Korea’s Hawaii. Paradise. Honeymooner’s Island. These are all names I’ve heard Jeju referred to by my friends in the Seoul Metro area. All allude to how beautiful Jeju is, but none do the island the justice it deserves. For among the hundreds of reasons why Jeju should be counted among the New 7 Wonders of the World, two are especially beautiful and should be put on one’s not-miss list during a trip to this magical island. I speak of Cheonjiyeon and Cheonjeyeon Falls. Both are located near the southern city of Seogwipo, and for the nature lover, take up half a day when embracing their beauty.
Cheonjiyeon translates to “God’s Pond” and derives its name from a legend that seven fairies who served the King of Heaven descended to this water source on cloud stairs, then bathed in its clear waters. The enormous U-shaped grotto, 1km from the parking lot, is home to more than 400 individual species of plants and animals. In fact, the diversified biosphere is one of the most unique on all of the island.
The falls create a roaring cascade 22m high, 12m wide, and then plunge 20m into the pool below. The park’s walking path takes one right to the pond and in full view of the falls. If you love nature, water, and stunning views, this is the place to be. Be sure to bring your tripod to capture all the glory.
Cheonjiyeon Falls Information:
Address: Jeju Special Self-Governing Province Seogwipo-si cheonji-dong 666-1
Phone: Korea Travel Phone +82-64-1330 (English, Korean, Japanese, Chinese); For more info +82-64-733-1528 (Korean)
Hours: November through February-time of sunrise- 10:30a.m.; March through October- time of sunrise- 11:p.m.
Individual: Age 24 and Over: 2,000 won/ Age 24-15: 1,000 won/ Age 7-14: 1,000 won/Age 6 and Under: free
Group (30 or more persons): Age 24 and Over: 1,400 won/ Age 24-15: 500 won/ Age 7-14: 600 won
1. By bus: From Jeju Compound Intercity Bus Terminal (Tel. 064-753-1153), take the bus heading to the 516 Western Highway (runs from 6a.m. to 9:40p.m./12 minute interval/one hour ride) or the bus heading to the Western Industrial Highway (runs from 6:16a.m. to 9:30p.m./12 minute interval/one hour ride). → Get off at Seogwipo Intercity Bus Terminal. → Walk 5 minute toward Mt. Hallasan, past Jeju Bank, and take a bus heading to Cheonji (No. 8) at the bus station in front of Seogwipo Drugstore. → Get off at the last station (5 minute ride).
2. Bus & Taxi: From Jeju Compound Intercity Bus Terminal (Tel. 064-753-1153), take the bus heading to the 516 Western Highway (runs from 6a.m. to 9:40p.m./12 minute interval/one hour ride) or the bus heading to the Western Industrial Highway (runs from 6:16a.m. to 9:30p.m./12 minute interval/one hour ride). → Get off at Seogwipo Intercity Bus Terminal. → Take a taxi (3-4 minute ride)
A few kilometers to the east is Cheonjeyeon falls and while the name leads one to believe there is only one thing to see… there are actually three separate falls. The first is also a large grotto with a massive cascade of water plunging deep into “The Pond of God.” During the winter months, this first waterfall may be nothing more than a mere trickle, but that doesn’t diminish the area’s beauty, but rather enhances it.
Walking to the second and third falls takes one into the surrounding wooded areas and allows visitors to embrace nature. Sauntering along the wooden path, you can see several stream, flowers, and if you’re lucky, a few animals just as curious about you, as you are about them. Photographic opportunities abound along the path and at the waterfalls. In addition, a few pavilions have been constructed, ideal for picnic lunches.
Near the end of the park, a large suspension bridge spans Cheonjiyeon allowing visitors a spectacular view of all three falls. It joins with an enormous pavilion, making for the perfect place to rest and take in nature’s masterpiece.
Cheonjeyeon Falls Information:
Address: Jeju Special Self-Governing Province Seogwipo-si Saekdal-dong 3381-1
Phone: Korea Travel Phone +82-64-1330 (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese); For more info +82-64-738-1529 (Korean, English)
Hours: March – October 08:00 – 18:30; November – February 09:00 – 17:30
Adults 2,500 won / Group 1,850 won
Youths 1,370 won / Group 750 won
Children 1,370 won / Group 750 won
* Free – Seniors (ages over 65)
1. From Jeju Airport, take Airport Limousine Bus No. 600 that goes via Jungmun and Seogwipo and get off at Yeomiji Botanical Garden (15 min interval / 50 min ride). Walk 5-10 min to the entrance of Yeomiji Botanical Garden. Purchase tickets there.
2. Taxi takes 30-40 min from Jeju Airport. 3. From Jeju Intercity Bus Terminal, take Seogwipo bound intercity bus and get off at Jungmun Resort (50 min ride). Walk 5-10 min. 4. Taxi takes 30-40 min from the bus terminal.
When visiting Seogwipo, do not miss these natural wonders. A trip to the region would be incomplete without doing so.