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Best Places for Autumn Leaf Peeping in South Korea

It’s that time of the year when Koreans’ Instagram feeds are the most colorful—showcasing places of autumn leaves in South Korea. You could be there too, flashing your OOTD against a backdrop of Seoul’s autumn cityscape or a corridor of golden ginkgo trees in Nami. If not this 2020, then next year. Or the next, in your own time.  

Autumn in South Korea is from September to November, with temperatures dipping every month as the season transitions to winter in December. It’s a very likable season because the colors are picture-perfect, the weather is cool but not freezing, and travel costs are usually cheaper.

Whether you’re booked for a trip to South Korea this fall or planning for a future trip, don’t skip these top places for autumn leaf-peeping around the country!

 

 

Namsan, Seoul

via CiaoHo on Shutterstock (CC BY 2.0)

Namsan is like the centerpiece of Seoul, its N Seoul Tower an everpresent view wherever you are in the downtown. The Namsan Cable Car is a popular way to get to the top of Namsan, from which you can already view the beautiful colors of autumn in Seoul. But if you want to get closer to nature and maybe get more fit, take one of the hiking paths that lead to the tower. 

Read more about all the things you can do at the N Seoul Tower and around

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Location: (Namsan Cable Car) 83 Sopa-ro, Myeong-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul
Best Time to Visit: Mid to late October

 

 

Bukhansan, Seoul

via Pixabay 

Bukhansan National Park is the only national park located right inside Seoul. There is a lot to do and learn in every corner of this 8,000-hectare mountain park, including autumn leaf-peeping. If you’re up for some outdoor adventure, go on a day hike to one of the three main peaks as you revel in the beauty of nature during autumn in Seoul. It’s possible to trek to the highest Baegundae Peak and back in five hours.

Travel between bus stops conveniently with a T-Money card from KKday!

Location: (Jeongneung Visitor Center) 215 Bogukmun-ro, Jeongneung-dong, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul
Best Time to Visit: Mid to late October

 

 

Haneul Park, Seoul

Republic of Korea via Flickr

Trees aren’t the only source of color during autumn in Seoul. In Haneul Park, the center of attention is the pink muhly grass and the silvery-white pampas grass. The park is a favorite among couples and a popular Instagram-worthy spot. The best time of day to go here is at sunset when the field is tinged dramatically with a warm golden gleam. The week-long Seoul Silver Grass Festival is also held at Haneul Park every October, featuring a lighting show at night and cultural performances. 

Book a Haneul Park day tour on KKday!

Location: 121-250  95 Haneulgongwon-ro, Mapo-gu, Seoul
Best Time to Visit: October

 

 

Nami Island, Gapyeong

via Nami Island

 

A popular day trip from Seoul, Nami Island is a grand showcase of all the colors of autumn leaves in Korea. Red, orange, amber, copper: choose your shade. One of the unique spots on Nami Island is the Ginkgo Tree Lane, which, as opposed to the usual red and orange fall foliage, shines in all its golden splendor during autumn. 

Book a Nami Island day tour from Seoul on KKday!

Location: 1 Namisum-gil, Namsan-myeon, Chuncheon-si, Gangwon-do
Best TIme to Visit: Mid-October to early November

 

 

The Garden of Morning Calm, Gapyeong

via The Garden of Morning Calm

A trip to Nami Island is often combined with a visit to The Garden of Morning Calm in autumn. It is an elegantly landscaped botanical field straight out of a postcard. While the garden is colorful all year round thanks to its vast collection of flowers, it gives off a unique character in autumn as tree foliage and grass change colors. Two highlight events during autumn are the chrysanthemum exhibition and the Maple Festival. 

Book a Garden of Morning Calm day tour from Seoul on KKday!

Location: 432 Sumogwon-ro, Sang-myeon, Gapyeong-gun, Gyeonggi-do
Best Time to Visit: October

 

 

Bulguksa Temple, Gyeongju

via KKday Supplier

Bulguksa Temple is just one of the many UNESCO Heritage Sites located in the historic town of Gyeongju, which is a popular day trip from Busan in autumn. If you’re looking for the best place for fall leaf-peeping in this side of the country, head to Bulguksa and match your sightseeing with a trip back in time as you tread the foliage-covered grounds of the temple. 

You can combine a tour of Bulguksa Temple with other UNESCO-listed sites on this day tour from Busan.

Location: 385 Bulguk-ro, Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
Best Time to Visit: Mid-October to early November

 

 

Naejangsan National Park, Jeongeup

via Shutterstock

Another easy trip to make if you’re staying in Busan for autumn is to Naejangsan National Park. If you’re up for another hiking adventure, you can go on a seven-hour ridge hiking course that traverses Naejangsan’s eight peaks. If that’s too extreme for you, don’t worry because there are other scenic walking trails to choose from, as well as temples and waterfalls to explore. The most stunning autumn scenery can be found at Baekyangsa Temple, Uhwajeong Pavilion, and the Maple (Danpung) Tunnel.

Book a Naejangsan National Park day tour from Busan on KKday!

Location: 385 Bulguk-ro, Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
Best Time to Visit: Mid-October to early November

 

 

Hallasan, Jeju

via KKday Supplier

There is no better place on Jeju Island for autumn leaf-peeping than South Korea’s tallest peak, Hallasan. Many people go on a day hike to the summit, with the scenery getting better and the fall foliage getting thicker as you go up. Alternatively, you can choose from the easier trails that lead to different viewing spots around the mountain, the most popular of which is the Yeongsil Trail.

Book a Jeju autumn day tour of Hallasan combined with Sanbangsan hot springs on KKday!

Location: (Yeongsil Trail Entrance) Jungmun-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do
Best Time to Visit: Late October to early November

 

 

Regardless of the season, South Korea’s beauty is unwavering. Start planning your trip for better days and save your favorite sights and tours on KKday to your wishlist.

 

Words by Rei Leano
Featured image via Teerachat pairing on Shutterstock

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