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Old Sanmaki Road 산막이옛길 and Goesanho Lake 괴산호

Beautiful wooden deck trail passing by mountains and streams with scenic views of Goesan Dam…  Enjoy the nature at its best along this 4km-long eco-friendly path

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If you take a ride to the Korean countryside of Chungcheongbuk-do, make sure to stop by  the Old Sanmaki Road 산막이옛. This spectacular trail is connecting Saorang Village (located in Waesa-ri, Chilseong-myeon, Goesan-gun Chungcheongbuk-do Province) to the small mountain village of Sanmaki.

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Start walking from the main parking lot passing the local merchants stands until you reach the main entrance of the trail marked by a huge stone at the top of the hill. This is the first spot from where you can observe the hidden beauty of the Goesanho Lake (dam built in 1957).

The trail continues for around 4 kilometers and leads you approximately half way around the lake. The path is almost completely prepared as a wooden deck and fits very naturally in the environment. You’ll probably stop many times to take pictures and admire different sceneries and views of the mirror-like Goesanho lake. The highlights of the trip will probably be the wooden suspension bridges or the three-meter-high observatory with tempered glass on the floor.

Once you reach the picturesque Sanmaki village, you can continue to walk or take a short boat trip on the way back to admire the lake and the mountains from different point of view.

You’ll find many coffeeshops and local restaurants at the beginning – around the parking lot but also in Sanmaki village if you need to stop for lunch or just a quick snack.

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How to get there:

546-1, Saeun-ri, Chilseong-myeon, Goesan-gun, Chungcheongbuk-do

충북 괴산군 칠성면 사은리 546-1

Transportation:

  • From Dong Seoul Bus Terminal, take an intercity bus to Goesan (괴산).
  • From Goesan Bus Terminal, take a local bus bound for Sujeon (수전) and get off at Oesa-ri (외사리).

Admission Fees:
Free for the trail – boat fee 5,000/3,000 won (adult/child)

Parking Fees:
2,000 won

For more information go to http://sanmaki.goesan.go.kr

 

 

 

 

Konjiam Arboretum (Hwadam Botanical Garden)

Royal azaleas, wild flowers, birch tree forest… Spring’s cherry blossoms may have wilted but there are other types of seasonal flowers at their peak right now. Take a tour in Hwadam forest for a perfect colourful spring scenery!

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Located in Konjiam Resort, Hwadam Forest is a less known botanical garden easily accessible from Seoul and one of the perfect destinations for a spring picnic in the nature.

Opened in 2010, Hwadam Forest has been designed by the LG Foundation as a preservation sanctuary for many trees and plants species.

This beautiful 1,350,000-square-meter area is renowned for its pink royal azaleas in May and colourful maple trees in October and November.

 

Start your tour by the walk across the Bridge of Promise and admire the view of the large pond with its traditional Korean house. You can choose from different hiking courses which take you around the arboretum.
The main 5-kilometer trail has a low slope and is easily accessible for prams.

You can also take a monorail right from the entrance of the arboretum and enjoy the view from above. It takes around two hours to explore the entire area but count more if you want to  picnic or have a drink on the terrace of the coffeeshop by the lake. There is also a small playground at the end of the trail.

 

How to get there:

278, Docheogwit-Ro, Docheok-Myeon, Gwangju-Si, Gyeonggi-Do, Korea

Opening hours:

  • March– May 8:30 – 6:00
  • June – October 8:30 -6:30
  • October – November 8:30 – 5:00

Admission: adults 9,000 KRW, children 6,000 KRW

Information: Tel. 031-8026-6666

For more information, check the Korean website.

 

Yeon Deung Hoe 연등회 – Lotus Lantern Festival 2016

More than one hundred thousand lotus lanterns lighting up Seoul night – don’t miss the magic Lotus Lantern Parade on Saturday May 7th from 7PM

Lotus Lantern Parade Seoul

The 2016 edition of Yeon Deung Hoe 연등회 (Lotus Lantern Festival) will be held from May 6th to 8th with exhibition of traditional lanterns in various places such as Jogye-sa Temple or Cheonggyecheon stream.

The Lotus Lantern Parade stands out as the most colourful and memorable part of the festivity. This magical event draws participating crowds carrying tens of thousands of specially made, brightly lit lanterns in the shape of dragons, pagodas, white elephants, and lotus flowers down the street to the tune of Korean classical music. The procession is a must-see tradition both for kids and adults. The sidewalks along the parade route are always jam-packed with people, but if you come one hour before the start, you shall be able to find free seats along the main street.

Here is the detailed schedule:

  • Exhibition of Traditional Lanterns: May 6 ~ 15 Jogye-sa Temple and Cheonggyecheon stream
  • Eoulim madang (Buddhist Cheer Rally): May 7 (Sat) 4:30 pm Dongguk University Stadium
  • Lotus Lantern Parade: May 7 (Sat) 7:00 pm Jongno Street (Dongdaemun ~ Gwanghwamun Plaza)
  • Hoehyang Hanmadang (Post-Parade Celebration): May 16 (Sat) 9:30 ~11:00 pm Jonggak Intersection
  • Traditional Cultural Events: May 8 (Sun) Noon ~ 7:00 pm Street in front of Jogye-sa Temple
  • Cultural Performances: May 8 (Sun) Noon ~ 6:00pm Gongpyung intersection
  • Yeondeungnori (Final Celebration): May 8 (Sun) 7:00 ~ 9:00 pm Insa-dong ~ Street in front of Jogye-sa Temple

For a wider selection of Parade pictures, see Flickr archives here.

Detailed information, itinerary and schedule available on Lotus Lantern festival official website.