Goryeosan Mountain Azalea Festival | Travel Review & Tips

Usually, when the cherry blossoms are gone, pink and purple azaleas explode in spectacular bloom in Korea.goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(120)Now, if you are thumbing through guidebooks searching for the best place to see these breathtaking azaleas, Goryeosan Mountain Azalea Festival is the perfect place to be!

About Goryeosan Mountain Azalea Festival

Every year from mid-April to the end of April, a fantastic azalea festival takes place in Goryeosan Mountain, or Mount Goryeo, in the heart of Ganghwa Island in Incheon.

As Incheon is a city bordering with Seoul, it only takes 2 hours to get to the festival from Seoul by car, making it an ideal destination for a short excursion.goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(127)

  • Festival Date: April 12 – 23
  • Location: Goryeosan Mountain, Ganghwa Island, Incheon
  • Best time to visit: Mid-April – late-April
  • Book a shuttle bus ride

To witness this otherworldly sight of flaming pink bloom myself, I visited the azalea festival via a shuttle bus package offered by Trazy.com, Korea’s #1 Travel Shop. goryeosan thumbnail_1And it was a fantastic experience, definitely not an ordinary trip that you can take anywhere else except with Trazy. Read on to find out why! 🙂

Top 4 Highlights of Goryeosan Mountain Azalea Festival Trip

Take a look at the four highlights of my trip to Goryeosan Mountain Azalea Festival, and you will see why this is ‘no ordinary’ trip.

1. Make your way to the top of Goryeosan Mountain to witness the breathtaking azaleas

Since the Azalea Habitat, the main feature of the festival, can be viewed from the peak of Goryeosan Mountain at 436m (1,430 feet), you will have to do some hiking during the trip, which gives you a ‘totally different’ travel experience you can’t get from other spring flower tours. goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(27)While hiking, you can find gorgeous pink azaleas along the way. So stop for a minute and take up-close photos! goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(124).jpgHonestly, I must say I am not a mountain person. But other than some relatively steep inclines on the way to the peak, the hiking trail that I took is enjoyable in overall even for non-climbers, like me.  goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(126)Plus, the spectacular views of breathtaking ripples of pink azaleas definitely pay you off when you reach the top of the mountain.
goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(129)goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(128)The festival also offers a photo zone where you can take pictures against a backdrop of Goryeosan Mountain covered with azaleas, too!goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(130).jpg

Take a look at the map below if you want to follow in my footsteps from my trip with Trazy!goryeosan-mountain-map

  • Total Distance: 2.9km
  • Duration: Approx. 1~1.5 hours; one-way
  • Difficulty Level: Easy – Moderate
  • Detailed Course: Cheongryeonsa Temple Entrance (Drop-off location) > Cheongryeonsa Temple > Peak of Goryeosan Mountain & Azalea Habitat

2. Stop and replenish at Cheongryeonsa Temple

On the way to the top, you will pass by this beautiful Buddhist temple called Cheongryeonsa Temple, but I recommend you to fully enjoy your time at the top of the mountain and then drop by this temple on your way down.goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(12)There is a rest area with a bench where you can replenish after burning off all your energy on your hike as well as a stunning magnolia tree, which was full in bloom during my visit.goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(125)

3. Enjoy the tranquility at Gukhwa Reservoir

If you have spare time, take a brief moment at the reservoir where you can soak in the scenery and enjoy the tranquility.goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(118)A short walk from the entrance of Cheongryeonsa Temple will have you at this calm and serene reservoir.goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(131).jpg

4. Travel like a local at Ganghwa Pungmul Market

Before heading back to Seoul, there was a short stop at Ganghwa Pungmul Market during the trip. It was quite an authentic place that gives you a glimpse of a thriving and vibrant local Korean market scene.goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(117)Check out this cute map of the market!goryeosan-mountain-azalea-(114)

Checklist for Travelers to Goryeosan Mountain Azalea Festival

1. What to bring
Bring a sunscreen, hat, handkerchief, a water bottle and, of course, your camera, hiking poles if you have one. 😉

2. What to wear
Wear casual clothing and comfortable lightweight walking shoes!

3. Where & What to eat
While you can find vendors selling ice creams and cool beverages along the way to the peak, you can find outdoor food stalls around the entrance of Cheongryeonsa Temple and at the top of Goryeonsan Mountain.goryeosan-mountain-food.jpgThese food stalls serve Korean spicy cup noodles and local dishes such as ‘Muk-muchim (seasoned acorn jelly salad)’, ‘Pajeon (green onion pancake)’ and ‘Janchi-guksu (banquet noodles)’. The prices range from 5,000 to 15,000 KRW for the meals.

But bringing your own lunch box and enjoying it during the hike is a great option as well!

Enjoyed reading this travel review? If you have any questions about the trip, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below and book Trazy’s trip now while it’s available!

Looking for other cool spring festivals in Korea?

taean-tulip-festivaljindo-sea-parting

Don’t forget to check out Trazy.com, Korea’s #1 Travel Shop, for more spring tours and the best things to do in South Korea!button31

Photo Credits
By Byungjoon Kim (IMG_1392Uploaded by Caspian blue) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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