There are many scenic attractions, which are called “Kumgang” along with the superb scenic beauty of Mt Kumgang, in the DPRK. Of them, there is Mt Jangsu which earned fame as “Kumgang in Hwanghae province”.
In olden times, the Korean people said that “whereas Mt Kumgang is the prince of natural beauty of mountains which dominates the eastern mountain area, Mt Jangsu is the queen of beauty of valleys which made a sudden rise from obscurity in the western flat area.
Originally, Mt Jangsu was called Mt Chiak in the meaning that it abounded in pheasants. It was called thus in a sense that many people came there to repulse foreign enemy while breathing fresh air, drinking water and having herbs during the 1592-1598 Imjin Patriotic War and lived long.
The mountain was also called Mt Hongak in spring, Mt Chongak in summer, Mt Phungak in autumn and Mt Paegak in winter for its beautiful scenery in all seasons.
Since ancient times, the beauties of valley, rock and observation have been regarded as the three beauties of the mountain. Among them, the beauty of valleys in twelve bends was counted first.
High-rise cliffs, various trees and grasses growing in the gaps of precipice, crystal-clear water flowing through valleys, waterfalls, ponds and thick forests form a mysterious and enchanting spectacle to behold.
Visitors are reluctant to take their eyes off Sansam (wild insam) Rock, Surigae (eagle) Rock and other queer-looking rocks which can be seen here and there.
Moreover, it is nothing short of spectacular to mount the highest peak of Pojok and look round Mts Jwayang, Kuwol and Jongbang in the distance.
Mt Jangsu is largely divided into the twelve bends of the mountain, the Myoum Temple area and the Jangsusan Fort area. The areas are of great value as they abound in historical relics showing the Korean history and talents of ancestors, as well as beauty spots including Tolmun and Mulhaeng valleys.
The Myoum Temple area, in particular, is said to have been called a typical district of scenic beauty on the west coast of Korea, and old records say that an endless stream of tourists flow there in spring when flowers come into bloom and autumn when mountains are ablaze with the glorious tints of foliage since the scenery in all seasons differs with each other and the delight of tourists is innumerable.
Besides, Mt Jangsu not only teems with fauna and flora resources, but also has a rare fold which is hard to find in the world.
And there is a 40-kilometre-long sightseeing loop road in the Mt Jangsu beauty spot, starting from the first of the twelve bends to Lake Unpha.