Jirisan National Park is a true gem hidden in the heart of South Korea. This breathtaking park is home to towering peaks, cascading waterfalls, and dense forests that stretch as far as the eye can see. The park is an ideal destination for those seeking to reconnect with nature and escape the hustle and bustle of modern life. From the summit of Jirisan, the highest peak in the park, hikers can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. The park is also home to an abundance of wildlife, including Asiatic black bears, deer and wild boars. Whether you're a seasoned hiker or just looking for a peaceful retreat, Jirisan National Park offers something for everyone. Come, explore, and discover the natural beauty of Jirisan.

Read more: Naganeupseong Folk Village at Suncheon, South Korea


    Jirisan National Park South Korea
    Jirisan National Park, South Korea


    Jirisan National Park, South Korea

    Background

    Jirisan National Park covers 483,022 square kilometres, making it the largest national park in South Korea. Ssanggyesa Temple and Chilbulsa Temple, as well as valleys, falls, and other popular attractions, can be found in Gyeongsangnam-do.

    Jirisan features over ten incredible summits and several hiking trails. There are also incredible cascading waterfalls, including Guryongpokpo, Burilpokpo, Yongchupokpo, and Chilseonpokpo. The park is home to various important cultural sites, such as the famous Hwaeomsa Temple, Ssanggyesa Temple, and Daewonsa Temple.


    Jirisan Highest Peak

    Cheonwangbong, or "King of Heaven Mountain," rises to 1,915 metres above sea level, making it South Korea's second highest peak after Hallasan (1,950 m) and the highest on the South Korean mainland. Many more peaks over 1,000 metres surround Jeonwangbong, including Jeseokbong (1,806 m), Banyabong (1,732 m), and Nogodan peak (1,507 m). During your visit, you can witness a panorama that appears to be a sea of mountains stretching off into the horizon.

    Jirisan is regarded as one of South Korea's three most significant mountains, alongside Hallasan and Seoraksan. It is located in the southern end of the Sobaek mountain range.

    Jirisan National Park South Korea
    Cheonwangbong is the highest peak in Jirisan


    Best Trails in Jirisan

    Samshinbong is a popular but challenging trek from the Ssanggye Temple access point. You will go on a 2.3-kilometer trail that leads up from Ssanggyesa to the Buril Falls. The path continues 6.9 kilometres to the peak from the left turn on the path just before the waterfall. You can reach the peak in approximately four hours, and it takes a further three hours to go down through a rather steep trek. Remember to bring along plenty of water and snacks.

    Other recommended hiking routes include the two-hour climb from Seongsamjae to the Nogodan ridge to arrive at the summit of Nogodan. Alternatively, there is an exciting summer trail which begins in Seongsamjae and continues along the Nogodan ridge to Hwaeomsa Temple over a five-hour journey. For seasoned hikers, the seven-hour trail from Piagol valley to Imgeollyeong is a must-try to get a taste of the splendour of Korean autumn.

    Jirisan National Park South Korea
    Samshinbong is a popular but challenging hiking trail in Jirisan


    Wildlife & Plants

    Jirisan is home to more than 1,500 plants, 122 species of birds, 24 species of mammals, 10 species of amphibians, 10 species of reptiles, 42 species of fish, 5,000 types of insects, and many more. It is South Korea's most diverse ecosystems and habitats. Asiatic black bears, Yellow-throated martens, otters, and flying squirrels are four rare and unique species found here.

    Ever since tthe South Korean government have started releasing bears into Jirisan National Park, it is thought that at least 74 Asian black bears are living here. Those who plan to travel to Jirisan National Park may come across these adorable Asian black bears as they explore the trails.

    Jirisan National Park South Korea
    Asian black bears at the Jirisan National Park in South Korea


    Entrance Fees

    Admission Fee

    Adult 1,000 won
    Teenager 600 won
    Children 300 won

    Parking

    Small cars: 2,000 won
    Mid-size cars: 4,000-5,000 won
    Large cars: 6,000-7,500 won

    Camping

    Adults 1,600-2,000 won
    Teenagers 1,200-1,500 won
    Children 800-1,000 won


    How to Get to Jirisan National Park

    By Bus

    The best way to get to Jirisan is via vehicle or bus. Many buses from Busan depart from Seobu Terminal, including two daily buses to Ssanggyesa, four daily buses to Jungsan-ri, and one every other hour to Gurye. Local buses can transport you to the park's entrance from there. These cities are also accessible from other cities such as Jeonju, Gwangju, and Daegu.

    By Train

    The nearest and most convenient train station to Jirisan is 1 Gurye-gu Station. Gurye-gu Station is on the west side of Jirisan Mountain, making it easy to reach the beginning site of the HwaeomsaTemple and Nogodan Route. When you arrive at Gurye-gu Station, take a bus to Gurye Bus Terminal from the bus stop visible as soon as you exit. It takes around ten minutes and costs 1,000 won 1,500 won.

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