Hiking through Korea’s Stunning Mountain Scenery

Korea’s mountainous landscape provides some of the world’s best hiking terrain and the views are a definite visual treat for the eyes. Almost 70% of this country offers unparalleled walking routes and along the way you can view cloud-covered peaks, city views and spectacular national parks.

Sturdy hiking boots for women and men will be required on these treks around one of the world’s most beautiful countries.

Image by Arnaud DG, licensed by Creative Commons

Jirisan National Park

Jirisan is South Korea’s largest national park stretching for over 484 square meters and home to many of the highest mountain peaks in the country. Cheonwangbong is a natural draw for those with a sense of adventure and this immense mountain peaks at 1,915m. The Baekdu Daegan is a 1700Km ridge but the 40Km Jirisan route will include 21 mountain peaks, most of which stretch over 1000m. Koreans consider this to be a sacred area that can turn a fool into a wise person if they stay long enough and it will take approximately three days to cover this part of the route.

An always popular park

Daecheongbong in the Seoraksan National Park is a favorite with hikers who are testing out their mountaineering skills. This 1708m mountain can be ascended in around three hours and provides superb views of the immense valley below. A slightly taxing hike in the same park is the 876 meter Ulsan Bawi, which offers stunning sea views to the east. This park is a definite favorite with hikers thanks to the panoramas, dense forest trails and cloud-covered peaks.

A view of Seoul

Seoul offers seven mountains with Baegundae proving the highest at 836m. The hiking trail to Baegundae is a well-used route and although steep should not be too taxing even for novice hikers. The views from the summit of the surrounding mountains and the city itself are nothing short of breath-taking and the air here is incredibly clean, fresh and invigorating.

Jeju Island

Jeju is a volcanic island that lies in the Korea Strait and is home to the idyllic Hallasan National Park. It’s here you can find the Seongpanak Trail (9.6Km), which takes five hours to complete but will reward you with the serene Baengnokdam crater lake as well as the Saraoreum Lake, which can be reached on the return visit. The majestic 1,905m Hallasan volcano is of course one of the main attractions and this entire area can be hiked throughout the year, even during the snowy winter months.

These are just a small selection of the Korea’s many walking and hiking trails. There’s some magnificent terrain waiting to be explored that will provide you with an alternative view of this always fascinating country.