Goeunsan is a very small mountain that offers more real estate for apartments than recreation. It doesn't have many trail options. There is pretty much just one trail that runs along its short spine. In all actuality, to hike to the peak from the nearest subway station, you'd spend more time on roads than trails.
The Scouting Report
Do not hike here. Again, do not hike here. Do not hike here unless you meet the following criteria:
- You live in the immediate vicinity
- You have already hiked nearby mountains such as Ansan
- You are very bored
- You have been commissioned by Seodaemun-gu's board of tourism to write a detailed report for foreigners about why no one should bother hiking on Goeunsan.
The terrain is not difficult at all. Most of it is paved roads and dirt trails. There are a few sets of stair you must climb.
(1-easy, 5-difficult): 2
-The only thing that keeps this hike from being a 1 is that there is the slightest bit of elevation gain. Other than that, it is an extremely simple and easy hike.
How To Get There
Where: Seoul-si, Seodaemun-gu, Hongje-dong
Find your way to Hongje Station on line 3. Get there however you want. Take the subway. Take the bus. Ride a unicycle if that is more your speed.
Once at Hongje Station, go to exit 3. It is the exit that has the number 3 written on it.
Coming out of exit 3 of Hongje Station, turn right down the very first street you come to.
It is a narrow street with no sidewalk. Automobiles and pedestrians must share the street. When you come to a fork in the road, veer left.
Continue along this street until a sidewalk starts on the left-hand side. Stop just before the sidewalk begins.
If you look down the road to your right, you will see Goeunsan. In the fall, when there are no leaves, you can see stairs climbing the mountain. Find your way to and up these stairs.
It shouldn't take long until to reach the top. When the stairs end, continue climbing the dirt trail. Soon you will reach a playground.
Unless you want to spend time playing on the playground, walk straight past the playground and badminton court. You will begin walking on a paved road again.
You will quickly come to another fork in the road. The road to the right goes downhill. Take the road to the left that goes slightly up and behind the apartments.
Follow this paved road until it turns into a dirt trail. At this point, the trail follows along the ridge of Goeunsan. There is a small lookout deck on the left. Enjoy the views.
After enjoying the view of Seodaemun's skyline from the lookout deck, it is time to head back down. You have 2 options. Either turn around and go back the way you came. Or, continue in the same direction. If you continue hiking in the same direction, the trail stays strong for a bit. It soon peters out though and you are left bushwhacking your way down. It is doable, but not as well marked as the path you came from.
If you choose to continue in the same direction, here are a few more views you will be afforded:
From Hongje Station exit 3 to the ridge of Goeunsan, it should take 20 to 30 minutes.
In between Hongje Station and the stairs on Goeunsan, there are a number of restaurants and coffee shops along the street. All of them offer fine cool downs.
Consider downloading and using Runkeeper while hiking. It is an excellent way to track how far you've hiked.