mountainbiking/hiking: Achasan & Yongmasan
A good hike-a-bike is Achasan, which is not too steep but offers a good view of the Han River and Seoul below. It only takes about an half hour to hour to climb up to the top, but you can lengthen the ride to well over 4 hours by climbing up Achasan over to Yongmasan and back.
You could spend the whole day between the two mountains, following all of their multiple ridgelines around...
Adding nearby Yongmasan (Mt. Yongma) is an excellent ride with a variety of views and some fun things to see along the way, like a man-made waterfall and the remains of a small fort dating back to the Goguryeon period. It's connected to Achasan by a ridge running between the two mountains.
Equipment: Some parts of both Acha and Yongmasan can get a bit chunky and steep, so wear your body armour and full-face! The trails are all mostly exposed granite, and will bite you if you bail.
Take water with you, no 7-11 up top...
Although, you will usually find somebody at the top that hiked up with Ddongddongju for sale. :)
And sometimes ice-cream in the summer, kept really cold with dry-ice.Related to:
- Beer Tasting
- Hiking and Walking
Urban riding / Ramp park
It's hard to find a good ramp park in Seoul.
There's the odd park around on the Hangang pathways; They are small and usually have small children using them as playground slides, with ignorant parents (unaware that they are for bikes/boards/skates) getting angry if you ride your bike inside.
Every so often a decent park will open, but will be mismanaged (somebody not wearing protective gear/pads, helmets, and gets stupidly hurt) and then shut down quickly "because it's dangerous!"
Imagine my joy when an army buddy told me there was a park on the local US Army base.
He had never checked it out, so we planned an adventure...
I'm neither American or in the Army, so he had to check me onto the base. They held my Canadian ID at a checkpoint, and gave me a visitor's pass.
Inside was like a little version of America: real grass everywhere, smooth roads, wide open spaces, no morons driving on the sidewalks, etc. You get the idea.
We found the ramps. Made of good grippy material instead of the slideyplastic that Korean ramps are made of, with no hordes of 5 year olds using them as slides, we had fun.
Also, good beer is really really cheap on the base. I filled my bag with Heinnekin Darkies. :)
And there is a Taco Bell, along with many other restaurants.Related to:
- Whale Watching
- Beer Tasting
Scubadiving in Kimcheeland :)
I finally got out and did some fun diving while here in Korea, and will definately be doing more.
The water here is definately not as warm as Thailand, but still fun if you are prepared for it.
I hooked up with a decent Korean shop based in Seoul, Nomadive, and they do regular trips both domestically around Korea and abroad to other countries.
Most of the shop's DMs/instructors speak English quite well, so it's easy to upgrade your courses here, or even take your Openwater if you are new to the sport and want to learn.
Shop's pricing is relatively cheap, compared to all of the US military outfits here moonlighting as diveshops.
I'll add info regarding divesites throughout Korea to their respective area pages. Take a look through my other Korean pages and see where I've been:
Equipment: Equipment - bring/buy your own, or rent at the shop for a decent price.
You'll want a 5 to 7mm suit, and probably a hood and gloves (depending on where/when/how deep you are going).
If you have big hands/feet (or are plumpish) you'll have a hard time finding rental gear here that fits, and are better off to bring your own, or purchase online and have shipped over. It's easy and relatively cheap to have a suit custom made here, though, if you want to go that route.Related to:
- Road Trip
- Beer Tasting
- Diving and Snorkeling
Urban riding / jump park
Seoul is hurting for urban jumping parks.
There are a few scattered about on Hangang, with a few smaller jumps that invariably have small children using them as slides...
There is an ok park near Dobongsan station (114) on the blue line, but it is pretty far from downtown.
There used to be a decent park in central Seoul at Olympic Park, installed for X-Games, but that was removed for the installation of basketball courts a couple years ago.
Imagine my surprise when I was playing around near the Jamsil Sports complex, and found a new park! It has 6 medium sized features, with a few rails as well.
Built for bikes, skateboards, and fruitbooters, it has been mostly used by BMXers. I take my urban cruiser in.
Children are not allowed to run rampant through here, it is fenced and watched by a security guard.
Next to the park is a rollerhockey rink, as well as a fruitboot speed track.
All built for the Hi Seoul festival, who knows how long they will be around for. Maybe permanent, perhaps not...
Equipment: Bring your helmet/pads. The guard will want you to sign a waiver before you get to play.
There is a beer/convenience store very close, so you don't have to pack beer/water/snacks.Related to:
- Adventure Travel
- Beer Tasting
LOTTE WORLD THEME PARK
The Lotte World Adventure, a huge indoor theme park with amusement rides, shows, and Streets of the World, is organizing a Winter New Year Festival. Various events include parades, a daily rock band performance, and a North Korea traditional culture festival are
at the Folk Museum.
The Lotte World is a gigantic, multi-purpose complex featuring shopping malls, sports facilities, a theme park, a deluxe hotel and a folk village. A most of the facilities are indoors.
Lotte World Adventure
The largest indoor theme park in the world, there has kiddie riders, monorail and scarier roller coaster.
This lake park, which also can be reached from the Lotte World Adventure. Offer romantic setting and features a dancing fountain, rides an outdoor theater
The unique feature of the Lotte World Folk Village located on the third floor of the shopping center. Collection of miniatures of palaces, fortresses and village depicting various aspects of the life during the Joseon Dynasty.
At Lotte World Ice Rink, you can enjoy skating all year round. Larger than many other international ice rinks, this huge ice rink has a capacity for 1,000 skaters at any one time. The rink is conveniently located next to Lotte Adventure theme park where you can enjoy many thrilling rides. In the surrounding area, there are various restaurants that make this a great meeting place for friends or family. Discounts for large groups or for Adventure theme park ticket holders.Related to:
- Budget Travel
- Theme Park Trips
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
EVERLAND+ CARRIBEAN BAY
Everland located in Yongin, is abig theme park, which includes a zoo, snow sled, and botanical garden. Everland contains three distinct themes which are Festival World, Caribbean Bay, and Speedway. Everland also features the Glen Ross Golf Club, Automobile Museum, Sportspark, and Hoam Art Gallery.Related to:
- Theme Park Trips
- Adventure Travel
mountainbiking --> Namhan Sanseong
The Nam is cycling goodness. The best riding I've yet seen in Korea...
Very varried terrain. Everything from steep chundery exposed granite goodness to full on flowy loam with berms, drops and jumps. We usually do beershuttles on the weekend...
Not just DH though, she has different trails and roads to suit any of your cycling needs, be it road, XC, or full on shuttled Downhill.
Namhansanseoung is a provincial park because of the fortress, but bikes are tolerated.
We generally steer clear of the main hiking trails during the later parts of the day because there is so much foot traffic. Be wary of hikers.Related to:
mountainbiking --> DH @ Jisan Resort :)
Jisan Resort is a fairly small resort, even compared to others in Korea. The mountain is small, and all of their snow in winter is machine made.
What makes this place special is it's relative proximity to Seoul, and more importantly, the fact that they have embraced cycling as a moneymaker for the 9 months of the year that it is not cold enough to make snow.
They are trying to become Korea's first dedicated lift-access cycling destination. DH fun! :)
As of the date of me writing this tip, they have a couple (beginner/expert) decent trails and a 4X course cut in, and held their first race last weekend (Nov. 11/07) to finish the season. They just got started operations late in this season, and have quite a few more trails mapped out to cut in over the winter, for next season's riding.
Next season should be good!
Equipment: Bring your DH bike! Also upper body armour is required for insurance liability reasons.
Lift ticket will cost approx. 20,000 won for the day.
Resort condo's are available for overnighters, and there are a couple smaller grocery stores close for beer/food needs. The village area is pretty new, small, and quiet at night.Related to:
- Beer Tasting
- Skiing and Boarding
mountainbiking --> Umyeonsan
Trails on Umyeonsan are best suited to an XC or trailbike. There are chundery trails suitable for a big-bike, but they are pretty short, and are more fun on a mid-travel fully. Most of the trails are smooth singletrake, between the odd small chunky rock feature.
Ridgeline trails will eventually run into the odd empty bunker, which are there for the defence of the base/mountain if North Korea ever attacks again... would be a fun area for paintball.Related to:
- Beer Tasting
Mountainbiking --> Demo-san/Guryong-san
A couple of mountains in southern Seoul, a bit over 300m high. The eastern ridge (Guryong-san) is a bit more technical than the western ridge, but still doable on an XC. Western ridges are a bit more undulating, while the eastern ridge is more of an up-and-down. Trails are mostly hardpack, with small amounts of exposed granite.
Go on a clear day, right after it's rained. The rain will wash the pollution from the air, ensuring a great view!
And try not to swallow any dragonflys! There's tons up there in late summer...
Equipment: Bring a full camelback in the summer. It's humid as fook, and you will definately sweat.Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
Mountainbiking --> Acha-san
Achasan is a chundery, exposed granite goddess, eager to thrash you if you aren't wary.
No roads up, hence no shuttles. You earn your runs on her.
Runs are steep and technical. Not for beginners, or XC riders.
You see hikers, but they get out of the way and cheer you on.
City's english newspaper sent a reporter and cameraman up with us once, for pics and a story.
Equipment: A fullface lid and pads are a must, unless you like leaving flesh on the trail to show where you've ridden. Bring a full camelback and munchies. In summer and fall you can usually find an Ajuma selling food, soju, beer, and ice-cream at the top of one of the ridges, but not always.
Is rideable all year, if you come prepared.
Summer is hot and humid, watch out for the odd monsoon. One hit us the day we took pics, we are all soaked.
Winter is usually clear and cold. Best season to run her is spring or fall.Related to:
In Korea and Seoul especially you are able to find a relatively high number of Bowling facilities, called "Bowling Chang" (º¼¸µÀå) in Korean.
Some are new, some are old but it's great fun nontheless.
Just look for a giant bowling pin on any rooftop and you know where to go!
Equipment: Everything you need is provided. Bowling balls are provided in all different sizes, shoes are available against a small fee.
Asian League Ice Hockey
Asia League Ice Hockey consists of 8 teams; 4 from Japan, 2 from China and 1 from Korea and Russia. Well, actually I don’t know about ice hockey very much. So I’ll show you a useful website. You can check out the schedule and the system of this league. I went to an Arena in Seoul to watch a match last year. It was my first time to watch ice hockey games in my life but it was really exciting and interesting. Seoul had a team named Winia but this team has changed its home arena from Seoul to Anyang. But you don’t worry about that. Anyang is very close to Seoul. You can get to Anyang by subway line-1.
Equipment: Spirits like ram, whisky etc...
Lots of Bikes for Rent
If you're in Yeouido Park or Olympic Park and want to ride a bike you're in luck. The picutre to the left is just half of the stock of one of the five bike rental places in Yeouido Park (and more in Olympic and other ones, too).
Rates are reasonable (same as the rollerblades, actually) at 3,000 won (USD 2.50) an hour...6,000 won an hour for tandem bikes (those ones are popular too). Just give them a piece of ID and pay for the first hour, if you go longer just make up the 'overtime', as they call it, when you return (there is no extra charge for being late, you still pay the base rate only).
You can even go as far as you like...perhaps the 22 km from Yeouido Park to Olympic Bridge...just as long as you're back by about 8-9pm when they want to close up.
We stayed here for a week. It is very nice but DO NOT have your laundry done by them, a piece of...more
This is an extended stay hotel with outstanding amenities for business travelers and their families....more
This hotel was budget friendly compared to other hotels in the area. The room was more spacious than...more
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