Looking to beat the heat this summer but don’t want endless lines and crowds? In the heart of Jeollanam-do rests the peaceful town of Damyang. While not as well-known as many other Korean cities popular as summer destinations, it is home to some very appealing natural attractions that make a trip here worthwhile. Visit Damyang this summer to enjoy a low-paced, relaxing vacation in the shade of vast groves of bamboo.
Tranquil, majestic bamboo forest, Juknokwon
The best place to relax is in the charming forest of bamboo trees known as Juknokwon. The cooling breeze that blows through the bamboo provides rest, relaxation, and mind-soothing meditation. The calm wind and deep shade keep the forest at 4 to 7 degrees Celsius cooler than the outside air.
Opened in May of 2003, the forest is threaded with paths totaling a distance of 2.4 kilometers, enough for visitors to fully take in the dense forest. From the observatory, the trail is divided into eight paths with various themes, ranging from Lovers’ Road to Old Memory Bypath. Visitors to the forest can also find statues of pandas throughout the forest, along with dynamic experiences and information board. The forest is quite popular, having been used as a filming location for the popular variety show “1 Night 2 Days” and the 2004 film “R-Point.”
Juknokwon’s scenic trails
The skinny bamboo trees shoot up from the forest floor like green strands stretching into the sky. Unlike the usual brown tree bark and green foliage of most forests, the entire bamboo tree is green from trunk to canopy, giving the forest an ominous green glow that is positively breathtaking. Even the forest floor is blanketed in the fallen leaves of bamboo.
Walking through this forest is a great opportunity to enjoy the health benefits of a forest bath, but the full 2.4km trail is quite long. To save time while also taking in all the bamboo forest has to offer, let’s take a look at the most popular of the eight trails that wrap around and cut through this cool grove.
At 630 meters, this is one of the longer trails. Grab your loved one’s hand as you head out on a peaceful, romantic walk through the twists and turns of the path, reflecting the way our lives unfold in reality. Stop at the waterfall to take a moment and reconfirm your love for one another.
Old Memory Bypath & Philosopher’s Road
Old Memory Bypath provides a chance to walk with a close friend and talk about the fond memories you have formed together. Let the calm atmosphere of the bamboo trees soothe your spirit as you reminisce about good times and the people dearest to you. The full 210-meter path can be completed in just 5 minutes, providing a quick and easy way to refresh and rejuvenate your spirit.
Taking the stone stairs, you can arrive at Philosopher’s Road. A distance of 360 meters, this path carries the feeling of reflecting on one’s life and gives off energy to both the body and the mind.
☞ Address: 119, Juknokwon-ro, Damyang-eup, Damyang-gun, Jeollanam-do
☞ Directions: Take a bus approx. 15 minutes from Damyang Bus Terminal
☞ Admission: Adults 3,000 won
☞ Operating hours: 09:00-19:00 (November-February 09:00-18:00)
☞ Website: juknokwon.go.kr (Korean only)