Naejangsan National Park is one of the most popular places in all of Korea to see the Autumn (or Fall) foliage. During the autumn season (Oct-late Nov), the hillsides and pathways are covered in a multitude of red, orange and yellow leaves. Although it’s far away from Seoul, it doesn’t deter people from coming to witness Naejangsan Autumn Charm. Read on and you’ll see why you must visit Naejangsan when in Korea.
Naejangsan Autumn Charm – The Most Beautiful Time of the Year
It’s great to visit Naejangsan throughout the year. But because of the park’s beautiful maple leaves, autumn is its busiest time. So don’t be surprised if you see a lot of crowd at the national park. However, when we visited there in early Nov this year, there weren’t too many people. Even our tour guide was surprised! How lucky. 😊
Naejangsan Autumn Charm – How to get there?
Depending on where you come from, Naejangsan can be reached via public transportation. But let me warn you. If you are traveling from Seoul, it will take a superrrrr long time (at least 5 hours) for you to get there. From Seoul, you can take a bus to Jeongeup and from the city’s Bus Terminal, you can get to Naejangsan by taking Bus 171 (내장산).
As we were short of time and wanted to save all the hassle, we decided to opt for a day tour with KoreaTravelEasy. The tour bus will pick you up from the designated pick-up subway station (Myeongdong, Hongik University or Dongdaemum station) in the morning. At the end of the tour, the bus will send you back to pick-up location. It’s that easy!
Naejangsan Autumn Charm – Endless Gold in 4hr
When we went to Naejangsan, the autumn charm was at its peak. The whole stretch of road was brightened up by the golden and red leaves. I’ve never seen such amazing colours in my entire life. While I was enjoying the autumn breeze, I secretly thank myself again for making the decision to come to this national park, despite its distance from Seoul.
While you are there, remember to enjoy a cup of tea at the Naejangsan Temple. Only 1.5km away from the park entrance, the beautiful temple is very kind to offer free tea to visitors.
It’s just wonderful to relax in a traditional Korea tea house with a cup of hot tea after a long walk. Do note that you need to get there before 3:45pm to get the free experience.
After visiting the temple, you can choose to hike further up, or you can make your way up to the cable car area. The cable car will send you directly to the mountain top. But our guide advised us that the queue could be long, so we decided to forgo the ride.
Instead, we decided to back down to the visitors centre. If you are lazy walking back like us, you can catch a shuttle bus back down to the entrance (1000 KWR per person) or you can walk the 1.5km back down.
Our 4 hours there were very well spent. Believe it or not, it can take a looonnnggg time walking to the temple if you enjoy taking photographs. So make sure to bring along some water and snacks to keep you going.
Naejangsan Side Trip – Jeonju Hanok Village
Apart from visiting Naejangsan, the tour will also bring you to Jeonju Hanok Village. Famed as the starting point of Joseon Dynasty, Jeonju and its Hanok Village is brimming with that classic, ancient charm. With over 800 traditional Korean hanok houses, it’s really charming to stroll along this ancient village.
If you want your photos to be more Instagram-able, you can even rent a set of hanbok at about KRW 5,000 for that old Joseon experience. I did that when I visited Gyeongbokgung, the Seoul hanbok experience was really amazing!
Jeonju Hanok Village – Delicious Food
One food you shouldn’t miss when in Jeonju Hanok Village is its PNB choco pie! Our guide said the choco pie is really special. It’s bigger and more yummy as compared to those from the rest of Korea. I’ve never tried choco pie from elsewhere so I can’t really compare, but the ones in PNB is really good. 😊 We also tried another bread from PNB and it tasted equally good. You should totally get this one too as it’s very crispy!
Another very famous food in Jeonju is its Bimbimbap. I’m not a big fan of Bimbimbap but I think it’s still worth trying this famous dish.
Naejangsan Autumn Charm – KoreaTravelEasy Day Tour
With the help of KoreaTravelEasy, we managed to visit two beautiful destinations in 1 day. The tour is perfect if you are short of time, yet want to cover more places in one day. It also saves you all the hassle transferring between trains and buses. I booked my tour online and the whole process takes only a minute. 😊
Another plus point about having a tour is to mingle with the guides! I learnt so much about Koran culture from our two lovely guides Wanoba and his sister. They speak very good English and we got so many travel tips from them on Busan and Jeju.
Now the autumn season is over, but you can find other winter trips such as 1-day ski tour on KoreaTravelEasy. If you are planning to visit Korea next year, do pay Naejangsan a visit and be charmed! Apart from Neajangsan, you can also catch beautiful autumn foliage near Seoul. Nami island in autumn is really beautiful and Garden of Morning Calm is equally breathtaking. You will literally fall for them!
Here’s the complete travel vlog for Naejangsan and Jeonju Hanok Village. Check it out now!