2016

Korea Travel Bucket List: Smaller, yet Beautiful Islands in Korea

While most travelers have most likely heard about Jeju Island, which is one of the most famous island in Korea; the Korean peninsula is surrounded by virtually endless number of smaller and lesser-known islands yet with breathtaking scenes. Today, I would like to introduce you to some of the islands that I have been to or that I would like to visit to in preparation for a great summer!

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Out of 3358 officially affirmed islands in Korea, but Marado stands in the southernmost part of Korea (It is about 10 kilometers south of Jeju). It is a good place to go fishing when the tide rises on the east, as there are a variety of fish species. The island is only 4 kilometers long and can be walked around in 90 minutes. It’s definitely a worthy experience if you are tired of busy life in Seoul and want to get as far away as possible!

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Namiseom is an island very famous for its long paths lined with tall straight trees. Not to mention, but Namiseom is named after Nami, a famous general from the Joseon Dynasty. It is 63 km away from Seoul, which is approximately an hour away, so many families and couples like to visit. From open grass areas, gardens, ponds to farms, there are many gorgeous views all throughout the island. Moreover, the island is also referred to as the Naminara Republic. When you come to entrance to the island, you will see a traditional Korean style gate indicating that you are entering Immigrations for Naminara Republic.

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As South Korea’s fifth-largest island located at the northwest end of the country, Ganghwado never leaves you bored of the view. Since there were people living on this island from the prehistoric times, the island still holds well-preserved historic sites along with old battlefields. Ganghwado served as the designated place of refuge for the royal family during times of national crisis, so it maintains a royal residence, many temples and shrines as well. Visiting these historically significant sites can definitely offer a broad perspective and open our eyes to our rich history.

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Cheongsando is a small island in Wando County that is designated as part of Dadohae Marine National Park. Covered with beautiful blue ocean and sky with green fields, the island has a breathtaking scenery that will never make you bored! As an ultimate escape, you can lead a relaxing vacation at a much slower pace here compared to the busy city life. The famous film, Seopyonje and the drama Spring Waltz were filmed on this island as well! Sets used for these dramas and films still remain in the island and is definitely some great tourist attractions. It is only 10-minute-long walk from Cheongsam Port, so you should check it out when you stop by Cheongsando.

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Geojedo is Korea’s second largest island and of course, with a breathtaking view. Geojedo is packed with great attractions for tourists to visit, whether you drive along the coastal highways, sightsee the Oedo Paradise Island or Haegeumgang, a two-day trip would be ideal. The island is extremely famous for its historically significant place. Memorial services are held every year in memory of General Lee Sun-Shin, built in memory of the Battle of Okpo in 1592. It also has a historical relics site, where it still holds the then-biggest prisoner of war camp during the Korean War. Geojedo is definitely a historically interesting island, which everyone should stop by and enjoy.

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Ulleungdo and Dokdo are some of the most well-known islands in Korea. Created by volcanic eruptions over 2.5 million years ago and located in the East Sea, these islands still hold a special place in the hearts of Koreans with their beautiful landscapes. Being the easternmost territory in Korea, you can reach Ulleungdo and Dokdo by taking a 3-hour-long ferry from Pohang or Mukho. There are no special tour programs, but visitors are given 30 to 40 minutes for sightseeing around the islands. The key to sightseeing them is the enjoyment of their natural beauty.

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I will add more to my list but please comment below some of your favourite islands in Korea or islands that you have already been to, I would love to read them all!

 

2 replies »

  1. I actually went to Cheongsando a few weeks ago, and I absolutely loved how relaxing the atmosphere was! It was so nice to get out of Seoul for the weekend to a slower pace. So glad it made this list, and I highly highly recommend going there to everyone! :)

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