I was there in the early morning and saw elderly farmers working on their land. Seeing farmers, especially elderly ones, make me appreciate their hard work even more. After greeting the friendly farmers, I walked through the small village streets to a road that lead me to the mountain. Like in many mountain entrances in Korea, it has workout equipment. After you pass this area, the hiking path splits. I prefer the one on my left, because the right when is very steep.
When I arrived at the mid area of the mountain, I was blown away by one of the peaks that was fully decorated with azaleas, while the other peak had cherry blossoms leading the way to a small temple
After leaving the temple, I headed to the higher peak, which was the highlight of my hike. I could see beautiful pinks and greens surrounded by factories. A man who hiked up with a cool box full of ice cream was selling them there. It was a nice and refreshing treat. I quickly snapped pictures, as the air there was the worst. I could smell the chemicals. I then hiked to various lower peaks to admire the azaleas. By then the mountain got a lot busier with colorfully-dressed middle-aged hikers. I walked down, only to realize I took a wrong turn.
I ended up at an entrance facing a big factory, which is used by tour buses, and has pop-up eateries during the festival. I was told that no public buses stop there, so the only way back is by taxi. Since I wasn’t that tired I walked around a bit, and discovered a paved road back to the temple. I decided to hike back up the mountain, which was a good decision. The road passes a cherry blossom forest. I don’t think I have ever seen an area so densely populated with cherry blossoms. It was beautiful, but hard to take a good picture of. The best one I took was from afar. I then arrived back to the middle point in between the azalea peak and the temple. I hiked down to where I started and passed by farmers working on their land, while others were selling their goods to hikers.
I had a wonderful day enjoying the azaleas. I really recommend you to see it in person, as the pictures do not do justice to the beauty of the mountain. Happy Hiking!
Click here for more information on the festival and how to get there.