Attraction Bukhansan National Park 262 Bogukmun-ro Seongbuk-gu, Seoul South Korea Published on: 13-11-2015
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Why Bukhansan National Park is special ?
The Bukhansan National Park (Korean: 북한산국립공원, 北漢山國立公園) in Seoul and Gyeonggi covers an area of 79.92 km2 (30.86 sq mi) and was established on 2 April 1983. Bukhansan means "mountains north of the Han River."
The park contains forested areas, temples and granite peaks. The three main peaks are Baekundae, 836.5 m (2,744 ft), Insubong, 810.5 m (2,659 ft) and Mangnyeongdae, 799.5 m (2,623 ft). Due to its popularity with hikers and Seoul residents, some trails are closed on a rotation basis to protect the local environment.
The Bukhansanseong Fortress is located in the park, together with its 9.5 km (5.9 mi) long defensive wall. A fortress was first built on this site in 132 AD to protect Seoul from foreign invasions, and it was expanded to its current size in 1711. It was reconstructed after damage sustained in the Korean War. Despite its name, this mountain is in Seoul, South Korea, so this mountain should not be confused with North Korea (also referred to as 북한, bukhan).
What to explore at Bukhansan National Park?
Bukhansan has a rich history as well. Silla's King Jinheung Sunsubi Monument on Bibong Peak, the Bukhansanseong Fortress built along the mountain's ridges, Sangunsa Temple built by the monk Won-Hyo, and numerous other temples occupy the mountain areas. Especially, Bukhansanseong Fortress is a must-see tour site if you are visiting the mountain. The fortress was built with a wall spanning about 8,500m, built specifically to stop foreign invasion. It is one of the representative mountain fortresses of the Joseon Era. In the fall, the view you can get from the fortress of the mountain is spectacular. Temples are also representative of rich culture that flourished on Bukhansan. The Seungasa Temple on the east Bibong Peak, with Maaeseokgayeoraejwasang (seated rock-carved Buddhas) carved into a 5m granite rock, and the Munsusa Temple located halfway up the Musubong Peak, with purified mountain water dropping from the ceiling of Munsugol Cave, are indicative of both Bukhansan's history and culture.
With its granite peaks and Bukhansanseong Fortress, Bukhansan is perfect for hiking in all seasons. In the spring, all kinds of flowers bloom, and in the summer, lush forests carpet the numerous valleys. The hiking path along the valley is perhaps the best summer mountain climbing course. And the fall is the perfect time to visit the temples and pavilions in their autumn colors. In the winter, the snow-covered mountain scenery is very beautiful. The park averages 5 million visitors and has received the Honor of being in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the national park with the highest number of visitors per square foot.
How to get to Bukhansan National Park?
Bukhansan National Park
Gireum Station (Subway Line 4), Exit 3.
Take Bus 110B or 143, and get off at the last bus stop.
Gupabal Station (Subway Line 3), Exit 1.
Take Bus 704 bound for Bukhansanseong Fortress (북한산성).
Get off at the Bukhansan Mountain entrance bus stop.
- Amazing Scenery and walking trails
- Beautiful and breathtaking
- Wonderful breath of fresh air
- Great view and well maintained paths
- Best hiking area in Seoul
Bukhansan National Park 262 Bogukmun-ro Seongbuk-gu, Seoul South Korea
Tips for you
I'm writing this while waiting for my husband and friends climbing up the peak. I think this is the only time that you really need to hike. The rest of it may be tiring and exhausting but it's very doable. We are not well prepared for this but since we didn't have much to do in Seoul, I suggested my friends do a hiking trip to Bukhansan. Getting here is very easy as I found good information on the park website as well as fromTrip advisor reviews. We took subway line 3 to Gupabal then exit 1 to catch bus 704.Like other reviewers said, we felt intimidating looking at Korean hikers as they were so well prepared for their hikes with proper clothes, walking sticks, gloves. Only one guy in out group wore hiking shoes while the rest of us wore walking shoes. But it turned out that our shoes still managed to get us to the peak. So if you have hiking shoes then wear them but if you don't then don't waste money buying them from those shops along the way to the park entrance. However, the lesson that we learned is to wear light clothes. The hike is long so don't also carry a lot stuffs with you if not necessary. But water is a must so bring as many as you can. Also some snacks if you plan to have a quick pinic at the peak. You'll find amazing spots to do so. Going up took us about 3 hours as we stopped so many times to take pictures and rest. The hike to the peak is 4 km so about half way through it was when we started some rock climbing. The last 1km was harder and very exhausting for me. Don't give up there! Once you got to the peak,your hard work would be paid off. Going down of course was faster and easier. To conclude, I strongly recommend doing this hiking trip if you are in Seoul. I'm very anti athletic and if I could do this then I believe everybody else can too.
Go hiking at the spectacular mountain, where you can also do some walking, rock climbing, visit temples, and go bird-watching. Amazing views of the city from here, too. Best seen during sunset!