Jeolla Journals

There and Back Again: South West Korea

Best of IgoUgo

A travel journal to Jeolla by michaelhudson

Naejangsan National Park Photo, Jeolla, South Korea More Photos
Quote: The two Jeolla Provinces are Korea's forgotten lands, underdeveloped hotbeds of political dissent and fractious regionalism.

There and Back Again: South West Korea

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Boseong Photo, Jeolla, South Korea
Quote:
Aside from the destinations listed in the journal, the four major cities of Gwangju, Mokpo, Yeosu and Jeonju all merit at least a day long visit. In North Jeolla, don’t miss the soaring peaks, hot springs, and Indiana Jones-style bridges at Daedunsan Provincial Park, or Muju, Korea’s southernmost ski resort, in the midst of Deogyusan National Park. Jeonju makes the best base, with easy access to Moaksan and Maisan provincial parks. South Jeolla’s main draw card is its indented coastline. Jindo and Hongdo are the best known islands, though the marine based Dadohae Haesand National Park has to keep you occupied for weeks. The best time to visit Jindo is in March, when a near 3km l...Read More

Boseong Tea Plantation and Hot Springs

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Attraction

Boseong Tea Plantation Photo, Jeolla, South Korea
Quote:
You won’t find the tiny coastal town of Boseong in many guidebooks to Korea, and it’ll likely take you a while just to find it on a map, but the day I spent there was one of the most memorable of my three years in the country. The main attraction is the Daehan Dawon Tea Plantation, which harvests and packages over 70% of the country’s green tea. Local buses wind their way out of town through terraced hills first cultivated by the Japanese, stopping at the entrance to the plantation on their way to Yulpo. A track through two straight rows of fir trees leads past a hut selling green tea flavoured products ranging from noodles and rice cakes to ice cream, soap to hot pepper paste. The pr...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 17, 2004

Naejangsan National Park

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Attraction

Naejangsan National Park Photo, Jeolla, South Korea
Quote:
One of the smallest and least well known of Korea’s national parks, Naejangsan’s sixteen peaks rival Seoraksan as the most popular place to view the peninsula’s annual autumnal riot of colour, the irregular dots of orange persimmon fruit covered by blood red maple and a profusion of shades of yellow, brown, and green. The park entrance is a leisurely half hour stroll from Wuhwajeong Pavilion, set in the centre of a large pond overhung with maple and willow trees. A cable car glides past jagged rock formations and puffs of cloud-like tree cover en route to an octagonal viewing pavilion that looks out over a stone amphitheatre of forested peaks like Seoraebong, which juts up and above t...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 17, 2004

Hwaeomsa Temple

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Attraction

Hwaeomsa Temple Photo, Jeolla, South Korea
Quote:
Jirisan National Park spreads over three provinces and is split into three main sections, each with its own major temple. Hwaeomsa, founded in 544, destroyed five times and last rebuilt in the mid-seventeenth century, is wedged between the towns of Namwon and Gurye, and is best reached by bus from the former if you’re coming from Seoul. The temple is a fifteen-minute walk from the bus stop at the small park village, a concrete sprawl of shops, restaurants, accommodation, and, somewhat bizarrely, a neon-fronted N.A.S.A. Nightclub. Follow the main road up to the park entrance, where admission to the park and temple costs 3,000 won. Entering the main compound through...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 17, 2004

Maisan Provincial Park

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Attraction

Maisan Provincial Park Photo, Jeolla, South Korea
Quote:
If I were ever to compile a list of the top ten sights in Korea, Maisan would be very near the top. Located a few miles from the agricultural town of Jinan, it’s the site of Tapsa, probably the most unique temple in the country. Jinan is afforded an unusual charm on Saturday mornings by market stalls seemingly taking up every inch of its pavement space, tattered canvas stretching over plastic tubs full of squid, tables piled with mushrooms and endless racks of cheap clothing. The bus station is crowded with elderly women in headscarves sitting on old newspapers laid out across dirty cement; old men hunch in small circles smoking cigarettes, and I’m the only person on the five-minute ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 17, 2004

Daedunsan Provincial Park

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Attraction

Daedunsan Photo, Jeolla, South Korea
Quote:
Stretched across the border of North Jeolla and South Chungchong provinces, Daedunsan Provincial Park is roughly equidistant to Jeonju and Daejeon, making a wonderful day trip from either. Its eponymous highest peak rises to 878 metres, the summit reachable by a two hour hike up a narrow valley or a box like cable car. Buses from Daejeon’s Seobu or Jeonju’s Inter City bus terminals terminate at the small tourist village around the Daedunsan Tourist Hotel, which is connected to the cable car station by a steep road that starts at the park entrance before cutting sharply past souvenir stands and one of Korea’s ubiquitous Viking Boat rides. The views from the cable car are magnifi...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on September 3, 2004

About the Writer

michaelhudson

michaelhudson
Jarrow, Tyne & Wear, United Kingdom