How is Ulsan to live in? I am being offered a placement at CDI in Ulsan, but I've heard both the school and city are pretty terrible. Any feedback would be appreciated!
I can't say much about CDI, but I can look into it for you. As for the city being terrible, I hardly think so. The people who usually think that are ones who were hoping for Seoul or Busan and "settled" Ulsan. I guess if you compare Ulsan to Seoul.... it would measure up but it is hardly anywhere near "terrible"
First, life here is what YOU make. Sit in your apartment all weekend complaining to friends back home about not having friends here or how you can't find the organic handmade vegan sausage that you used to get in hipstertown USA and then yeah I guess it could be hard time.
However Ulsan has a lot to offer it is just that a lot of new kids don't give it half a chance because they have their eyes set on different places. Ulsan has a decent beach surrounded by western bars, restaurants and cafes. The downtown core has some great bars with a lively open mic/music scene. There are decent shops and it even has a Costco to get your western food fix. Not to mention the KTX bullet train station.
There are scenic trails that follow the river, gyms to workout in and buses that can take you to some great locations for skiing. If you have to get out then you are only 45 minutes from Haeundae Beach in Busan and a a few hours from Seoul.
To be honest I am not really too sure why people complain about Ulsan so much. Yeah there are better places but there are a ton of worse places in Korea to teach. The thing you have to keep in mind and this goes for any places that you travel to work in, is that it takes some time to get used to and time to adjust.
Most people that complain about Ulsan are the people that want everything handed to them when they arrive. Ulsan is what you make it. Get out and do something. You will find that a lot of people like myself really like living here.