SK in SK: Climates of South Korea

This is yet another way to organize different posts in this blog – by different climate regions.

One of the most basic facts of Korea’s climate is that it receives the Siberian wind, which makes winter much colder on the Korean peninsula than in many parts of the world within the same latitude (all of South Korea is south of Madrid, Spain). Heck, most of South Korea is colder than all-of-Japan-except-Hokkaido (Hokkaido is north of the entire Korean peninsula and also receives the Siberian wind). However, the East Korean Warm Current keeps the very southernmost parts of the Korean peninsula warmer than they otherwise would be, which is why South Korea has coral reefs within its maritime borders.

I could observe the impacts of the climates in many ways during my travel. For example, I saw plenty of Siberian chipmunks in both Hokkaido and South Korea, but in the rest of Japan, they are nowhere to be seen (fun fact: the Siberian chipmunk is the only species of chipmunk which is not native to North America).

Even in a country as compact as South Korea, there is quite a range climates, and these different climate zones increased the cultural diversity of different regions of South Korea.

The list starts with caverns which mostly ignore surface temperature (they are cool in summer and warm in winter), and then goes from warmer to colder climates.

The Caverns Which Are Somewhat Impervious to the Climate Outside
Manjanggul, the Lava Tube Cave, and Gimyeong Maze Park
The Caves of Sobaeksan
The Caverns of Hwanseongul

Subtropical (i.e. Jeju island)
Yeomiji Botanical Garden in Jungmun
The Famous Waterfalls of Seogwipo & Jungmun
Gamsan Village and the Museum of Sex & Health
Seongeup Folk Village
The Coast of Jungmun – Jusangjeollidea
Sanbangsan, the Cliff Sitting on Jeju’s Coast
The Coast of Seogwipo
Jeju Museum of War History Peace at Gama Oreum
A Documentary about Jeju Shamanism at the Jeju Women’s Film Festival
Jeju Stone Park
April 3rd Peace Park in Jeju
Udo Island: The Mini-Jeju
Sunrise at Castle Mountain Sunrise Peak
Jeju Olle Trail Route #1

The Southern Provinces with Relatively Mild Winters Where It Is Possible to Grow Tea, Bamboo, and Other Crops Which Don’t like Cold Winters, Yet Are Not Subtropical (i.e. Busan, Gyeongsangnam, and Jeollnam Provinces)

Busan: Books, Beach, and Basement Cinema
From Shimonoseki to Busan
Spaland in the World’s Biggest Department Store
Beomeosa: My First Buddhist Temple in South Korea
Geumjeong-seongsan: My First Fortress in South Korea
Seokbulsa: The Really Cool Temple I Visited with Polish Tourists
The UN Cemetary in Busan
Suncheon Bay
Nagan Castle Folk Village, Part 1: The Village which Charmed Me
Nagan Castle Folk Village, Part 2: An Open-Air Museum of Joseon-era Life
The May 18th National Cemetery in Gwangju
Festivities, Museums, and Art in Gwangju

The Western Provinces, which are warmer than the Eastern Provinces (i.e. Jeollabuk, Chungcheongnam, and Gyeoggi Provinces)

A Joseon-era Neighborhood in the City: Jeonju’s Hanok Maeul
Gyeonggijeon: The House of the Official Portrait of King Taejo
Temple by the Horse’s Ears, Temple of a Dedicated Stone-Piler
So-Muuido, My Last Full Day in South Korea
Bomun-sa, Seongmodo’s Temple of Having Sons
Guardian of the Han River: Ganghwa Island
Downtown Incheon
Busosanseong: Where the Baekje Kingdom Fell
Archaeological Ruins of Baekje in Buyeo
Learning about Baekje at the Buyeo National Museum
The Tomb of King Muryeong in Gongju: the Most Important Ancient Tomb in South Korea
The Treasures of King Muryeong at the Gongju National Museum
Gongsanseong: the Fortress in Gongju
Hwaseong Fortress: Haenggung, the Palace of King Jeongjo
Hwaseong Fortress: the High Point of the Wall at Paldalsan
Hwaseong Fortress: the West Gate, and the Really Big North Gate
Hwaseong Fortress: The North Floodgate and the Pretty Pavilion
Hwaseong Fortress: Archery and Beacons
Hwaseong Fortress: Completing the Circuit
Walking Along the Han River
Jongmyo, the Ancestral Shrine of the Joseon Kings
Gyeongbokgung, the Largest Palace in Seoul
Changgyeonggung, the Quiet Grand Palace, Part 1
Changgyeonggung, the Quiet Grand Palace, Part 2
Seoul’s Namsan and N Seoul Tower
Deoksugung: A Palace at Night
Bukchon Hanok Village
The Remains of the Original Ancient Baekje Capital ‘Hanseong’
Walking Around Gyeogbokgung
Namsangol: A Preserved Slice of Seoul’s Joseon Heritage
The Seoul Lantern Festival at Cheongyecheon
Changdeokgung, the Last Palace I Visited in South Korea, Part 1
Changdeokgung, the Last Palace I Visited in South Korea, Part 2: Trees
Changdeokgung, the Last Palace I Visited in South Korea, Part 3: Indoor Spaces
Changdeokgung, the Last Palace I Visited in South Korea, Part 4: Nakseonjae
Photos of a Mystery Place in Seoul
Huwon: The Secret Garden of Changdeokgung
The Joint Security Area at Panmunjeom Part 1: Where South Korea Talks with North Korea
The Joint Security Area at Panmunjeom Part 2: The Axe Murder and Bridge of No Return
Dorasan: The Train Station without Trains, and a Peek into North Korea
The Third Tunnel in the DMZ
Heyri: The Art Village near the DMZ

The Eastern Provinces, which are Colder than the Western Provinces (i.e. Gyeongsangbuk, Chungcheongbuk, and Gangwon Province)
Gyeongju: The City of Ancient Royal Tombs
Ancient Silla Heritage in Downtown Gyeongju
The ‘Folk Village’ and Hanoks of Gyeongju (plus economy and food)
Namsan: A Hike Through Ancient Silla
Namsan: Hermitage of the Seven Buddhas
Gyeongju: Bulguksa and the Most Impressive Buddha Statue I Have Ever Seen
A Final Visit to Namsan and Farewell Gyeongju!
The Andong Mask Dance Festival
Beauty and Tradition: Hahoe Folk Village
Hahoe Byeolsingut Talnori: A Traditional Masked Drama
Daegu, the Medical Metropolis
Haeinsa: House of the Triptaka Koreana
Cheongju: City of the Jikji
Chungju Lake
Coastal Folk Heritage at Haesindang
The North Korean Submarine at Jeongdongjin
Gangneung: a Joseon Villa, a Gramophone Museum, and a Tofu Village
Goseong, Sokcho, and Gangwon Province’s North Korea Connection
Beopjusa, Keeper of Ancient Buddhist Art
The Ancient Ruins of Mireuksa

In the Mountains, but Less than 1000 Meters Above Sea Level
A Final Morning in South Korea: Inwangsan
A Final Afternoon in South Korea: Bukaksan, the Northern Guardian of Seoul
Guinsa, the Sanctuary in Sobaeksan
Seoraksan National Park: The Scene at Biseondae
Seoraksan National Park: Biryeong Waterfall
Jirisan National Park: Buril Waterfall
Jirisan National Park: Ssangyesa, Temple of the Twin Streams
The Taebaek Coal Museum
Seoraksan National Park: Valley of the Waterfalls
Seoraksan National Park: Ulsan Bawi
Bukhansan, the Roof of Seoul
Woraksan

Subalpine to Alpine (i.e. the Roofs of South Korea)
Songnisan
Jirisan National Park: Seseok to Ssangyesa via Samsinbong
Jirisan National Park: To Seseok Shelter via Jeseokbong, Jangteomok Shelter, & Chotdaebong
Sobaeksan: The Peak
Jirisan National Park: Ascending Jungbong
Jirisan National Park: The Highest Peak Cheonhwangbong
Hallasan Part 1: Ascent via the Seongpanak Trail
Hallasan Part 2: Descent via the Gwaneum-sa Trail
Seoraksan National Park: The Highest Peak Daecheongbong
The Ancient Shrine on Taebaeksan

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