Namsan Botanical Garden
The cable car and N Seoul Tower command most of the attention on Namsan. However, Namsan has a small, largely unknown botanical garden that is one of the most scenic places to enjoy a casual stroll on the mountain.
Residents of Hannam-dong are extremely fortunate. As if living at the foot of arguably the most popular mountain in Seoul---Namsan---was not enough, they also have incredibly easy access to one of the most naturally scenic spots on the mountain, Namsan Botanical Garden.
The small garden is relatively new. It first opened in 1997 and has been a popular place for locals to visit ever since. The garden is loosely divided into various sections. One of the most interesting sections is the pine tree garden. Here, pine trees are divided into groups based on which area of the country they originated. The path that winds through the pine trees is excellent.
If you are planning to spend a day at Namsan (Park - Mountain), make it a point of visiting the botanical garden. It doesn't require a huge chunk of time. And, it is free. So what do you have to lose?
There is a very nice cafe in the park near the bridge that leads to the Hyatt Hotel. Although it is a bit pricy, the ambiance is fantastic. The cafe provides indoor and outdoor seating. If you choose to sit outside on the porch, a fabulously manicured lawn surrounds you. When the weather is great, this is a perfect place to spend an hour or two.
Children's Forest Experience
This botanical garden isn't only for adults. There is something for everyone, including the children. The forest experience zone is an ideal location for kids to play in a setting that tunes the senses towards the natural world. School groups often visit here during field trips, during which private individuals cannot enter the area. As long a group doesn't have the area reserved, the forest experience zone is open and made available to everyone.
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