Golden Fall Stroll, ‘Tongiljeon Ginkgo Trees’
In between golden fields on the way from downtown Gyeongju (경주) to Bulguksa (불국사), the road heading to Tongiljeon (통일전) is visible. A long straight road lined with golden trees matched with the higha nd wide autumn skies, Tongil Road is one of the most beautiful ginkgo roads in Korea. With many people visiting, this place has become one of the top autumn attractions of the city in fall. A road where you can feel autumn all over you, is best enjoyed by getting off your car and walk on the side of the road covered with falled ginkgo leaves. The autumnal atmosphere is also in full swing inside the Tongiljeon (Unification Hall) compound the as the pavilion and pond look so beautiful.
A Hall Full of Trees ‘Korea Forest Research Institute’
Korea Forest Research Institure is located just a few minutes away from Tongiljeon. Thus it is a place you should not miss when visiting Tongiljeon. It is a perfect place for visitors to enjoy beautiful scenery that nature has to offer. In autumn, you can feel the fullness of autumn among the various trees that have been tinged various shades of orange. You can come with your family or enjoy the beauty of fall alone. If you prefer walking on the flat grounds rather than hiking, this place is perfect for you to visit. It is regrettable, however, that the eastern side of the institute is under construction and can only enjoy half of it. However, don’t get disappointed.
Walking along the trail next to the road toward Tongiljeon, a healing course leading to the ancient the Royal Tomb of King Jeonggang and the Royal Tomb of King Hun is waiting for you.
A Trip to Find Myself, ‘Dori Village Ginkgo Tree Forest’
The hidden autumn attraction of Gyeongju, which is not much known to tourists, is the Dori Village Ginkgo Tree Forest. Though it is located a little far from downtown Gyeongju, it is known for its exotic scenery that has already been featured in a movie. The main attraction of this place is scenery created by the ginkgo trees standing tall and proud against the blue autumn skies as well as the leaves of ginkgo trees which have already fallen to the ground. The best time to visit to take nice pictures is when the peak of foliage season is a bit over. This attraction is located in the village where residents live, so make sure respect the residents right by walking in the forest quietly.
A 350-year old Classical Beauty, ‘Un-gok Seowon Ginkgo Tree’
The usually quiet parking lot of Gangdong-myeon’s Un-gok Seowon becomes crowded in autumn. The 360 year-old ginkgo tree which is located in Un-gok Seowon shows its overwhelming beauty in fall. This ginkgo tree was planted in 1748 to commemorate the achievement of Gwonhaeng, the founder of Andong Gwon Clan. The ginkgo leaves that fly with the wind are simply spectacular. Usually a good place to stroll quietly, but at this time of the year, you have to endure a bit of crowds of photographers from all over the country. It is one of Gyeongju's representative autumn attractions, which must one must see before all the ginkgo leaves fall to the ground.
Forest of myth and legend of the Silla Dynasty, ‘Gyerim Forest’
Located between Wolseong and Cheomseongdae, Gyerim Forest is a legendary forest that contains the myth of Kim Al-ji, the founder of the Kim Clan. The old zelkova trees and other old trees are so dense that their colorful autumn foliage almost covers the skies. Sine it is not yet know to fall foliage travelers, so it is still possible for one to enjoy a quiet and leisurely walk. Once you walk past Gyerim Forest and enter Gyochon Village, you will come find Woljeong Bridge, a new landmark in Gyeongju. It is a night attraction that comes after Donggung and Wolji which is best enjoyed with the fall foliage of Gyerim Fores.
Silver Grass Dancing with Autumn Breeze, ‘Mujang Peak Silver Grass Trail’
Let's take the autumn trail of Gyeongju. Gyeongju’s Dongdaebongsan Mujang Peak (Amgok-dong), is famous for its silver grass covering the entire mountain. There is a steady stream of hikers in fall.
The 1.48 million square meters of silver grass habitat offering a cool scenery is the main attraction of this place. Come if you want to get lost in the maze-like beauty of silver grass. Walking on the trail, will make you enjoy the sweetness of fall. In addition, Mujang Historic Site and a three-story stone pagoda (Treasure No.126) are also located near Mujang Peak.
It's a shame to miss out on grilled pork belly. So stop by at a restaurant on the way down from hiking.
Follow the Footsteps of King of Silla on the ‘King’s Road’, ‘Fall in Byeongpung Churyeungjae’
The King’s Road is the road where King Sinmun walked when he was on his way to King Munmu’s resting place in the East Sea. The king's road starts at Chowon Village which is located before the Choryeongjae Tunnel, along the old road that passes from Gyeongju to Gampo. The path is full of tales and stories such as "Malguburi" where the horse fell because of its high incline, ‘Sesubang’ where King Simun washed before continuing his journey and ‘Yongyeon Falls’ where a dragon apparently appeared. The path leading to Kirimsa, a 1,000-year-old temple, is not just a common hiking course, but a place where the breath of Silla's thousand years history permeates. Let's go into the slowly deepening of autumn. Especially, if you cross the Choryeongjae by car, be sure to slow down. The autumn scenery of `Churyeongjae` that looks like a folding screen outside the car window might cause you to miss lane. Driving safely is a must when traveling in Gyeongju in autumn.
A Trail Best Enjoyed with the Sea, ‘Padosori’
If you're tired of the autumn trip, let's go to a beach trail in Gyeongju. In particular, the ‘Padosori’ trail, which is 1.7 kilometers long, is popular among tourists. Around this time, the ocean in Gyeongju, where the sun shines, offers mysterious scenery to the point where one has to check out the color scheme. When you climb up to the towering observatory, you can see the scenery of the Yangnam Jusangjeoli or columnar joints and the sea at a glance. It is the pride of Gyeongju’s sea, where tourists gather from all over the country to enjoy the unique atmosphere.
Photos Courtesy of Gyeonju City