Often dubbed ‘Korea’s Hawaii’, the volcanic island of Jeju is a UNESCO protected Biosphere that boasts great scenery and amazingly diverse flora with outstanding facilities for everyone from nature lovers, honeymooners and even those looking for a jet-set lifestyle.
While Jeju's amazing golf courses, casino's and beaches towns soak up the crowds, we recommend taking to the beautifully charted footpaths to discover the amazing volcanic formations of the coastline or heading through citrus orchards lining the slopes of Hallasan (1,950m / 6,397ft), Korea’s highest peak, to reach an ancient Buddhist temple.
Udo, an islet off the northeastern shore, is where you’ll find white-sand coral beaches lapping black-rock cliffs. Divers and snorkelers, meanwhile, head for the city of Seogwipo, on the south coast, which has the warmest seas in Korea and some superb coral reefs.
The Haenyeo of Jeju
Jeju and the small islands off its shoreline are also the domain of an extraordinary band of all-female, freediving grandmothers, known in Korea as ‘Haenyeo’, who for centuries have dived in the rough waters of the Japan Sea to collect sea urchins and other delicacies. Many are over 70!