Jejudo is the top holiday destination in Korea and it is easy to see why. The pleasant climate, stunning beaches, delicious seafood, magnificent volcanic formations, world-class hotels, first rate golf courses, and sports-fishing grounds all make it a marvelous place to visit. The Koreans refer to Jejudo as “The Hawaii of Korea” or “ Honeymoon Island,” and The Asian Wall Street Journal has dubbed it “The Bali of North Asia.”
Whatever you choose to call this egg-shaped island, Jejudo’s brilliant aquamarine waters and spectacular black lava formations will draw you deeper into the island’s calm and multifaceted beauty. The many luxury resorts feature terrific seafood restaurants and rentable boats, jet skis, and even offer parasailing. As you venture into the heart of the island, you will be charmed by the exquisiteness of Hallasan (the volcanic mountain which formed the island), the tangerine orchards, pineapple fields, and gushing waterfalls.
A fascinating remnant of pre-historic Jejudo and a well-known symbol of the island is the dolharubang (grandfather stones). These carved statues, 52 in total, are seen all around the island. Anthropologists believe that they represent guardians who once protected the entrances to Jeju’s large towns. They are likened to the mysterious stone figures found in Tahiti, Okinawa, Fiji, and Easter Island.
Another prominent symbol of the island are haenyeo, Jejudo’s famous diving women. For as long as anyone can remember, these brave women clad only in modest white cotton swimsuits could be seen diving deep in the waters for seaweed, shellfish, and sea urchins. They have been immortalized in songs, brochures, sculptures, postcards, and various souvenir trinkets. Today thousands of haenyeo still continue the free-diving tradition. Instead of white cotton, however, modern day haenyeo now wear wetsuits and snorkels. Their amazing ability to hold their breath in free dives as well as the delectable, fresh treasures they come up with have made the haenyeo legendary in Korea.