20 Best Things to Do in Jeju

by | Jun 15, 2019 | Latest Posts, South Korea

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A perfect mix of natural beauty and quirky sights, there are lots of amazing things to do in Jeju. Popular with Koreans as well as international tourists, Jeju’s natural beauty is a highlight of Korea. We loved exploring its rugged coastline, beautiful waterfalls, powerful volcanic landscape and the quirky museums and parks. Here’s our guide to the best things to do in Jeju!

Jeju!

 

 

Our things to do in Jeju Essentials

Before we get into things to do in Jeju, here are our recommendations on getting around and where to stay.

Getting around Jeju

Renting a car in Jeju is the best way to explore the island plus driving is relatively easy.  Having your own car gives you the flexibility to travel at your own pace and see places that are simply not possible on group tours or public transport. We’re huge fans of road trips and have driven rental cars in over 40 countries so we have a lot of experience renting cars in foreign countries. We rented with AJC/Avis through RentalCars.com, which we find has the best rental car prices.

Make sure to book your rental car well in advance for the best price and to ensure availability. Jeju is an island with a lot of visitors: Seoul Gimpo to Jeju is the busiest air route in the world and 26million passengers use the tiny Jeju International Airport every year! As such, demand for rental cars on the island is high, especially during busy periods and holidays. We recommend using RentalCars.com to reserve your car as they have the best selection and prices that we’ve found – click here to book now!

Book your car now with RentalCars.com

 

 

Our Jeju ride among the many cars at Sunrise Peak!

 

Where to Stay in Jeju

We recommend staying in Jeju City if you have a late arrival or early departure. The South of the island is the ideal location to explore the Jeju sights.

  • Howard Johnston Hotel Jeju: We spent a night at the Howard Johnson and found it perfect for a short stay before or after a flight at Jeju International. The hotel is centrally located and very close to the airport. There are lots of restaurants and facilities within a short walking distance. Parking is also available for free as part of the room rate – check prices now!
  • Marriott Jeju Shinhwa World Hotels & Resorts: this resort was one of our favourite hotels in South Korea and was a good base for exploring Jeju. The resort itself is amazing, with stunning rooms, a beautiful pool and an incredible breakfast. There’s even a theme park attached to the hotel! – check prices now!
  • Kensington Jeju Hotel: located close to Jungmun Beach on the south of the island it’s easy to see why the Kensington Jeju Hotel is one of Jeju’s highest rated hotels. The breakfast and dinner buffets are insane and the views from the rooftop infinity pools are some of the best in Jeju – check prices now!

 

Click here for the best Jeju Hotel prices

 

The Marriott Jeju

 

4G Internet

We found having mobile data invaluable in Jeju and it was extremely useful in the rental car. Being able to research the sights and having real-time navigation was invaluable and we highly recommend purchasing a sim when you arrive in South Korea. We prebooked our SK Telecom Sim Cards through Klook and it was cheaper than purchasing on arrival – click here to prebook your Jeju Sim!
 
 

 

 

The 20 best things to do in Jeju Island

From beaches, caves and waterfalls to museums and theme parks, here are our 20 best things to do in Jeju. 

Stunning Jeju!

 

 

Jusangjeolli Cliffs

The spectacular rock formations of the Jusangjelloi Cliffs are comprised of hundreds of hexagonal stones rising from the sea. The cliffs were formed by a Mount Hallasan eruption and are viewed from a wooden walkway which snakes around the cliff. The cliffs are one of the most beautiful sights in Jeju and it is breathtaking to watch the waves crash against the rocks. For us, the Jusangjelloi Cliffs were our little reminder of home: the rock formations are a smaller version of Northern Ireland’s Giant Causeway!

The spectacular rock formations of the Jusangjelloi Cliffs

 

 

  The UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Jeju was created by a massive volcanic eruption 2 million years ago and the island is lush with remnants of volcanic activity. There are over 350 small inactive volcanic cones and 160 lava tubes dotted across the island. It’s incredible to arrive on Jeju and be immersed in the evidence of how powerful nature really is. The Jeju Volcanic Island and Lava Tubes UNESCO World Heritage Site is made up of three amazing Jeju sights: Seongsan Ilchulbong (known as Sunset Peak), Mount Hallasan and the Manjanggul Lava tubes. 

Jeju UNESCO

 

 

Manjanggul Lava Tubes at Manjanggul Cave

Jeju is home to 160 lava tubes and the Manjanggul Cave in Jeju is the longest lava tube in Asia. Best described as tunnel-like channels formed by rivers of lava, the lava tube at Manjanggul Cave stretches for 13.4kilometres and is considered one of the finest lava tunnels in the world. One kilometre of the cave is open to visitors and it’s incredible to walk among the stalactites and lava toes along the route. The highlights are the ‘Stone Turtle’, which resembles the outline of Jeju Island, and an 8-metre tall lava column which is the largest in the world. 
 

The Manjanggul Cave


The largest lava column in the world


Exploring the lava tunnels

 

Best things to do in Jeju tip: avoid flip flops and sandals and bring a rain jacket as it can get chilly and wet in the cave. 

Descending into the cave

 

Sunrise Peak: Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak 

Seongsan Illchulbong Peak is a five-thousand-year-old cone-shaped volcanic crater rising from the sea.  Topped by 99 jagged rocks which resemble a crown, it is one of the most recognisable landmarks in Jeju. It’s an easy hike up the North West side of the crater and the 20-minute climb is reward with stunning views of Jeju and the ocean.

Best things to do in Jeju tip: Seongsan Illchulbong became known as Sunrise Peak due to its magnificent sunrise views. A sunrise hike is absolutely worth the early wake-up call!

Seongsan Illchulbong Peak


Admiring the beautiful views on the hike


The view from the top

 

 

Mount Hallasan

The final Jeju UNESCO sight is Mount Hallasan.  Hallasan is the tallest mountain in South Korea and is located in the center of Jeju. Its peak dominates the Jeju landscape and stands at almost 2,000 metres tall. There are a range of hikes which vary in length and effort: two of the hikes lead to the summit and offer a glimpse at the iconic crater lake. Both the 9.7km Seongpanak Trail and the 8.7km Gwaneumsa Trail lead to the summit. The easier trails include the Yeongsil Trail at 3.7km. 

Best things to do in Jeju tip: it is possible to do the summit hikes in a day if you arrive at the starting point early.

 

 

Love Land (adults only)

The sex-themed Love Land is by far the quirkiest of our things to do in Jeju. Love Land is an outdoor sculpture park with over 100 sensual and erotic sculptures in various sex positions. Some of the sculptures will cause you to cover your eyes! Everything is naughty from the door handles to the cars. We giggled and cringed our way through the themed park which takes about an hour to explore.

Best things to do in Jeju: visitors must be 18 or over to enter Love Land

One of the more wholesome sculptures at Love Land!


The urinal display!


The sculptures all depict sexual and erotic scenes

 

 

6 | Seopjikoji Coast Walk

The Seopikoji Coast Walk is famous for both the yellow canola and its appearance in Korean dramas! The canola blooms during March and April but it is a stunning scenic walk at any time of the year.

The Seopikoji Coast Walk

 

 

7 | Jeongbang Falls

The diverse landscape of Jeju is home to some stunning waterfalls and the Jeongbang, Cheonjiyeon and Cheonjeyeon Waterfalls are the three most famous on the island. Our favourite is theJeongbang Waterfall which is of the only waterfall in Asia to fall straight into the ocean. The 23-meter high waterfall is surrounded by giant boulders but it’s possible to walk across them and get close enough to feel the water spray!

Jeongbang falls straight into the ocean

 

Best things to do in Jeju tip: Jeongbang Waterfall is accessed by descending a series of steps and, if you want to get close, walking across rocks. Make sure to wear wear proper footwear!

A set of stairs leads from the car park to the Jeongbang Waterfall

 

 

8 | Haenyeo, Jeju’s women divers

The Jeju Haenyeo are the island’s traditional women divers who dive without oxygen masks in Jeju’s waters. Some of the women divers are aged over 80 and continue to free dive under the sea gather clams and seaweed. We saw the Jeju Haenyeo on our descent from Seongsan Illchulbong where the path leads to a viewing platform from which to watch the traditional women divers.

We spotted the Jeju Haenyeo on our descent from Sunrise Peak

 

 

9 | Iho Tewoo Beach

Framed by a red and white horse shaped lighthouse at either end, Iho Tewoo Beach is close to downtown Jeju and the airport. The sand is an interesting mix of yellow and grey and the shallow waters allow for swimming. Locals fish from the seawall and kayaking, swimming in the outdoor pool and renting boats are popular activities at Iho Tewoo Beach. With its great restaurant, beautiful sunsets and walks among the pine tree, the beach is also lovely in the evenings.

Iho Tewoo Beach

 

 

10 | Sunset at Suwolbong Peak

Now an inactive volcanic cone and located at the most western point in Jeju, Suwolbong Peak is part of the Jeju Olle walking trails. The beautiful landscape and sea views are a treat and it is a Jeju sunset gem.

Sunset views from the Suwolbong Peak

 

 

1Wonang Falls

Located in the lush surrounds of the Donnaeko Valley, the waters of Wongang Falls are crystal clear.   Flowing straight from Mount Hallahan, the icy cold water means swimming in Wonang Falls in reserved for the very brave!

Wonang Falls

 

 

12 | Oedolgae Rock

The towering Oedolgae Rock is an impressive rock formation visible from the Olle trail, a series of trails which stretch across Jeju. The cliff walk offers a stunning display of nature with the blue ocean, interesting rock formations, the crashing waves and the backdrop of the beautiful Bum Island and Sae Island.

Oedolgae Rock


The views from the trails are spectacular

 

 

13 Cheonjeyeon Falls and Seonimgyo Bridge

Known as the Pond of God, the three-tiered Cheonjeyeon Falls is set in a lush tropical forest. Legend has it that f you stand under the waterfall on the 15th day of the 7th lunar month then diseases will be cured. However, swimming is only permitted during the Chilseonyeo Festival in May!

The Seonimgyo Bridge cross over the Cheonjeyeon Falls. As well as the views of the waterfalls, the bridge has a beautiful carving of seven nymphs. Legend has it that seven nymphs descended from the heavens at night and came to bathe in the waters of the Cheonjeyeon Falls.

Seonimgyo Bridge

 

 

14 | Hypeopjae Beach

The stunning white sands and turquoise waters of Hypeopjae Beach make it one of the most beautiful in Jeju. it’s also one of the most popular with visitors drawn to its shallow clear waters. There’s plenty of parasols and food options and snorkelling, inflatables and water sports are popular at Hypeopjae Beach.

Best things to do in Jeju tip: Geumneung Eutteumwon Beach, located beside Hypeopjae Beach, is just as pretty but is often quieter than its more famous neighbour. The white sands are framed by some awesome stone statues and the waters are equally as blue!

 

 

15 Cheonjiyeon Falls

Where the sky connects with the land,  Cheonjiyeon Falls is the third of Jeju’s three great waterfalls. The waterfall is accessed at the end of a scenic walk and Cheonjiyeon is set in lush surrounds. The turquoise waters and the resident ducks are a highlight at the Cheonjiyeon Falls! Make sure to try the squid biscuits which are sold at the entrance of Cheonjiyeon.

Best things to do in Jeju with kids tip: walk to the falls is serene and beautiful, especially during cherry blossom season. 

Cheonjiyeon Falls

 

 

16 | Teddy bear museum

A museum dedicated entirely to teddy bears, Jeju’s Teddy Bear Museum is home to hundreds of teddies from all over the world. Our highlights were a teddy bear version of the Mona Lisa, the smallest teddy in the world and the Vitruvian Teddy, a nod to Leonardo Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man painting. Outside, there is a garden with teddy bear structures – check prices here!

Click here to purchase tickets to the Teddy Bear Museum

 

 

 

17 | Jungmun Beach

With its crashing waves, Jungmun is Jeju’s surf beach. It’s also popular with families due to its golden sands and location close to the tourist hotels.

Jungmun Beach

 

 

18 Sojeongbang Falls

Close to the Jeongbang Falls, Sojeongbang Falls has 10 streams. It’s possible to swim under the Sojeongbang Falls although the waters are freezing!

Sojeongbang Falls

 

 

19 | Aqua Planet

If you are travelling with kids, Aqua Planet is a Jeju must do. It is the largest aquarium in all of Asia and 50,000 animals and 500 plants live there. There’s a fascinating variety of marine life on show at Aqua Planet: the stingrays, sharks, seals, penguins and otters were our highlights among the thousands of sea creatures – buy tickets here!

Click here to purchase tickets to Aqua Planet

 

 

20 | Jeju Shinhwa World

With a theme park and water park, a visit to Jeju Shinhwa World is the perfect way to blow off some steam in Jeju. The theme park has fun rides across 3 themed zones while the water park offers slides, waves and pools to have fun with!