Spring Flowers in Korea: When & Where to Go (The Best Gardens, Fields and Spots)

by South Korea, Natural Sights2 comments

Spring is an amazing time in South Korea and it’s a season that you must see with your own eyes! After all, you’ll be amazed not only with the beautiful beot-kkot (벗꽃) or cherry blossoms (called ‘sakura‘ in Japan), but also with the various blooming spring flowers in Korea that often have respective flower festivals.

Best South Korea cherry blossom spots?

If you don’t want to miss out on such colorful festivities — or if you simply want to witness blooms and endless fields of various spring flowers in Korea, just continue reading this detailed guide and you’ll know when and where to go!

Top Spring Flowers in Korea

» Azalea or “Jindallae” (Rhododendron)

Hwangmaesan Royal Festival

Hwangmaesan Country Park photo by: Shutterstock

(진달래) Azaleas are pretty flowering shrubs that are in various shades of purple, pink, red, and reddish-orange. There are a lot of variants of this shrub but what’s native to the Korean Peninsula is the royal azalea in which its colors vary from white to pink or even purple.

Commonly, you will find most of the royal azalea on mountainsides and hillside forests, so take note of the following best spots for spring flowers in Korea:

  • (INCHEON) Goryeosan Jindalle Mountain Azalea Festival: Located just 2 hours from Seoul by car, Incheon’s Ganghwa Island is the place to be if you’re seeking endless fields of azaleas! Held in Goryeosan Mountain or Mount Goryeo, it makes for a great and easy hike to do by yourself or with family and friends.
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 12
      .
  • (NEAR BUSAN) Hwangmaesan Royal Festival: Found near Busan, the Hwangmaesan Country Park holds this popular festival ever since 1997. In fact, due to its popularity, a lot of Korean movies and shows have featured these pink and purple flowers that seem to wrap around the fields like a vast blanket.
    TIP: Book a guided tour from Busan
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 27 to May 12
      .
  • (BUCHEON) Wonmisan Azalea Festival: (Wonmi Bucheon Azalea Hill) Sandwiched between Incheon and Seoul this 167-meter tall hill in Bucheon gets covered in a myriad of azaleas every spring! What’s special about this place is that the azalea shrubs or bushes are close to one another, making it seem like there is a dreamy drape of various shades of pink and lilac no matter where you look!
    TIP: Book a guided tour to Wonmisan
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 14
      .
  • (GUNPO) Gunpo Royal Azalea Festival: If you still want to see more spring flower spots in Korea, head to the city of Gunpo found south of Incheon and head to the Royal Azalea Hill. Typically held in late April, you’ll love the diverse cultural programs and experiences that are held in celebration of this festival.
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 24 to 28
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: March to Mid May

– – –

» Canola or “Yuchae” (Brassica Napus)

Spring Flowers in Korea: Jeju Canola Flower Festival

Jeju Canola Flower Festival photo by: Shutterstock

(유채) Locally called yuchae, the bright yellow canola flower is one of the most common spring flowers in Korea, and for years now, the most famous festival for canola flowers is held in Jeju Island. After all, these flowers grow very well and are highly suited for Jeju’s barren soils.

  • (JEJU ISLAND) Jeju Canola Flower Festival: There are several festival grounds as well as spots that you need to check out…
    • Gasi-ri: This is a town that’s known for its picturesque fields filled with bright canola flowers that are said to be the largest volume on the island!
      • Noksan-ro: Nearby, you’ll find this charming road which is said to be one of the 100 finest roads in Korea! This 10-kilometer stretch goes through Noksanjang and Gammajang (two greatest horse farms in Joseon Dynasty) and it is lined with a mixture of canola flowers and cherry blossom trees. To celebrate the festival, a portion of the street will be closed off to traffic so that visitors can get close to the spring scenery on the road.
        TIP: Book a guided tour NOW!
    • Sanbangsan: Found on the west of the island is this mountain in which its base transforms into a local favorite once the fields are speckled in yellow from the blooms of the canola.
    • Seopjikoji: Head to the eastern shores of Jeju to see a field of canola flowers that are backdropped by the sea. You will also love this location as it is a common filming site for many Korean entertainment shows like “All In” and “Aqua Planet”.
    • Jungmun Eongdeongmul Valley: This is a hidden photo spot where canola flowers line the valley like a stream.
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 9
      .
  • (NEAR BUSAN) Changnyeong Nakdonggang Youchae Festival: Held in Namji Sports Park, this festival features rapeseed flowers that are similar to the canola flower (it belongs to the same family).
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 14 to 18
      .
  • (SEOUL) Banpo Hangang Park: Held sometime in mid-May, a rapeseed flower festival is held in this park which you can easily access from Jamsil Station’s exit 7.
    • Festival Date: (TBC) May 8 to 10
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: March to May

– – –

» Cherry Blossom or “Beot-Kkot” (Prunus Serrulata)

Spring Flowers in Korea: Gyeonghwa Station Cherry Blossom Road

Photo by: Shutterstock

(벗꽃) Naturally, cherry blossoms have got to be the most popular spring flower in Korea that tourists from all over the world would love to see!

Apart from the different standard cherry blossom trees, what’s special about Korea’s cherry blossoms is the existence of the ‘King Cherry‘. This variant hails from Jeju Island and the most striking feature is that its flowers or leaf clusters are larger and have a more hot pink color than the rest.

I have already written extensively about the best time periods and the best spots to go to in South Korea for cherry blossoms, so don’t forget to click on the link below!

READ: South Korea Cherry Blossom

  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: Late March to Mid-April

– – –

» Cornelian Cherry or “Sansuyu” (Cornus Mas)

Spring Flowers in Korea: Sansuyu

Photo by: Shutterstock

(산수유) Often mistaken for forsythia flowers, the sansuyu or cornelian cherry flower (also often called Japanese dogwood) has a smaller crown and it is one of the best spring flowers in Korea. The Korean name ‘sansuyu‘ actually translates to everlasting or unchanging love — which can be a bit of an irony because these flowers only last for about 2 weeks (but it’s better than the cherry blossoms that bloom for only a few days).

The top spots to check out for these cornelian cherry flowers are…

  • (Gurye) Gurye Sansuyu Flower Festival: This is one of the first spring flowers in Korea and if you want to see thousands of them — about 30,000 in the main festival grounds alone which is at the base of Jirisan Mountain Range! — just head over to the town of Gurye. In fact, the county has so many sansuyu trees that it makes up about 3/4 of South Korea’s overall sansuyu products production. Once you’re here, don’t forget to do the flower walking route as well as participate in one of the many experience booths where you can make sansuyu rice cakes, chocolate, and more.
    TIP: Book a guided tour NOW!
    • Festival Date: (TBC) March 16 to 24
      .
  • (Icheon) Icheon Baeksa Sansuyu Flower Festival: If you can’t travel far out to Gurye, Icheon is your best bet since it is an easy day trip from Seoul! The festival is often held in Baeksa Village where these flower trees have been growing naturally for more than 100 years. To make the most of your stay, other than snapping away with your camera, you can join the Korean traditional folk games or watch the sansuyu flower parade.
    • Festival Date: (TBC) March 28 to 30
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: Mid to Late March

– – –

» Daffodil or “Gaenari” (Narcissus)

Spring Flowers in Korea: Yoogibanggaok

Yoogibanggaok photo by: Shutterstock

(수선화) Blooming in early spring, daffodils may be in hues of yellow or white and it is one of the most beautiful spring flowers in Korea that you can find! A famous place that locals go to for taking photos of this pretty flower is…

  • (SEOSAN) Yoogibanggaok: There are a lot of key places in Seosan of Chungcheongnam-do where you can find daffodils but it is in the mountainside at Yoogibanggaoak where you can see fields of daffodils that are in sheer numbers! It is crazily beautiful and it makes for a great Instagrammable spot.
    • House of Yu Gi-Bang: This 100-year-old home is surrounded by a hill of daffodils and there are a lot of paths to walk through in order to find the best picturesque angle.
    • TIP: Drop by nearby Taean to see the famous magnolia festival!
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: March to May

– – –

» Golden Bell Tree or “Gaenari” (Forsythia Koreana)

Gaenari Forsythia Koreana Flowers

Photo by: Shutterstock

(개나리) Said to be the official flower of Seoul, the golden bell or forsythia is a native species in the country. This is one of the spring flowers in Korea that you will commonly find along sidewalks, parks, and hills; plus, with its early blooming season (along with the sansuyu), it is often known to be ‘spring’s messenger’.

For the top spring flower viewing spots of this flower, see…

  • (SEOUL) World Cup Park: Commemorating the past 17th FIFA World Cup, this is an expansive park that is subdivided into 5 sections namely the Nanji Han River Park (Nanji Hangang Park or 난지한강공원), Nanji Stream Park (Nanjicheon Park or 난지천공원), Peace Park (Pyeonghwa Park or 평화의공원), Sunset Park (Noeul Park or 노을공원), and Sky Park (Haneul Park or 하늘공원) — and if you head over to the World Cup Park’s Forsythia Lane, you’ll find a lot of forsythia lining up the path. To get there, just head somewhere near the Sky Park parking lot that’s near the electric train.
    .
  • (SEOUL) Eungbongsan or Eungbong Mountain: This is a mountain situated in the Seongdong district and though a lot of Korean mountains have forsythia bushes, Eungbongsan might just be the only one wherein the entire mountain is blanketed with such bright yellow forsythia flowers! Apricots and cherry blossom trees can also be seen along the way up to the mountain, so it will be quite an amazing yet easy hike.
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: Late March to Early April

– – –

» Magnolia (Magnolia Grandiflora)

South Korea Flowers: Magnolia

Photo by: Shutterstock

(목련) This is one of the prettiest spring flowers in Korea and truth be told, due to its white color with a tinge of pink as well as its simplicity, it is often used to represent dignity and femininity. As such, a lot of university campuses in Seoul would often have this flower on their grounds. For the best magnolia festival in spring, this should be your top of mind:

  • (TAEAN) Taean’s Chollipo Arboretum Magnolia Festival: Held in Cheollipo Arboretum which is one of Asia’s top botanical establishments given that it houses more than 15,000 flora species from over 60 countries. The public can access a limited part of this 64-hectare expanse, but it’s enough to see a variety of beautiful flowers especially that of the magnolia. During the festival, you will get to witness hundreds of different magnolias that are globally renowned!
    TIP: Book a guided tour NOW!
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 13 to 15
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: Late March to Mid-April

– – –

» Plum Blossom or “Maehwa” (Prunus Mume)

Plum Blossoms : When and Where

Photo by: Shutterstock

(매화) This is yet another kind of spring flowers in Korea that is often mistaken for cherry blossoms due to its light pinkish color! Blooming in early March, plum blossoms or maehwa are a symbol of dignity and nobility. One of the most popular byproducts of this flowering tree is maehwasu (매화수) or Korean plum liquor which you can think of as a lighter version of soju due to its lower alcohol content and sweetness.

You will find a lot of plum trees spread around Seoul and the rest of Korea, but if you want to see them in its full glory, head to…

  • (GWANGYANG) Gwangyang Maehwa Festival: Celebrated in Gwangyang City’s Seomjingang Village (which can be a day trip from Busan), this is said to be the biggest maehwa festival in South Korea as it offers picture-perfect views that brim in full of plum trees’ blossoms. With its white and sometimes light pink color, the village will even seem like it’s covered in snow! Don’t miss out on activities such as picking plums or making sweet plum puffs.
    TIP: Book a guided tour NOW!
    • Festival Date: (TBC) March 10 to 13
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: Early to Late March

– – –

» Tulip (Tulipa)

Taean Tulip Festival

Photo by: Shutterstock

(튤립) Tulips hold different meanings for Koreans as dependent on their color — but as a whole, they are deemed to portray a confession of love. Though most people associate this flower with the Netherlands, it’s possible to enjoy it in Korean soil as well.

  • (TAEAN) Taean Tulip Festival: This is said to be one of the top 5 tulip festivals in the world; so naturally, this is a famous tulip festival that you must see! Besides, the festival showcases over a million tulips in different colors and species. You can even stay here up until the evening to witness the light festival that brings a sparkle to the whole of the park.
    TIP: Book a guided tour NOW!
    • Festival Date: (TBC) April 13 to 27
  • EXPECTED BLOOM PERIOD: April to May

• • •

Top Gardens or Flower Fields in Korea

If you rather want to witness a variety of spring flowers in Korea in just ONE place, below is a list of gardens, parks, or flower fields that can offer you that!

» Garden of the Morning Calm

Garden of the Morning Calm

Photo by: Shutterstock

The Garden of the Morning Calm is a stunning arboretum that opened in 1996 and it is home to almost 5,000 species of plants. Its gardens are divided into 20 different themed areas each holding different types of flowers — from hydrangeas to chrysanthemums, it is a must-visit during the spring season!

The Korean Wild Flower Exhibition or Spring Festival also takes place every there from mid-April to May, and visitors are welcomed by a grand display of 300 kinds of wildflowers and rare, gorgeous flowers such as cherry blossom, Japanese apricot, magnolia, and azalea.

– – –

» Everland

Everland : Four Seasons Garden

Photo by: Shutterstock

This may be known as South Korea’s largest theme park but Everland is also famous for its breathtaking flower fields during spring!

Visitors can witness the Four Seasons Garden in full bloom from early March to mid-April which features more than one million flowers. The vast field of tulips and rose is also a main attraction, as well as the sculptures and paths that are decorated with other spring flowers such as daffodils, grape hyacinths, and freesias.

– – –

» Byeokchoji Gardens

Byeokchoji Gardens

Photo by: Shutterstock

Byeokchoji Gardens in Paju has 27 themed gardens with both Oriental and Western landscaping elements and over a thousand plant species. Some of the springtime flowers include coneflowers, tulips, daisies, periwinkles, calla lilies, and hydrangeas.

Established in 1965, this garden has also been featured in over 100 dramas, movies, advertisements, and music videos! Have you wanted to enjoy sets straight out of “My Love From The Star” or “Descendants of the Sun”? Then go here.

Every path is picturesque complete with wooden bridges, pagodas, grassy fields, and of course, flowers, flowers, and more flowers. This park is gorgeous throughout the year but flowers will begin blooming in March. The tulip festival is held from April to May, the lily festival from June to August and the mums festival from October to November. No matter when you go, you’re sure to have a beautiful time!

– – –

» Seoul Botanic Park

Seoul Botanic Park

Photo by: Shutterstock

This is a newly-opened botanic near Gimpo Airport. Seoul Botanic Park is said to have theme zones that will represent 12 major cities’ flora worldwide, as well as a forest, garden, lake, and marsh. Sounds like a lot…? Well it is since the area takes up about 70 football fields!

Plus, with a variety of plants and flower species, you’re sure to find a lot of wondrous sights here — and of course, in spring, it holds a Flower Festival sometime in mid to late April.

– – –

» Changgyeonggung Palace

Changgyeonggung Palace

Photo by: Shutterstock

A lot of tourists in Seoul visit the more popular palaces which are Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung (out of the 5 palaces). But if you ask me, you should NOT miss out on Changgyeonggung Palace — especially in spring!

Aside from being a historical spot, this royal palace is a good spot to enjoy spring flowers in Korea from March to May. After all, an assortment of cherry blossoms, plum blossoms, Korean bush cherry, Korean dogwood flowers, apricot blossoms, and royal azaleas among ancient buildings make for a picturesque spot!

– – –

» Ilsan Lake Park

Goyang Flower Festival

Photo by: Shutterstock

Every year in spring, Ilsan Lake Park holds the Goyang Flower Festival. First celebrated in 1997, it has since attracted millions of people from all over the world to watch the of display indoor and outdoor flower exhibitions by over 300 organizations. You can also buy flowers!

I’ve seen various installations before in this park and they are just so amazing — that I’m sure a lot of Instagrammers would love them! Therefore, make sure to include this in your South Korea itinerary (held sometime in late April to May).

• • •

» Top South Korea Tours «

N Seoul Tower Tour

N Seoul Tower Tour
Marvel at the breathtaking views of Seoul!

Nami Island Tour

Nami Island Tour
+ stops to Garden of Morning Calm and more!

• • •

Spring Flowers in Korea

Overall

South Korea is truly beautiful every spring season. The streets and buildings are filled with colorful flowers and makes a romantic backdrop for photos. If you’re heading to South Korea on spring, don’t forget to visit the places mentioned above for a more unforgettable spring experience.

• • •

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2 Comments

  1. Gudin

    This is super helpful! I can’t wait to see these in the future!

    Reply
    • Aileen Adalid

      Glad to hear this. Hopefully SOON!

      Reply

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