To the south of the island is Jeondeungsa (전등사), a pretty temple dating from the fourth century – when Buddhism was just taking root on the peninsula – making it one of the oldest temples in the country. It was also the venue for the creation of the famed Tripitaka Koreana, eighty-thousand-plus blocks of carved Buddhist doctrine which now reside in Haeinsa temple near Daegu. To reach the temple, take one of the half-hourly buses bound for Onsu-ri. About 5km west of Onsu is Manisan (마니산), the main peak of the island, which affords wonderful views of the surrounding islands.

Studding Ganghwado’s east coast are three fortresses – Gwangseongbo (광성보), Deokjinjin (덕지진) and Chojijin (초지진) – which are best seen by making use of the bicycle lanes that run alongside the main road; otherwise, buses run every hour or so. Gwangseongbo (daily 9am–6pm) is the northernmost and most interesting of the three, and dates from the mid-seventeenth century; its strategic importance will be obvious to all visitors, as it peers out over the channel that separates Ganghwado from the mainland.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

South Korea features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Seoul food: the transformation of a neighbourhood

Seoul food: the transformation of a neighbourhood

Itaewon, a neighbourhood in the South Korean capital Seoul, is on the up and food is at the forefront of its renaissance. Here Amy Guttman explores a district u…

14 Jan 2016 • Amy Guttman insert_drive_file Article
Would you get down and dirty at South Korea’s Mud Festival?

Would you get down and dirty at South Korea’s Mud Festival?

What once began as a marketing ploy for a therapeutic mud found near Boryeong, a small city on South Korea’s sandy west coast, has since transformed into a un…

17 Jul 2015 • Colt St. George insert_drive_file Article
In pictures: traditional dress around the world

In pictures: traditional dress around the world

The Sari, India Ostensibly the simplest item of clothing possible – a single length of fabric, up to nine metres long – the sari is also one of the world…

02 Feb 2015 • Alice Park camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month