70% of Korea is mountainous, which means that it's rife with hiking trails, from easy paths suitable for leisurely walks to more advanced trails for serious hiking enthusiasts. Are you a beginner hiker? Don't fret. There's no shortage of trails in Korea that can meet your desired level of difficulty according to your condition or mood. Let's explore some of Korea's finest hiking trails and see if some of them are right for you.

    1

    Hallasan

    A treasure trove of vibrant local flora

    Mt. Halla, the tallest mountain in South Korea, is known as a treasure trove of local flora for good reason. It'll treat you to a variety of flora according to the elevation. Visits can be sometimes limited or restricted for environmental protection and safety, but if you're lucky, you can see some fantastic scenery that you simply can't see anywhere else, which is why people choose to return here again and again. It is not an easy climb, but there are tours geared toward children and the elderly. Be sure to check in advance before arriving.

    Asukoht: San 220-1, Sanghyo-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

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    2

    Seoraksan

    A different look for each season

    At the summit of Mt. Seorak, enjoy a panoramic view of the East Sea beyond Sokcho. In spring and summer, walk through the lush forests blooming with buds and take in the sights and sounds of valley streams. The vivid colours of changing leaves in autumn and captivating white snow in winter make Mt. Seorak a fabulous place to visit anytime throughout the year. Cable car rides are also available, so you can enjoy everything it has to offer, including the many nearby tourist spots, even if you're not quite up for a hike.

    Asukoht: 833 Seoraksan-ro, Sokcho-si, Gangwon-do, South Korea

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    3

    Jeju Olle Trail

    Where the whole walking boom began

    Olle means "narrow alley" in Jeju dialect and is a word that has become so famous that nearly everyone in Korea knows its meaning. The various routes of Jeju Olle Trail can be found all throughout the island, each offering the people walking on the paths a different side of Jeju to be appreciated and cherished. The well-developed paths are actively managed and are available in various levels of difficulty, so even beginners are encouraged to give them a try. Trekking up shallow inclines or walking leisurely while admiring the seascapes should be fun whether tackled alone or in a group.

    foto: Teddy0408 (CC BY-SA 3.0) muudetud

    4

    Jirisan

    A challenging mountain for hikers of all levels

    Mt. Jiri is perfect for repeat visits thanks to its trekking courses of varying degrees of difficulty. Some can be completed comfortably while taking in the surrounding scenery and traditional culture, while others are full-scale climbing courses that require you to prepare for an overnight stay. Cheonghak-dong, famous for maintaining traditional culture, is located right here at Mt. Jiri. If you want to catch the stunning sunrise at Cheonwangbong Peak, make sure you prepare for a hard climb and maybe say a prayer for good luck.

    Asukoht: 376 Nammyeong-ro, Sicheon-myeon, Sancheong-gun, Gyeongsangnam-do, South Korea

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    foto: Piotrus (CC BY-SA 3.0) muudetud

    5

    Bukhansan Dulle Trail

    Personalise your day trip in nature

    Bukhansan Dulle Trail was designed to let you easily walk around Mt. Bukhan and each section requires less than four hours to complete. Each course is linked to the surrounding tourist spots, so we recommend choosing a course according to the desired theme and length. Accessibility is good since the trail is located in a metropolitan area. Courses that require less than an hour are great for children as well, making Bukhansan Dulle Trail a lovely weekend destination for the whole family.

    Asukoht: 375 Daeseomun-gil, Deogyang-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea

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    6

    Deogyusan

    A great spot for walking along crystal clear valley streams

    Mt. Deogyu, located in Muju-gun, is nice and cool even in summer and is known for having many cool and clear valley streams. If you're going there with children, we recommend the gentle Gucheondong Eosa Trail or Hyangjeokbong Course 1 where you can ride a ski lift. Chilyeon Waterfalls, named for the connecting seven waterfalls, is also right here at Mt. Deogyu. On weekdays, bicycle routes that lead to Baekryeonsa (temple) are organised by difficulty for a slightly different experience.

    Asukoht: 159 Gucheon-dong 1-ro, Seolcheon-myeon, Muju-gun, Jeollabuk-do, South Korea

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    7

    Naejangsan

    A peaceful atmosphere offering a glimpse into Korean temple culture

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    Mt. Naejang offers a glimpse of Korea's splendid Buddhist culture and is well-known for being home to famous temples such as Baekyangsa, which has been featured on TV programs, and Naejangsa, a temple with a long history. Each temple is famous for its own beautiful scenery and grounds, so it's sought out by many visitors year-round. If you're trekking up the mountain, we recommend Naejangsan Ridge Trail. Naejangsan Nature Observation Trail passes through temples Naejangsa and Baekryeonam and is a gentle course suitable for children as well as the elderly.

    Asukoht: 1207 Naejangsan-ro, Jeongeup-si, Jeollabuk-do, South Korea

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    8

    Taebaeksan

    A welcoming challenge for all mountain lovers

    Mt. Taebaek is the centre of the Taebaek mountain range and is also the core of the Baekdudaegan system of mountains, which starts from Mt. Baekdu and continues to Mt. Jiris. It's a popular spot that all lovers of hiking should try at least once. If you're looking for a light challenge, however, there are also gentle walking courses that take less than an hour, like Geomryongso Trails. Yuilsa Trail is another course that's suitable for beginners. When you reach the summit, you'll be greeted with a beautiful panoramic view.

    Asukoht: 4778 Taebaeksan-ro, Hyeol-dong, Taebaek-si, Gangwon-do, South Korea

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    foto: Dcpeets (CC BY-SA 3.0) muudetud

    9

    Songnisan

    A contiguous chain of colourful rolling peaks

    Due to its many peaks, Mt. Songni is recommended for mountaineers and serious hikers who are accustomed to a bit of rock climbing. It's difficult to climb, and some sections are quite steep. Your reward for climbing is some of the most pristinely preserved nature in Korea, making Mt. Songni a worthwhile hike. It's not all doom and gloom, however. There are gentle forest ecological paths for those who have difficulty climbing, such as Sejo Trail from Beopjusa (temple) and Bulmokiyetgil lined with Jeongipumsong pine trees, which are considered a natural monument.

    Asukoht: 84 Beopjusa-ro, Songnisan-myeon, Boeun-gun, Chungcheongbuk-do, South Korea

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    10

    Namsan Park

    Relaxing piece of nature hidden within a busy city centre

    Situated in the centre of Seoul, Mt. Nam is welcoming to anyone from the city seeking a bit of respite in nature. It's conveniently accessible by bus and cable car, which is perfect for those who want to avoid hiking. If you want to fully enjoy Namsan, however, we highly recommend walking the Namsan Dulle Trail. It has clear themes for each course, and the length of each course is quite manageable. Plan a tour in connection with nearby tourist attractions for a full getaway.

    Asukoht: 231 Samil-daero, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea

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