The best things to do in Seogwipo take you across the coastal town’s verdant forests and dramatic volcanic landscapes. It's home to 3 spectacular waterfalls, plus a beautiful coastline filled with rocky coves and bathing pools. Take a boat out on the ocean to fish for squid, or explore under the sea with a submarine trip or diving expedition.

    Inland, the town boasts beautiful parks and gardens that are home to a wide variety of interesting wildlife. A whole host of museums and galleries display local art and sculpture, along with amazing bits of island history. Make sure to try some of Seogwipo's fresh local seafood, either at a market or at a waterfront restaurant.

    What are the best things to do in Seogwipo?


    Jeongbang Waterfall

    A magnificent cascade that falls straight into the ocean

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    Jeongbang Waterfall is a monumental, 23-metre waterfall that plunges over the edge of the sea cliffs. You can climb to the top for a great view of the river surging over the edge. The view from sea level is spectacular as you stand right in front of the torrent, but expect to get lightly splashed.

    A wooden observation deck across the cliffs gives you the best vistas of the falls. Legend has it that the waterfall was once home to a holy dragon and that the water can cure all kinds of diseases. Local fishermen sell sea urchins and fresh seafood from baskets around the rocky coast.

    Location: 37 Chilsimni-ro214beon-gil, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 6 pm

    Phone: +82 (0)64-733-1530


    Seogwipo Tourist Port

    Bustling waterfront with restaurants and boat trips

    The Seogwipo Tourist Port is filled with fishing boats and lined with towering palm trees. The inner harbor is a popular spot for catching sea bream and groupers. You can take a boat from the port and head out on an open sea fishing trip during the day. Go at night to try your hand at catching Jeju squid.

    Diving trips regularly leave from the Seogwipo Tourist Port. Discover the island's beautiful corals and brightly colored fish like angelfish and lionfish. A visit to the port is a great opportunity to buy abundant fresh fish from the onsite market. There are many waterfront seafood restaurants where you can watch the sun setting behind Saeseom Island.

    Location: 33-1 Seogwi-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea


    Cheonjiyeon Waterfall

    A picturesque waterfall surrounded by verdant forest

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    Cheonjiyeon Waterfall is actually a series of 3 connected falls spilling into each other. The upper waterfall drops dramatically from an overhanging cave, into the 'Pool of the Gods'. At the bottom, a 30-metre-high cascade flows straight into the river. The falls are lit up at night, giving the water a magical glow.

    The pools around Cheonjiyeon Waterfall are home to mottled eels, which come out to swim at night.  The lush woods are filled with wild dampalsu trees, Chinese lemon trees, and camellia bushes. Take a stroll around the park for peaceful pools, stone paths, and pretty bridges carved with mythic figures.

    Location: 961-33 Cheonji-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 10 pm

    Phone: +82 (0)64-760-6304


    Seogwipo Maeil Olle Market

    A sprawling indoor market selling fresh seafood

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    The Seogwipo Maeil Olle Market is a traditional Korean market that sells many local Jeju delicacies. It's especially well-known for fresh seafood, with daily catches of mackerel, octopus, hairtail fish, abalones and other live shellfish. Locals also come there to buy dried seaweed products, kimchi, fried rice cakes, Korean doughnuts, and Jeju tangerines.

    Although the Seogwipo Maeil Olle Market is primarily a food market, the 200 shops and 100 street vendors sell a broad range of goods. You can pick up volcanic clay face masks, chopsticks, serving lawn bowling, clothes, and souvenirs. The market is at its busiest in the evenings, when restaurants open and locals come for dinner.

    Location: 18 Jungang-ro 62beon-gil, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

    Open: Daily from 7 am to 10 pm

    Phone: +82 (0)64-762-1949


    photo by 골뱅이 (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified



    Natural bathing pools at the edge of the ocean

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    Seonnyeotang is a group of natural rock pools where, according to legend, fairies used to bathe. The area is fed by the ocean at high tide, and the saltwater pools are deep enough to swim in. Sea urchins and small fish live in the pools, so snorkeling is a popular activity here.

    Take the hiking path Olle Trail 7, and you can combine a scenic hike with some bathing. Alternately, relax in the pools and admire delightful views of the sea and the volcanic formation of Oedolgae Rock. You can reach Seonnyeotang via steep stairs down from the cliff. The rocks can be rough, so it's advisable to wear comfortable shoes.

    Location: 795-5 Seohong-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea


    Saeseom Island

    A wild, forested island that’s home to various wildlife

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    Saeseom Island is a small, tree-covered island and conservation zone, which features a 1-km circular walking route. The paths of wooden decking make for a pleasant and easy stroll with beautiful views of the ocean between the trees. Information boards along the walk explain more about the island's wildlife, especially the many birds that nest here.

    The rocks around Saeseom Island are also of interest for their fossilized shellfish, which are between 2 and 3 million years old. You can get to the island via Saeyeongyo Bridge – this slick, modern pedestrian bridge was built to resemble a traditional boat.

    Location: Seogwi-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

    Open: Daily from 6 am to 10 pm


    Yeomiji Botanical Garden

    More than 2000 different species of trees, plants and flowers

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    The Yeomiji Botanical Garden is a lush garden that boasts an exotic selection of international plants. Visit its 12,000-square-metre greenhouse to wander through the humid jungle, admire cacti in their desert environment, and see tropical fruit trees. Outside, the garden mimics a variety of different styles, from Korean and Japanese to French and Italian.

    Water-loving plants grow around the lily pond, and there's a unique 'bog garden' for marshy plants. Kids will enjoy the various colorful sculptures of animals and dinosaurs at the Yeomiji Botanical Garden. You can climb to the top of a 38-metre-tall glass observation tower for charming views of various flowers, plants and trees.

    Location: 93 Jungmungwangwang-ro, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 6 pm

    Phone: +82 (0)64-735-1100


    Daepo Jusangjeolli Cliff

    Atmospheric landscape of volcanic rock formations

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    Daepo Jusangjeolli Cliff is an awe-inspiring cliff face made up of thousands of stone pillars. The smooth and perfectly formed hexagons were created when lava from an ancient volcanic eruption was cooled by the seawater. At its tallest, the cliff reaches a towering 20 meters. At the lower end, the pillars sink into the ocean.

    A wooden walkway near the cliffs offers the best views of the stone formations. Take a speedboat from the Jungmun Tourist Complex to get up close to the cliffs from the water. Alternately, you can follow a hiking trail, Olle Trail 8, along the coast to explore more of this weird and wonderful scenery.

    Location: Jungmun-dong, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

    Phone: +82 (0)64-738-1521


    Lee Jung-Seop Art Gallery

    A diverse collection of paintings by Korean artists

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    The Lee Jung-Seop Art Gallery celebrates the life and work of a 20th-century artist who was inspired by Seogwipo's breathtaking scenery. The museum contains a fascinating collection of Lee Jung-Seop's paintings. His Fauvism-inspired work features bright, bold colors and energetic brush strokes. One of his most iconic paintings is Scenery with Seopseom Island in the Distance (1951), which depicts Seopseom Island.

    The gallery also exhibits a substantial collection of landscapes, abstracts, and calligraphy pieces by contemporary Korean painters. Outside, you can visit the traditional island house where Lee Jung-Seop used to stay in Seogwipo. There's also a small garden of native trees and winding stone pathways.

    Location: 27-3 Ijungseom-ro, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, South Korea

    Open: Tuesday–Sunday from 9 am to 6 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +82 (0)64-760-3567


    photo by Jinho Jung (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified


    Jeju Olle Trail

    A long-distance footpath connecting Jeju's forests and beaches

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    Jeju Olle trail course was selected and developed to provide a beautiful and easy country walk across Jeju Island. Olle means 'a narrow walkway from the gate of the house to the main road' in the Jeju dialect. In 2007, the first route was opened, and a total of 26 routes covering 425 km have been developed, with more being added quite regularly.

    Each route is around 15 km or less, with an average travel time of 5 to 6 hours, with spur routes available on nearby islands. Trails have quaint cafes and restaurants for when it’s time to take a break. It's fun to buy an Olle passport and get a stamp at the Olle Information Center.

    Victoria Hughes | Contributing Writer

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