Okhwa Natural Forest

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Basic info

  • Address140, Unamokhwa-gil, Miwon-myeon, Sangdang-gu, Cheongju-si, Chungcheongbuk-do (San 61-2, Unam-ri)
  • Contact for inquire82-43-201-2243
  • SummaryOkhwa Natural Forest is the closest recreational forest to Cheongju. The forest was created by Cheongwon-gu, Cheongju-si and is managed by a private organization.
  • Homepagehttp://okhwa.cbhuyang.go.kr/

Detailed Information

Enjoying Mountain with Natural Forest

Okhwa Natural Forest is one of representative clean areas in Cheongju and was formed on 136ha land near the 9 scenes of Okhwa. The forest boasts various outdoor lodging facilities, a campground, a water play site, and sports facilities. Well-built trails offer a good environment for woods bathing.
If you drive towards Boeun from Miwon and turn left at Unsam Samgeori for Okhwa Valley, you will see the forest on the right.
You can begin to climb the mountain from the left side of the Management Office or walk along a path on the left of the office and pass Mediation Forest and start from the eastern white pine forest.
You will walk on a steep trail for about 10 minutes if you directly climb from the office. A wooden stairway helps climbers but the course will make them sweat from the beginning. Walking for about 20 minutes will lead you to the summit, topped by an octagonal pavilion, though you will be panting for breath by then. The course is steep for a warming-up course. If you go down a slope, you will find a path and then a dense eastern white pine forest across an ascent.
Eastern white pine trees are at least 30m tall. As such, the trees will cover the sky and it will feel dark inside the forest even in the morning. The place is considered the best afforested eastern white pine forest in Korea, and Chungcheongbuk-do publicizes it as an excellent afforestation area. Under the forest are a trail and a resting facility. Therefore, it is called ‘Meditation Forest.’
After the forest, you will reach a place dotted with boot camp training and relaxation facilities after going up the path. The boot camp training facilities are designed for group retreats and reminiscent of a military training course. It takes about 35 minutes to reach the top, where the octagonal pavilion stands. To the eastern side of the pavilion is Boeun-gun, Sanoe-myeon. The ridgeline with the octagonal pavilion reaches Sinseongbong Peak behind Gyewon-ri and runs between Cheongju and Boeun.
The standing ridge horizontally dissects the area and receives much wind as a result. In summer, the area has plentiful and pleasing cool wind, and in winter, wind from the north scatters snow pleasantly over the area. After walking along on the ridgeline for 6 ~ 7 minutes, you will reach the top. The top overlooks a community TV antenna for a town under the forest. A path to a valley in the southwest is linked to the upper part of the forest’s swimming pool.
If you continue to walk for about 10 minutes along the ridgeline, a steep cliff will face you on the left of the line. Under the cliff lies Boeun-gun, Sanoe-myeong, Isik-ri. A site for the now-defunct Isik Elementary School comes into view. From here, a descending path to the forest begins.
A 10 minute-descent will take you to a shabby octagonal pavilion. Watching the floor closely, you will find something unusual. There are holes like desert sand traps on the floor with fine sand. They are ant traps to capture ants. Ant-eating bugs hide in the sand swamp and quickly drag passing ants into the sand.
If you walk down from the octagonal pavilion along the trail for about 10 minutes, you will see a forest swimming pool. The roadside is impressive as it is peppered with katsura trees.




Hiking Course (approximately 1 hour and 50 minutes): Okhwa Natural Forest(20 minutes) → Octagonal Pavilion(5 minutes) → Eastern White Pine Forest(40 minutes) → Octagonal Pavilion(5 minutes) → Summit(10 minutes) → Descending Route(10 minutes) → Ant Traps and Octagonal Pavilion(10 minutes) → Swimming Pool

How to come

2sunhwan-ro (4.6km) → 3sunhwan-ro (3.5km) → Danjae-ro (18.4km) → Nambu-ro (4.6km)