Gayasan Nakhwadam Pond is one of the most small but beautiful sites I have visited in Gayasan National Park area in South-North Gyeongsang Province, South Korea.
Nakhwadam (literally: 'nak' - to fall, 'hwa' - flower, 'dam' - pond or pool) can be basically translated as "the pond or pool with fallen flowers".
Why is this place called that way?
I would say that because during the Springtime fallen flowers that fell into the stream gather here and fill up the pool.
I have not seen it, but that's my best guess. I should visit this place during the Spring and find out.
It was said that the first French Ambassador to South Korea (an archaeologist and a linguist) traveled all over Korea and decided that when he dies his cremated body (ash) be spread in Nakhwadam. It was granted!
His granted wish came from his impression of Nakhwadam. He said that the most beautiful part of Hongnyudong Valley is Nakhwadam, including Haeinsa Temple that houses the more than 8,000 Buddhist canon.
It is in Honghyudong Valley which is used to be more beautiful than today. Nakhwadam is located in one of the "19 most scenic Gayasan sites" in the park.
Gayasan Nakhwadam Pond is very accessible to anyone as it is located beside the road leading to Haeinsa Temple area.
You can hike from Gilsangam Temple area to get here. It is a leisurely walk with amazing trees everywhere you turn, besides the inviting fresh and flowing stream between the rocks with fantastic shapes and various sizes.
Even people who are using wheelchairs can visit here because it has such facilities.
Expect that you will only see nature here. Nothing else!
I love the shapes of the branches of the pine trees (and other trees), especially these trees. Red Pines are numerous--you can tell them from the color of their barks--reddish!
You will find a viewing deck specially built not only for you to have a great view of Nakhwadam Pond but also for safety reasons.
the viewing deck or platform is made of treated wooden materials and with sturdy railings.
from the viewing platform, you have a full view of the pond, the small murmuring waterfall just above the pond.
if you look to your right when facing the pond, you will see the source of it--the constantly flowing stream of fresh water, rumbling over the rocks of various shapes, coming down from the sides of Gayasan Mountain.
The sight is fantastic, and I was really impressed. I was not expecting to find this place. And I was happy with my decision to walk from the temple area to the village and found this site.
I would have surely missed this natural treasure if I took the bus or taxi to the town area. So glad that I did hike!
When I decided to explore Gayasan National Park, I haven't heard about this place. It is one of the surprises of my travel to this area.
Of course, I will definitely revisit Nakhwadam Pond and will plan to spend a longer time. And I highly suggest that you visit this site whenever you are within this national park of Gyeongsangnamdo and Gyeongsangbukdo Provinces.
Nakhwadam was one of my favorites during my exploration of Gayasan National Park. Aside from Chilbulbong Peak , the highest peak of Gaya Mountain Range, I will put Haeinsa Temple and its UNESCO World Heritage listed Tripitaka Koreana (Buddhist canon).
Get to Gaya Myeon area by bus from Daegu Seobo Bus Terminal then transfer to a bus going for Haeinsa Temple direction.
You can get off Gaya Myeon then take a taxi to Gayasan Nakhwadam Pond. Or, tell the driver ahead to drop you off at a bus stop near your destination.
If you are a backpacker, you can decide to hike from Gaya Myeon to Haeinsa Temple area and drop by Nakhwadam. It will approximately take two and a half hours to reach this site.
Alternatively, you can get here by hiking from Haeinsa Temple area (bus stop area) using the trail by the streamside. It's only about more than a kilometer from Haeinsa Bus Stop.
Don't worry! If you are hiking from either Haeinsa area to the Gaya Myeon or from there to Haeinsa, you won't miss it.
Let me know should you have questions on how to get there.
Thanks for reading this article. I hope you have a pleasant journey!