options available through Klook as follows:

  • Visit Yangdong Village, Anapji Pond, Bulguksa Temple and the Seokguram Grotto. This tour is available on Thursday each week. Pick up and drop off from KTX Busan Station, Seomyeon Station and Haeundae Station. Click here to check out and book this tour through Klook.
  • Visit Cheomseongdae Observatory, Daereungwon Tomb Complex, Hwanglidan Street, Gyochon Traditional Village, Woljeong Bridge, Bulguksa Temple and Night view of Anapji Pond. This small group tour is available on Tuesday and Friday each week. Pick up and drop off from Seomyeon Station or Ulsan KTX Station. Click here to check out and book this tour through Klook.
  • Visit Bulguksa Temple, Seokguram Grotto, Anapji Pond, Cheomseongdae Observatory, Gyeongju National Museum, Cheonmachong Tomb and Yangdong Folk Village. This private tour (up to 8 passengers) is available every day and will pick up and drop off at your Busan hotel. Click here to check out and book this tour through Klook.
Gyeongju Transportation

Join the South Korea Travel Planning Facebook Group

You are also welcome to join our South Korea Travel Planning Facebook Group – it is a great resource to enable you to ask questions about your upcoming trip to South Korea!

South Korea Travel Planning

Disclaimer:  This article contains affiliate links.  If you book after clicking on one of these links then we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.