Being surrounded by stunning nature, of which there are 3 National Parks, caves, temples and delicious food all over the place. To go Hiking in Danyang is a top destination for Korean outdoor enthusiast but it’s not so famous yet among western tourists as I discovered during my solo backpacking in adventures in Korea which took me for a week to this little town.
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The (New) town of Danyang was created in 1986 after most of the old city was submerged when the Chungju Lake was created after a dam construction.
Although most tourists will just go to the top attractions, you can check them on my post about things to do in Danyang, one that I really enjoyed was hiking around the city as I discovered a network of trails which are not transited at all and provide really good views and even a fantastic terrain for some trail running.
How to get to Danyang
South Korea being quite a small country you can move around to almost anywhere by bus or train.
I arrived to Danyang from Seoul by bus, you can get a similar priced (or even cheaper) train but the train station in Danyang is out of town so you’re better off getting there by bus.
Where to stay
During my time in Danyang I was staying at Factory G. Ssang which is a wonderful guesthouse, really cool design and the common area makes you feel at home.
If you’re travelling solo and speak good English send them a message as they may be interested in hosting you for free for just a couple of hours daily conversation in the evenings so they practice their English skills, that’s what I did and I enjoyed it a lot as I met quite a few locals which also took me around town
Hiking in Danyang: around town
Apart from the top attractions which I mentioned on the link above, I found a network of trails when I went for a walk towards the Dodamsambong Peaks.
To get there is just a 30 minute walk by the river from the bridge, there’s only a couple of hundred meters that are next to a highway but the rest is very nice to walk or run.
When you arrive to the Dodamsambong Peaks there’s a tourist centre and signs pointing towards Seongmun which is a natural stone arch, said to be the remains of an old cave.
Just about 150 meters before the arch itself you will see a small path diverting towards the left of the mountain (as you walk to the arch). I took it as I saw a small group of hikers and got curious as I was not aware of hiking trails in this part of town.
MY HIKING ESSENTIALS
The walk starts on a nice forest trail with some ups and downs but mostly flat areas.
The terrain is really well maintained and there are signs every few hundred meters showing your location so it’s impossible to get lost.
There are 4 trails in total, although I saw a few more small paths that were not on the signboards, so if you feel adventurous and/or have plenty of time I’m sure you can hike a lot more!
As I didn’t prepare at all for this hike, which I decided on the way to make most of it as a trail run, and was not carrying even water on me I chose to stick to the marked trails just in case.
After you pass the tourist centre at the Dodamsambong Peaks there will be no other places to buy water so make sure to prepare for this and bring your own reusable bottle as I got pretty thirsty on that warm day! the trail run definitely contributed to that but I couldn’t resist the urge to run those paths!
The trails on the map (pictured below) show a total of 8.1 Km of trails, and as you can see, on the green trail kind of look like there’s a road nearby at the end of it towards the left side of the image, so I decided to go in that direction (yeap, still thirsty) and found more trails that were not on this map, I then followed a zig-zag direction around the yellow arrow (which I added! this arrow is not on the maps)
This area seemed to me that it must be quite popular in the summertime as there was a sort of camp with a playground, the trail will at times split into 2 or 3 paths which made it a bit harder to navigate.
At one point, I got to a beautiful viewpoint of the city and the bridge but then I had to turn around as there was no way forward…
After climbing back up a little bit from the viewpoint, taking always the path “to the right” I finally arrived to a small parking lot and from there it was the road that can be seen on the map.
This was an unplanned but really cool day which I recommend to anyone that is planning to visit Danyang as the terrain is really good and the climbs are very gentle so anyone can enjoy this beautiful place!
If you’re planning to go to Hiking in Danyang make sure to set one day aside to explore this area! feel free to drop any comments or questions! 🙂
Take a look at my other posts about backpacking in Korea for more ideas on your next trip!