Just below the Korean peninsula is beautiful Jeju Island. The only self-governed province in Korea (the island is run entirely by local politicians), it is considered the Hawaii of Asia for its stunning scenery and appeal. Tourists from all around the world flock to this sunny-beach paradise. Why not join them? Listed here are the 4 best reasons to stop by this unique gem.

Cover image credits: 제주도-외돌개-바다, from https://pixabay.com/ko/photos/제주도-외돌개-바다-4113928/ by dcland2. License: Pixabay

1. Natural Beauty

"Waterfall on Jeju Island, Korea" from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Waterfall_on_Jeju_Island,_Korea.jpg by Douglas Knisely

Jeju Island is breathtaking. With sparkling seas, rugged mountains, and stunning fields, Jeju exudes the spectacle of nature. And it's not just on the surface: formed from volcanic activity, Jeju's land is 90% covered in basalt, and there is all manner of geological marvels to be found here. One particularly notable one is the lava tubes, which we'll discuss in more detail later in this article. It's clear that Jeju Island boasts some of Asia's finest natural beauty. And there are plenty of ways to enjoy it. From scuba diving to paragliding and ATV tours, Jeju islands is full of options for every traveller!

2. Flora and Fauna

"Jeju island" from https://www.pxfuel.com/en/free-photo-jieyz. License: Pxfuel

Jeju Island is overflowing with all kinds of stunning animals and plants for both the nature enthusiast and layman. With 77 different types of mammals and 198 birds (many of which are endangered), it's well worth a trip. And Jeju's fauna doesn't slouch either. 90 out of the 134 beautiful plants on Jeju are endemic to the island.

3. Lava Tubes

"Jeju-Manjanggul Lava Tube" from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Jeju-Manjanggul_Lava_Tube.jpg by Olga Lipunova. License: CC BY-SA 3.0

Vast underground networks of caves formed by geology and flowing lava, Jeju's lava tubes have qualified as a World Heritage Site. Live out your childhood dreams of exploring dark tunnels, catching photo-worthy shots of stunning rock displays. Don't visit Jeju without taking a look at these.

2. Hallasan Mountain

"Halla Mountain in Jeju-do" from https://www.flickr.com/photos/koreanet/6387785543 by Republic of Korea. License: CC BY-SA 2.0

We stay on the volcanic mood with this final attraction. Hallasan Mountain ranks as South Korea's highest mountain and volcano, being 1,950 metres (6,400 ft) in the air. Climbers and hikers are drawn to Hallasan's epic trails. At the top of the mountain, they will be rewarded with a gorgeous view of crater lake Baengnokdam. Beautiful pink flowers grow around the mountain's base in the spring, bringing about nature's full splendour.