Saturday, October 26, 2013

Into the Woods, Valleys & Countryside. Korea Day 4

Recap from the previous post, arrived at Yeongwol the night before and stayed at Donggang Cistar where i had this 1 bedroom apartment for myself. Had a really good sleep the night after all that traveling. When i looked out the window, it was pitch dark so i couldn't quite figure out the surrounding. The next morning, i opened up the curtains...
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There was like this HUGE mountain that stretches all the way till god knows where and it's right in front of my eyes. I was like, So it has been there last night but i did not notice it at all as it was too dark. What a view, LOL
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  108 Samok-ri, Yeongwol-eup, Yeongwol-gun, 
Gangwon-do, R.O.Korea 230-888

Managed to get a good look of Donggang Cistar before heading down for breakfast.
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Buffet breakfast at Donggang Cistar before we begin our day in Yeongwol!
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Quite a spread for buffet breakfast. There's American style breakfast and of course, traditional Korean style with the kimchi and such. Can't help but mention how much i love buffet breakfast when i'm overseas because i always skipped my breakfast when i'm in Singapore (which explains why i always love to have all day breakfast/ brunch in SG) :|
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Went to the train station to get our return tickets to Seoul via the O train before we start our day in Yeongwol.
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The good thing about their train stations is that they have lockers for you to deposit your stuff! We were so glad because without the lockers, we would have to carry our luggage (the heavy bag that we have been carrying for the past 2 days) to visit the different sites of Yeongwol and some of these sites require climbing some hills/mountains!
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Visiting 4 out of the 10 scenic sites for the day!
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We actually got a cab to fetch us from places to places and the cab uncle was nice enough to wait for us to explore each site and bring us to the other. First stop is Seonam Village (선암마을). It's a small town located on the banks of Seogang River in Ongjeong-ri, Seo-myeon, Yeongwol-gun, Gangwon-do province and this village is famous for its cliff that is shaped just like the Korean Peninsula. The walk up is about 1 km to the Oganjae lookout for a good view.

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 San 180, Ongjeong-ri, Hanbando-myeon, Yeongwol-gun, Gangwon-do
강원도 영월군 한반도면 옹정리 산180번지

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Water on three sides, high eastern area and lower western area. After comparing the map and the cliff, you would see the similarity between the two. I have no idea why the cliff is shaped like this, maybe coincidence or fate?
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Seondol Cliff was the next cliff that we visited!
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The rock is about 70m high between Nalgol and Namae-maeul and it's also called Sinseonam. This place is located at a cliff of Seogang River in Bangjel-ri, Yeongwol-eup. It's a standing stone that looks like a cliff cut by a big knife.
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May i direct your attention to the bottom right hand corner. See that brave little boy over there, LOL
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Was on the way to enter Jangneung (莊陵) when i saw this cart outside selling "gao luck" (roasted chestnuts) and i immediately bought it from this uncle dressed in a squirrel costume. Decided to take a photo, he so friendly hor?
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Tickets to enter Jangneung (莊陵) [UNESCO World Heritage] at 1,400 won each.
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Before we enter Jangneung, i bought the "gao luck", then we saw opposite was selling ice cream so we decided to get one each to eat along the way. Just before entering, we were told no food is allowed inside -__- So the 3 of us had to stand around the entrance to finish up our ice cream slowly in the cold weather... why the squirrel never tell us -_-
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190, Danjong-ro, Yeongwol-eup, Yeongwol-gun, Gangwon-do
강원 영월군 영월읍 단종로190

Jangneung is the tomb of Danjong, the 6th king of Joseon (1441~1457). The story goes something like this... King Danjong was only 12 when he became King and just two years later he was overthrown in a coup by Sejong the Great’s second son, King Sejo. King Danjong and his wife were banished from the area and a few years later, in fear of King Danjon returning to regain power, he was murdered and since 1967, a religious service called Danjongje is held every year on April 5th, according to the lunar calendar, in commemoration of Danjong.You can read more online :D
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Passed by this structure which is like a gate/ entrance of a pathway. Upon closer look...
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Apparently only god can use this pathway. Saw quite a lot of gods that day, if you know what i meant. It's either those people did not read this sign before taking the route, or they don't bother since no one is gonna stop them, LOL
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The royal tomb of Danjong who was King of Joseon Dynasty.
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San 67-1, Gwangcheon-ri, Nam-myeon, Yeongwol-gun, Gangwon-do
강원 영월군 남면 광천리 산67-1

Cheongnyeongpo Cape (영월 청령포) Remember the previous place, Jangneung where it's where the tomb of Danjong is located? Cheongnyeongpo Cape is known as the place of King Danjong's exile. He was exiled on Cheongnyeongpo Cape, where all three sides are surrounded by water with a steep wall-like rock called Yugyukbong on its west side.
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The cap is so isolated that it can only be reached by ferry.
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The formations of pine tree at Cheongnyeongpo Cape was very special, it gives you a very "twilight" feel.
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After the work through, you will get to understand the life of Danjong. Visitors will also get to see Geumpyobi and Danmyoyujibi, created during Danjong's exile, both landmarks help to convey the Cape's interesting past. Even the tree that you see above, it's where Danjong would spend during his free time. Quite a interesting place i would say :)
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Just as we were leaving the place, we saw these champagne grapes being sold and the guy gave us some samples to try so i took one. The moment i bit into one, i was like - " O_O HOW COME GOT GRAPES SO NICE ONE." Super sweet, the taste is something like... Qoo white grape i think (?!) Hesitated to buy even though it's super nice and one box (12 bunch) cost only 20,000 won (SGD$25) because of the fact we have to carry it all the way back on the train to Seoul, and smuggle it back to Singapore. BUT we bought it in the end and i carried it all the way. Couldn't resist. LOL
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Had a weird lunch. Apparently it's some kind of soup with a lot of these little snail or shell fish in it. Honestly, i'm not really used to Korean food, mainly because i don't take spicy and i don't take veggies. (That's like 2 of the main ingredients in every dish -_- ) But because since i'm already there, might as well give everything a try (:
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The thing in Korea is, you order one main and BAM! Comes with like 6 unknown side dishes. HAHA
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After 3 days outside Seoul, it's finally time to head back. 3 hours back via the O train...
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Not gonna show anymore photos of the train but this time i spotted a children play area on the train! You know how kids tend to not be able to sit still, especially for long rides. Having such an area on the train seem like a good idea.

Went back to Center mark Hotel (the hotel that i stayed on the first day) to check in once again.
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 CenterMark Hotel, Seoul
38  Insadong 5-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Got a bigger room compared the one i stayed on the first day and this one comes with a bath tub (did not use it anyway because i was too tired and lazy to wait for the water to fill up, lol) I was telling the rest how much bigger the room was and both of them was like - "Got meh?" Apparently both of them got the twin room on the first day -_-
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Unpack a bit and went downstairs to the makeshift tents/ street stalls (which we always see in Korean drama) for our dinner. These road side stalls are also known as "Pojangmacha" (포장마차) It literally means "covered wagon" in Korean and is popular for people to have food and drinks in the night esp. alcoholic beverages such as Soju and Makgeolli.
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Ordered a grilled squid and minced meat pancake (Bindaetteok). The store owner was very nice and gave us a bowl of hot oden (fish cake) soup, which we really appreciate as it was raining heavily. We also ordered a bottle of Makgeolli which is something like wheat/ rice beer. Quite comfy having such warm food in this type of cold weather (:

That's all for Day 4. For Day 5, i will be visiting Suwon Hwaseong Fortress in the early part of the day before it's time for free & easy! I had to plan where i want to go for the rest of the day, all alone by myself. Stay tuned for the next post!

Special mention to Korea Tourism Organization Singapore for this sponsored trip:

Pre-trip | Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6