Our goal for the last day was to hit up some sort of natural wonder, so we picked Manjanggul cave, went to the bus terminal to take the 990 towards Gimnyeong, but found ourselves on a different bus that dropped us off not 200 meters from the ticket booth but almost 3 km from the ticket booth. Once there we paid the 4,000 won for a ticket, headed off to the bathroom behind the ticket booth to pay for a locker (you’ll need coins) and store all of our stuff, except for our hoodies and phones then headed off to the caves.
The Manjanggul caves were originally studied and explored by an elementary school teacher and his students, who despite being ill-equipped, went out and researched every inch they could get to. Their teacher is also the one who gave it its name.
Manjanggul is a long lava tube, about a 8km walk down into the earth. The floor is uneven and expect a decent temperature drop and for water to drip on you. I suggest sturdy shoes so you won’t trip and either a warm jacket or hoodie. It is dim, despite lights that are set up throughout the caverns, but still tread careful. There are signs throughout giving information about how the tunnel and specific formations were formed. The cave is also home to bent-wing bats and cave spiders. We didn’t see any spiders while down there but we did see a bat. It was the perfect thing to do on a hot summer day.
The caves are closed the first Wednesday of every month and are open from 9-6pm, though they stop letting people in at 5:10pm. There is also a little gift shop/snack shop where you can buy kimbap or a light meal. The bus seems to only leave every hour or so and does not wait.