The month of May is a beautiful time to be here in Korea.
The weather isn’t too hot or too warm, but JUST right… and the mountains and valleys, beaches and riverbanks that this country is full of — show off the best of what the nature has to offer.
Planning a trip with your family or friends this month?
Our Kwon Jang-ho has a list of the most popular spots to visit in Korea… at this time of the year.
May is widely regarded as one of the best months of the year for travel in Korea.
The spring flowers are in full bloom, the summer heat hasn’t quite arrived yet and there is no shortage of events around the country.
But where are the best places to go?
“A GPS navigation company released details of the most searched for driving destinations in each province during the month of May last year. Beaches were some of the most popular sites nationwide. In Gangwon-do province, for example, Sokcho beach and Gyeongpo beach, took the top two spots,… while Daegwallyeong sheep farm came third.”
Nestled in the highlands of the Taebaeksan mountains, this picturesque farm has over 200 sheep grazing on its green pastures.
The views have been captured in films and commercials over the years, and have drawn comparisons to the Swiss Alps.
Visitors can take in the sights with a relaxing hike around the property, and if you want to get closer to the sheep, you can buy a basket of hay for a small fee and feed the animals yourself.
“It’s really fun and the sheep are so cute.”
Gyeonggi-do province offers some plumb spots, but the country’s biggest theme park, Everland, was the top destination.
Located on the outskirts of Seoul, the park attracts over 7 million people a year, though the month of May sees the most visitors.
That’s partly due to the annual rose festival scheduled during the month.
It’s one of the park’s most successful attractions, even among the thrilling amusement park rides.
A popular addition to the park this year is Panda World.
Le Bao and Ai Bao, on loan from China, have already attracted huge crowds since the attraction opened last month.
“I’ve only seen them in comics and it’s amazing to see them in real life, but I was surprised to see they were smaller than I thought. All they do is eat and sleep and I’m kind of jealous of that, but then again, they are pandas after all.”
Moving south to Gyeongsang-do provinces, the southern coast is famous for its beaches, but a little peninsula on Geoje-do island called Windy Hill has been gaining in popularity.
The site’s famous windmill overlooks a charming little fishing village called Dojangpo Maeul.
This idyllic locale was once considered a hidden treasure, but after appearing in films and TV programs in the last few years it has become a must-see site in the area.
Next up is Chungcheong-do provinces , and beaches once again take the top two spots, but coming in third is the National Institute of Ecology, which houses the nation’s biggest ecological park — the Ecorium.
Containing almost 2-thousand forms of plant life and 2-hundred-and-30 animals, it’s a place where young and old can experience and learn about different ecosystems, including the tropics, the desert and polar regions.
Last, but certainly not least, are the Jeolla-do provinces, with sites such as Juknokwon Bamboo Village in Damyang and Seomjingang River Train Village.
But the number one destination, in both the country and the province for two years running,… is the Jeonju Hanok Village in Jeollabuk-do province.
Popular with Korean and foreign tourists alike, the village features over 800 houses built in the traditional Korean style.
A recent trend has seen more and more visitors coming dressed in traditional hanbok clothing, as people try to emulate life in Korea during pre-industrial times.
“I think this village is the best representation of traditional Korean culture.
It also feels very comforting and warms my heart.”
These are just a handful of the destinations the country has to offer, and although May is considered the best month to travel, there are plenty of great sights around the country that can be enjoyed all year round.
Kwon Jang-ho, Arirang News.
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