Autumn colours are full in bloom in Korea. The trees are bright in vivid colors and the leaves rattle as breeze flows. Hf’s Korean editor visited Naejangasan, the to-go place for fall colours on a family trip. Follow me for a journey through the spectacular view!
Naejangsan(내장산/內藏山) is located near Jeongeup city, in the North Jeolla Province of Korea. The mountain is best known for its spectacular autumn colors from the ticket office to Naejang temple, and attracts 10 million visitors daily during the peak season. Located in Naejangsan National Park, the mountain has waterfalls, temples and its most famous autumn which has been around for more than 500 years.
During the peak season, access to the mountain becomes quite hard. The parking lots usually get filled up before 9am and nearby roads get packed with cars. The parking lots are located far away from the entrance to the mountain so expect some walk from the car park. However, the wonderful view to the entrance will make the long walk all worth it.
The way to the mountain was bustling with people even early in the morning. Buses from everywhere filled with tourists were hastily arriving at the mountain. The entrance fee was 3,000 won for adults. A discounted price for groups over 30 people is available.
Naejangsan is famous for the walk from the ticket booth to Naejang temple. Needless to say, the view was so enthralling that the editor couldn’t help but stop several times to take photos. A photo will do a million times better than words!
Upon the arrival at Naejang temple, the autumn colors take on a different look by harmonizing with the traditional architectures. The colorful lanterns, ponds and temples all blend into one scenic image on a camera lens. One thing to note, though, is that Korean temples have a well to go by. The water is fresh and plastic cups are provided.
There is a way to spice up the maple tree viewing by hopping on the cable car. It is a 2.5km walk from the mountain entrance to the cable car ticket office. On weekends, especially during peak hours, an hour long waiting line will be formed, so get there early as possible to avoid the crowd. The cable car ride provides a broader scenic view of the mountain. It is recommended to take the cable car to the top, then walk down for a brief hike.
One last spot not to miss is Uhwajeong pavilion surrounded by a lake. The reflections on the water combined with variegated autumn colors of the mountain create a magnificent scene.
A day trip to Naejangsan offered a quite yet bustling getaway from the city. An additional tip though, would be to include Jeonju in the trip, an hour-away city most famous for its traditional structures and awesome food to get the most out of your Korea trip.
Additional information (available in both English and Chinese): knps.or.kr
TEXT & PHOTO: JISU J
CHINESE TRANSLATION: CHRIS Y