As spring is hopefully approaching, I decided to show you a beautiful garden from our Sunday trip in Korea last June. Anette and I decided to visit The Garden of Morning Calm after our friend and colleague recommended it as a nice one-day trip from Seoul.
It turned out that the place has a very interesting story to it! It was designed by a Korean gardening professor while he was staying in the US, and it was inspired by an Indian poem, in which Korea was described as the land of the morning calm (proof it was not written in the 21st century, huh). The purpose of the garden is to provide a place to meditate and relax to Koreans and foreigners alike, hopefully making Korean landscape beauty famous world-wide.
There are 5 000 different plant species from both Korea and exotic lands. They were selected so that there is always something to see, no matter what month of the year you come. In winter, there are also colorful lights. One plant you probably would not consider special are the pine trees, but you should pay attention to them in this garden. Why? You can buy pine nuts harvested from these trees in one of the souvenir stores! It is the best souvenir to bring from there, the nuts are very delicious and couldn't be more local! I recommend the half-peeled ones.
What is amazing as well, the garden is set in a small valley surrounded by mountains. If you check the map, it is literally in the middle of nowhere! The location makes it even more special. If you end up getting stuck in horrible traffic on the bus there and decide to get off and walk instead (a solution bus drivers offer once the walking distance is 30 min or so), it will truly seem to be an oasis after walking in scorching sun uphill (there are plenty of naengmyeon restaurants on the way to refresh though).
You can read more about the garden here or on their official website.