Autumn in Korea: Your detailed guide to enjoying the season

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There is nothing more beautiful than the brilliant colors of a crisp autumn day or a clear, star-filled sky on a crisp autumn night. If you’re looking to enjoy the breathtaking autumn transition, then you should definitely visit Korea. In this article, I’ll explain in detail all you need to expect when visiting Korea in autumn, why autumn is a good time to visit Korea and the top places you should see before the season ends. 

Why should you visit Korea in autumn?

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Photo by Hangah Liong on Unsplash

There are a number of reasons why you should travel to Korea between September and November. The beautiful weather enhances the shifting colors of the leaves. This time of year, the temperatures are great, allowing you to enjoy your activities in comfort. While there is no such thing as a terrible month to plan a trip, the months of September and October do have significant differences.

In Korea, September is often sunny and clear, with temperatures in the mid-to-upper 70s. Temperatures will vary from 17 to 25 degrees Celsius, allowing you to enjoy a refreshing morning and a relaxing afternoon in the sun.

In October, the weather in Korea is a little cooler than the rest of the year, but it is still delightful. When the temperature is between 14 and 21 degrees Celsius, a knit sweater and loafers will suffice to keep you warm.

Even though November is the coolest month of the year at this time of year, it is still a pleasant month for touring! A cool morning and a sunny afternoon are in store for you. Regularly, the temperature fluctuates between 9°C and 16°C. The weather is comfortable during the day, with a sunny or partially overcast sky and little or no rain.

what to wear in the autumn in Korea

Because of the crisp autumn mornings and bright afternoons, you will be able to dress comfortably but not overly so during your vacation. We recommend bringing a light jacket for the cooler months and a thicker coat for the colder months while traveling in September and October. If you’re traveling between the middle of October and the end of November, make sure you bring a scarf and gloves.

I also recommend that you bring a small, lightweight umbrella, so you’re prepared for any unexpected events. Bring a pair of sunglasses with you for the sunny days of September. Bring a pair of comfortable shoes with you because parts of the tours will be physically challenging. The most appropriate footwear would be sneakers or moccasins.

If you’re a foodie, you might want to carry a little lunch box with you so you can pack snacks or store them while you’re out looking for traditional foods.

Places to visit in Korea in autumn

National Park of Seoraksan

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Photo by Mirko Blicke on Unsplash

If you want to observe the first hints of fall foliage, you must go to Seoraksan National Park, which is home to Korea’s third tallest mountain, Seoraksan.

Seoraksan, which is home to towering mountain peaks, interesting rock formations, and gorgeous valleys in Korea, is stunning all year, but the views in the autumn months are incredibly stunning.

The bulk of the hiking pathways in Seoraksan National Park should be covered in vivid red and yellow leaves by the middle of October.

Hikers and sightseers from all over the world are flocking to Seoraksan this time of year to explore the hiking paths while soaking in the beauty of the falling leaves.

Enjoy breathtaking scenery at Naejangsan National Park

Another notable autumn foliage location is Naejangsan National Park, which is also a well-known autumn foliage destination in Korea. The park is a renowned tourist site due to its brilliant scarlet color, 600-year-old nutmeg trees, and waterfalls.

This area also includes Dodeokpokpo Falls and Geumseonpokpo Falls. The waters of Dodeokpokpo, which flow down at tremendous rates, are framed by a rock, demonstrating the might of nature. Geumseonpokpo, on the other hand, is situated in a valley and hence has a more serene atmosphere. The views are simply stunning.

Baekyangsa Temple and Naejangsa Temple are two of the most well-known Buddhist temples in Naejangsan National Park.

The tree-lined trail from the Hiking Information Center to Naejangsa Temple, which is densely packed with 108 trees, gives a spectacular canopy of bright autumn leaves to enjoy!

Jirisan National Park

If you’re looking for a leaf-peeping refuge in Busan, look no further. You’ve come to the right place. Jirisan National Park is Korea’s oldest and largest national park, and it is home to Jirisan Mountain, the country’s second-tallest mountain and oldest peak (1915m).

With its natural beauty and magnificent fall colors, Jirisan National Park is one of the most popular fall foliage destinations in the Busan area. Jirisan is a convenient day trip location because the journey from Busan takes roughly 2 hours.

This is one of the best sites to enjoy fall colors in the area, located in Jirisan’s Baemsagol Valley, a 9-kilometer-long valley studded with little streams and rock beds set against a backdrop of vibrant fall hues.

Odaesan National Park

The popular Korean television drama “Goblin,” starring Gong Yoo and Kim Go-Eun, was filmed in Odaesan National Park, which is famed for its gorgeous thick forest of fir trees.

Another great spot to see the autumn leaves is the nearby Woljeongsa Buddhist Temple, founded in 643 and is located in the valley east of Mount Odaesan. It was dedicated to the goddess of mercy and was erected in 643.

Daedunsan Provincial Park

Daedunsan Mountain, which rises to an elevation of 878 meters, is well-known for its steep and rocky scenery.

The Suspension Bridge (Geumgang Gureumdari), which spans a steep valley at the height of 300 meters above sea level, is one of Daedunsan Mountain’s most popular attractions. You can cross it if you dare! We can assure you that it will add excitement and adrenaline to your hiking adventure.

If hiking isn’t your thing, you can take the cable car to your location. In Daedunsan National Park, which is worth visiting, you can witness a sea of glowing maples from the cable car.

Bukhansan, another place to take in the breathtaking natural scenery.

Bukhansan is another famous hiking destination in Korea because of the beautiful leaves that change color in autumn. It has been recognized as one of the world’s top sites to visit in the autumn. Because of its location to the north of Seoul, it is easily accessible, making it suited for visitors of various abilities and time restrictions.

There are three distinct peaks with varying heights. The highest, Baegundae, stands at 836.5 meters, while the second, Insubong, stands at 810.5 meters; the lowest, Mangyeongdae, stands at 787.0 meters.

Hiking here is appropriate for hikers of all experience levels, from beginners to intermediates. Bring with you a scarf and some comfortable shoes. The total distance between the lowest and highest points, traversing all three peaks, is approximately 7.4 kilometers, which should take skilled climbers less than 2 hours to complete.

Fans of Korean dramas will feel like movie stars on Nami Island.

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Photo by Hannah Sibayan on Unsplash

K-Drama is one of the most well-known elements of Korean media culture. Because it is one of the primary filming locations for popular television episodes such as Winter Sonata, the island of Nami receives a significant number of visitors each year. Autumn is possibly a gorgeous season to visit since the island is blanketed in brilliant foliage and appears to be very stunning.

Photographers will enjoy taking images along the roads lined with Ginko and maple trees, which are at their height in terms of color and brightness right now. There is a pervasive sense of enchantment in the air on Nami Island throughout the autumn months.

You can expect a kaleidoscope of brilliant and beautiful hues when visiting Nami Island during the autumn months.

The Hyangwonjeong Pavilion in Gyeongbokgung Palace in Seoul is a fantastic place to start if you’re seeking more K-Drama locations. Aside from that, you may visit MBC Dae Jang Geum Park, Yongin, and the Korean Folk Village.

Sample some local delicacies in Daepo Port.

For those who enjoy excellent food while visiting Korea’s Sokcho area, a trip to Daepo Port is highly recommended. At the live fish market, you may taste the pleasures of the sea while shopping for the freshest raw items available. Traditional meals are offered at Gamja Songpyeon if you don’t care for fish as much as you should.

Songpyeon is a rice cake that Koreans eat during the country’s autumn holiday, known as Chuseok if you haven’t had the pleasure of trying it yet. This delicacy should be on every foodie’s bucket list because it is unique to the area and has cultural significance.

Relax on Jeju Island – a slice of paradise.

Jeju Island, dubbed “Korea’s Hawaii,” is a unique location that draws both locals and tourists from all over the world. The caves, such as the lava tunnel Manjanggul Cave and the Saryeoni Forest Path, are two of the area’s most unusual attractions.

Whether you’re alone or with your loved ones, the forest is the perfect place to find peace and tranquility. Driving is the most convenient means of transportation because the cedar forest begins at the entrance to Regional Road 1112. Come between September and November to see how the seasons change!

You’ll find Japanese oak, snowbell trees, and birch trees here, in addition to cedar trees. A walk down the trail will be incredibly useful for individuals looking to get some exercise.

With its deep blue water and vibrantly colored leaves, Jeju Island’s Cheonjiyeon waterfall is a wonderful place for refreshing your Instagram page.

Another notable site is the Hallasan volcano, which is located on Jeju Island. You can hike here without being concerned about your safety. The Gwaneumsa Trail or the Seongpanak Trail are the greatest options for seeing the crater. Go for the Eorimok Trail, which will lead you to a nice overlook where you can relax and take photos while taking in the surroundings.

Bike through Gangchon Rail Park while the leaves fall.

The Gangchon Rail Park is the perfect place to visit if you want to stay active while traveling. Because you’ll be cycling on the Mugunghwa Train Track, your experience will be as authentic as possible.

When it comes to this trip, fall in Korea is the best time to visit. This is because you’ll be surrounded by brilliant colors and feel as if you’ve entered a dream. If you want to visit between the middle of October and the end of November, bring a light jacket, a water bottle, and a snack to keep warm.

Bulguksa Temple – an excellent place to learn history and culture.

If you want to get away from it all, Gyeongju is an excellent spot to go. This coastal city is famed for its stunning beaches and sloping hills, which are actually royal tombs. Almost everything you see here has cultural significance, whether it’s an antique rock carving, an ancient pagoda, or a statue. When you visit, you will be able to enjoy the best of both worlds: history and nature.

Bulguksa Temple, on the slopes of Mount Toham, is the Jogye Order’s main temple. As such, it holds significant historical and cultural significance in Korean Buddhism. Bulguksa Temple is the Jogye Order’s most famous temple. 

This region has the Dabotap and Seokgatap stone pagodas and the Cheongun-Gyo, and two bronze Buddha sculptures. UNESCO has recognized the site as a World Heritage Site.

As the Autumn leaves begin to turn color, the Bulguksa temple in Gyeongju is visible just beyond the entryway.

Do you intend to spend the fall in Seoul? Here’s what you can do

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Photo by RAMESH KUMAR SAINI on Unsplash

If you stay in the city during your autumn holiday in Korea, you will not be bored. Climb to the summit of Gwanaksan Mountain to get the best view of the city from above. The best time to go on the hike is between late September and early October.

Consider visiting Namsan Tower, which is another lovely spot with spectacular views and is conveniently located in the city center! You have the option of walking up or using the cable car, which is more enjoyable and involves less work.

Come see the open-to-the-public lotus pond in Changdeokgung’s Secret Garden. You’ll find over 100 different tree types and pavilions here, where you can relax and be inspired!

One of the beautiful sights in the Olympic Park is the pink muhly grass, which only blooms between September and November. While you’re here, you can go bicycling or have a cup of coffee with your friends.

Gyeongju 

Gyeongju is much more than a spectacular display of autumn color. You get the complete experience because this area is overflowing with historical heritage sites and other fantastic places to explore! These are some of Gyeongju’s most popular tourist attractions.

  • Seokguram Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is well worth a visit; it is one of the world’s most important religious structures, and you will not be disappointed!
  • Donggung Palace and Wolji Pond (Anapji Pond) – Known for its spectacular nighttime vista, you can see the moon and palace mirrored in the pond’s surface. You won’t want to miss the action of the night scene at Donggung Palace and Wolji Pond (Anapji Pond).
  • Cheomseongdae Observatory – The oldest working astronomical observatory in Asia is Cheomseongdae Observatory. This great structure, Korea’s 31st National Treasure, has remained in outstanding shape until the present day.
  • Gyeongju Folk Craft Village comprises 40 thatched and tile-roofed structures and is home to many Korean artisans who work in the traditional arts and crafts business. You may not only buy the products that they make, but you can also engage in hands-on workshops!
  • Hwangnidan-Gil – Put on your traditional Korean Hanbok and explore every nook and cranny of alleys full of hip sites to visit, including cafes, bakeries, antique shops, and everything in between!
  • Bulguksa Temple — In Gyeongju, you may marvel at the magnificent construction of Bulguksa Temple, one of Korea’s most well-known temples.

Autumn Festivals in Korea

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Photo by Yu Kato on Unsplash

It’s festival season once more! This list only scratches the surface of what’s available. This is because there are so many wonderful events and festivals going place all around the country.

Chuseok

Chuseok, or “Fall’s Eve,” is one of Korea’s most significant festivals, along with Lunar New Year. The festival takes place on the last day of autumn. Most Koreans return to their hometowns to spend time with their families. Therefore, Seoul may appear deserted in comparison (even though it is still a city). If you’re in Korea around Chuseok, see if there are any foreigner-friendly activities, especially if they include Songpyeon (traditional dance).

Festival of Mask Dance in Andong

It’s a bucket list favorite because it houses so much Joseon-era history and culture. The biggest attraction in Andong is the Mask Festival. The festival takes place every year (which is not in the village itself but in a different park).

Lantern Festival in Jinju

The Jinju Lantern Festival dates back to 1592 when Korean troops burned lanterns to prevent the Japanese from invading the town by blocking the river with them. It’s a large-scale event with light shows and, of course, lanterns.

Busan International Film Festival

This film festival, which has been going on for almost two decades, is one of Asia’s most prestigious. Their website contains additional information.

Oktoberfest

So, down in Namhae, there’s a little German village, and I’m sure they hold an Oktoberfest festival! Exhibits on nurses and miners who journeyed to Germany in the 1960s and 1970s are also on show.

Bibimbap Festival in Jeonju

What is Korea’s national dish? Bibimbap. What is the most well-known city in the world for having it? Jeonju. The festival, which takes place in and around Hanok Village, is a must-see for foodies.

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