With mild temperatures and landscapes decked in colorful fall foliage, autumn is the ideal time to visit Gangwon-do. South Korea has other destinations offering stunning fall colors, but Gangwon-do, situated in the far northeast, is one of the first locations to experience the beauty of changing hues.
So, if you are looking to make the most of autumn this year and have selected Gangwon-do as your preferred location, here are the top fall foliage spots you should consider.
Seoraksan National Park
Since this park lies in the far north of Gangwon-do, it should be your first stop when exploring the area to take in the colorful foliage. The third highest mountain in the nation and the park’s primary peak, Daecheongbong Peak, is a visual delight.
It remains snow-clad for about 5-6 months, but during autumn, the landscape transforms to display incredible depth of colors. Upon reaching the top, you can see breathtaking views of Seoraksan Mountain and the East Sea.
We advise visiting the park at sunrise and sunset since the changing color of the terrain is more pronounced at those hours.
Seorakshan National Park covers a total of 398 km², with the land divided into sections Oeseorak, Naeseorak, and Namseorak. You can scroll around to capture those picture-perfect autumn snaps.
As for the aged and disabled, enjoy the pops of colors in the mountains by taking the cable car facility near Seoraksan Small Park.
Odaesan National Park
For tourists looking for tranquil autumn with less crowd, Odaesan National Park is a great option. The park covers around 304 km² and comprises Woljeongsa and Sogeumgang districts.
There is an abundance of trails filled with autumn-painted trees all over the park. But, if you want less hiking and more photoshoots amidst the colorful foliage, concentrate on the Woljeongsa district.
The fairly flat 1 km Woljeongsa Fir Tree Forest trail, which encompasses several lively streams amidst the varied colors, is a great way to start the journey.
As for hikers looking for adventure, Sangwonsa, with its rocky terrain, will be more suitable to satisfy your hunger. Numerous trails with varying degrees of difficulty are available.
You can begin with the 2.2 km trek from Guemgangsa to Guryong Falls, which is filled with beautiful lush flora in a landscape of waterways and rocky terrain.
Continue towards the tougher 13.7 km but breathtaking Sogeumgang Course via greenery, spectacular gorges, and rivers for more autumn coverage.
The list of best fall foliage spots in Gangwon-do would be incomplete without the mention of Nami Island. Of course, the place has become highly popular after its appearance in the popular drama Winter Sonata, but irrespective of that, the entire space is magical and worth every attention.
Autumn transforms the area into something magical, with vivid dashes of color appearing everywhere. You will be greeted by the fresh and soothing aroma of the large redwoods and dense pines that border the island.
There are several specific spots to see the fall foliage, but walking is the ideal option because it will make you feel as though you have entered an autumn wonderland.
The Ginkgo tree walkway is extremely picturesque. Do not forget to capture those vibrant yellow shades while enjoying the beauty.
If you don’t like walking, you can rent a bike or an electric vehicle there.
Wondae-ri Birch Tree Forest
Wondae-ri Birch Tree Forest, which creates a distinctive Siberian atmosphere with its tall white birch tree tops towering into the blue from the snow-clad soil, has become increasingly well-known as a winter tourist attraction.
However, the forest is equally as attractive and enchanting in the fall as it is in the winter. Only in this case, Mother Earth draws the landscape with vibrant yellow and crimson paints instead of white.
The entire surrounding becomes soothing with the consistent rustling of the leaves as the wind passes through.
Although the forest is located on what initially appears to be an average hill, it takes truly immersed in the greenery to truly experience its splendor. There are many pathway options to take. All of them are fairly easy with mild slopes.
Wishing you picturesque autumn this year in Gangwon-do. Don’t forget to take your favorite camera.
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