Saturday, June 22, 2024

Climbing in Seoul: The place to Go & What to Carry


When you concentrate on mountain climbing, plenty of locations come to thoughts – from the Alps to the Himalayas of Nepal. However have you ever ever thought of South Korea? Climbing in Seoul is a singular expertise, full with gorgeous views, straightforward accessibility, and all method of terrains. Nicole, our Journey Excursions Gross sales Advisor, gave us the lowdown on the perfect spots and high suggestions for mountain climbing in Seoul.

I had absolutely the pleasure of dwelling in Seoul for 2 and a half years, and one in every of my absolute favorite actions to do on the weekend was to climb one of many many gorgeous mountains which might be situated inside and round Seoul. In case you are planning on spending time within the metropolis and are up for a hike, maintain studying for some nice suggestions! 

Enjoyable reality: Mountains cowl 70% of South Korea’s territory!

The place to Hike:

Seoul has quite a few mountains in and round itself, so there are tons to select from. They provide a number of trails for all skills, so whether or not you’re a newbie in search of an excellent stroll, or a mountain climbing professional in search of a problem, there will likely be a mountain for you! 

hiking in seoulhiking in seoul

Namsan

Altitude: 270m

In the event you’re new to mountain climbing, that is the place it would be best to begin. Namsan affords a nice hike as much as the enduring Namsan Tower. You’ll be able to observe the primary path up and attain the summit inside an hour – there’s additionally a cable automobile and buses, which you’ll be able to take up and down the mountain if you’re trying to relaxation your legs! Namsan is situated centrally in Seoul, with Myeongdong being the closest subway station. It’s a tough one so that you can miss, as Namsan Tower stands tall at its peak. It’s the proper introduction to the spectacular views that mountain climbing in Seoul can give you!

hiking in Seoulhiking in Seoul

Achasan 

Altitude: 295.7m

Followers of BTS might recognise this mountain from when RM and V misplaced a problem on RUN BTS. Nonetheless, even if you happen to’re not a Okay-Pop fan, this mountain nonetheless makes for an ideal climb and affords improbable panoramic views of Seoul. It is a comparatively straightforward and low-altitude climb. Solely 40 minutes from Achasan Station, right here you too can discover Goguryeojeong Pavillion and nice views of the town. This implies you don’t even must go to the height of the mountain to get the views! You’ll be able to then determine if you wish to proceed the path or flip again and head again down. Achasan is situated within the east aspect of Seoul, not too removed from Seoul Forest or Seoul Kids’s Grand Park Zoo. 

After your hike, if you happen to fancy going someplace vigorous, you may wish to head to Konkuk College Station, the place you will discover infinite bars, eating places, cafes and retailers. You’ll have undoubtedly earned an excellent meal and a refreshing drink after your hike! 

hiking in seoulhiking in seoul

Yongmasan

Altitude: 348m 

Linked to Achasan by the Seoul path, you’ll discover Yongmasan. A better mountain with fantastic views (and plenty of stairs alongside the way in which) assure you can be working these legs! There’s an choice to start out a path from Yongmasan Waterfall Park, the place you’ll be able to benefit from the views of the waterfall and watch folks try the climbing partitions that are additionally situated there.

On the way in which down, we ended up on a route that was fairly difficult and steep, so it’s value doing a little additional analysis on the perfect trails down earlier than heading up the mountain! After getting made it again down the mountain, it’s possible you’ll fancy leaping on the subway to Seoul Forest and Seongsu Cafe Road, the place you’ll discover some a lot wanted refreshments. 

hiking in seoulhiking in seoul

Gwanaksan

Altitude: 632m

There are numerous trails to observe up this mountain, with some being simpler than others – so it’s undoubtedly one to analysis beforehand! 

Situated in southern Seoul, we adopted the route from Sadang Station, passing temples, sculptures and even some army bunkers en route. Our objective was to succeed in the remainder space, as we knew after this level it was going to be barely too difficult for our means. In the event you’re a pro-hiker, this might be the one for you! Observe the various picket and steel staircases and take within the view of the town. It’s occasions like this once you realise simply how huge Seoul is – and the way wonderful the panorama appears, the place the buildings and the mountains meet. 

hiking in seoulhiking in seoul

Bukhansan 

Altitude: 836m 

This was the hardest hike I did in Seoul, however one which was undoubtedly well worth the sweat. The views once you stand on the peak are spectacular, the surroundings alongside the way in which is gorgeous, and also you’ll uncover hidden gems inside Bukhansan Nationwide Park. In the event you’re following the Baegundae Peak path, be warned that the ultimate half just isn’t for the faint-hearted, as you’ll observe many stairs, holding on to the fastened rope for assist, as you climb the steepest a part of the mountain. On the high of the mountain, you’ll discover a big rock face to sit down, admire the view, and revel in a nicely deserved snack. 

Bukhansan is situated north-west of Seoul and is definitely a hike you’ll want a complete day for!

hiking in seoulhiking in seoul

Seoraksan 

Altitude: 1,708m

Situated outdoors of Seoul (however a part of one in every of our South Korea tour itineraries), Seoraksan Nationwide Park is house to one of the spectacular mountains within the nation. Right here, you’ll discover Buddhist Temples, all method of wildlife, and a cable automobile that may take you as much as one of many peaks of Seoraksan if you happen to don’t fancy a hike. There may be an entry price to the park – however if you’re collaborating in our 12-day tour, that is included in your journey! 

There are numerous size hikes to select from, relying on how a lot time it’s a must to spend within the park, your mountain climbing means, and what you wish to see when you stroll. 

  • Choice 1: You’ll be able to take the cable automobile, earlier than a 20 minute, mild hike to the height.
  • Choice 2: Hike via Bisundae and Keumganggul Cave, on a pleasant stroll that takes round 3 hours. 
  • Choice 3: Hike via the Park’s gorgeous waterfalls (Yukdam, Biryong and Towangsung Falls) on a trek that takes round 2 hours. 
  • Choice 4: Hike to Ulsanbawi Rock, on a testing 4 hour hike that can reward you with really spectacular views. 

After your hike, you’ll be able to head into Sokcho City to seek out recent seafood and soju, and toast to a profitable hike!

Honourable Mentions:

Daemosan

Altitude: 293m 

A small mountain situated south of the river, I had the pleasure of dwelling 5 minutes from Daemonsan, so I managed to do that hike a couple of occasions. With views of Gangnam, Lotte Tower and extra, it’s an exquisite mountain to hike you probably have a free afternoon. 

Inwangsan

Altitude: 338m

It is a hike to do if you’re trying to see a few of the finest sights of Seoul alongside the way in which. Following the Seoul Fortress Wall, you may even see glimpses of Gyeongbokgung Palace, Namsan Tower and the President’s Blue Home. 

Enjoyable reality: Did you discover that every one the names of the mountains finish with ‘san’? Effectively ‘Mountain’ in Korean is ‘San’ ( 산 ).

hiking in seoulhiking in seoul

The way to get there:

When the town is filled with mountains, it isn’t too difficult to seek out them, and for a lot of of those hikes in Seoul, some trails could be discovered solely 5-10 minutes from a subway exit.For navigating round Seoul, I might advocate downloading the app Naver Map or Kakao Map. Each have English and make discovering your manner across the metropolis a lot simpler! (I might additionally advocate downloading Kakao Metro to assist navigate the metro system.)

hiking in seoulhiking in seoul

What to pack:

It’s vital to be ready when mountain climbing in Seoul, particularly if you’re trying to courageous a mountain like Bukhansan. You’ll want to keep in mind the next:

  • Backpack or a cross-body bag: A small bag that’s snug to hold. 
  • Comfy sneakers and appropriate clothes: These hikes don’t require full mountain climbing boots, nevertheless, do be certain that your sneakers are snug and supportive – with good grip. Dressing for the event is at all times vital, because the climate in Korea can change relying on once you go to.
  • Water: There’s nothing worse than working out of water midway up the mountain! You’ll want to deliver an excellent sized bottle (or two) and maintain hydrated as you stroll. 
  • Snacks: Once you’ve labored up a sweat, caught your breath, and admired the view, you may discover that you’re prepared for a snack! Chances are you’ll discover some folks promoting ramen or ice cream on the mountain, however if you wish to be ready with your individual, head to the comfort retailer earlier than you begin the hike, and choose up some scrumptious snacks like gimbap, candy potato, or potato chips. 

 

So there you might have it! Climbing in Seoul is an incredible technique to get to know the town and its wonderful environment – and with all these mountains to select from, you’ll you’ll want to discover a path for you. In the event you’d prefer to be taught extra concerning the time we spend in Seoul and Seoraksan, head to our tour itinerary right here.

 

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