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8. Cool in the summer, warm in the winter – Manjanggul Cave (Top 10...
Jeju Island is a marvel of volcanic wonders, hiding a plethora of mysterious, unexplored caves. Despite a total of 160 caves on Jeju, Manjanggul Cave is the only one that is open to the public. The total depth of the cave is estimated to be almost 10.7km and so far, 7.4 km have been discovered. However, only 1km of the entire cave is open to visitors. In the past, visitors could also explore Gimnyeonggul Cave, which is connected to Manjanggul Cave, but it was closed to the public in 1991 due to safety concerns.
Manjanggul Cave holds a great deal of geographical value, and like so many places on the Island, it is listed as a world heritage site, but this is not the only reason people visit. The consistent temperature of 15 degrees Celsius throughout the year also beckons travelers to Manjanggul Cave. The cave becomes a haven from the heat in summer and a warm place of rest during winter.
You can enter the cave by going down about 15m of stairs at the opening. The cave consists of parallel lines and grooves left by the hot lava. As you walk through the cave, you can also hear the musical sound of water droplets falling from the ceiling.
Up until the end of the cave, there is lava stalactite—which was created when the top surface of the cave was melted by the lava—erratic block, and other evidence of the cave’s volcanic past. When you finally reach the end, you will be met by the world’s biggest lava column. This lava column looks like a large pillar, formed by fresh lava cooling off on top of old. The column is truly gigantic, with a height being 7.6m.
Considering the entire length of the cave is over 10,000m and only 1km is open to the public, it is rather fascinating to think that the ground above where you walk is literally just sitting on top of a cave of treasures that are yet to be revealed. You will certainly gain a new perspective on Jeju, as magnificent below the surface as it is above. Be sure to visit Manjanggul Cave, as well as the Woljung and Gimnyeong Geological Trails.
· Admission Fees: Adults 4,000 won, Youths & Children 2,000 won
· Operation Hours: 09:00~18:00 (Closed on: The 1st Wednesday of every month)
· Location : 3341-3, Gimnyeong-ri, Gujwa-eup, Jeju-si (See the map)
· Two photos above by JTO