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Page 1 of 980 Older Full Trip Report
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13 April 2021

My 6 favourite hikes near Seoul in South Korea

Public transport only, no car or taxi required!

Koreans love hiking. It is the national past time. Hiking in Korea, more specifically South Korea, is very very convenient. It is not uncommon for there to be a bullet train station in a national park!
Most hiking locations have a street full of hiking shops in the park entrance. Because of the popularity, it is probably a good idea to avoid weekends and holidays, unless you enjoy hiking with others. On a weekday there will often be retired folks out hiking who meet up and climb a mountain every day. It is great to see.

Right now I cannot travel anywhere to hike, I miss it, so instead, I will make a list to remind myself of great hikes I have done near Seoul.

Also, Seoul is by no means the only place to go hiking in Korea, the whole country is full of great opportunities to find a cool mountain to climb. I also have lots of hikes to read about on this site in and around Gwangju, Daegu, Daejeon and Busan. Like Seoul, I went to them all via public transport.
I hope to be back in Korea as soon as COVID allows to find more mountains!

Oh and a reminder, the list here is just a taste, each of the linked posts has more detail on how to get there, what to see, and at least 10 photos each of the hike.

6. Cheonggyesan via Maebong - Cheonggyesan station - 3 April 2019

lists - In Sixth place we have the 2 mountains of Cheongyesan and Maebong. This one is really easy to get to and can probably be approached from 2 different s

In Sixth place we have the 2 mountains of Cheongyesan and Maebong. This one is really easy to get to and can probably be approached from 2 different subway lines, although I chose to attack it from Cheonggyesan station. With a bit of planning I think it would be easy to hike over to Gwacheon station.
The views were not great but the trail is great. Parts of it are even carpeted. There are a lot of different hiking trails in this area. I did not see any temples myself but the map tells me there are some in the area. I did however see some military installations and a shrine to a trainee paratrooper plane crash in the 80's.
Click here to check out lots of purple and yellow flowers while climbing over a couple of mountains.


5. Suraksan - Danggogae subway station - 1 April 2019

lists - In 5th place we have the lesser known hike of Suraksan. This one has great views and deserves more attention. The walk to the trail head from Danggoga

In 5th place we have the lesser known hike of Suraksan. This one has great views and deserves more attention.
The walk to the trail head from Danggogae station is picturesque. At the time of writing, Dangoggae is the last station on the subway line, but who knows maybe it will be extended.
A temple and sign boards filled with flyers advertising hiking tours makes it easy to identify the trail head. Then it is amazing rocky scenery all the way, with great views of the city.
I continued on down the other side to the middle of nowhere which resulted in a long walk around a road past military bases to get back to where I started. There are probably better ways to come back!
Click here to appreciate a great rocky view.


4. Dobongsan - Bukhansan National Park - Dobongsan station - 24 March 2015

lists - Coming in at number 4 is the first of 2 entries for the ever popular Bukhansan National Park. Dobongsan is so popular it is actually on 2 subway lines

Coming in at number 4 is the first of 2 entries for the ever popular Bukhansan National Park. Dobongsan is so popular it is actually on 2 subway lines.
This hike is very popular, and quite dangerous, with a few areas where you swing from wire ropes. Bring gloves. It is popular with rock climbers although no gear is necessary for the casual hiker to appreciate the sights, but do be careful. Some of the most dangerous parts are optional with a less dangerous path to take instead.

When I went parts of the hike were closed due to falling rocks, the park rangers were on top of the situation and helpful hikers went out of their way to tell me in English what was going on.
There are also shrines and even a golden Buddha to appreciate along the trail.
Click here to grip onto wire ropes and try not to plummet.


3. Baegundae - Ssangmun subway station - 22 March 2015

lists - Continuing on from the above, here is another hike in the Bukhansan National Park. It has been a few years so I am not entirely sure if I got off at S

Continuing on from the above, here is another hike in the Bukhansan National Park.
It has been a few years so I am not entirely sure if I got off at Ssangmun or Banghak station, both look to be about the same distance from the trail head.
The subway is not too close to the hike, but I always prefer to walk through the streets to get to my hike rather than squeeze onto a bus, who knows what you might see along the way?

The hike itself is very good, although my view was spoiled a bit by a yellow sand dust storm as the photos show. Along the way there are shrines, and a couple of sections of an ancient wall (most likely reconstructed).
Click here to gawk at an ancient wall.


2. Ingwangsan - Muakjae subway station - 2 April 2019

lists - This one has a great view and a lot of history. The main part of this hike is very popular and can be approached from the main part of the city next t

This one has a great view and a lot of history. The main part of this hike is very popular and can be approached from the main part of the city next to Gyeongbokgung palace. I chose to start from Muakjae station, hike over a hill and then down the main wall back into town.
Apparently this whole area used to be off limits due to previous North Korean spy activity and because it overlooks the Blue House, where the president lives. There is a lot of security keeping an eye on you when you are here, but the views are extaordinary!
Click here to hike over a hill and look at the Blue House.


1. Gwanaksan - Sadang subway station - 9 April 2019

lists - And finally in first place, Gwanaksan. I liked this one so much I have done it twice, once in 2011 and then again in 2019. The 2019 one is listed here

And finally in first place, Gwanaksan. I liked this one so much I have done it twice, once in 2011 and then again in 2019.
The 2019 one is listed here, but you can easily find the 2011 entry by using my tag searching system for Gwanaksan.
In 2019 I approached from Sadang station, walked over the top and down the other side to Gwacheon, but there are probably 10 different ways to appreciate Gwanaksan, and I intend to do some more of them in the future.
It is a very popular hike, and there is lots to see along the way including war time tunnels and bunkers.
Click here to appreciate everything Gwanaksan has to offer.


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