A mountain hike through ancient cultural and religious relics of the Silla Kingdom
Namsan is part of the old Silla (57BC-935AD) capital of Korea of which it spent the period between 652 and 935 as the United Silla Kingdom of Korea. The area is now a UNESCO world heritage site.
Namsan is the name of the small but mountainous area that is part of the Gyeongju National Park area in Gyeongsangbuk-do, southeast Korea. It covers about 8 x 12kms and has some 180 peaks. The peaks are open topped summits with the highest being Nam-san at 494m. Namsan is a warren of old trails that were once used by Buddhist practitioners and monks to visit temples and carve many of the great Buddhist relief carvings and pagodas that exist in this wonderful area. These days about 80 carved reliefs, about 60 stone pagodas and remains of about 100 temples and palaces mostly built between the 7th and 10th century remains, 12 of these relics are designated national treasures.
Meet in Gyeongju early morning and travel to trail-head at a remote start point. Walk up into the mountains of Nam-san and wander around on old trails that take us from one Buddhist relic to the next. Lunch in a local village before returning to the mountains to make our way to a small Buddhist hermitage where we will sleep the night. Early the next morning get up and attend Morning Prayer, with options to either meditate or watch the sunrise in front of a 1200 year old relief carving. Return to the hermitage and eat breakfast, take our time talking to the monks or nuns before wandering off on a slow jaunt through the beautifl mouuntains again searching for ancient religious relics. End our day back at your accommodations or place of choice in Gyeongju.
Meeting Location + Tour Duration
Meeting location: I can only meet you in Gyeongju. Express Trains run from Seoul to Gyeongju by the hour.
End location: Any location in Gyeongju.
Duration: 2 days
Access to the mountain will be by bus or taxi. From there, it's walking only for two days. We will return to Gyeongju by bus or taxi.
Lunch, Dinner, and accommodation for the first day.
Breakfast, and Lunch for the second day.
Transport to and from Namsan Mountain, within Gyeongju only.
A Recent Review of this tour
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Roger was a wonderful guide. My mother and I had great fun hiking the mountain, learning from Roger about Korean history and culture, spending time in a small monastery, eating fabulous food, and also learning a lot about New Zealand, as Roger is a New Zealander. Most impressively, Roger went out of his way to take care of us: to let us set the pace, to communicate with others in Korean when we could not, and to ensure our safety and comfort. Highly recommended.