The Forest Walk
Ulleung Island is not a place you come to if you want to go to parties or do big shopping sprees (hell even little shopping sprees are off the cards!). Ulleung is a place you visit for the natural beauty and a great opportunity to go on a forest walk. There are many great hiking trails and walking trails that you can do in an hour or so. There are also the bigger hikes, if you’re feeling adventurous, like Seonginbong, that can take most of the day.
Unfortunately a lot of these smaller trails are not well signposted making them difficult for you to find. I’m going to be doing a series of blog posts documenting as many trails as I can find. Giving you some info about them and rating their beauty and difficulty!
Where it begins
First trail is the Dodong Forest Trail which is a forest walk that leads to the Dodong lighthouse and Haengnam beach. This was the first hiking trail I found. It gives you a great ocean view as well as a wonderful wander through the forests of the island. So far I’ve not met anybody else on this trail so it is quiet and peaceful. The wind rustling through the trees with the birds chirping around you really takes you away from civilization.
A downside is that there are often electrical cables running up the mountain which does spoil the view to an extent in some places. You can find the start of the trail on a road that runs up near the local post office and past a Catholic church.
The beginning of the forest walk is the mother of all up hills and in true Korean fashion, it has stairs. The trail is mostly just up and down with a few flat places peppered in between and it is about 2km to the lighthouse from Dodong. I am not incredibly fit at the moment and the walk takes about 45 minutes.
What to see
At the lighthouse you can have a great view of the sunrise. It has a platform that looks out over Jeodong and you can see Jukdo and Gwaneumdo in the distance. In addition to the forest you can also get down to Haengnam Beach. Along the way there is a small bamboo forest that you can walk through.
Overall I’d rate the view an 8/10. Great ocean and forest scenery, great view of Jeodong and the islands but brought down by electrical cables.
Difficulty I’d give it a 7/10 – It isn’t long but the up hills are steep and if you are not used to hiking you will work up a sweat doing it! You don’t need to take water for this walk.
Below is a video of the first half of the walk. I had taken my bagpipes up to play on the mountain and thought I’d take a video on the way. Everything is turning nicely green with summer on the way!