Looking back at my time so far in Korea, I have had a good time, but I often feel I haven't done a heck of a lot. Seoul is a self-contained city and with more than half the entire country's population living within the metropolitan area, it's too easy never leave. Tourists that come to Seoul for a week will possibly have seen more than I have in my year plus. So with this in mind I've set out to do more, scheduling myself for fun excursions on a regular basis. First up, hiking in the city.
Seoul is a city that sits amongst eight mountains. While it's easy to lose sight of them with all of the high-rise buildings, you are never far from one. Hiking is a popular pass-time, especially with the pass-middle-age adults. It's somewhat of a stereotype that retirees love to hike. Groups of people wearing the latest in synthetic hiking equipment are easy to spot, if only because of how much the women love outrageous neon fuchsia colored gear.
Meaning "Dragon Horse Mountain," Yongmasan is in the northeast reaches of the city, primarily home to residential areas. It was still cool from winter and the sun was shining, creating the perfect temperature for hiking.
Seeing Seoul from this vantage point really put into perspective the city's density. There is very little in terms of space. There almost no green spaces in this part of the city, something clearly needed.
A moderate to easy hike, certain routes seemed to have stairways all the way to the top. Along the way there are even public exercise areas, complete with hula-hoops and a bench press. At the top a number of couples set up a picnic, a great place to do so. With Seoulites never ceasing to enterprise, there were a makeshift rest areas at the top selling instant ramen, soups and beer at the top.