Sokcho (South Korea)

Sokcho City is located in the northeastern part of Gangwon Province on the coast of the Sea of Japan. It is here that ferries with Russian tourists come from the Far Eastern city of Zarubino. Sokcho is a modern city with beaches, shops, many fish markets, hotels and restaurants.

According to Destination Explorer, the city center is located between the Jeoncho and Yeongnan lakes. Along the coast of Sokcho, from the Dongmyeong Passenger Sea Terminal, the main city avenue stretches south. In the northern part of the avenue, an extensive fish market is interesting, where you can rent a boat and go fishing, the Yongkeum-jeon gazebo (a great place to meet the dawn), an old lighthouse with an observation deck and Yeongnan Lake. South of Yongnan Lake rises Tiger Mountain, resembling a tiger in outline, and a park stretches along its banks, where not only local residents, but also guests of the city like to relax and ride bicycles.

From the south, the central part of the city is separated by Choncho Lake. On its bank rises the modern high-rise Expo Tower 73 m high with an observation deck. Cape Chon adjoins Lake Choncho from the east. On the cape is the village of Abai, where North Korean refugees settled during the Korean War, this is one of the poorest areas of the city. Not far from the northwestern shore of Lake Choncho in the central part of the city is the Museum of Ceramics, and nearby is the Central Market.

South of Lake Choncho, a beach stretches along the coast Sokcho . Its length reaches 500 m, and its width ranges from 50 to 80 m. The beach is officially open only in summer. Clear water, white sand and pine forests surrounding the beach attract crowds of tourists here. During the season, you can hardly find a free place here if you don’t take care of it in advance. Along the beach there are many cafes, restaurants, as well as boat rentals that go to the nearby Zhuo Island for fishing. South of Sokcho Beach, in the Old Port area, there are many seafood restaurants.

On the southern outskirts of the city on the seashore is Seorak Sunrise Park. Here, among the lush vegetation, you can not only have a great rest, but also go on a submarine tour to Zhuo Island.

From Sokcho excursions are arranged to the mountains of Kymgang-san (Diamond Mountains), which are located on the territory of North Korea. North Korea gave the right to tourism activities in the mountains of Kumgang-san to South Korea for 50 years, a special tourist zone was formed here, which has the status of a separate province. You cannot travel to the Diamond Mountains on your own, only as part of organized tourist groups. The highest point of the massif reaches 1638 m. Bizarrely shaped rocks form off the coast of Kymgang-san, and in their central part there are many waterfalls, lakes, mineral springs and Buddhist temples.

West of the city of Sokcho, on the slopes of the Seorak-san mountains, adjacent to the Geumgang-san mountain range, there is Seorak-san National Park. This area has been under state protection since 1965. The maximum mark of Seorak-san is Mount Taechon with a height of 1708 m. About 2000 different species of animals live in the park. Several hotels were built near the park, and on its territory there are campsites, so you can go hiking in these places for a few days. At the entrance to the park, the cable car begins, which goes to Kwongum Peak. From here you have breathtaking views of the surroundings. To the east, you can see the Piryon and Tovanson waterfalls, to which hiking trails are laid from the entrance to the park. In the western part of the park there are Buddhist monasteries. Northwest of the entrance to the park is the 7th century Sinheung-sa Monastery, built under the Silla state. On the way to the monastery, you will see a 22-meter Buddha statue, erected in 1986. Also worth visiting is the 7th century Sinheung-sa temple. To the north, the temples of An-yang, Newon and Gyojo, which is located in a cave, are interesting. On the northwestern outskirts of the park, behind the temple of Gyojo, the Ulsan-bawi ridge stretches, to which an iron staircase leads. In general, the mountains are considered one of the most picturesque places on the planet. They are great for hiking.

Between the city of Sokcho and the Seorak-san National Park, there is an area with hot springs, on the basis of which thermal spas were created. The most popular thermal resort of these places is Khanva Sorak with a large water entertainment complex Sorak Waterpia. The resort has hotels, outdoor pools, baths, saunas, water slides and many other attractions. The local mineral waters have a sodium-calcium-magnesium composition and are enriched with negative ions. Their temperature is +49 degrees. Mineral waters are effective in the treatment of arthritis, neuralgic and skin diseases. Not far from here is another thermal complex Cheoksan based on mineral waters of a similar composition, but with a temperature of +53 degrees.

To the west of the city of Sokcho is the northernmost ski resort in South Korea – “Alps”. It is the northernmost ski resort in South Korea. The snow cover stays here until mid-April. Holidays here are suitable for families with children. On the territory of the resort there are equipment rental offices, a ski school, a children’s club, a health center, restaurants and cafes.

Sokcho (South Korea)