Jeju Island or also known as Jeju-do (a short form of Jeju Special Autonomous Province) is the only special autonomous province of South Korea and the country’s largest island. It’s situated southwest of Jeollanam-do Province in the Korea Strait, a sea passage between South Korea and Japan. Although the island isn’t a famous destination for the western people, the Asians are very familiar with its amazing geographic and cultural potential. In the last few years, its popularity has grown, especially for the young couples which seem to consider the island a mystic and romantic place. In time, it became one of the most visited places in East Asia, with more than four million visitors from mainland Korea, Japan, and China every year.
Jeju Island is a volcanic island created entirely from volcanic eruptions approximately 2 million years ago and is dominated by Halla-san (Halla Mountain): a volcano 1,950 meters high and the highest mountain in South Korea.
Because of the relative isolation, the people of Jeju have developed a culture and language that are different from those of mainland Korea, with many local legends and mystic beliefs. They even named it the “Island of the Gods”, taking after a legend that tells the story of demi-gods that lived on the island, considered to be the progenitors of Jeju people. Distinct cultural artifacts and stones with different shapes that are considered protective for the locals can be found here.
With a huge variety of landscapes, from long beaches to mountains and waterfalls, Jeju Island could turn out to be a thrilling experience. Cheonjeyeon and Cheonjiyeon waterfalls, Mount Halla, Hyeobje cave and Hyeongje island are just some of the popular sights on the island.
Depending on the season, Jeju hosts unsual festivals such as a penguin swimming contest in winter, a cherry blossom festival in spring, the midsummer night beach festival in summer and Jeju horse festival in autumn. Aside from these events, many activities can be done in Jeju such as horse riding, hunting, fishing, mountain climbing, hiking.
For a more detailed description of the island, follow this link.