Early November is the perfect time to visit the county of Yeongnam’s Wolchulsan National Park, a scenic mountain spot in southwest Korea. The brilliant crimson autumn foliage complements the blue skies and the mountain’s white craggy peaks. On the mountain’s lower slopes are the Buddhist temples of Dogapsa and Muwisa, the latter famous for its 15th-century main hall and beautiful wall murals. In addition to Mt. Wolchulsan, be sure to check out the green tea field in the township of Deokjin-myeon and the historic community of Gurim Village.
EAT>Korea’s southwestern region, including Yeongam, is famous for the rich flavors of its indigenous cuisine. While almost anything served is bound to be good, one standout is galnaktang, a hearty soup made of beef ribs and whole small octopuses. The village of Deokchon has plenty of restaurants that specialize in this dish.
SEE>If you’ve got a head for heights, you’ll love Cloud Bridge, a 52-meter-long suspension bridge above a 120-meter chasm between two granite peaks.
DO>Hike Mt. Wolchulsan, of course.
STAY>Gurim Village has several places that offer hanok homestays.
GO>Take the KTX from Seoul’s Yongsan Station to Mokpo (travel time: 3 hrs, 20 min). From Mokpo, take a bus to Yeongam.