3-Day Itinerary to Discover Jeju Island
Jeju Island is a well-loved destination to native South Koreans as a must visit island getaway. The windswept beaches, iconic landscapes and unique culture transcend you to another time and perspective on life.
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Day 1: Manjanggul Lava Tube & Seongsan Ilchulbong
Start your day by visiting Gimnyeong Beach, one of must see beaches on Jeju Island. Enjoy the emerald beaches and indulge in a coffee at one of the charmingly decorated cafes. Next, head to Manjanggul Lava Tube, one of the largest lava tube caves in the world. Explore the unique geological formations and learn about Jeju's volcanic history.
After lunch, head over to the eastern side of the island to Seongsan Ilchulbong (Sunrise Peak), a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its stunning sunrise views. You can hike up the peak and enjoy panoramic vistas of the island. Seongsan Sunrise Peak was created from a volcanic eruption over 5,000 years ago. From there, make your way to the Saryeoni forest path. On the eastern border of Mt. Halla National Park, this is a popular weekend walking destination with 15km of forest paths to explore at your leisure.
If you don't spend the rest of the afternoon in the park, you can stop by Daheeyeon where you will find green tea fields, zip lining and the opportunity to try green tea ice cream at the Cave Cafe while having a nice foot bath. Wrap up your evenign with a seafood feast at one of the local restaurants in Seogwipo Olle Market. Try some fresh seafood dishes like grilled fish, sashimi or Jeju's famous black pork.
Day 2: Eorimok
Start your day exploring the breathtaking natural beauty of the Eorimok trails surrounded by the lush forest of Mt. Halla, the highest peak in South Korea. Follow up with a visit to the Olle trekking courses at Yakchen Temple.
After lunch, visit Jusangjeolliade, also called Seaside Cliff, an impressive coastal rock pillar formation. This designated cultural monument of Jeju Island was also formed when the lava from Mt. Halla erupted in to the sea. Afterward, visit the famous Dragon Head Shore located at the bottom of Mt. Sanbang, north of Jeju City. Locally called "Yonguam" (dragon head) this wind and wave created dragon shaped shore is a must see.
On your way to Jeju City, stop by Mysterious Road, an optical illusion popular with tourists, giving the illusion that the road slopes upwards, but in reality, runs downhill. In the evening visit Dongmun Market where you can explore local street food, shop for souvenirs, clothing or fresh produce. Enjoy dinner in Dombedon Restaurant, located at Black Pork (Heuk-dwaeji) street, where you can enjoy Jeju's famous "black pork" barbecue.
Day 3: Jeju Olle Trail & Jeju Haenyeo Museum
On your final day, take a stroll along the Jeju Olle Trail. Enjoy the scenic coastal views, lush countryside and peaceful atmosphere. The afternoon is the perfect time to explore the Jeju Haenyeo Museum to learn about the haenyeo "Sea-Women" divers who collect seafood without modern diving equipment. The museum offers insights into their way of life and a glimpse of traditional Jeju culture. It also showcases traditional houses, artifacts and offers haenyeo performances. In the evening, relax on Hyeopjae Beach, which is quite popular or choose a more secluded beach, like Pyoseon Beach. Take a swim or simply unwind on the sandy shores.
Enjoy dinner at Hyeopjae Haenyeoijip (Haeneyo's House in Hyeopjae) and enjoy the incredible view of the sea and Biyangdo Island from their outdoor seating area.
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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Asia & Southeast Asia.