Natural Heritage Sites

Natural Heritage Sites 【 Photo: Hallasan Mountain's Baengnokdam Crater Lake 】

Jeju Volcanic Island and Lava Tubes (Designated 2007)

Jeju Island was formed through volcanic activity over 1.8 million years ago. As such, the island is a valuable asset in research of geological features and topography of volcanic landforms such as volcanic cones and lava tubes. Jeju’s lava tubes are some of the most beautiful in the world, featuring dark walls and various colors of carbonation on the ceilings and ground. Among the many natural formations, Hallasan National Park, Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak, and the Geomunoreum Volcanic Cone lava tube system have jointly been designated as a World Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO.

  • Hallasan Mountain【 Photo: Hallasan Mountain 】
  • Korea Railroad Co., (KORAIL)【 Photo: Baengnokdam Crater Lake 】

Reaching to a height of 1,950 meters, Hallasan Mountain is the tallest mountain in Korea with gentle slopes formed by eons of volcanic activity. There are around 40 parasitic volcanoes which formed in the surrounding area. A variety of animals and plants inhabit the slopes, including the largest forest of Korean fir trees (Abies Koreana) in the world.

In addition, the top of Hallasan Mountain offers a view of the magnificent vista over the entire Jeju Island. The peak also holds Baengnokdam, a vast crater lake that is both beautiful and highly valued in academic research.

  • Manjanggul Lava Tube【 Photo: Manjanggul Lava Tube 】
  • Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak【 Photo: Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak 】

In the Geomunoreum Volcanic Cone region, there are about 20 lava tubes formed some 100,000 to 300,000 years ago by huge amounts of basalt lava that spewed from Hallasan volcano. The most famous of these lava tubes are Gimnyeonggul Lava Tube, Dangcheomuldonggul Lava Tube, Manjanggul Lava Tube, Bengdwigul Lava Tube, and Yongcheondonggul Lava Tube.

The largest tube is Manjanggul. This cave features a variety of stalactites and stalagmites, along with a bridge and waterfall formed by lava. The cave and its various formations have outstanding value when it comes to researching the process of formation of the lava tubes.

Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak, one of the many parasitic cones on Jeju Island, was uniquely created on the sea floor. Featuring sharp cliffs around the crater, this attraction is popular for catching the sunrise. The cliffs on the three sides facing the sea were formed by the waves eating away at the lava, while the western side was connected to the main island due to a build-up of sand and gravel.

This page was last updated on August 5, 2019, and therefore information may differ from what is presented here.