From Heart And Seoul

Skiing in Pyeongchang: Site of the 2018 Winter Olympics

February 22, 2017 42 Comments
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If you’re still wondering where the heck Pyeongchang is – you’re not the only one. Who remembers Sochi 2014? Sometimes they pick a place no one has ever heard of. Then it’s forever embedded in your brain. If you don’t already know the name, you will. Just be careful not to confuse it with the North Korean capital (Pyongyang)!

Regardless of your athletic ability or your interest level in winter sports, you should 100% go skiing in Pyeongchang. Most resorts open for the season around mid-November and close up by April. In Korea, it doesn’t get really cold until after the first of the year though – so keep that in mind.

 

Getting There:

Pyeongchang is a few hours away from Seoul, so you’ll probably want to spend the night there if you plan to ski for more than a few hours. Otherwise, there are some groups that go by tour bus and will return the same day. Just google ‘Pyeongchang ski tour’ for options. There are tour options leaving from Seoul, Incheon Airport and multiple US military bases.

However, if you’re up for renting a car (or have a Korean license), by all means go on your own. The drive is easy (approx 2 hours from Seoul), and Pyeongchang is a great weekend getaway in the mountains. Plus you’ll be able to stay and eat where you want, instead of being confined to a tour’s restrictions and time limits.

If you do decide to drive, just know that Google maps doesn’t work in English within Korea. Use the Waze app for English navigation. If you need help planning your trip, you can always call this travel assistance hotline for any questions you have. They speak multiple languages and can be accessed from whatever country you’re in.

Where to Ski:

 

Alpensia Resort

Alpensia seems to be the nicest and most upscale of the ski resorts in Pyeongchang. There are two hotels that back right up to the slopes (InterContinentalHoliday Inn), and they also have an entire retail park full of shopping and restaurants on site. In addition to the slopes, you can also get a good look at Alpensia’s ski jumping facilities if you take a short drive around the complex. These are also being used for the Olympics. You’ll see the tower – just drive in that direction.

Pyeongchang Alpensia ski resort

Pyeongchang Alpensia ski resort

Pyeongchang Alpensia ski resort

Pyeongchang Alpensia ski resort ski jump

Rates:

Alpensia Ski Resort Lift Rates

Alpensia Ski Resort Rental Rates Alpensia Ski Resort Rental Rates

Location:

325, Solbong-ro, Daegwallyeong-myeon, Pyeongchang-gun, Gangwon-do

강원도 평창군 대관령면 솔봉로 325 (대관령면)

Eats:

We chose to eat at a Japanese restaurant on site, which was very good after a long day of skiing. You can grab coffee or a beer, but they also have sit down restaurants right at your fingertips. Everything you need is in the surrounding “retail space” right at the base of the slopes.

Pyeongchang Alpensia ski resort restaurant

Where to Stay:

The Kensington Flora Hotel is our pick for lodging (see pictures below). Located only about 10 minutes from Alpensia, it’s the nicest hotel in the area aside from staying at the InterContinental.

It’s set on a sprawling piece of land complete with an outdoor pool and gardens. Plus, the hotel’s lobby features Olympic medals and trophies from years’ past. They also have an impressive breakfast buffet that serves Western and Korean options, and an entire convenience store within the hotel for easy access to toiletries and snacks.

However, if you can go on a weekday – definitely check rates for the InterContinental. If prices drop below $200 a night, you should snatch up a room that instant. You really can’t find a better option than staying here, since the InterContinental backs right up to Alpensia’s slopes. Um – yes, please.

Pyeongchang Kensington Flora hotel

Pyeongchang Kensington Flora hotel

Pyeongchang Kensington Flora hotel olympic medal

 

Phoenix Park

In my opinion, Phoenix Park is the most impressive ski resort in Pyeongchang. It’s just huge. And it looks like an Olympic venue in the making.

With upwards of 20 slopes, we were able to spend 6+ hours here and not get bored. You won’t be disappointed. From Beginner slopes to Black Diamond runs, there’s something for everyone here. They have cafes and entire food courts at the top of some of the lifts, and you can take a gondola up to the highest one. You’ll also see moguls, jumps, and even a halfpipe, so you can begin to get excited about what’s to come in 2018!

Pyeongchang Phoenix Park skiing

Pyeongchang Phoenix Park skiing

Pyeongchang Phoenix Park skiing

Rates:

Phoenix Park Ski Rental Rates

Location:

174, Taegi-ro, Bongpyeong-myeon, Pyeongchang-gun, Gangwon-do

강원도 평창군 봉평면 태기로 174 (봉평면)

Eats:

Lucky you, our favorite restaurant in Pyeongchang is just down the street from Phoenix Park’s entrance. You could literally walk to it if you wanted to take a break from the slopes and stretch your (already stretched) legs.

The restaurant’s called Kkorovai, and it’s nothing short of amazing. We stumbled on it by accident and whipped a U-turn to pull in (sucked in by their “brunch” sign sitting out by the road). It’s got a modern, quirky design and all the food is fantastic. So good we even came back for seconds the next day.

You’ll find breakfast, burgers, pasta and the best sandwich EVER on the menu. I highly recommend the Kkorovai burger or the sandwich (listed on the menu in Hangul but you’ll know when you see it) but we didn’t leave disappointed with their brunch either.

Pyeongchang Kkorovai restaurant sign

Pyeongchang sandwich at Kkorovai restaurant

Pyeongchang burger at Kkorovai restaurant

Where to Stay:

Although the Kensington Flora is our favorite in Pyeongchang, you may want to consider staying somewhere a little different for easy access to Phoenix Park. In the area surrounding the entrance, you’ll find upwards of 30 different pensions (similar to an Airbnb) that are no more than a 5 minute drive to the slopes. Most of them are fairly basic and cozy, but you’ll generally have a place to yourselves and you can’t beat staying this close to Phoenix Park. And I promise you’ll get the authentic Korean experience.

Pyeongchang Mayfair pension

Yongpyong Resort

We haven’t been to this one yet, but being one of the big 3 ski resorts hosting the 2018 Winter Olympics, you can’t go wrong here. It’s said to be the largest ski and snowboard resort in Korea.

Rates:

Yongpyong Ski Resort Lift Rates Yongpyong Ski Resort Rental Rates Yongpyong Ski Resort Rental Rates

Location:

715, Olympic-ro, Daegwanryeong-myeon, Pyeongchang-gun, Gangwon-do

강원도 평창군 대관령면 올림픽로 715 (대관령면)

 

I hope you enjoyed the read, and this inspired you to go skiing in Pyeongchang! If there’s anything I missed, or any recommendations you’d add – please let me know!

Until Pyeongchang 2018….!

The 2018 Winter Olympics are less than a year away! If you're headed to Korea, don't miss the chance to ski the olympic slopes in Pyeongchang! Get all the details on making it happen here.
The 2018 Winter Olympics are less than a year away! If you're headed to Korea, don't miss the chance to ski the olympic slopes in Pyeongchang! Get all the details on making it happen here.

42 Comments

  1. Reply

    Priyadarshini Rajendran

    February 25, 2017

    Great post, informative. Thanks for sharing the schedules too. Awesome photographs. I am adding this to my list 🙂

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 25, 2017

      Thank you! 🙂

  2. Reply

    Anisa

    February 25, 2017

    I am not really a skiier but I would love to watch skiing, especially in the Olympics. I think it is nice that they choose unknown cities sometimes, it is always a great way to learn about new places.

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Totally agree! It’s always fun when it’s a big popular city too, but we got lucky that they are hosting it in Korea while we’re here!

  3. Reply

    Anna

    February 25, 2017

    Wow so many informations! Thanks for sharing your experience , I just came back from Switzerland where I did some ski as well 🙂 Snow is just such a pretty thing !

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Wow, I’m sure Switzerland blows SK right out of the water! It’s on my bucket list for sure.

  4. Reply

    Anita

    February 25, 2017

    It sounds like a great idea to visit the site of Olympics before the games. I find your post very detailed and informative. Useful information about prices and hotels. Thanks for sharing!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Thanks Anita! Glad it was helpful 🙂

  5. Reply

    Flavio @ Adventurous Travels

    February 25, 2017

    That looks like fun! I never thought about skiing in South Korea, but I’l love to try! The photos are great and the views are spectacular!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      You definitely should! Skiing in SK is becoming more and more popular!

  6. Reply

    Sheena

    February 25, 2017

    Impressive post. Very comprehensive ☺️

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Thanks, Sheena!

  7. Reply

    Kelly

    February 25, 2017

    Thanks for a great and informative post. I always love reading your posts because it reminds me of when I was in Korea. I meant to go skiing while I was there but it never happend. And it’s cool that the winter olympics willbe held here in 2018. I am clueless and had no idea. Lol. Thanks!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Thanks Kelly! Korea is such a fun place! We really love it here, so we’re pumped that the Olympics are being held here so soon!

  8. Reply

    Danielle

    February 26, 2017

    I had never considered Korea as a ski destination – but definitely will now! Most Aussies go to Japan, New Zealand, the US and Canada for ski holidays; I’d love the cultural experience of visiting Korea.

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      That sounds about right! 🙂 I never would have thought of Korea as a ski destination before now, but we’ve loved it!

  9. Reply

    Bhushavali

    February 26, 2017

    OMG! Google Maps doesn’t work in English? That’s difficult!!! Thanks for the tip. Its interesting to see the sunshine in winter as well! The burger looks yummm… I still haven’t skied once in my life and I really hope to do one soon…

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      No it doesn’t in some countries! Thank goodness for Waze!

      You should definitely try skiing – just don’t let a few falls keep you down 🙂

  10. Reply

    Samantha Sparrow

    February 26, 2017

    I’m not a skier – in fact skiing terrifies me! But I’m always in awe of those that do and enjoy it. I would visit just to go to Kkorovai though – those burgers look like the best, and I’m definitely a sucker for a good burger.

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      I know right?! I’ll go for the budger alone 🙂

  11. Reply

    Ariane

    February 26, 2017

    Wow that’s a lot of usefull information! I’d love to trade the alps for snowboarding in Pyeongchang! 🙂

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Not a bad trade! I’m sure the Alps can’t be outdone though!

  12. Reply

    Indrani

    February 26, 2017

    Reading about Pyeongchang for the first time and introduction put me at ease… I am not the only one ignorant of the place. Sounds like an exotic destination to me. Thanks for detailing out the stay facilities there, quite helpful.

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Not many people have heard of it before! You aren’t the only one!

  13. Reply

    Janice

    February 26, 2017

    This is so informative! I’m going to Korea and skiing is definitely one on the list of activities. This makes me so excited 💚

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      I’m so glad you’re going! Let me know if you end up having any other questions, and have a blast! 🙂

  14. Reply

    Stella the Travelerette

    February 26, 2017

    This is very detailed information! I am sure that if I wanted to go skiing in Pyeongchang this would be everything I would need. I agree that Phoenix Park looks the most impressive. I am sure everyone will want to come here after the 2018 Olympics!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Thanks Stella! That’s what I’m thinking too – after the Olympics, people will actually recognize the name! haha

  15. Reply

    Cory Varga

    February 26, 2017

    This is so, so good! We want to go and try the Japanese slopes before we try the Korean ones haha.
    It looks like such epic adventure, and that food…omg! For years I’ve been wanting to visit S Korea, but never thought about winter sports. I always imagined the city life!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 26, 2017

      Thanks Cory! Seoul is definitely one of my favorite cities in the world, but Korea has so much more to offer too! Hope you make it over here soon!

  16. Reply

    Lindsay Shapka | The Anthrotorian

    February 27, 2017

    I lived in South Korea for over a year and never made it here! I will definitely have to go back. Great post!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 27, 2017

      Ahh you definitely have to come back then! Thanks lady!

  17. Reply

    Alice Chen

    February 27, 2017

    Great, informative post! I love skiing and this looks like a wonderful place to do that!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      February 28, 2017

      Thanks Alice! 🙂

  18. Reply

    Ami Bhat

    February 28, 2017

    Winter olympics are fascinating….more so as I am not so good in these and always admire those who are. I sure would love to visit and experience the events here, especially snowboarding and skiing….Some day,,,,hopefully

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      March 1, 2017

      I am the same way! Skiing is not an easy thing to pick up, so it’s that much more impressive to see the Olympians doing it!

  19. Reply

    Priyanka Singh

    February 28, 2017

    Never heard about Pyeongchang before, its a perk to know about new places and the events associated with those when we read travel blogs of different writers from this world. This is such an informative post that includes minute details of price, available hotel options and food varieties which is helpful to many who are planning for 2018 Olympics.

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      March 1, 2017

      Thank you! My hope is it helps someone in planning – it can be a pain to try and sort through all the information out there when you’re going someplace you’ve never heard of!

  20. Reply

    Devesh Joshi

    March 3, 2017

    I just came back from himalayas snowboaring. sliding down the snow has some adventure in it.

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      March 4, 2017

      The Himalayas must be an awesome place to ski & snowboard!

  21. Reply

    Aamira

    March 4, 2017

    Great Post! Thank you for your sharing!

    • Reply

      Ashlyn | From Heart And Seoul

      March 6, 2017

      Glad you enjoyed!

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