Cherry Blossoms in Cheongju, South Korea

Cherry blossoms (벚꽃 [bot-gote] in Korean) are an exciting, beautiful, unofficial introduction to spring in Korea. There are full-blown festivals and even songs dedicated to this time of year. There are a few places in the country that are famous for viewing cherry blossoms, such as the island of Jeju (where we went for our anniversarymoon) and Jinhae in the southwest part of the country. As usual, you can always find something in Seoul as well.

Seoul Jamsil Cherry Blossoms Seokchon lake

Cherry blossoms in my former hood, the Jamsil neighborhood in Seoul. (2014)

But despite Korea’s small size and efficient transportation system, it gets tiring traveling all over the country to do things. Cherry blossoms bloom everywhere, so Eric and I were determined to find a scenic place near us. Luckily, with the recommendation of our Korean co-workers, we found a great spot in Cheongju (the closest city to us) along the Mushincheon River downtown.

cherry blossoms south korea cheongju

cherry blossoms couple photos in cheongju korea

Lots of families, couples, friends, and more were there to enjoy the sites.

There was some kind of festival happening at the same time; I assume it was related to the cherry blossoms due to the souvenirs being sold.

cherry blossom festival cheongju

cherry blossoms cheongju festival

Eric enjoying the cotton candy & me wearing a cherry blossom crown 🙂

cherry blossom sunlight korea atembe

The sunlight kept changing on us so we took a zillion pictures trying to find the best light…and because the trees were just so pretty!

Unfortunately, lot of people were pulling flowers off of the trees for photos (and then just dumping them on the ground!). This is not only bad for the trees but it also makes them go bare faster. Blossoms only bloom for about one week, and they are very delicate, so it’s best not to disturb them so that others can enjoy their beauty!

cherry blossoms south korea cheongju chungbuk

cherry blossoms atembe korea

Sometimes you just need to stop and smell the 벚꽃

Cherry blossoms are interesting because the flowers come full force before ANY green leaves, so all you see are shades of pink and white on the branches.

I’m sure the bigger blossom festivals have much more impressive scenery, but it was nice to be somewhere that wasn’t too crowded, yet just as picturesque and enjoyable.

Cherry blossoms bloom at different dates each year. Ask around in February/March of each year to get a forecast on when they will be in full bloom near you!

More sites to see/things to do in Korea:

Try on hanbok, traditional Korean attire.

Jump into an art painting at the Trick-Eye Museum.

See a palace!

Visit Jeju Island, the Hawaii of Korea.

Take a trip to Busan, the second-largest city along the southern shores of Korea.

About Atembe

Atembe is a Cameroonian-American who is exactly 27 years old (because saying "20-something" is SO 2016) and currently teaching kiddos art and English in South Korea. In her free time she's dancing, drinking too much celebrity tea, living vicariously through characters in her favorite TV comedies, or [sometimes] letting her husband Eric beat her at Wii. Catch her on Twitter or Instagram via @sothisisfate, and for a faster response, tweet her a "TAR!..."

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