Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Jeju Island - Part 1 SFW

Nancy and I had a long Thanksgiving weekend so we decided to take a trip to Jeju Island.  Jeju is a volcanic island of the southeast coast of the Korean peninsula...it reminded us of the Big Island in Hawaii.   It is a big tourist destination in the summer...not so much in November.  Despite some chilly weather, we had a really great time.  We hired a taxi driver to take us from the airport to our hotel on the opposite coast and also to take us on a tour of the island the next day.  The driver's name was Mr. Kim and he was awesome.  He spoke fractured but mostly understandable English and was not hesitant about taking us to the destinations that he thought we needed to see.  That would include a Tea Museum, the woman's diving museum (I think they were all lesbians) and various other interesting and semi-interesting locals.  In addition, he had some incredible music playing during the trip (on CD of course) that added to the experience...how many people can say they have traveled through Korea listening to Skeeter Davis sing "End of the World"?  Not many I would say...

Jeju has many natural attractions including 3 UNESCO World Natural Heritage Attractions.  We visited all 3 and they were pretty incredible.

Mt. Hallasan National Park - the highest mountain in South Korea.  We had a short visit and trekked up a little bit.  Next time I'm summiting!

Manjanggul Cave - the longest lava cave in the world  The open area we traveled was 1 km long!!

Seongsan Peak - a dormant volcano crater off the eastern coast of Jeju.  Gorgeous views from the top.

She did NOT move from this spot!

Near our hotel on the southern coast is an amazing natural coastline called Daepo Coast Jusangjeollidae (did I spell that right?).  It is a lava coast with natural geometric shapes...rectangular and hexagonal prism formations!  WTF!!

Even if you are not a math geek it's hard to not be impressed!!

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