Seokbulsa: A Hidden Treasure in Busan

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Earlier this fall, Ric and I hiked up to tiny Seokbulsa temple.  Located off the Oncheonjang stop on Line 1, the temple is a hidden treasure built right into Geumjeong Mountain.  The hike up to the temple starts with a ride up the mountain in a cable car, affording an amazing view of the entire city. 

ImageThe cable car let us off a short hike from Geumjeongsan Fortress, an ancient fortification that surrounds the summit of the mountain.  Of course,we had to stop there for a photo op or two.  

ImageBut the fortress was only the beginning of the beautiful trek through the pretty poorly marked mountain trails leading up to the temple.  The scenery was so gorgeous it almost made us forget we were still well within the confines of the city.  

ImageThe beauty of the trail was soon overpowered by a pretty strenuous uphill climb–one definitely not for the faint of heart.  However, the reward at the end of the road is totally worthwhile.  

Seokbulsa is beautiful, and relatively unknown to tourists.  Even on a sunny Saturday, it was relatively empty.  

ImageThe religious statues common to all Buddhist temples are particularly remarkable here because they are carved directly out of the mountainside.

ImageAnd they are massive in size–these guys are approximately 40 meters tall.  The quiet, secluded temple was a lovely, welcome respite from the noisy city streets.  I mean, who wouldn’t want to eat a PB&J sack lunch at the top of a mountain with all of Busan spread out at your feet?  Image

Getting There:  From Oncheonjang Station on Line 1, walk across the pedestrian crosswalk toward HomePlus.  Then, just head toward the mountain.  The cable cars cost a couple thousand won to ride, but are essential unless you want a 8 hour plus round trip hike.  Our advice:  buy the ticket for the ride up, but hike back down yourself.  






Filed under: Uncategorized Tagged: Busan, Korea, Seokbulsa, Stuff to Do, Temples


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