The roads leading to rivers, lakes, and seas are crowded with vacationers in the summer, but in the fall, the roads leading to the mountains become quite busy. Korea’s best autumn travel destinations are the mountains colored with autumn foliages. The best time to see the autumn leaves change color is from mid-October to mid-November.
- Seoraksan Moutain
When Korean’s think of autumn leaves, Seoraksan Mountain is the first thing that comes to most people’s minds. Seoraksan is called Korea’s “Cleopatra” because of the beautifully colored autumn leaves. It is also where Fall’s seasonal changes can be first seen. Here, the leaves begin to change color, and the crimson color makes the entire Seoraksan Mountain looks as if it is on fire.
There are various hiking paths for you to choose from. The Daeseung Falls, also known as the longevity valley and the Jeombongsang Jujeongol, which reaches from the Osaek (5 colors) Springs offers the best view.
Seoraksan takes about 5 hours by bus from Seoul. (Click here for more info)
Directions to Seoraksan Moutain:
1. From Sokcho or Sokcho Express Bus Terminal, take city bus No. 7 or 7-1 and get off at the entrance of Mt. Seoraksan (30 minute ride).
2. From Sokcho Intercity Bus Terminal, taxi takes 15-20 minute to the entrance of Mt. Seoraksan.
- Odaesan Mountain
Odaesan Mountain is especially famous for its beautiful autumn season as its leaves begin changing colors as soon as Seoraksan Mountain leaves change. The Odaesan autumn scenery reaches its peak in mid-October. Odaesan’s surrounding attractions include Samcheok and Yangyang’s Hajodae Pavilion and Naksansa Temple, the film locations of the movie ‘April Snow’. Other attractions include Gyeongpodae and Seoraksan. Odaesan is famous for Hanjeongsik (traditional Korean table d’hote) and Bibimbap served with wild herbs found on Odaesan Mountain. In addition, because of its close location to Gangneung, Odaesan offers fresh seafood restaurants. (Click here for more info)
Directions to Odaesan Moutain:
From Dong Seoul BusTerminal take a bus to Jinbu (06:32-20:05, depart every 30~40 min, ride 2 hrs 15 mins).
Take a bus bound for Mt. Odaesan or Woljeongsa & Naksansa at Jinbu Bus Terminal (12 times a day, 15 min ride).
- Jirisan Mountain
Jirisan’s autumn scenery begins in mid-October. At the peak of Jirisan, the crimson leaves are barely visible through the thin layer of clouds but are a must-see. The Piagol Valley’s autumn scenery is noted as one of the top ten things to see at Jirisan. During the peak of the fall season, the Piagol Valley Crimson Leaves Festival is held. (Click here for more info)
Directions to Jirisan Moutain:
From Gurye Train Station (Jeollanam-do Province), take City Bus bound for Gurye-eup. Transfer to the bus bound for Yeongoksa Temple or Piagol Valley at Gurye Bus Terminal (first bus 6:40 / last bus 19:40 / 1 hour interval / 30 minute ride).
- Naejangsan Mountain
Naejangsan is the second most sought out mountain in the fall season following Seoraksan, with its crimson beauty reaching its peak in late October. Naejangsan has nutmeg trees of more than 600 years old and colonies of the natural treasure Daphniphyllum, which add to the beauty of the mountain scenery.
Surrounding attractions within a 1-hour radius of Naejangsan are Hanok Villages in Jeonju, Soswaewon and Sigyeongjeong in Damnyang. There are many traditional folk restaurants in the surrounding areas of Naejangsan. (Click here for more info)
Directions to Naejangsan Mountain:
From Jeongeup Bus Terminal, take a bus No.171 headed to Mt. Naejangsan National Park.(Bus runs every 20 min)
Taxi takes 20 minutes.
2011 Visit Korea Year Special Events during Autumn
Besides checking out the autumn mountain scenery in Korea, you may also wish to participate in one of the 2011 Visit Korea Year Special Events to learn more about the culture of Korea.
- Gyeongju Hallyu Dream Festival (September) – Fans can see and enjoy dramas, fashion, music and various other aspects of the rapidly growing hallyu culture in the historical city of Gyeongju.
- Jeongju Korea Food & Tourism Festival (October) – This is a feast of Korean food held in Keongju. Visitors can experience the richness of traditional delicacies amid the famous Jeongju Hanok Village.
- Busan International Fireworks Festival (October) – Stunning fireworks, state-of-the-art laser lights and loud and exciting music come together to illuminate the night sky of Gwangandaegyo Bridge.
Formula 1 Korea Grand Prix (14 – 16 Oct 2011)
The Formula 1 Korea Grand Prix will be held in the Sampo District, Jeollanam-do from 14 October to 16 October 2011. (Click here to read more about the Formula 1 Korea Grand Prix)
Purchase a free & easy package or air ticket with these 4 participating travel agencies: Chan Brothers, MISA Travel, CTC and Price Breaker and you will get an exclusive free Korea Travel pack that includes:
- Free Korea pass with credits worth KRW 20,000
- Korea Pass Information Booklet
- 24k Gold-plated Mobile-phone radiation protector sticker featuring Hallyu Star Rain
- Korea Travel Guide Book & Tourist Map
- One Lucky Draw Coupon
- Korea Travel Guidebook
Source of information and photos for Autumn Getaway Spots in Korea: Official Site of Korea Tourism Org