Gangwon-do

Snow bikers at Yongpyong

Some alternative slope users at Yongpyong

Gangwon-do, South Korea’s remote northeastern province, is the spiritual home of Korean skiing; the country’s first resort, Yongpyong (Dragon Valley), was built here for good reason. The Taebaek Mountains (Korea’s principle range) run down the east side of the peninsula, and are at their greatest in Gangwon-do; the province is home to many of the country’s highest peaks – and its best ski resorts.

Map showing borders of South Korea's Gangwon-do province

Leading the way are High1 and Yongpyong, Korea’s two standout resorts – if you only go to one resort in Korea, try to make it one of those two. The latter, Yongpyong, is one of three resorts (along with Alpensia and Phoenix Park) situated in Pyeongchang County, which between them will host most of the mountain events for the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics (the remainder will be at the new purpose-built Jeongseon Alpine Centre in neighbouring Jeongseon County).

The Pyeongchang 2018 Olympic halfpipe at Phoenix Park

The Olympic halfpipe at Phoenix Park

The Pyeongchang resorts, Jeongseon, and High1, are in the east of Gangwon-do, a long way from the Seoul area, but there’s also a handful of resorts closer to the capital in west Gangwon-do; Oak Valley and Welli Hilli Park are just outside the city of Wonju (Gangwon-do’s largest city), Vivaldi Park is just a 90-minute bus ride from Seoul, and Elysian Gangchon is actually on the Seoul Metro system (and so is listed both here and under the Seoul Area resorts).

Here are the locations of all the Gangwon-do ski resorts (see below map for resort reviews):

Map showing locations of the ski resorts in South Korea's Gangwon-do province

Map showing locations of the ski resorts in South Korea's Gangwon-do province

1. High1
2. Yongpyong & Alpensia
3. Jeongseon Alpine Centre (under construction for Pyeongchang 2018)
4. Phoenix Park
5. Welli Hilli Park
6. Oak Valley
7. Vivaldi Park
8. Elysian Gangchon