Olle on Jeju Island, South Korea

Olle is the English transliteration of a Korean word found in the local Korean dialect of those living on Jeju Island. It is a word used to describe the many footpaths built for locals and tourist. It is my impression that initially they were designed for locals, simply as a means to get around the island more efficiently and pleasantly, but because Jeju Island is the premiere honeymoon destination for Korean newlyweds, and because many other tourists visit as well, there are now olle built simply for the purpose of enjoying the beautiful scenery.

There are hundreds of miles of olle on the island, and many free maps easily found on the island. The maps are available in Korean and English, and probably Japanese (and maybe Chinese).


There is nothing fancy about Jeju olle. They are only wooden footpaths, but they wind along the coast, up into the hills, and also through the more urban areas of the island, and I use the word urban liberally, because there isn't much on Jeju Island that doesn't feel rural. On their paths you will find beautiful views and the occasional odd item, like this Chinese gravestone, surrounded by a wall made of volcanic rock, up in the hills near Cheonjeyeon Waterfall.