I wish I could say I came across these bears in the wild while hiking through mountains. Okay, no I don’t. I hope I never run into wild bears.
Apparently Bear Tree Park is popular with American military members who come to Korea with families and Korean families with young kids.
I know the concerns people have with zoos seeing how you can’t always tell how the animals are treated. The animals I saw were clean and didn’t seem to be underweight, but I’m definitely not an expert on these matters.
An adult ticket is 13,000 won or about $13. You can take a bus or train to Jochiwon station and then a bus or taxi to the park. Be careful taking the bus though because they only go out to the park a few times during the day. I think they assume that most people coming have little kids and their own cars.
The park itself is worth seeing. There are so many different flowers and trees and the park isn’t so big that it is overwhelming.
There was a cafe and a mini food court (which was closed that day) but we ate at the restaurant inside the welcome house. We didn’t realize it would be as fancy as it was, there were steaks and pasta. When I think of a park or zoo, I think of hot dogs and french fries.
Besides bears, there were also white peacocks, which I didn’t know existed.
The bears are called Manchurian Black Bears. The park pamphlet said you could walk the baby bears and feed them milk from a bottle. Baby or not, I don’t want to be that up-close-and-personal with wild animals.