Think themed couple wear, crystal blue waters and huge windmills dotted across endless fields. Complemented by azure sunrises and beach-themed cafés around each corner, Jeju Island is definitely one of the most scenic and romantic islands you will ever visit.
If you only have 72 hours to spare, Jeju Island is best explored road trip-style. Here’s the most efficient way to check out Jeju’s favourite attractions!
1. Hallasan National Park
Image credit: Hoonie’s Home in Jeju Island
The most majestic landmark in Jeju Island, Hallasan National Park is the first thing you should check off your list when visiting Jeju Island. Although it is the highest mountain in the whole of South Korea, the hike to the summit can be completed within 9 hours. This may sound tiring, but it will be well worth the effort for the breathtaking views from the peak.
Along Eorimok and Yeongsil Trail Image credit: Whnjejuisland
For a lighter hiking experience, you can choose the Eorimok and Yeongsil trails, which go midway up the mountain. For experienced hikers, we recommend you take the Seongpanak and Gwaneumsa trails that will bring you to the mountain’s summit.
Image credit: Clash Boom Band
If you do want to make the most out of your hike, go for the Gwaneumsa Trail, as it passes by a Guringul (lava cave) and offers the best views of Mt. Hallasan’s sloping valleys.
Image credit: Jeju Tourism Organization Blog
Address: 2070-61, 1100-ro, Jeju-si, Jeju-do
Opening Hours: Limited to daytime hiking daily; mountain entrance hours also vary by season.
*Protip: Wear appropriate hiking gear, and be well prepared for windy conditions
Where to stay: 2. Hotel Nanta
Image credit: Hotel Nanta
A 10km drive away from Mt. Hallasan, a stay at Hotel NANTA will be well worth the money spent due to its proximity to the mountain. Being relatively close to the mountain, you will not have to endure a long drive after the climb!
All rooms are comfortable and spacious enough for families and friends to stay together. It has a great view of Mt. Hallasan, and a sparkling ocean view of Jeju. You can enjoy a buffet dinner at Cookin’, the hotel’s main restaurant, and relax by the pool afterwards.
Price: Standard Rooms start from S$97/night
Address: 56-26, Seondolmokdong-gil, Jeju-si, Jeju-do, South Korea
Monsant Café is the most popular café on Jeju Island, which might partially be due to its famous owner – G-Dragon from Korean boyband, BIGBANG. However, the celebrity fame associated with the café is not the sole reason for its prominence. The café design is spectacular with huge mirrored doors, basal rock and crushed concrete walls. Plus, it’s also the only dining location in the area with such unique architecture.
Image credit: a as Architecture
The café serves mainly cakes and coffee, and is relatively small compared to other cafés in the Aewol region. Hence, it may be difficult to get a seat indoors. It would be advisable to visit the café in the morning for its sunrise views, and to avoid the crowd.
Image credit: lurvethelife
Hop onto a transparent kayak and paddle through crystal-clear waters while in the Aewol Area! Admire a rare view of the ocean right beneath your feet without getting them wet. Top off the experience with a dessert treat at the Bomnal Café afterwards (located right by the beach itself). A slice of their tiramisu cake will do wonders after a long session of kayaking.
*Protip: Go early to enjoy views of the sunrise without a crowd
4. O’sulloc Tea Museum
Image credit: Cavin Teo
The O’sulloc Tea Museum is one of the worthiest attractions to visit in Jeju. Walk through the island’s very own tea plantation, and have a taste of this beauty at the O’sulloc Café. With freshly made green tea, along with flavoured desserts like cakes and ice cream, you’re guaranteed to love this attraction, even if you are not a green tea fan. And with its cutely packaged green tea products, the museum is also a great place to pick up souvenirs for your loved ones!
Image credit: Travel with T
For beauty fanatics, the O’sulloc Tea Museum also has its very own specialty Innisfree store, which houses products exclusive to the store that is not available anywhere else. If you are travelling as a family, the Innisfree shop also provides a fun soap-making session for both adults and children.
Address: 15, Sinhwayeoksa-ro, Andeok-myeon, Seogwipo, Jeju Island 63521, South Korea
Opening Hours: 9.00am to 6.00pm daily
5. Hyeopjae Beach
Image credit: Kimchee Guesthouse Korea
Hyeopjae Beach is a hotspot for family friendly activities, and is often frequented by families with young children as compared to couples. In fact, many Korean families enjoy going to Hyeopjae to catch small fish and crabs in shallow tide pools, before releasing them back into the sea afterwards – a childhood activity most Koreans grow up doing. The beach allows parents to take a break from the city life and share their childhood pastimes with their children.
Climb to the peak of Seongsan Ilchulbong and enjoy the luxurious view of colourful shophouses dotting the coastal shores. A look at both sides of the peak will leave you gasping in awe, and is well worth waking up early for to catch a view of the sunrise. The climb is only 50 minutes both ways, and is manageable for people of all fitness levels.
Price: Adults 2,000 won / Teens & Children 1,000 won
Drive past the windmills to reach the scenic Woljeongri Beach, which fronts numerous beach-themed cafés designed with huge glass windows and rustic decorations. This particular beach is well-known for its cafés and photo-taking opportunities instead of water sports.
Address: Woljeong-ri, Gujwa-eup, Jeju-si, Jeju-do
8. Woodstock Café
The highly Instagrammable Woodstock Café is a must-visit for photo-lovers. The eatery may look plain on the outside, but its interior decor will be sure to blow your mind. Every room offers a different vibe and you’ll feel like you’re visiting 5 cafés all at once.
To live up to the ‘café life’, order a cup of their specialty Vanilla Latte and take in the calming sea view from the soft cushion chairs – you’re guaranteed to feel relaxed.
Just a stone’s throw away from Woljeongri Beach, Sehwa Beach is the one that truly satisfies your beach wanderlust. The cobalt blue waters feature a gradient so perfect, it looks Photoshopped! Apart from photos by the beach, you can also café hop and visit the numerous restaurants along the shore.
Address: Sehwa-gil, Gujwa-eup, Jeju-si, Jeju-do
10. Café Gongjakso Coffee and Dessert
One of the most notable cafés to visit is Café Gongjakso Coffee and Dessert. This popular postcard café tops the charts in terms of its whimsical beach-themed design, and its bestselling items – the Yuzaide drink, Halabong Tea and carrot cake.
Many locals and tourists purchase postcards for only 1,500 won to pen well wishes for their loved ones. You can spend some time here choosing souvenirs, writing postcards or simply sipping a cuppa while catching up with friends and family!
Address: 1477-4 Saehwa-ri, Gujwa-eup, Cheju, Jeju-do, South Korea
Opening Hours: 8.00am – 9.00pm
Image credit: Part of a World
Mazeland is especially unique, as it is uncommon to actually have a life-sized maze you can walk through. For those who are not as good with directions, fret not as the maze is not difficult to navigate through! This tourist attraction is no normal maze, as its well-manicured lawns and hedges have served as a filming location for top Korean shows, including Running Man and Legend of the Blue Sea. Relive the romance as you find your way through the maze.
Opening Hours: November - January: 9.00am – 5.30pm February - March/October: 9.00am - 6.00pm April - May: 9.00am – 6.30pm June - September: 9.00am – 7.00pm
12. Jeju Swiss Village
Image credit: Visit Jeju
The Jeju Swiss Village is a cute collection of colourful cafés, shops and restaurants. A respite from famous tourist attractions, this quaint village feels like a sleepy town and is a top favourite for those who enjoy time away from the maddening crowd.
Address: 1559-1 Wasan-ri, Jochon-eup, Cheju, Jeju-do, South Korea
Opening Hours: Dependent on respective shophouses
13. Jeongseong Pizza
While you’re there, you can also visit the Jeongseong Pizza, which is owned by a kind-hearted and friendly dog-lover. During winter last year, there were two stray dogs that went to the pizza place’s owner for food and warmth so much that he eventually built a shelter for them. He has since been featured on the SNS Animal Show for his kind act.
On top of pizza and his friendly companions, feel free to ask the host for any recommendations on things to do on Jeju Island!
Price: 7,000 won per pizza
Address: This one is a little tricky. Walk on the right fork once you enter the Swiss Village, and it’s the red house with a red dog shelter in front.
Getting Around: 14. Rent a car
Renting a car is highly recommended as this saves a lot of time when travelling around Jeju. This is even more important as buses here may also take 20-30 minutes to arrive, and not all attractions are accessible by public transport.
It is best to book your car rental before flying over to Jeju as it may be hard to secure a car at last minute. Additionally, do take into account the size of your luggage when choosing your rental car size!
Rental companies such as Hertz run promotions from time to time and are worth a check for price comparisons, especially during the holiday season.
With this itinerary, you will truly be able to immerse in the vibrant and exotic beauty of Jeju’s natural landscape. A 72-hour experience with the crystal blue seas, amazing cafés and mountains will ensure that you leave Jeju feeling refreshed, and already planning your next visit.