Just sit right back and you’ll smash my tail, as I tell of a Christmas trip. That started from this freezing place aboard a heated bus. My mate is a clever vixen and I am rather silly. Two others joined us that day for a six day tour, a six day tour. The weather started getting warm, our travel was done. If not for the space in our bags, we would have sweated. We would have sweated. The adventure on the ground of this pleasant Korean isle with Direlda, his mate too, a history teacher and his wife, the video camera, the notebook and many bags here on Jeju Isle.
The weather we left behind was in the negative Celsius and snow covered the ground, the buildings, the trees. Winter had cast its blanket upon Gyeonggi-do and it wasn’t about to remove it. But we were heading to the southernmost province of Korea, so it was with delight that we shivered at the bus stop waiting for our ride to Gimpo Airport. It was a pleasantly short flight to Jeju. But to our dismay we glimpsed small mounds of snow on the tarmac of Jeju city’s airport.
As we bussed across the island the snow increased as we rose into the central highland and then dwindled away as we descended to the southern coast. By the time we got off the bus near the city of Seogwipo, the weather was pleasant, though still a little chilly now and then.
We had accidentally missed our stop due to it not being announced and so had to walk a little ways back into town. This turned out to be good, for it allowed us to visit Jeongbang Waterfall, as it was on the way. The waterfall tumbles off a cliff into a basin on a stony beach. We got to climb down to the beach and wander around, which was pleasant as the water in the ocean wasn’t that cold.
Then we wandered into town until we found our hotel. After a short break we headed out for dinner and eventually settled for fried chicken. We made the choice mainly because it was actually open. For whether it was simply too early for the other restaurants to be open or because it was Christmas Eve, there weren’t a lot of available choices. My wife and I got a large plate of spicy fried chicken, which meant it was coated in a spicy sauce. I decided to eat the chicken using chopsticks! Keep in mind, that isn’t really standard as fried chicken wings don’t provide a lot of places to hold on to with chopsticks, but somehow I managed.
After our delicious meal we walked past a covered marketplace. While not as big as some of the marketplaces I’ve wandered through, this one had a water feature running down the center of one of the central roads. Like all marketplaces (and many sidewalks…) we had to watch out for the delivery motorcycles/mopeds that zip along. Sometimes it feels like they have the right of way… We didn’t buy anything, though it was fun ambling past the stalls of vegetables, the clothing shops, and the stacks of fish. And eventually we ended up on the waterfront. An island sheltered part of the harbor. The bridge going to the island was lit up in a shifting array of colours, so we wandered around the harbor to see it up close. We didn’t quite know what it was supposed to be, so I won’t tell you–see if you can figure it out before I tell you what it is in the recounting of the next day’s adventures.
My wife and I attended part of a Christmas Eve service at a church across the street from our hotel. All-in-all it was a good first day in Jeju!
Now for some pictures. You can click on them to see them a bit bigger.