Where to bike for free in Seoul: Oksu Station

Sunday, July 19, 2015 2 Comments A+ a-



You may have heard or read that eerie Korean comic set in Oksu station in Korea. The comic revolved on a guy who was dragged into the railroad tracks by a ghost. Today, with the provision of barriers, no ghosts can drag you to the railroad tracks.

Aside from Oksu station being a home to an urban legend it is also your gateway to experiencing free biking along the Han river through the Hangang park. All you need is just an ID to rent a bike for two hours.

With the information gathered from a blog, we braved the busy Oksu station and followed the instructions of the blogger to no avail. The blogger said vaguely that after you take exit 3, cross the pedestrian, you will see the building where you can rent the bikes.

Because of the vague instruction, we spent the next 15-30 minutes getting lost and finding a way using the available free WiFi. Thanks to some Malaysians or Indonesians who bravely asked some bystanders, we were led to the building, which was quite a walk away and is impossible to see from the Oksu station exit.

So here's a visual guide thanks to Google Street View:

1) Take Exit #2 or #3



2) Cross the pedestrian lane until you reach the sidewalk

3) Walk along the sidewalk where you can see an apartment building. Walk straight.


4) You will reach a fork ahead of you and a pedestrian lane. Cross it and walk again.


5) Walk until you reach the apartment building. By this time, you can see the biking building on the other lane.



6) Cross the pedestrian lane that would lead you to an island. Cross the other pedestrian lane again.


7) Welcome to the biking building!



See, that was not a short walk from the Oksu station. In the future, I hope that I could help someone with this post hahaha.

Entering the building, you will be welcomed by an middle-aged man who will get your ID, ask you to sign on a sheet, and let you pick a bike parked inside the building. Among the choices are kids' bikes, bikes with basket attached, and mountain bikes.

 

I picked a red mountain bike while my sister picked a bike with a basket. We took the downhill road close to the building and headed to the bike lane. We headed to the Seoul forest, which would require you to cross a wooden-floored bridge. There are plenty of signs that would let you know if you're close to the forest.

            



Our favorite part was going to look at the deer in the forest. You need to find the signage (below) after you walk uphill and lead you to footbridge that stretches two highway lanes. There was a signage that says that you can't use a bike on the footbridge but several bikers disregard the warning and bike there nonetheless. The footbridge is not very narrow but losing your balance would mean crashing onto someone or banging on the rails.

Yes, the 6nd gate! How do you pronounce that? :))

The footbride as seen from the highway in StreetView

Nearing the end of the footbridge, you will be able to see a lake below and then a caged facility where the deers are resting.



You might have noticed that we wore surgical masks as our trip fell on the height of MERS in Seoul. A local advised us that we would just look strange in the crowd of people without masks but for us, it was our protection against Koreans who sneeze and cough without covering their mouths. There's nothing wrong in taking extra precaution.

I'm ending this post with a short video of me biking. You can see that the biking lane is asphalted and well constructed. People can jog on the right side while bikers can bike on the left side. I wish that someday the Philippines can have this facility so that bikers won't have to fear for their lives while biking alongside trucks and irresponsible drivers in the streets. Haha, wish ko lang talaga.


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Janice Teo
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August 24, 2016 at 12:40 PM delete

Hello! This is a very helpful post, thank you! I am just wondering, is 2 hours enough for you to cycle to see the deer and back to return the bike? What if we do not return in 2 hours?

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August 24, 2016 at 1:14 PM delete

Thanks for reading! Yes, two hours is more than enough to bike and see the deers. It's not that far too. If you think you will exceed two hours, you just have to return to the bike rental facility to re-register when you reach the said time limit.

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