One Day (and Gluten Free!) in Daegu, South Korea
I had the privilege of spending a few weeks in South Korea, specifically in the city of Daegu. Although I worked the majority of the time, I had some free moments to explore the city. Through my own trials and tribulations, I can tell you how to do things right, especially in just one day.
Also, yellow dust is a real thing.
The various public transportation options in town are easily accessible, easy to use and by far the least expensive option, especially compared to taxis. You can purchase a card that you can recharge at designated machines (they have English options) or in convenience stores.
Otherwise, taxis are another option. I didn't leave the car without dancing to k-pop with the driver. Fav K-Pop jam? Red Velvet's Rookie. It was playing everywhere.
My ideal breakfast in most Asian countries is rice with an egg on top, and gluten free soy sauce. Actually, this is kind of my ideal breakfast anywhere. This is easy to find in Korea, and it available at most restaurants (BYOGFSS... Bring Your own Gluten Free Soy Sauce).
I have to keep mentioning Starbucks as an option, because I couldn’t find alternative milk ANYWHERE else. Plus, their cherry blossom tea is like nothing else. So…
They might not have alternative milk options, but they have EVERYTHING Audrey Hepburn and some delicious herbal teas.
One of the few places where the owner understands what being Celiac is. Great Thai dishes.
Gluten-free pasta pizzas, calzones, pasta. Find your GF Italian fix here!
There isn’t one exact spot I would recommend, but as long as your meat hasn’t touched soy sauce, you should be good, including with the sides offered. I didn’t have a hard time or bad reaction at all with K-BBQ, by using my allergy translation card!
These are super popular, and everywhere. Although most are gluten-free, the ice is unfortunately made with dairy.
We stumbled upon this three-story bar accidentally and I am so glad we did. It’s in a great spot, right in the midst of awesome shopping options. They even had cider, which was my go-to.
Things to Do
This is a thing you can pay to do, or watch for free. Many people like to exercise around the lake, or just people watch. You can also feel bad about your lack of sun protection compared to everyone else wearing hats, visors, umbrellas, etc. P.S. There are fountain shows in the summer time.
PLEASE, I mean I BEG YOU… Do not leave South Korea without watching at least one baseball game. I am the least sport-y people you will ever meet, and this was the most entertaining moment for me in South Korea other than dancing on a truck with the wrong political party. We are talking rice cakes, we are talking some intense cheerleaders, we are talking a personal announcer just for our side, we are talking games for the audience, etc. The fun didn’t stop, and I didn’t want it to end. Do we even know who won or lost? Nope. Who cares. Go Lions?!
Vendors that will vend you anything your heart desires. Street food galore, and 10-packs of Korean facemasks for just $2. You’re welcome.
An hour outside of downtown Daegu, we visited for Buddha’s birthday and were all so enamored by the beauty and spirituality this area encompasses.
Need to go on a hike, or get away from the yellow dust? Then this is the place for you. A gorgeous hike, full of secret paths to Buddha statues and temples, and a cable car that leads you to a gorgeous view of the city and an awesome restaurant. You can also people watch at their outdoor gym. No regrets.