21st April 2024

18 Best Things to Do in Sokcho: Ultimate Bucket List (2023)

Looking to uncover the best things to do in Sokcho? If so, we’ve got you covered in this blog post.

From our last visit to this place, we learned that Sokcho has an irresistible charm that captivates travelers of all kinds.

Get ready to embark on an exciting journey filled with nature’s wonders, cultural treasures, and thrilling escapades in this coastal gem of South Korea.

So, fasten your seatbelts as we take you on a delightful ride through the hidden gems and local treasures of Sokcho! Let’s dive in and discover the magic this enchanting destination has in store for you.

5 Facts about Sokcho

  • Located on South Korea’s eastern coast.
  • Gateway to the stunning Seoraksan National Park.
  • Home to Naksansa and Sinheungsa Temples, rich in cultural heritage.
  • Famous for the vibrant Sokcho Jungang Market, offering local delights.
  • Offers a picturesque coastline with beautiful beaches like Sokcho Beach.

Best Things to Do in Sokcho

1. Visit Naksansa Temple

Discover a haven of serenity at Naksansa Temple, harmoniously nestled along Sokcho’s serene coastline. This sacred site exudes spiritual tranquility, surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty.

The temple’s main highlight is a towering statue of Bodhisattva, standing majestically against the backdrop of the vast sea. Embrace the rich tapestry of Korean Buddhist heritage as you explore the ornate halls and pagodas adorned with intricate carvings.

Don’t miss the mesmerizing sunset views from the temple’s vantage point, offering a perfect moment of contemplation and wonder.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea, along the eastern coast.
  • Best Time to Visit: Spring and autumn for mild weather and vibrant surroundings.
  • Famous For: Its stunning seafront setting, the impressive Bodhisattva statue, and its historical significance in Korean Buddhism.

2. Experience Serenity at Sinheungsa Temple

Immerse yourself in pure serenity within the heart of Seoraksan National Park at Sinheungsa Temple. Surrounded by lush mountains and verdant forests, this spiritual sanctuary captivates with its harmonious ambiance.

The main attraction is the awe-inspiring bronze Buddha statue, a symbol of Seoraksan’s spiritual guardianship. Wander through the temple grounds, where the rhythmic chants of monks blend seamlessly with the sounds of nature.

Whether you seek a moment of reflection or simply wish to bask in the peaceful surroundings, Sinheungsa Temple offers a soul-soothing retreat.

  • Location: Seoraksan National Park, Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: All seasons have their charm, but spring and autumn offer mild weather and colorful landscapes.
  • Famous For: The colossal bronze Buddha statue, its serene ambiance, and its significance as a sacred site within Seoraksan National Park.

3. Explore Seoraksan National Park

Embark on an unforgettable adventure amidst the awe-inspiring landscapes of Seoraksan National Park, stretching across Sokcho and neighboring regions. This natural wonderland is a paradise for hikers, boasting a network of pristine trails that lead to mesmerizing viewpoints and cascading waterfalls.

In spring, cherry blossoms add a touch of magic to the surroundings, while autumn paints the park in hues of red, gold, and orange.

Be sure to keep an eye out for the elusive local fauna, including the endangered Korean goral and rare Asian black bears, adding a touch of excitement to your exploration.

  • Location: Sokcho and neighboring regions, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Autumn for vibrant foliage and pleasant temperatures, or spring for cherry blossoms.
  • Famous For: Pristine hiking trails, diverse flora and fauna, and stunning seasonal colors.

4. Discover Cheongcho Lake

Nestled in a serene corner of Sokcho lies Cheongcho Lake, a tranquil oasis embraced by majestic mountains. Take a leisurely stroll along the lakeside promenade, relishing the soothing atmosphere and capturing picture-perfect reflections of the surrounding peaks on the calm waters.

The lake’s allure extends to every season, with cherry blossoms adorning the shores in spring and the vibrant foliage creating a kaleidoscope of colors in autumn. Whether you seek peaceful solitude or a picturesque spot for a lakeside picnic, Cheongcho Lake will undoubtedly leave you enchanted.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Spring for cherry blossoms and autumn for vibrant foliage reflections.
  • Famous For: Its picturesque setting, mirrored reflections of the mountains, and seasonal charm.

5. Take a Ride on Seorak Cable Car

Ascend to new heights of wonder and awe via the Seorak Cable Car, offering an exhilarating journey to Gwongeumseong Fortress. As you soar above the dense forests and rocky terrain of Seoraksan National Park, the panoramic views unfold before your eyes, leaving you breathless.

The fortress atop the mountain adds a touch of historical intrigue, with remnants of ancient military structures serving as a testament to the region’s storied past.

Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a history buff, or simply seeking unparalleled vistas, the Seorak Cable Car promises an unforgettable experience.

  • Location: Seoraksan National Park, Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: All year round, each season offers a unique perspective of the park’s beauty.
  • Famous For: Breathtaking aerial views of Seoraksan National Park and the historical Gwongeumseong Fortress.

6. Climb Sokcho Expo Tower

Rising proudly above Sokcho, the Sokcho Expo Tower offers a bird’s-eye view of the city and its stunning coastal surroundings. This soaring landmark serves as a gateway to a panoramic wonderland, where the East Sea meets the emerald mountains.

Ascend the tower for an unrivaled perspective, especially during sunset when the sky blushes with hues of pink and gold. Whether you’re seeking the perfect Instagram shot or simply wish to marvel at nature’s grandeur, the Sokcho Expo Tower is an unmissable destination for all travelers.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Sunset for captivating sky colors and cool sea breezes.
  • Famous For: Providing an unmatched view of Sokcho city and its stunning coastal landscape.

7. Wander around Daepo Port

Immerse yourself in the charm of a bustling fishing village as you explore Daepo Port, where the marine spirit of Sokcho comes alive. Stroll along the harbor, where fishing boats gently sway with the tide, and discover local seafood restaurants offering a mouthwatering array of freshly caught delights.

Watch as fishermen haul in their catch of the day and perhaps even embark on a thrilling fishing expedition of your own. Daepo Port offers an authentic glimpse into the maritime culture of Sokcho, where the sea and its bounty are deeply woven into the city’s fabric.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Early morning to witness the fishermen’s activities or late afternoon for a seafood dinner by the harbor.
  • Famous For: Its bustling fishing village ambiance, fresh seafood offerings, and maritime culture.

8. Have Fun at Seorak Waterpia

Beat the summer heat and indulge in a day of aquatic fun at Seorak Waterpia, Sokcho’s premier water park. With thrilling water slides, lazy rivers, and soothing hot spring pools, this destination promises excitement for visitors of all ages.

The park’s scenic location, surrounded by the verdant beauty of Seoraksan National Park, adds a touch of natural splendor to your water-filled escapades. Whether you seek adrenaline-pumping adventures or leisurely relaxation, Seorak Waterpia is a perfect spot to cool off and create cherished memories.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Summer, from June to August, for warm weather and refreshing water activities.
  • Famous For: Its water attractions, hot springs, and idyllic setting within Seoraksan National Park.

9. Visit Yeongnangho Lake

Experience the serene beauty of Yeongnangho Lake, a peaceful reservoir surrounded by verdant hills and natural tranquility. Escape the city’s hustle and bustle as you take a boat ride across the tranquil waters, marveling at the reflections of the lush landscape.

Hike along the lake’s perimeter, where well-maintained trails offer picturesque views and a chance to spot various bird species that call this area home.

Whether you seek relaxation, birdwatching opportunities, or a peaceful lakeside picnic, Yeongnangho Lake provides a serene retreat for nature lovers and solitude seekers alike.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Spring and autumn for pleasant weather and vibrant natural surroundings.
  • Famous For: Its serene ambiance, scenic boat rides, and birdwatching opportunities.

10. Witness the Bustling Sokcho Fisheries Wholesale Market

Embrace the vibrant atmosphere of Sokcho Fisheries Wholesale Market, a bustling hub where the city’s maritime spirit is at its liveliest. Join the locals as they peruse the colorful stalls, brimming with an assortment of freshly caught seafood.

Sample the region’s culinary delights, from sashimi and grilled fish to spicy seafood stews. Whether you’re a seafood enthusiast or simply curious about the bustling local culture, Sokcho Fisheries Wholesale Market offers an authentic taste of Sokcho’s coastal charm.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Early morning for the liveliest seafood auctions and the freshest catch of the day.
  • Famous For: Its vibrant and energetic ambiance, fresh seafood offerings, and a glimpse into the city’s maritime culture.

11. Learn History at Sokcho City Museum & Displaced Civilians Folk Village

Immerse yourself in Sokcho’s rich history and culture through two fascinating attractions. At Sokcho City Museum, uncover the city’s past through captivating exhibits and artifacts that span the ages.

From ancient artifacts to modern-day displays, this museum provides an engaging journey through Sokcho’s heritage. Next, step back in time at the Displaced Civilians Folk Village, a living testament to the tumultuous Korean War era.

Wander through reconstructed traditional homes and experience the daily lives of civilians during this pivotal period in history.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Year-round, as it offers insightful experiences regardless of the season.
  • Famous For: Sokcho City Museum’s historical exhibits and the immersive experience at the Displaced Civilians Folk Village.

12. Shop and Dine at Jungang Shopping Street

Indulge in retail therapy and savor delectable culinary delights at Jungang Shopping Street, Sokcho’s vibrant and bustling commercial district. With an array of shops, boutiques, and street vendors, this lively thoroughfare offers an exciting shopping experience.

Explore the stalls brimming with souvenirs, fashion items, and local products, and don’t forget to sample the mouthwatering Korean street food as you stroll along. Jungang Shopping Street is not just a place to shop; it’s a celebration of Sokcho’s dynamic culture and culinary diversity.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Evening, as the street comes to life with vibrant lights and bustling energy.
  • Famous For: Its shopping opportunities, bustling atmosphere, and diverse culinary offerings.

13. Experience Abai Village

Step into the captivating world of Abai Village, a unique fishing community that reflects the spirit of Sokcho’s maritime heritage. Wander through the narrow alleyways lined with rustic wooden houses, capturing the essence of traditional Korean fishing villages.

Engage with friendly locals who warmly welcome visitors and share stories of their livelihoods. Abai Village offers a glimpse into a way of life shaped by the sea, where traditions and customs are kept alive amidst the ebb and flow of time.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Any time of the year, as its charm remains timeless.
  • Famous For: Its authentic fishing village ambiance, traditional wooden houses, and warm hospitality.

14. Shop at Sokcho Jungang Market

Immerse yourself in the vibrant energy of Sokcho Jungang Market, a bustling marketplace where local culture thrives. This lively street teems with a diverse array of vendors selling everything from fresh produce to traditional Korean handicrafts.

Wander through the maze of stalls, savor the enticing aromas of street food, and haggle with friendly merchants to discover unique bargains. Sokcho Jungang Market is a sensory delight that offers a truly authentic shopping experience, allowing you to connect with the heart and soul of Sokcho.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Early morning for the freshest produce and lively morning market atmosphere.
  • Famous For: Its diverse shopping opportunities, lively street food scene, and vibrant local culture.

15. Enjoy the Teddy Bear Farm

Embark on a whimsical journey at the Teddy Bear Farm, a delightful attraction that brings out the child in everyone. This enchanting wonderland features adorable teddy bear displays in various settings, perfect for capturing adorable photographs.

Engage in interactive exhibits, create your own teddy bear, and indulge in sweet treats at the Teddy Bear Cafe. Whether you’re traveling with family or friends, the Teddy Bear Farm promises a joyful and heartwarming experience for all ages.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Any time of the year, as it’s a charming attraction regardless of the season.
  • Famous For: Its whimsical teddy bear displays, interactive exhibits, and family-friendly ambiance.

16. Take in the View from Sokcho Lighthouse Observatory

For awe-inspiring views of Sokcho’s coastal beauty, head to the Sokcho Lighthouse Observatory. Perched atop a rocky promontory, this vantage point offers panoramic vistas of the East Sea and the city’s stunning shoreline.

Visit during sunrise or sunset to witness the sky ablaze with colors, adding a touch of magic to the scenery. The Sokcho Lighthouse Observatory is a haven for photographers and nature enthusiasts alike, where the magnificence of land and sea unite in a breathtaking display.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Sunrise or sunset for the most captivating sky colors and dramatic views.
  • Famous For: Offering stunning coastal panoramas and the iconic Sokcho Lighthouse.

17. Wander around Daepo Port

Step into the heart of Sokcho’s maritime heritage at Daepo Port, a bustling fishing village where the sea and its bounty shape daily life. Observe local fishermen hauling in their catch of the day and venture to the bustling fish market, brimming with the freshest seafood offerings.

This picturesque harbor invites you to savor the city’s culinary delights at the seafood restaurants lining the waterfront. Experience the vibrant maritime spirit of Sokcho as you stroll along the docks, where colorful boats sway gently with the tide.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Early morning to witness the fishermen’s activities or late afternoon for a seafood dinner by the harbor.
  • Famous For: Its bustling fishing village ambiance, fresh seafood offerings, and maritime culture.

18. Have Fun at Seorak Waterpia

Beat the summer heat and indulge in a day of aquatic fun at Seorak Waterpia, Sokcho’s premier water park. With thrilling water slides, lazy rivers, and soothing hot spring pools, this destination promises excitement for visitors of all ages.

The park’s scenic location, surrounded by the verdant beauty of Seoraksan National Park, adds a touch of natural splendor to your water-filled escapades. Whether you seek adrenaline-pumping adventures or leisurely relaxation, Seorak Waterpia is a perfect spot to cool off and create cherished memories.

  • Location: Sokcho, South Korea.
  • Best Time to Visit: Summer, from June to August, for warm weather and refreshing water activities.
  • Famous For: Its water attractions, hot springs, and idyllic setting within Seoraksan National Park.

Best Time to Visit Sokcho

The best time to visit Sokcho is during spring (April to June) and autumn (September to November). During these seasons, the weather is mild and pleasant, making it ideal for outdoor activities, hiking, and exploring the natural beauty of Seoraksan National Park.

Spring brings cherry blossoms and blooming flowers, while autumn paints the landscape with vibrant colors, offering stunning views. Avoid the hot and humid summer months (July to August) and the chilly winter season (December to February) to fully enjoy your Sokcho experience.

How to Get to Sokcho

  • By Air: The nearest major airport to Sokcho is Incheon International Airport (ICN) in Seoul. From the airport, you can take a domestic flight to Yangyang International Airport (YNY), which is the closest airport to Sokcho. After landing at Yangyang Airport, you can take a taxi or a bus to Sokcho, which is approximately a 30 to 40-minute drive away.
  • By Train: If you prefer a scenic journey, you can take a train from Seoul to Sokcho. There are direct KTX trains and Mugunghwa trains departing from Seoul Station to Sokcho Intercity Bus Terminal. The KTX is faster but more expensive, while the Mugunghwa train is a more affordable option.
  • By Bus: Sokcho is well-connected by bus from various cities in South Korea. You can take an express or intercity bus from major cities like Seoul, Busan, or Daegu to Sokcho Express Bus Terminal. The bus journey offers comfortable and affordable travel options.

Where to Stay in Sokcho

1. Seorak Kensington Stars Hotel: Nestled amidst the scenic beauty of Sokcho, Seorak Kensington Stars Hotel offers a luxurious retreat for travelers seeking comfort and convenience. The hotel boasts elegant rooms with modern amenities and stunning views of Seoraksan National Park.

2. Shinsegae Resort & Suites Sokcho: Situated along the picturesque coastline, Shinsegae Resort & Suites Sokcho promises a blend of relaxation and excitement. The resort features spacious rooms with panoramic sea views and a host of recreational activities, from indoor pools and fitness centers to a golf driving range.

3. Sokcho The Class 300: For those seeking a modern and stylish stay, Sokcho The Class 300 is the perfect choice. The hotel’s chic rooms, each offering stunning mountain or ocean vistas, provide a tranquil escape. Located near Sokcho Express Bus Terminal, it offers easy access to the city’s key landmarks, including Seoraksan National Park and Sokcho Jungang Market.

Where to Eat in Sokcho

1. Abai Sundae: Indulge in a quintessential Sokcho culinary experience at Abai Sundae, renowned for its delicious sundae (blood sausage) dishes. This humble eatery serves up a variety of mouthwatering options, from traditional sundae soup to sundae hotpot, all prepared with fresh ingredients and authentic flavors. With its warm ambiance and friendly service, Abai Sundae offers a true taste of Sokcho’s culinary heritage.

2. Jumunjin Seafood Town: For seafood lovers, Jumunjin Seafood Town is a must-visit dining destination in Sokcho. This lively seafood market boasts an array of stalls offering the catch of the day, from succulent crabs and fresh fish to grilled squid and shrimp. Choose your favorite seafood and have it prepared right before your eyes, ensuring a delightful and flavorful feast by the sea.

3. Ojju Kalgooksoo: Ojju Kalgooksoo is a beloved local spot famous for its delicious handmade knife-cut noodles. Savor a warm bowl of kalgooksoo, a traditional Korean noodle soup, made with a rich and flavorful broth and topped with vegetables and tender meat. This cozy restaurant provides a hearty and satisfying meal, perfect for refueling after a day of exploring Sokcho’s attractions.

Travel Tips & Suggestions

  • Visit Seoraksan National Park early in the morning to avoid crowds.
  • Try the local specialty, Sokcho-style squid dishes, at Daepo Port.
  • Plan your trip during spring or autumn for pleasant weather and vibrant scenery.
  • Take advantage of the convenient bus system to explore Sokcho and its attractions.
  • Don’t miss the breathtaking sunset views from Sokcho Lighthouse Observatory.
  • Pack comfortable shoes for hiking and exploring the national park’s trails.
  • Embrace the local culture by visiting Sokcho Jungang Market for fresh seafood and souvenirs.

Conclusion – Best Things to Do in Sokcho

In conclusion, Sokcho stands as an enchanting coastal paradise, inviting travelers to uncover the best things to do in Sokcho. From the spiritual serenity of Naksansa Temple to the awe-inspiring beauty of Seoraksan National Park, every step unveils a captivating experience.

Whether you savor local delicacies at bustling markets or bask in the breathtaking views, Sokcho’s allure leaves a lasting impression. So, embrace the warm hospitality, immerse yourself in the local culture, and let Sokcho weave its magic into your heart as you embark on an unforgettable journey of nature, culture, and adventure.

FAQs – Best Things to Do in Sokcho

What are the best things to do in Sokcho?

The best things to do in Sokcho include exploring Seoraksan National Park, visiting Naksansa and Sinheungsa Temples, enjoying Sokcho Beach, and experiencing the local charm at Jungang Market.

When is the best time to visit Sokcho?

Spring and autumn are the ideal times to visit Sokcho, with pleasant weather and vibrant colors. Avoid the hot summers and chilly winters for a more enjoyable experience.

How do I get to Sokcho?

You can get to Sokcho by air via Incheon International Airport and Yangyang Airport, or by train from Seoul to Sokcho Intercity Bus Terminal. Buses and cars are also convenient options.

What are some recommended hotels in Sokcho?

Consider staying at Seorak Kensington Stars Hotel for luxury, Shinsegae Resort & Suites Sokcho for a family-friendly experience, or Sokcho The Class 300 for modern elegance.

Where can I try local Sokcho cuisine?

Head to Daepo Port for delicious Sokcho-style squid dishes, visit Jumunjin Seafood Town for fresh catches and try traditional kalgooksoo at Ojju Kalgooksoo.

What activities are family-friendly in Sokcho?

Families can have a blast at Seorak Waterpia, indulge in teddy bear magic at Teddy Bear Farm, and explore the captivating Abai Village together.

Is Seoraksan National Park suitable for hiking beginners?

Yes, Seoraksan offers various hiking trails suitable for beginners, such as Biryong Falls and Gwongeumseong Fortress, offering breathtaking views without extreme difficulty.

Check out our other trips