chiaksan national park

chiaksan national park

Chiaksan National Park is a spectacular mountain park with several peaks and natural features worthy of a visit. Chiaksan has been designated as the sixteenth national park in 1984. It has a total land area of about 182 square kilometers.

Chiaksan National Park attracts visitors in huge numbers due to its fantastic rock formations, imposing high peaks, steep valleys, scenic slopes, among its natural beauty. Among the highest peaks, Namdaebong, Cheonjibong, Hyangnobong, Sambong, and Birobong tops the list. The tallest among them reaches to over 1,200 meters high.

Trivia: Chiaksan has over 800 plant species supporting various trees including Mongolian Oaks and Japanese Oaks. Also, there are over 2,300 animal species including the endangered (34 species) such as the Flying Squirrel and Copper Winged Bat –

The total area of Chiaksan National Park includes a 14 kilometer-long trail that connects the peaks for Birobong Peak in the North to Namdaebong Peak in the south. These spiny peaks hold many breath-taking deep valleys, surprisingly unusual granite rock formations, streams and waterfalls that entice visitors.

Specifically, most visitors and hikers alike are drawn into the beauties of Geumdae Valley, Taejongdae Rock, Guryongsa Temple, and the famous Seryeom Falls. During Fall season, you will be entertained by colorful foliage, by verdant forest and plants in summer, and white mountain blanketed by snow in the winter season.

Trivia: Guryongsa Temple was first built during the Silla Kingdom (BC 57-AD 935) by Monk Ui Sang within the years 625-702 during the reign of King Moon Mun in 661-681. However, some argued that the present temple was built during the Joseon Dynasty by King Sukjong (1674-1720)

Having learned a little bit about the park, one will wonder how is it like to hike and conquer its peaks. Yes, it is a beautiful place and visitors are permitted to explore its wonders (except for some dangerous paths). The following information will surely satisfy the curiosity and cravings of avid mountain hikers.

chiaksan national park hiking courses

Some trails are not listed here as they are not open for hiking due to safety advisory relating to weather conditions and other safety conditions. Anyway, when you are in the area, please inquire at the information center before heading up.

  • Geumdae Ranger Station - Namdaebong Peak Course: Geumdae Ranger Station - Yeongwonsa Temple - Namdaebong Peak. This course is about 5 kilometers long and can take more than two to three hours to accomplish.

  • Haenggu Park Ranger Post - Hyangnobong Peak Course. Haeunggu Park Ranger Post - Bomunsa Temple - Hyangnobong Peak (향로봉). This trail is about 2.8 kilometers in the distance and could take one hour and a half to accomplish.

  • Seongnam Park Ranger Post - Namdaebong Peak Course: Seongnam Park Ranger Post (성남탐방지원센터) - Sangwonsa Temple - Namdaebong Peak. This course is about 6 kilometers in the distance and could take two hours and thirty minutes to accomplish.

  • Bugok Park Ranger Post - Birobong Peak Course: Bugok Park Ranger Post (부곡탐방지원센터) - Godeunjae - Birobong Peak. This longer hiking course, about 8.9 kilometers, is the longer one and could take around three hours to complete.

  • Guryong Information Center - Seryeom Falls Course: Guryong Information Center (구룡탐방지원센터) - Guryongsa Temple - Daegok Campground - Seryeom Falls. This is only 3 kilometers long and could take around two hours to accomplish depending on the speed and skill.

  • Guryong Information Center - Birobong Peak Course: Guryong Information Center (구룡탐방지원센터) - Guryongsa Temple (구룡사) - Daegok Campground (대곡야영장) - Seryeom Falls (세렴폭포0 - Sadari Byeongchang (사다리병창) - Birobong Peak (비로봉). This course is about 5.7 kilometers in distance and could take around three hours and thirty minutes to accomplish.

  • Guryong Information Center - Seongnam Park Ranger Post Course: Guryong Information Center (구룡탐방지원센터) - Birobong Peak - Hyangnobong Peak - Namdaebong Peak - Seongnam Park Ranger Post. This is the longest course and only recommended for experienced mountain hikers. It could take around 10 hours to accomplish the distance of more than 23 kilometers.

  • Hwanggol Information Center - Birongbong Peak Course: Hwanggol Information Center (황골탐방지원센터) - Ipseoksa Temple - Birobong Peak. This course is only 4 kilometers in distance and could be accomplish within two hours and thirty minutes or so.

Notice: The park is not accessible during the seasonal fire watch period: March 2-May 15 and November 17-December 15. A preservation area – Seonghwangnim – is closed to the public until 2026.

admission fees & facilities

Entering Chiaksan National Park is not free as it is nationally protected and requires visitors to pay for conservation fee for a minimal amount.

Invidividual: 2,500 Won [Adult], 800 Won [Teenager], 500 Won [Child]
*Group: 2,300 [Adult], 700 Won [Teenager], 400 Won [Child] (Groups means from 30 and above number of people)

Campground, Visitor’s Center, Restrooms

If you are only a backpacker or bicycle rider, you would not need the information below. Yes, that’s because it is about the parking facilities available within the park.

parking area & fees

  • 1 Hour: 500 Won [light-weight vehicle], 1,100 Won [small & mid-sized vehicle], 2,000 Won [large vehicle]
  • Every extra 10 minutes: 100 Won [light-weight vehicles], 250-300 Won [small and medium], 4-500 Won [large vehicle]
  • Over 9 Hours: 5,000 Won [light-weight vehicle], 13,000 Won [small/mid-size], 20,000 Won [large vehicle]
  • Monthly parking payment is also acceptable: 50,000 Won [light-weight vehicle], 150,000 Won [small/medium], 200,000 Won [large vehicles]

Note: Don’t lose your parking ticket as they will charge you for full day basis!

Now, if you are going there and decided to take public transport, the below information could be useful.

Public Transports and Destinations

Chiaksan National Park is very accessible area as it is along Jungang Expressway and Yeongdong Expressway, and national railroad system. If you travel from Seoul to Chiaksan, the following information are available:

  • Train (Mugunghwa Cheongnyangni Station – Wonju Station – Chiaksan National Park (Wonju Station-Chiaksan Park: 9-12,000 Won) – 1 hour 23 minutes (23,129-37,570 Won)
  • Bus: Seoul Express Bus Terminal – Wonju Express Bus Terminal (8,000-12,000 Won/1 hour 30 minutes) – Chiaksan National Park (Taxi: 10-13,000 Won/10 minutes)
  • Subway, Bus: City Hall station (2-Green, 1,400 Won) – Gangbyeon Station  Dong Seoul Bus Terminal (6,900 Won/1 hour 30 minutes) – Wonju – Chiaksan National Park (taxi: 10-13,000 Won).
  • Taxi (from Seoul to Chiaksan National Park): 100-13,000 Won/1 hours and 23 minutes

Wonju Station
From Wonju Station, you can take the following buses:

  • Bus #41 bound for Guryongsa Temple which takes around 40 minutes
  • Bus #21 bound for Geumdae-ri or Seongnam-ri takes approximately 30 minutes
  • Bus # 82 bound for Hwang-gol take approximately 30 minutes

Then get off at the entrance area of Chiaksan Mountain.

Hoengseong County

  • You can also take a fast train (bullet train) – KTX – to Heongseong Station and transfer to a bus bound from Guryongsa Temple. Buses match their schedule with KTX arrival time.

For More Information

Now, if you need further information, you can use the following contact details.

Address: Bugok-ri, Gangnim-myeon, Hoengseong-gun & Hakgok-ri, Socho-myeon, Wonju-si, Gangwon-do
Inquiries: 1330 Korea Travel Hotline: +82-2-1330 (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)
Phone: +82-33-732-5231

Hope the above descriptions of Chiaksan National Park help you find what you need. Please, share with us your experience after your visit.

Safe travels!

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