What To Expect
Visit Ganghwado, a fascinating place that is often called the microcosm of Korean history. Due to its strategic location, Ganghwado has historically been one of the first targets of many foreign attacks particularly in the late 19th century when Korea unsuccessfully sought to maintain its status as a "Hermit Kingdom." Go to Ganghwa History Museumand see the historical records of Korean existence, from the mythical foundation of Korea to the opening port to the outside World marked by Ganghwado Treaty signed in February 1876.
Visit Korea's first Anglican Church, a notably unusual church with Western, Korean, Christian, Buddhist and Confucian influences. Nearby is the site of a former Goryeo Dynasty palace that was constructed in 1232. Only two years from its construction, the royal court fled here from the invasion by the Mongols. There now remain only a few of the foundation stones. See the UNESCO World Heritage site Dolmen, a 50-ton granite dolmen from the Neolithic period formed of an oblong capstone that rests on two sturdy upright supports.
Travel to Jeondeungsa Temple, also called the "Temple of the Bequeathed Lamp," to experience traditional monastic life, passing by the Ginseng center and interesting local roadside markets selling agricultural products along the way. The temple was founded in 381 by the Goguryeo monk Ado and got its name after a queen gave a donation of a jade lamp. It is a popular Buddhist temple providing a glimpse into Buddhist culture. Getting to observe and experience the ascetic Buddhist life in a temple is a rare opportunity to outsiders despite the many temples in the country. Some of the temples have just started opening their doors to foreign visitors for a short sojourn to give them the chance to see how monks practice their daily discipline from early morning prayers to evening rites. Visitors will get to study and experience the Korean tradition and culture, at the same time enjoying the surrounding nature.
Temple stay programs may vary depending on individual temple situation, but it basically includes morning and evening services, meditation, tea ceremony, garden walks, lantern making and much more.
Join the early-morning Buddhist Dharma Ceremony. Everyone in the temple will gather at the Main Buddha Hall for it. This magnificent Dharma Ceremony will clear all dust from the mind and all stray thoughts from the head. have breakfast in the temple dining hall.
After breakfast, you will proceed to Manisan where you will go on a 3-hour trek. The trail is pretty steep. Most of it is covered with trees and sheltered from the sun. Go through dirt paths, rocky paths, climb up and over large rocks, and hold on to ropes to avoid falling down cliffs. You will also have to go up typical Korean mountain staircases. Once you get high enough, there are a few great view points to stop on top of flat, smooth rock surfaces to admire the scenery. At the top of Manisan is a stone altar. It is here where sacred flames for national athletic events are ignited.
Overnight in the temple
English speaking tour guide
Optional activity costs
Tips and gratuities
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2 days / 1 night
4 days / 3 nights
12 hours and 30 minutes
6 days / 5 nights