See & Do Tours
Four views of Seoul
during the season of contemplation.
It has already been 30 years since the creation of Olympic Park. In 1986 and 1988, major events like the Asian Games and the Olympics took place, giving rise to the lush, green park we know and love today. Walking through the park, pedestrians are greeted with many different types of scenery. In the 1,400,000㎡ plot of land, no two place look the same, making it much enjoyable for visitors to leisurely walk and look around the park. With Mongchontoseong Fortress as its center, there are 5 walking trails placed around the park. Following the old Baekje relics, the trails feel secluded and cut off from the world. Spanning a distance of 2.3 km, the walking trails of Olympic Park offer up some wonderful scenery. For example, the famous “Lone Tree", a very popular photo spot, can be found nearby. When the houses near Mongchontoseong Fortress were demolished for the park, that tree was the only one of its kind to survive. The singular tree in the middle of a vast field creates an undeniably picturesque landscape.
The railways, once ways for merchants to commute and transport their wares, have changed so much over the years. Covered in greenery, it had been completely transformed into a forest trail. The railway from Yongsan Station to Gajwa Station covers a total distance of 6.3km. Starting with the Daeheung-dong section of the railway back in 2012, the Forest Park was finally completed and open to the public starting May 2016. Out of all the sections, the Yeonnam-dong section went through the most dramatic transformation. Alluding to New York’s Central Park, the new green space was nicknamed “Yeon-tral Park” and steadily grew into being a very popular spot. These days, people can be commonly seen having picnics on the grass or reading books on the benches in the park. In front of Exit 6 of Hongik Univ. Station, there’s a Gyeongui Line Book Street. There, booths operated by various publishers sell books and various book events take place along its cultural spaces. It’s the perfect place to feed the literary soul. In fact, there are many things that will thrill visitors willing to explore the different sections of Gyeongui Line Forest Park as the areas around the railway is constantly being developed and expanded.
Built along the ridges of Mt. Naksan, Mt. Namsan, and Mt. Inwangsan, the fortress wall became the borders of the capital city of Hanyang during the Joseon dynasty. Within those walls, the streams and lush forests gave rise to a village which grew into a city. Although much of Hayang’s former appearance has been lost during its transformation to Seoul, the historical walls continue to stand strong as a border around the city. Within the wall that spans a distance of 18.6km, there’s a small portion of the wall in Naksan spanning 2.1km from Hyehwamun Gate to Heunginjimun Gate. Famous for looking like the back of a camel, Naksan is the smallest and easiest mountain to hike out of the four main mountains surrounding Seoul. The Naksan Park that passes through the wall is a great place to rest and the city view beyond the walls are breathtaking to see. As the sunset colors the autumn skies and slowly darkens into night, the street lights turn on, lending visitors a tranquil atmosphere in which to view the city’s night scene.
Connecting Daehanmun Gate to Jeong-dong, Deoksugung Stonewall Walkway – the inspiration behind many songs and poems – is Seoul’s most famous and beloved walking trail. As the weather gets cooler, the Stonewall Walkway obtains a serene and tranquil atmosphere. This year, it’s doubly so as the length of the wall has been extended. On August 2017, a portion of the wall blocked off by the British embassy was finally opened to the public after 58 years. 100m of the wall from the back gates of the British embassy to the staff dormitory has been realigned and extended to reach Deoksugung Palace and is expected to be open to the public around October 2018. Although it’s part of the same Stonewall Walkway, it’s a little different from the path from Daehanmun Gate to Jeong-dong. The new part of the wall is a bit lower and continues to clash a little with the red brick walls of the British embassy. Let yourself ruminate over the history of Seoul as you walk along the same path that King Gojong and King Sunjong walked for their ritual ceremonies. Visitors can learn more about the Korean empire through the exhibition that opened in Jungmyeongjeon Hall last year.