An important note on Jeju’s updated bus system and this blog post
From August 2017, Jeju Island implemented a new city and intercity bus system. It increased the number of buses in service, while simplifying the routes, fees and numbering system.
Consequently, the contents of this previously published blog post may have changed. We therefore would kindly request that you consult this page for new bus maps in English on VisitJeju.net, and this page on our blog for a chart of the old and new bus route numbers.
If you read Korean, then the province’s official bus system website is a useful and up-to-date resource. We hope you’ll enjoy your travels on Jeju Island!
They say Udo Island looks like a cow lying down and that life is slow there… but it’s dynamic and has the most wonderful white sand beach. From the tip of Jeju Island, you encounter an entirely new island. It only takes an hour to see the entire thing. But it’s so engrossing, some visitors spend days exploring it.
Dive into its charm!
Colorful isle within an island: An Udo journey
The charm of Udo Island has no end. It seems like life there might be slow, not unlike meandering cattle, but it’s much more dynamic and attractive to visitors that you’d think. It might take just an hour to circumnavigate, but travellers can spend days there exploring its colorful charm.
Udo (牛 島), as its name suggests, is an island that some say resembles a cow lying down. It was an uninhabited island for centuries until a state farm was established there in 1679. It is now famous for its peanut crop, in addition to marine products like turban shells, abalone, red sea cucumbers, and the like. The Annual Udo Island Turban Shell Festival in April is definitely worth seeing. There are ferries which depart Seongsan and Jindal ports every 30 minutes from 8 a.m. If you plan to stay the night, a one-way ticket includes the vessel fare, terminal fee and admission to Udo Maritime Provincial Park. You’ll need to show your ID and fill out a boarding card before you can catch the ferry. The travel time is just 15 minutes from Seongsan Port to Udo.
Udo Port Passenger Terminal 112-7 Seongsandeungyong-ro, Seongsan-eup, Seogwipo-si Daily 08:00~18:30 | Times subject to change depending on season From Jeju City Intercity Bus Terminal take bus 710 and get off at Seongsan Port Passenger Terminal bus stop. The trip takes about 1 hour and 25 minutes. Parking available: 5,000 won per vehicle per day
You’ll need to do a little homework if you want to get around Udo Island and you don’t have your own car. But don’t worry, there are plenty of options for you, including electric car rentals, scooter and bike rental outlets, and tour operations which welcome visitors. Rates range from 10,000 to 40,000 won a day depending on your choice of transportation and duration. Tour buses make regular trips around the island and stop at the major sightseeing spots. The tour bus ticket is good for the whole day.
Seobin White Sand Beach
Seobin White Sand Beach is reminiscent of the Mediterranean in that it has white sand and an emerald-colored sea. If you look closely at a handful of that white sand though, you’ll discover that it’s actually red algal nodules. It’s unique in Asia and as such is designated as Natural Monument No. 438. You can look and touch the “sand” but please don’t bring any home with you. It’s illegal.
Did you know that there is yet another island within range of Udo (which itself is within range of Jeju Island)? It is called Biyangdo, and shouldn’t be confused with the larger island on Jeju’s northwest coast with the same name. There’s an observation deck, pavilion, and campsite built by the stone walls up on a panoramic hill. There is a lighthouse standing alone in the sea. When the tide is low, a walkable path opens between Biyangdo and the lighthouse.
Geommeolle Beach and Dongangyeong Cave
Geommeolle Beach is just 100-meters in length, and is so named in the Jeju language for its black sand. The beach from afar looks somewhat grey, but if you keep looking, you’ll be able to see a variety of tones in the geological structures there… at the cliff and rocky shore.
This diminutive beach is actually a big attraction for visitors looking for that perfect sunrise photo, and ocean sports enthusiasts. Its narrow coastal cave is also a big draw, and there’s even an annual concert held there to make the most of its distinctive acoustics.
Udobong Peak and Udo Lighthouse
Now that you’ve explored the outer circumference of the island, it’s time to make the 30-minute journey up Udobong Peak. From the top is a truly inspiring sight … a panorama that many consider some of the most beautiful scenery in Korea.
Udo Lighthouse was first put into operation in March 1906. A new 16-meter-high white circular concrete structure was erected in December 2003. If you wish to see it up close, please keep in mind that the stairs leading to Udo Lighthouse are somewhat steep. It’s worth it once you get there though, as the scenery is truly unique and beloved.
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