KOREAlity or Fiction? (#1) The Goblin in Québec

Welcome to this new series in which fact and fiction collide! Each month, a cultural aspect of Korea will be covered through K-dramas and you’ll be asked to tell truth from fantasy. Are you up to the challenge?

The Goblin [도깨비] cast and crew made an improbable visit to Québec City to shoot a few episodes of the popular drama. The scenes starring Gong Yoo and Kim Go-Eun show some of Québec’s most iconic sights. Can you guess which of the following belong to reality and which ones have been created for the drama?

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Château Frontenac Brass Mailbox

During one of her visits to the famous hotel, Ji Eun-Tak drops a letter into an old mailbox. One can wonder if the letter would ever reach its destination in real life. Mail drop… or just a prop?


The mailbox is real and working! A trap can be found on each floor for the guests to slip their precious correspondence. You can even buy your postcards directly from the Château’s lobby. As you may have guessed, you won’t see Kim Shin around, but rumours say the ghost of Count Frontenac still haunts the place.

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Parc du Bastion de la Reine Cemetery

We know that Kim Shin’s tombstone is fake, but what about the place of sepulture where the scenes were filmed? Located next to the Citadelle of Québec, the oldest military building in Canada, the cemetery offers to those who lie beneath a great view over the Château and the city. Too good to be true?


The cemetery isn’t real. The park is the glacis of the Citadelle, founded more than five hundred years after Kim Shin’s epic battle. No one is buried there, but remains of the old fortress have been discovered.

Old Québec Steak Restaurant

Ji Eun-Tak and Kim Shin can be regularly spotted in a steak restaurant. One would guess that the popularity of this classy steak and grill rocketed after the drama was aired. If the restaurant truly exists, that is.


The steak restaurant doesn’t exist, but you can go to Cafe Zino in Paju, South Korea, which has been revealed to be the location where the scenes were shot. A bit of a stretch, even for a hungry stomach.

The Christmas Shop

What about the now mythical Christmas shop in front of which Ji Eun-Tak anxiously waits for her Goblin husband? Any chance you could drop by to buy a few decorations before the holidays?


You’ll find the boutique in Old Québec, across from the cathedral. The store is exactly as you can imagine: magical, sparkly and friendly. From time to time, you might even see fans taking selfies in the store.

The Red Door

A mysterious red door allows Ji Eun-Tak to follow the Goblin to the other side of the world. Bystanders will now pay closer attention when visiting the streets of Québec, hoping to see Gong Yoo barge in (or is it just me?). But is the door even there?


It is. The red door is located in an area called Petit Champlain, known for its charm and narrow streets. It belongs to the Petit Champlain Theatre, which opened its doors in the middle of XIXth century. For those of you who would like to take a rapid trip to Seoul: think again. After verification, the door actually leads to the theatre’s administrative office.


Have you ever been to Québec City? Which place would you like to (re)visit after watching the drama?

Photo credits: mago photos

bonjour-marie info

Categories: 2017

7 replies »

  1. Ha! This is a great post! (I will confess, I had intended to write about the Goblin in Quebec City myself, though from a different angle.) I knew that the graveyard was not real and that the Christmas store was. (We have one in Old Montreal, too.) Did not know about the other things, so thank you for that information. Somehow, I am glad that the red door is real, even if Gong Yoo won’t be walking through it any time soon. (Sniff…tears…) Sort of assumed that the restaurant was real, but would NOT have guessed that it was in Korea!

    • Haha, gotcha then! ;) I thought the steak restaurant was real too until I made some research. I would have liked to go there though… the interior is so classy and nice.

  2. C’est toujours aussi rafraîchissant de te lire Marie. Même en n’ayant pas vu la série, on se prend au jeu et on découvre des anecdotes inédites. J’ai vraiment adoré ton texte.

  3. Bonjour Marie. Où peut-on visionner la série? C’est intriguant…Tu piques ma curiosité!

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