Beautiful temple in the middle of a pine forest surrounded by green mountains and rocky peaks – Hoeryongsa temple is a perfect place to visit all along the year
Hoeryongsa Temple is located in the valley of Sapaesan Mountain in the northernmost part of Bukhansan Mountain National Park (just 30 minutes of drive from Seoul downtown).
The original temple was founded in AD681 in the 1st year of the reign of Sinmunwang King of the Silla kingdom by the great monk Euisangdaesa, and its original name is said to have been Beopseongsa . After several renovations since its foundation, in 1403 when the King Taejong came here to meet the great monk Muhakdaesa after returning from hermit life back to the kingdom, the temple was renamed to Hoeryongsa Temple (回龍寺: returning dragon temple).
To reach the temple, simply follow an easy walk from the entrance of Bukhansan Mountain National Park. It is a paved road, hence easily accessible even with strollers.
We were very lucky to visit this magic place on Buddha’s Birthday when the Temple was decorated with hundreds of colourful lanterns.
After spending some time in the temple we decided to continue hiking in the beautiful Hoeryonggol Valley. The hiking trail starts right at the entrance of the temple and leads up to Hoeryonsagori Junction. This hike is already impressive and rather tough (especially the last 300 meters climbing on the rock stairs). If you are good hikers we recommend to continue on the ridge of the mountain. You can climb on rocky peaks and enjoy amazing views. To get an idea of the available trails including distances and approximate times, check map.naver.com.
How to get there:
Hoeryong Station (Line 1) Exit 3 and take the bus 202-1 or walk
Address: 경기도 의정부시 호원2동 411
For localisation go to Seoul Map for Kids and Families