By Shim Hyun-chul
Mountain trails, well-shaded with leafy trees and the refreshing sound of running water, relieve urban people’s cares and worries.
Mt. Cheonggye is one of the most easily accessible mountains around Seoul for climbing, and extends over the southern border of the capital into Gwacheon, Euiwang and Seongnam in Gyeonggi Province. The mountain features temples and parks as well as a beautiful green forest and wooded valleys.
The name of the mountain comes from clear water from the valley as the Korean word “cheong” means clean and “gye” means valley. As the name indicates, there are some beautiful valleys on Mt. Cheonggye, including Wonteogol, Yakchosaemgol and Eodungol.
The 618-meter-high mountain also features the Manggyeongdae and Maebong summits as it surrounds the south of Seoul.
At observation spots throughout the mountain, climbers can enjoy breathtaking views of the capital and Seoul Zoo in Gwacheon.
There are several routes to climb the mountain and it takes about two to two-and-a-half hours to get to the top whichever one is chosen.