Hi, it’s me Marimonda!
Today, I’d like to take you to Jeju Island, the biggest island in Korea. This is also a place loved by most Koreans with its unique features and food. If you’re visiting Korea for a short amount time, it may difficult to visit here. However, it’s worth to squeeze this magical island into your agenda since you would experience different landscape and culture from other part of Korea.
HOW TO GET THERE
Jeju Island is located in the southern area of Korea. It takes about 1 hour and 20 minutes by flight from Seoul (Gimpo airport). The price of the ticket varies from 10,000 won to 150,000 won. Since it’s one of the popular tourist destinations, the price is really depending on the time you purchase the ticket. Thus, it is recommendable to search for the ticket as soon as you decide to visit this island.
You may go to cities with port and take ship, but it’s not comfy and time consuming. Moreover, it’s not cheap (in most cases, it’s more expensive than a flight).
THINGS TO DO
Well… there are so many places to visit and food to try in this magical island. It’s full of tourist destinations.
Mountain Halla – National Park
Climbing Mt. Halla is probably a must-thing to do when you visit Jeju Island. This volcanic mountain is located in the heart of the city, so you can see it anywhere in the island. It added its name on the UNESCO Natural Reserve in 2002 and Unesco World Natural Heritage in 2007. Since it is the highest mountain in South Korea (1950m), it has rich biodiversity of fauna and flora. Also this is the one of the two mountains that has crater lake in South Korea. One is in Ulleung-do (another island in the East sea), and there’s one more in North Korea.
The entrance is free of charge and seven hiking courses are available. The opening hour varies depending on the season, but for winter you can begin your hiking from 6 a.m.
Address : san 220-1, Sanghyo-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju
Bijarim is mini forest with more than 2,800 of torreya trees. This is the world largest single-species forest. Bijarim has two short trekking courses which take around two hours. The air was unbelievably clean, so I felt much more energetic after the walking in the forest. Bijarim opens between 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. but you can enter by 5 p.m. The entrance costs 3,000 won for adult. If you need a short break from the city, Bijarim would be a perfect place for you.
Address : 55, Bijasup-gil, Gujwa-eup, Jeju-si, Jeju-do
Columnar Joint (Joosangjeoli)
Since Jeju island is a volcanic island, it is very common to see columnar joint around shores of the island. The harmony of series of the black columnar joints and the blue sea is surreal. I couldn’t take my eyes off from the view. Unfortunately, many parts of the viewpoints were under construction by end of the year (2019). Still, it was gorgeous. The entrance fee is 2,000 won and it welcomes its guest from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Address : 2763 Joongmoon-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do
U-do is an island near Jeju-do. The name comes after its shape a cow. There are eight viewpoints in this island and peanut ice cream is famous. You need to take ship to get in this island and it takes about 20 mins from Jeju island. The ticket costs 5,000 won. You can walk around the island, but it is common to ride a motorcycle, bicycle or bus to look around the island. It has stunning views for sure, but everything in this island is quite expensive. Jeju-do already has a high price range, but this island is way more expensive than other parts of the island.
Address : Samyang gosumulgil 1, Udo-myeon, Jeju
Jeju Folk Village
Jeju Folk Village will offer you the opportunity to go back to the past. Wandering around the folk village, you would be able to see how the life was in this island in the past. There are also some traditional games that you can play with your family and friends such as spinning tops or marbles. It opens at 8:30 a.m. and closes between 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. The entrance ticket costs 11,000 won.
Address : 631-34, Minsokhaean-ro, Pyoseon-myeon, Seogwipo-si website
Nexon Computer Museum
Do you like arcade games? Then, Nexon Computer Museum is absolutely for you. This museum exhibits some old computers and magazines on computers. Also you can get a brief idea on programming coding. On the basement, there is an arcade where you can enjoy games. Due to its location, it seems like it’s loved by students who visit the island as a field trip to kill the time before the flight. I was a bit disappointed the ticket was quite expensive (8,000 won) and there are more things to do in Jeju than playing video games. Though it will take you to the past and you may not be aware of time. It’s rather a video arcade than a museum. The museum opens at 10 a.m. and closes at 6 p.m. everyday except Monday.
Address : 3198-8, 1100-ro, Jeju-si website
In many places in the island, you can ride a horse. It’s short and expensive but can be an unforgettable experience. The budget would be 10,000 won +@, going up the hill costs around 20,000 won +@ for 10-15 minutes.
If you’re into a special experience, a submarine tour would be a good option for you. You enjoy fish and corals under the sea. The tour was quite simple and it lasts for about 30 mins. Since I am afraid of scuba diving, I didn’t have opportunities to see deep down in the water. I took a submarine 10 years ago in Jeju, and t seems like the price hasn’t changed yet. It costs around 50,000 won back then and now.
Mandarin Picking Activities
Jeju island is known for its mandarin. Thus, it’s easy to find mandarin orchard in the town. You can participate fruit picking activities with a small cost ( about 10,000 won). Tasting mandarin is included (you can try it as much as you want while picking up the fruits) and by the end of the activity you will take a bag of mandarin you picked up.
Unfortunately, I visited Jeju only for 3 nights and 4 days. Also since I went there in November, I couldn’t enjoy its beaches. Hopefully, I could come back here again during summer.
Enjoy your travel with Marimonda. See you soon 🙂