[Hiking Korea] Ansan Jarak-Gil & Summit (안산자락길 & 봉수대)

Ansan mountain is situated right in the middle of Seoul, surrounded by more well known mountains such as Inwangsan and Seoul’s giant Bukhansan.

The mountain is well known for being the most accessible, being home to a deck trail suitable for wheelchair and pushchair users, as well as the elderly! The trail surrounds the whole mountain in a loop, which can be completed in a couple of hours.

I took the subway to Dongnimmun station (line 3) and headed towards exit 4, however the exit was closed so I used exit 3, and crossed the road to get to freedom park.

The trail is signposted the whole way through the park from the entrance, so it is not easy to miss! Heading up this way also takes you past Seodaemun prison, used by Japan to imprison Korean liberation activists during their colonisation of Korea.

Walking behind the prison and up the hill will take you straight onto the platform trail. It is marketed towards those people for which regular mountains are inaccessible – however taking this path is still quite steep with some stairs so bear that in mind!

The entire trail once on there is signposted, and there are multiple bathrooms and places to rest on the way!

I wanted to not only check out the trail, but also the summit of Ansan – which is home to a fire beacon used by the military during the Joseon Dynasty to send signals. The mountain is not the highest (296m) however the trail can get quite steep (I had to use my hands to scramble up some rocks at one point!) so wear suitable shoes with good grips.

From the top you can get a good view of not only the surrounding mountains, but also Namsan (NSeoul) tower and the full layout of Seodaemun prison! Make sure you head up on a good air day, we were surrounded by some fog (it started raining on the way down) so it was quite overcast when we got there

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