Semi back-packing trip to South Korea with 3 girlfriends.. 6 months planning and finally it went through and yes, it was an awesome holiday this year!
7-12 April 2016 (Kuala Lumpur-Incheon-Jeju-Busan)
Depart KLIA2 via Air Asia to Incheon at 8:00am flight. We arrived at Incheon around 3:30pm. After immigration and luggage pick-up, went straight to buy T-Money and local sim card. Bought wrong sim card (my phone was with micro sim) and luckily the cashier was so helpful and accepted return goods although I have to top-up another KRW10,000 for the micro sim package of 1GB. I used SKRoaming package. Then bought T-Money and upload KRW20,000. Without the help of my frequent SK traveller’s friends, I would be lost.
Went off to AREX line to go to Gimpo airport ~ plane to Jeju Island via Jeju Air at 7:35pm, about 1-hour journey. Arrived in Jeju Airport at 9:30pm. We rented a car at ‘Hertz rent-a-car’. There’s an airport coach on standby at arrival to ferry us to their office to collect our car. Rented a KIA Morning car for 6 days, totaled KRW192,100, shared cost and just nice for 4 ladies. 2 friends applied for the international license before our holiday. Staff showed how to use the GPS and some basic road safety in Jeju. Then off we go to our Guesthouse via GPS. Yayyy..
Arrived Lyndon Guesthouse almost to 11pm. The building is only up to 8th floor and our Guesthouse is on 6th Floor. Fortunately there was elevator, and all of us really tired from a long journey. We booked one room with 4 bunk-beds and personal toilet. It’s a nice room although a bit cramp for 4 people.
First Day (8 April 2016)
- Mt. Hallassan jungle trekking / trails – This is a must. It’s gorgeous. A very popular tourists’ area who loves to see beautiful scenic along the trails. Some pictures that I took on the way up J..spent half-a-day here;
- Mysterious Road (Dokkaebi Road) – It’s mysterious because at some part of the road, your killed the ignition and your car will move by itself, but only for a short distance. Cool..eat the most delicious spicy oden (fishcake) and tangerine (it’s in season) at the nearby stall. (Tangerine is one of the signature fruit in Jeju);
- Jongbang Waterfall – We arrived quite late and the place almost closed so we only spent about 20 minutes at the area. A beautiful waterfall area and the Pacific Ocean scenery were superb;
- Sightseeing to few places around Jeju (Toscana Hotel-owned by our favourite Korean popular singer (Kim Junsu of JYJ -was sold off in 2017), citrus museum, love theme park (didn’t enter, watch from outside only), etc.;
- We went back to our guesthouse around 9pm, bought some instant rice from convenient shop. Dinner: home-cooked kimchi fried rice, fried eggs, with canned chicken curry and fried fish in soya sauce (bought from home).
Second Day (9 April 2016)
- 2 of our friends fly-off to Busan for a concert that evening so just me and another friend to continue our adventure in Jeju.
- PLAY KPOP Digital Park – A venue that displaying the history of K-pop in South Korea, from 80s till 2016 with the latest technology and the tour ends with final showcase of 3D hologram mini concert of selected K-pop singers/groups, we selected to watch GDragon hologram concert. Entrance fee: KRW30,000 per pax.
- Teddy Bear Museum – All sort of teddy bears from around the world, the most expensive teddy bear, the first teddy bear, the ugliest, celebrities resemblances, etc. Entrance fee: KRW7,000 per pax.
- Sanbangsan Mountain – We thought it was a field of canola blossom park but we were wrong. It’s actually famous Buddha temple within the mountain. We stopped by for about 5 minutes for some pictures and off to Monsant Café in Aewol district, further north of Jeju Island. We found a quite big field of canola flowers at the foot of the mountain and had to pay KRW2,000 to take some pictures. Worth it.
- Monsant Café Aewol – Spent the whole afternoon with coffee and nice view of the sea. Café is owned by one of famous K-pop singer, GDragon of Big Bang group. Café was full with local and tourists at all time and had to wait to a bit for empty seats.
- Back at guesthouse around 8pm due to long journey from the café. Same dinner as on first night but not complaining because the kimchi was so delicious. I guess something about eating dinner on cold night and hot & spicy food. Pure delicious.
Third Day (10 April 2016)
- Monsant Café Aewol – Yup, went again because both of us fall in love with the place. It became our favourite hang-out venue for the short trip;
- Nolman Café Aewol – Yes, the famous ‘seafood ramyeon/noodles’ in Jeju. No other menu, just seafood noodles, comes with kimchi as side dish. It was really delicious and fresh. The owner went off to the sea at 5am every morning to catch the seafood for the day’s operations. Taking our sweet time to enjoy the food and walk around the rocky walk-way that oversees the Pacific Ocean. Windy and super nice day. We went back at noon to the airport to pick-up our 2 friends from Busan;
- Dongmoon Market – Nothing much to see here, we want to buy some tangerine but not as what we are looking for like the one we ate at Mysterious Road stall, so we skipped. But I did buy a very nice steel chopsticks set as souvenirs;
- Jeju Cherry Blossom Festival – The festival is at the entrance of Jeju National University. We were hoping to see a whole street with beautiful cherry blossom trees but unfortunately our timing was wrong. It’s the end of cherry blossom season and we only got to see a few trees with almost withered cherry blossom. Met some uni students who were more excited to see us when we said we are from Malaysia. They thought we were students at first haha..
- Cooked dinner at Guesthouse, same menu with additional side dishes that we bought from home;
Fourth Day (11 April 2016)
- Off to Aewol for last seafood ramyeon at Nolman Café and coffee at Monsant Café. Yes, official favourite spot in Jeju. Spent almost 2 hour there, said goodbye to the cafes, the Pacific Ocean sea and the beautiful windy atmosphere;
- Off to Osulloc Tea Museum to buy famous green tea and its products. We were lost on our way to Osulloc and by chance we found one of the biggest canola flowers field at the foot of a mountain. It was so pretty and gorgeous with vibrant yellow colour everywhere. Took some pictures and all of us felt very much happy of the discovery;
- Osulloc Tea Museum – Beautiful place. The museum was actually quite small but the place was surrounded by huge field of Green Tea beds and varieties of flowers (roses, canola, daisy, petunia, etc.) The tour finished with a nice café with all sort of Green Tea based drinks and cakes and some gift items. We bought some and especially the Green Tea was very good;
- Doraji Restaurant – For a final night in Jeju, we celebrated dinner at one of famous restaurant, Doraji Sikdang. They serve one of the best grilled fish and spicy steamed fish. Best way to enjoy dinner on the last day. (Note: This restaurant no more ‘pork free’ status in 2017 as the owner starts selling pork food items)
Fifth Day (12 April 2016)
- Last day in Jeju – early breakfast as usual. Checked out. Went off to airport to drop our luggage and while 2 friends return the car, me and my other friend waited at the airport. So many Chinese tourists and they are really loud (typical);
- Flight to Busan at 11am so while waiting, we roamed around the shops in the airport and buy some small gift items.
I come to love Jeju Island. The island was so beautiful and the people were nice. Food we tried on the street and restaurant were delicious, weather was awesome (well, if you come from hot climate like Malaysia haha) and all of us really enjoyed our holiday there.
Would love to come again, but next time because there are so many places that I haven’t visited yet due to time constraint. If I will come again, I want to come during autumn or winter season. Next stop – Busan.