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Bukansan National Park: Finding Serenity in Seoul

Bukansan holds a Guinness World Record for the most visited national park in the world, with five million visitors a year. Today, I decided to be one of them and I’m glad I did.

You get to Bukansan by taking Line 4 to Gireum Station, then getting on some random bus (I can’t remember which one; I just followed someone who was going to the same place.) The closer and closer you get to Bukansan, the more the city changes from sleek and Westernized to traditional and calm. Surrounding the national park are high tech hiking clothes outlets, like Black Yak and North Face. It’s interesting to me that practically no Koreans would even consider hiking without their matchy-matchy pants and long sleeve shirts. How do they not pass out from heat exhaustion?!?!!!!  To them, I must’ve looked pretty crazy hiking alone in vans and casual street clothes. Oops.

Oh, and entry to the park is free!!! You just pick a route and go for it! Woo-hoo!


Exploring Seoul Part 2 – Finding My Own Little Mountain

What really got me attracted to exploring Seoul was my own little, local mountain. Back in 2005 I lived next to Bongwhasan, which means Beacon Mountain. At the time I was living there I would go up there at least two or three times a week, and even during the middle of winter and summer. Before long I had learned my own routes to follow and where, more or less, I would arrive when I took a particular pathway down. As I said before, if I got lost on the mountain, I could just walk down and follow the mountain around and I would find somewhere I recognised sooner or later. To this day when I move somewhere I always look for the nearest mountain. Bongwhasan has much to do with this.


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