Everything You Need to Know About The Seoul Trail 


Everything You Need to Know About The Seoul Trail 

 

 

South Korea is known for its beautiful scenic beaches and mountainous landscapes being just a train ride away from bustling Seoul. If you have lived in Seoul for a while, you’ll have noticed that in certain areas of Seoul as well exist small nature-filled escapes – rivers that appear out of nowhere, mountain trails with an entrance just next to the sidewalk, and wide parks in which Seoulites love to take leisurely strolls around on the weekends. 

For those of you who enjoy spending time among nature and don’t want to leave Seoul, then keep reading because this post contains all the must-know information about one of the locals’ most loved nature escapes in the city! 

 

The Seoul Trail 

 

The Seoul Trail is a stretch of 8 walking and hiking courses that are connected to form a circle around Seoul City, together they form “The Seoul Trail.” The Seoul Trail is 157km long and starts with course 1 in the North and progresses clockwise around Seoul with walking and hiking trails of varying difficulties that include 85km of paths that go through forest sections, 40km of paths that cross through villages, and 32km of paths that run alongside streams. Each path contains stories about the history of Seoul and its culture, and visitors can learn about Korea’s history at temples and historical sites. In this article the 8 paths have been divided into 4 sections: North, East, South, and West so you can easily access the courses depending on which area of Seoul you live in!

 

The Seoul Trail Tour

 

Part of the fun of The Seoul Trail is that it features 28 stamping locations scattered along the courses with mailbox-shaped structures. Each of these mailboxes has a stamp that you are allowed to take, each with a distinct picture that indicates you were at that course. As you can see in the photo above, each stamp contains a unique story about the location and can help you remember where you already visited along The Seoul Trail. If you collect all 28 of these stamps, you are then eligible to apply for a special certificate that states you completed all 8 of the courses along The Seoul Trail. 

 

Quick Map and Stamp Book Information

  1. Check to see what the availability of maps and stamp books along The Seoul Trail is in advance.

  2. You should take your own stamp pad with you since stamp pads provided along the trail might be in bad condition from being exposed to the open air for too long.

 

Maps and stamp books are provided at these locations:

  • Seoul Trail Information Center

  • Customer Service Center, Seoul City Hall

  • Seoul Changpowon Administrative Office

  • Achasan Mountain Administrative Office

  • Yangjae Citizen’s Forest Administrative Office

  • Gwanaksan Mountain Administrative Office

 

How to Get the Seoul Trail Completion Certificate

If you have completed all 8 of the courses and want to get your certificate to prove it, you need to visit The Seoul Trail Information Center. After checking to see if you have all 28 stamps and giving you a quick survey questionnaire to fill out, they will present you with your official certificate!


 

Seoul Trail Courses 

 

North Seoul

 

Course 8 - Bukhansan Course

 

Course Information 

This course travels along Gupabal Station, Bukhansan Mountain, Dobongsan Mountain, and Dobongsan Station. This part of The Seoul Trail features dense forests, parks, Joseon Dynasty Temples, The Seoul Castle Wall, and royal tombs. From various points along the course, you will be able to witness beautiful views of Seoul and its surrounding mountains. As course 8 is the longest section of The Seoul Trail, it is recommended to make a plan to visit this section more than once to complete the entire path. 

 

Region: Gangbuk-gu, Dobong-gu, Seongbuk-gu, Eunpyeong-gu, and Jongro-gu

Distance: 34.5 km

Time:  17 hours

Difficulty: Normal

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Line 3, Gupabal Station, Exit 3

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Lines 1 & 7, Dobongsan Station, Exit 1

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course

  • Gureum Jeongwongil Skywalk

  • A hidden entrance to Tangchundaeseong Castle

  • Pyeongchang-dong

  • Myeongsanggil Viewpoint

  • Solsaem Spring

  • Guream Jeonmangdae Viewpoint

  • The Tomb of Patriot Yi Jun

  • April 19th National Cemetery

  • The tomb of Son Byeong-hui, an independence activist and Bonghwanggak Hall

  • The tomb of King Yeonsan

  • The tomb of Princess Jeongeui, a daughter of King Sejong

  • A rock with the engraved letters Dobong Dongmun, indicating the entrance to Dobong Seowon, a Confucian school

 

Course 1 - Suraksan & Bulamsan Course

 

Course Information 

This course travels along Dobongsan Station, Suraksan Mountain, Buramsan Mountain, and Hwarangdae Station. Despite the fact that course 1 of The Seoul Trail runs through both Suraksan and Buramsan mountains, this course is not extremely rigorous since it does not go through the rocky parts of mountains, but rather challenges the climber with hills and valleys.

 

Region: Nowon-gu, Dobong-gu

Distance: 18.6 km

Time: 8 hours 40 minutes

Difficulty: Hard

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Lines 1 & 7, Dobongsan Station Exit 2 

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Line 6, Hwarangdae Station, Exit 4

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course 

  • Seoul Changpowon

  • Byeogundong Valley (Kim Si-seup Mountain Path)

  • Nowon Valley (Cheonsangbyeong Mountain Path)

  • Stone quarry

  • Ecological Overpass over Deongneung Pass

  • Danggogae Pass

  • Seoul Trail lookout

  • Neopjeok Bawi (Flat rock)

  • Hakdoam Rock

 

East Seoul

 

Course 2 - Yongmasan & Achasan Course 

 

 

Course Information 

This course travels through Hwarangdae Station, Mukdongcheon,  Mangusan Mountain, Yongmasan Mountain, Achasan Mountain, and Gwangnaru Station. The section along course 2 of The Seoul Trail on the ridge between Yongmasan and Gwangnaru Station allows for one of the best views along the entire trail. Along this trail is also Mangu Cemetery, where you can find the tombs of celebrities such as Bang Jeong-hwan and Han Yong-un. The trail is home to Achasan Fortress, which was built in the Goguryeo Dynasty (37 BC – 668 AD).

 

Region: Gwangjin-gu and Jungrang-gu

Distance: 12.4 km

Time:  5 hours 10 minutes

Difficulty: Normal

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Line 6 Hwarangdae Station, Exit 4 

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Line 5, Gwangnaru Station, Exit 1

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course 

  • Mukdongcheon Stream

  • Jungnang Camping Forest (family camping site)

  • Mangu Cemetery

  • Achasan Mountain Fortress

  • A ridge in Achasan Mountain overlooking parts of Seoul

  • Gen. Ondal and Princess Pyeonggang

 

Course 3 - Godeok & Iljasan Course

 

Course Information 

This course travels along Gwangnaru Station, Hangang River, Godeoksan Mountain,  Iljasan Mountain, Tancheon Stream, and Suseo Station. Course 3 of The Seoul Trail has river sections that run along Hangang River, Seongnaecheon Stream, and Tancheon Stream; forest sections that run through Godeoksan and Iljasan Mountains; and sections of the path that cut through villages. These paths contain many stories of local history and legends. This course is quite long which makes it difficult to finish the entire course in one day, it is recommended to visit two or three times to complete the entire course 3.

 

Region: Gangdong-gu; Songpa-gu

Distance: 26.1㎞

Time: 9 hours

Difficulty: Easy

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Line 5, Gwangnaru Station, Exit 2

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Line 3/Bundang Line, Suseo Station, Exit 5

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course 

  • Gwangjingyo Bridge

  • Hangang River

  • Amsa-dong Prehistoric Settlement Site

  • Path at the foot of Godeoksan Mountain

  • Myeongil Park

  • Iljasan Mountain Cave

  • Bangi-dong Ecosystem Landscape Conservation Area

  • Seongnaecheon Stream

  • Jangsa Bawi (Rock) and Yaksu (Mineral Spring)

  • Tancheon Stream

 

South Seoul

 

Course 4 - Daemosan & Umyeonsan Course

 

Course Information 

This course travels along Suseo Station, Daemosan Mountain, Guryongsan Mountain, Umyeonsan Mountain, and Sadang Station. Course 4 runs along a gentle slope, making it one of the easier courses on The Seoul Trail and allows you to enjoy the natural landscape. Further along the course along Yeoeuicheon Stream between Guryongsan and Umyeonsan, near Yangjae Citizen’s Forest, and by Yangjaecheon Stream, the path runs flat and is perfect for a relaxed stroll. 

 

Region: Gangnam-gu and Seocho-gu

Distance: 17.9㎞ 

Time:  8 hours

Difficulty: Normal

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Line 3, Bundang Line, Suseo Station, Exit 6

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Lines 2 & 4, Sadang Station, Exit 4

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course 

  • Stone Pagoda Lookout

  • Yeollimok (two trees intertwined with each other, looking like one)

  • Bulguksa Temple

  • Yun Bong-gil Memorial Hall

  • Yangjae Citizen’s Forest

  • Daeseongsa Temple

 

Course 5 - Gwanaksan Mountain Course

 

Course Information 

This course travels along Sadang Station, Samseongsan Mountain, and Seoksu Station. The portion along Gwanaksan Mountain has many more difficult rock-climbing courses for those who are interested in more extreme sports. But the section of Gwanaksan that The Seoul Trail runs through is along the foot of the mountain. This path offers many historic and cultural sites and allows for a scenic nature walk. The majority of the sections that go through forests are rather rigorous and well suited for nature lovers.

 

Region: Gwanak-gu and Geumcheon-gu

Distance: 12.7㎞

Time:  5 hours 50 minutes

Difficulty: Normal

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Lines 2 & 4, Sadang Station, Exit 4

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Line 1, Seoksu Station, Exit 1

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course 

  • Gwaneumsa Temple

  • Mudanggol Valley

  • Nakseongdae

  • Seoul National University (SNU)

  • The tomb of Yun Gil

  • Hoapsa Temple

  • A forest aromatic bath site at Hoamsan Mountain

  • A deity’s path

 

West Seoul

 

Course 6 - Anyangcheon Stream Course

 

Course Information 

This course travels along Seoksu Station, Anyangcheon Stream, Hangang River, and Gayang Station. This is another long section of The Seoul Trail, however, the majority of course 6 is a flat path that runs alongside the stream. You can enjoy the relaxing sounds of Anyangcheon Stream and Hangang River, and the different scenery that changes along with the seasons.

 

Region: Gangseo-gu, Guro-gu, Geumcheon-gu, and Yeongdeungpo-gu

Distance: 17.8㎞

Time:  4.5 hours

Difficulty: Easy

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Line 1, Seoksu Station, Exit 2

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Line 9, Gayang Station, Exit 4

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course 

  • Cherry blossom path along the Anyangcheon Stream

  • Walking and bike path along the Anyangcheon Stream

  • Covered baseball park in Gocheok-dong

  • Changpowon; buckwheat fields

  • Stories about Mok-dong

  • Where Anyangcheon Stream flows into the Hangang River

  • Stories about Yeomchang-dong

  • Hwanggeumnae Neighborhood Park

 

Course 7 - Bongsan & Aengbongsan Course

 

Course Information 

This course travels through Gayang Station, Hangang River,  World Cup Park, Bulgwangcheon Stream, Bongsan Mountain, Aengbongsan Mountain, and Gupabal Station. The section of course 7 that is next to Bulgwangcheon Stream and Gayang Station is a flat path that is easy to walk, and the sections that go through Bongsan Mountain and Aengbongsan Mountain turn into a gentle slope that goes through the forest. At the World Cup Park and Bulgwangcheon Stream section, you can also enjoy the eco-park as well!

 

Region: Mapo-gu and Eunpyeong-gu

Distance: 17 km

Time:  6 hours 30 minutes

Difficulty: Normal

 

How to get there

Starting Point: Seoul Subway Line 9, Gayang Station, Exit 4

Ending Point: Seoul Subway Line 3, Gupabal Station, Exit 3

 

Walking Trails

 

Stamp Facilities 

 

Major Points on the Course 

  • Gayang Bridge

  • World Cup Park

  • World Cup Stadium

  • The Bulgwangcheon Stream

  • A colony of Korean Whitebeam trees at Bongsan Mountain

  • A beacon mound at the top of Bongsan Mountain

  • Suguksa Temple

  • Beolgogae Pass

  • Seooreung Royal Tomb

  • Eunpyeong Incineration Plant

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