Scenic Drive in Jeju Island

If you plan or interested to visit Jeju island on your own, I will strongly recommend you to rent a car and drive it on your own. Driving around Jeju Island is really enjoyable and easy, as you can stop by the road side to admire the scenery and relax to savor the beauty.

There is a lot of routes that you can take in Jeju. If you take the time to explore the routes from one city to the other, you will find even more gorgeous views, bits of culture, and astonishing landmarks. The most important thing if you are driving in Jeju is to have a reliable map that can show you the location of every sightseeing. It can helps you a lot on planning your journey, which routes that best suites your plan, especially when you have limited time to explore this Island. Not only saving time, knowing which route to go will also saves you on fuel. Renting a car in Jeju might be cheap, but not the fuel.

  • The 1131 highway on Jeju is a great road to travel along if you are going between Jeju City and Seogwipo City. Beginning in Jeju City you can visit the Samseonghyeol tourist site and then head up the mountain to check out the serenity of the Jeju Horse Grazing Field. Enjoy the views of Jeju City and the mountain foliage in the Forest Tunnel as you make your way to Seogwipo. Once you near Seogwipo, a short turnoff will take you to Donnaeko Waterfalls and inside the city you can enjoy the only waterfall in Asia that falls into the ocean at Jeongbang Falls. You may also stop for a while at Seogwipo Maeil Olle Market when approaching the city.

the forest tunnel at highway 1131

  • The 1139 highway also is a great road to travel between Jeju City and Jungmun City. Starting from Jeju City, you may visit the Halla Arboretum, Jeju Museum of Art , and the famous Love Land. Check out the wonder of Mysterious Road and head up the mountain towards the Eorimok trail. On this road you can enjoy a beautiful view of the southern part of the island, Seogwipo’s Natural Forest.The road ended nearby Jungmun where you can proceed to visit the Cheonjeyeon Waterfall, Chocolate Land, Teddy Bear Museum and much more.
  • The coastal route, the 1132 highway, which circles the island is my favourite driving route of all and makes for a spectacular scenery drive. You may take a detour at few numbers of coastal road scenery road around the island. Stops at Sunrise Peak (Seongsan Ilchulbong), Jeju Folk Village, Oedolgae, Sanbangsan, and Hallim Park will definitely result in a memorable road trip.

one of the beautiful scenery that you can found detouring coastal road

the ocean view at the coastal road

you might be lucky to see hanyeo along the coastal road

Follow the traffic rules and try not to speed in Jeju, lotsa speed cameras everywhere but don’t worry if you have gps because it will be constantly beeping to warn you. The maximum speed allowed in Jeju is just 80km/h, 50km/h at school area! Moreover, almost all bump locations in Jeju are updated in the Gps. What a good driving companion. Oh ya, Cars in Korea is left-hand drive. you need to have international driving license to drive in Jeju. For Malaysian, just pay rm150 at JPJ office and you would get it on the spot.

For both of my trip to Jeju, I rent it from KT-Kumho. Very reliable, cheap and convenient. Renting car from KT-Kumho

  1. Make online booking from it’s website. Do sign-up as their member, its free. They do provide lots of discount, even until 70 percent from normal price for member. You may choose your intended mode of transportation, duration and places to collect, and a booking receipt with reservation number with be given to you. You may also select additional features during your booking. Choose english gps and egg which is without any additional cost (free). The egg was actually wifi thing that allow you to connect to the internet in the car.Β  Remember to get the full insurance coverage during your car booking with some additional fee. You don’t want to put yourself in risk since driving in other country especially if you are not familiar to drive in right traffic.
  2. Once you exits the arrival hall at the Jeju Airport, you can walk straight to the KT-Kumho booth. After showing the reservation slip, head to take their free shuttle bus just outside the airport to go to the car collection area which located just 10minutes rides away.
  3. At their office, you are required to make the full payment at the office before the car key is given to you. Payment by credit card is accepted. You will received all equipment and before you proceed to collect your rental car. After checking the car condition and signed a form, you now can start your journey in Jeju.
  4. To return the car, just drop the car at the same car collecting center. You need to fill in the fuel back to the limit that required (if not mistaken almost full tank) before you return the car. Don’t worry, there is a lot of petrol station nearby the car collection centre. They will check the car condition and after that you can take the free shuttle bus direct to the airport.

rental car booth at the airport

the free shuttle bus

the car collection office in Jeju

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74 responses to “Scenic Drive in Jeju Island

  1. hi dear, how much did u rent your car in jeju for? was thinking whether i should drive, or hire a taxi!

    • I get it quite cheap from KTKumho.. 90,000won for 3days 2nite use..
      I would strongly recommend you to drive as Jeju road system was very easy to navigate and to drive yourself..

  2. Hey I have some question about the international license and problem facing on the road
    Understand from the jpj website , we can actually collect back our domestic license after we don’t need the international license , but may I know if i really can get back our old license with the validity I have now? And do u encounter any problem when driving in jeju? Heard that the direction when turning are different ..
    Sorry so many question hahaha i will be going in end may but yet settle jeju tour

    • Don’t worry… the international licence you get from jpj is actually like a booklet.. jpj won’t take your existing local driving licence when you applied for the international licence…

    • It was very easy to drive in Jeju.. wide road.. english signages.. just make sure u get english gps when you rent the car…

  3. Hi, The Travelling Architect!
    Great blog! Grateful if u could advise :-
    What is the parking system in the main cities in Jeju-do?
    Any traffic jams u encountered?
    Thank you!

    • For attraction area, most have dedicated parking area, some free and some with minimal fee per entrance…

      At the city center such as sengwipo town or jeju town, less parking area available… normally I’ll park at the dedicated parking compound and walk to the destination… and sometimes I just park at the roadside (if many others do that too)…

      Traffic jam ??.. nope.. don’t encounter with it during my visit there…

      • hmmm, I see. What about driving in the mountainous area in central Jeju? Are the roads gentle and wide (as in the road leading up to Genting Highlands) or narrow and steep (as in the old road leading to Cameron Highlands or the one going to Fraser’s Hill)? Thanks again for taking the time to answer my queries πŸ™‚ .

  4. Hello! I saw that you replied to Cherry’s comment regarding the price! I’ll be going for 3 days 2 nights as well. You paid ~90,000won, is that inclusive of the full coverage insurance? πŸ™‚

    • Oh dear sorry, one more question, does your 90,000won include the petrol top up as well? Hahaha, sorry, loads of questions ‘cos we’re still wondering whether to go with a taxi driver or to rent a car, so we’re trying to weigh out the price differences.

    • Hi… Sorry for the late reply… just came back from another 1week plus adventure in shanghai and hangzhou…
      The 90k all-in including full insurance coverage… its actually 2 full day usage of 48hour…

      • Your life sounds so fun!!! :O Wow that sounds quite good. I clicked in and they’re offering me close to 150k for everything :O Probably the period. Thanks girl! πŸ™‚

      • You may need to go to their website frequently as they do have different discount price from time to time… I got mine at 115k earlier, then luckily I went back to their website a week after and got better discount price at 90k for the same model.. and they dont even charge for any cancellation fee..

      • Cool! So I can reserve in advance and reserve again + cancel the previous one if there’s a better offer! Thanks! & btw your post is very informative! πŸ™‚

    • oh my… really didn’t notice my mistake.. thanks Ba for that.. you’re absolutely right.. cars in Jeju are left-hand drive.. I’ve edited my post…
      thanks again…

  5. Hello! After reading your blog, I have decided to rent a car when I go jeju this November πŸ™‚ One question tho, I tried signing up as a member from KT KUMHO, however I seem to have problem completing the registration as the system keeps prompting me to check ID if it is available . The problem is I can’t check ID as the button doesn’t seem to work 😦 . Is there some settings that I need to do on my computer ?

    • Am getting notifications from comments on this blogpost so thought I’d drop a suggestion on this. Try using other browsers! Sometimes Korean websites are only compatible with internet explorer!

  6. SeriouslyFunny
    Hi deqna07! Your answers are very informative and have now decided to drive in Jeju. Going there on the 3rd week of October.
    Terima Kasih banyak2! n Selamat Berpuasa!

    • thanks.. Just ensure you get the english gps and egg when you rent the car.. very2 helpful and don’t worry to make any detour as you might be surprised with what you see..
      hopefully you will enjoy your trip in Jeju..

  7. Hi Denqna07,
    I love your entree, very informative. I’m going to Jeju 11th Nov for 5 days 4 nights. I heard it is a tough driving during winter since you need to learn to install special gear on the wheels. Is that true? Hope to hear from you. =)

      • Hi Deqna07,

        thank you for the reply.

        Please allow me to have additional question. My driving license is renewed at the Post Office; so, no picture type. Can that license be used to get International license at JPJ? Or I have to renew my license to the one with picture first before I can apply for International Driving License?

        Second question is, do you know if i can apply for the license on behalf of my husband? since he’s away; so, I hope i can just help him apply.

        Thank you =)

  8. yeah, you can show the current license (without picture) but attached together with the original license with picture.. That’s what i do previously..
    However, I’m not sure whether u can apply on behalf.. better check with JPJ..

  9. Hi Deqna07

    Did you have to provide your local driving license details on Kumho website when you book your car? And did the Kumho counter in the airport ask for you local driving license? Is International driving license enough to rent a car?

  10. Hi! How do you pay for the petrol? Can we use credit card, or only cash is accepted?

    • I pay with cash.. cause only need to top up about 50k won.. i’m believe they accept credit card cause cc are widely accepted there..

  11. Hi v informative. Im gonna be in jeju for 2 nights 1 day tho not sure if its enough to cover then another 3 nights in seoul. Kindly advice if its realy really safe to drive first time on a left sided card in foreign land please? Will go n apply for international car licence soon. If not, any ideas if hiring taxi drivers in advance popular in jeju island?

    • Hi Tian,
      2d1n definately not enough for Jeju.. The island quite big and there’s lot of interesting places to visit there.. make sure you plan your driving route properly so that you won’t waste your time driving all over up and down.
      Based on my experience, its totally safe for first timer to drive in Jeju even with left hand drive.. the roads quite big and just make sure you get the english gprs together with the rental car..
      I won’t recomend hiring taxi driver as it quite expensive…

    • I went for 3 days & 2 nights, and I still didn’t manage to see enough. I’m from Singapore, & a relatively new driver (only drove for a couple of times after getting my licence, after which my dad sold the car, so prior to Jeju, I didn’t drive for like, 2 years?), but I coped very well in Jeju. But please read up on the traffic rules of left-hand drive, ‘cos it’s the direct opposite compared to right-hand. Make sure you have internet/wifi with google maps to back you up if the GPS doesn’t help (it didn’t register my guesthouse) but 80% of the places are easily found on the GPS.

      • Yeah.. I find the ‘egg” (that’s what they call for the portable internet doogle) provided by the car rental very usefull during our trip.. We even use it in our room for internet..

      • Jessica, u also rent the car from KT-Kumho as used by deqna? the insurance – how to buy? maybe I shd try but afraid the 2n1day is not enough to cover in case we messed up the directions and all. for 5n in korea as a trip is not enough then. advisable to change to 3n in jeju 2n in seoul?

    • Yes I did! I think you’ll get to choose the insurance option when you rent the car. Otherwise, it comes as a default. If I’m not wrong, you get full waiver for korean-made cars (eg, Hyundai) but only partial coverage if you get a foreign-made car.
      Honestly, I think it depends on your preferences. If you’re for scenic/relaxation, you should spend more time in Jeju (after all, you’ve already paid extra money to get a flight there). For us 3d2n, we only managed to cover several attractions, but they were all touch-and-go.
      There are definitely loads to check out in Seoul as well, so a total of 5 nights is not enough to do everything. I spent 8 nights in total in Korea & time really just flew past. We had to cancel a lot of things on our itinerary ‘cos we overestimated ourselves. So it’s really important to do some research and prioritize the places you really want to go to!

      • O yes, I forgot to add. Do try to get a korean-made car. The full waiver is very useful. We actually got into a little accident in which we scratched the car & got a couple of dents (‘cos my friend tried driving for a bit) but they didn’t charge us a thing when we returned the car. Parking in Jeju city can be a real pain ‘cos the space in the parking lots were pretty small & being a rookie driver, I took LOADS of time just doing 3 point turns to park the car.

  12. yeah I figure. but my trip is a bit tight. if drive, scare lost the direction and ended up wasting time. are most of popular places situated nearby?

    • the attractions in Jeju is scattered around the whole island..
      The Jeju town was at the north, with airport nearby and the Yongduam Rock, and the local museums located..
      Sengwipo at the south.. attractions such as Jeongbang falls, cheonjiyeon falls, the trick art museums, teddy bear museums and jungmun area also few minutes ride from there..
      The famous Seongsan Ilchubong and Manjanggul Cave located at the east of the Island..
      U can start your journey from the north and drive along at coastal highway around the island.. most of the attraction located along these routes..

  13. i try testing booking a car at kt-kumbo to get the cost estimation but the website is confusing….:s and we have to make payment by credit card? the pickup is just rent place??

  14. Hi there, kindly advice the recommended route/time required/journey how long- to be able to see most of the tourist places:
    Arrive in Jeju airport at 9pm- one night and then another night and then departs at Jeju at 1230pm flight.

    1. Drive from jeju airport to hotel in seongsan (east)overnight so to catch up the sunrise peak n other tourist places in seongsan area then drive to seongpiwo for a night and visit places on the way to airport for the flight

    2. Drive from jeju airport to hotel in seongpiwo (south) first overnight then visit places in seongpiwo areas then drive to seongsan overnight to catch sunrise then drive and visit places on the way north to airport for the flight

    which one would be betteR? kindly advice how long it would be from airport to the hotel in those two areas would be great. thank you!!

    • Hi Elle,

      1. From airport to seongsan will took around 1.5hr-2hr journey through the coastal highway route 1132. From seongsan to seongwipo, you can take the coastal route again, and along the way, you can visit Seopjikoji Coast, Jeju Folk Museum and spend the rest evening at Seogwipo area. The next day, you can visit Jungmun area and take the highway cross mountain to jeju city..
      2. From airport to seogwipo will take 1.5hr to 2hrs through the 1139 highway.. However, i won’t recommend for night driving because it can be dangerous as u will need to drive through the hallasan mountain.

      * I would recommend your first option. Please note that most of the attraction located at the south part of Jeju, so, you might want to spend more time there..

      • If drive through the hallasan mountain during day time, any good views of it or any things to explore along the route to seogwipo?

      • the view along the route of mout hallasan itself is quite nice.. upon reaching jeju airport, u can take a quick detour to yongduam rock..

      • Now. Thinking to spend a night in jejucity since late departure then nxt morning to seongpiwo overnight then to seongsan on the way back to airport. Just that flight at12noon means by 10am we have to leave from seongsan…so don’t get to see much in Seongsan then…

      • Ahh.. u will miss the nice view of seongsan and seopkoji coast !!.. I still feel your first option is better.. Driving through coastal route on the east was very beautiful !!..

      • That’s y im not sure- mainly cos we rushing to catch flight at noon 12pm…so either from seonwipo faster or from seongsan. But if we drive back to airport from seongsan, we can still catch the view seongsan and seopkoji coast right?

      • nope.. i don’t think u will be able to make it.. unless u check-out as early as 3am, and drive to catch the sunrise.. but u won’t be able to see seopkoji as it need about 30min detour from the main road..

  15. Hi, which car did u rent in jeju? was it like old with problems or quite new? If i set the return timing at 1300hrs, I can still return earlier like 11am right? does it matter to the car rental company?

    • both time, I rent the Kia Forte.. the car condition very good, even looks very new..
      You can return earlier than you rental time.. no problem.. just make sure u return with full tank..

  16. Also, for the GPS system, how is it input? I read in blogs that u have to key in phone numbers??

  17. I just checked with KT-Kumho but they told me that English GPS is not available at the time I want to rent the car. They only have the Korean GPS. Is it possible to use Google map? Did they provide you a detail English map when you rented the car?

    • yeah, their english GPS is subject to availability.. you may try to request again when you collect your car, if you’re lucky, they may have additional for you. U can get quite a detail Jeju map upon arrival at the Jeju airport. Maps can easily get at the tourist center anywhere in Korea, so you can get it when you’re in Seoul for early planning.
      If u want to use google map, make sure u get the portable wifi (egg)

      • Thanks for your reply. I tried to used google map but can’t get driving direction for Jeju. It only provides transit direction only…Did you use google map when you travelled to Jeju?

  18. Hi, I would like to ask what is the price difference between Gasoline and LPG? I am renting the Kia Morning and I think is using Gasoline. Thanks in advance! πŸ™‚

    • Sorry ya.. I’m not sure about the price as I don’t know korean words.. All the price at the petrol station written in Hangul.. I just ask the worker to help to fill the tank and paid the amount.. hahaha..

  19. Hi,

    I am going to JEJU this 28th Apr and leaving to Seoul on 1st May by JEJU Air.

    Seem very interesting to drive our own then renting a taxi, do we really need an international driving license ??

    Your opinion appreciated.

    • Hi,
      Yup.. most of the big rental car company that I’ve approached requested for international driving licence. I’m not sure about the smaller company.

  20. Hi! You got me convinced to rent a car in Jeju πŸ™‚ However, when I tried to sign up with KT-Kumho, I read that driving in Korea with local license issued by any other country is not permitted. I am from the Philippines. What should I do in order to be able to drive in Jeju?

    • Yeah.. most of the major car rental company in Korea required international licence for foreigners. That’s mean you need to get an international licence from your home country first. If in Malaysia, it was quite easy, we can get it at JPJ, just need to pay additional fees. I’m not sure how Philipphines system is.

  21. Hi, nak tanya sy akan ke jeju on 15 to 18 oct. So just nak tanya route yg paling ok to travel from jeju town. sbb nanti saya stay kat jeju town for 2 days. Kalau sy nak tgok sunrise dkt seongsan ilchubong tu kena keluar dari jeju town jam berapa?

  22. Hi, We will going to jeju on 12 mar 2016 , is the weather there
    safe to drive through mount hallasan. to seowipo .Is it a Tunnel through
    the mountain or drive round the mountain?.If we drive by the
    west coastal is it takes longer time?

    • Hi Irene,
      Driving to Seogwipo through mount hallasan is quite safe. It actually a drive round the mountain with reasonably wide road. However, be caution if you drive in early morning, cause the fog can be quite thick and visibility can be as low as 10-20m only.
      Driving by coastal road will take longer time, however the scenery was really beautiful. I prefer coastal route compared to mountain highway.

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