We finally made it to Mokpo at night after a 3-hour bus ride to Daejeon from Gangneung and another 2.5 hour KTX ride from Daejeon to Mokpo.
After I asked for directions from a group of young (who looked to be) police officers, my friends and I strolled down the street from the train station where we encountered a very brightly lit street. This was also when an older man from the group of officers before passed by and told us to follow him; he lived near the ferry so he would walk us there himself. Ah, Koreans are awesome (for the most part, at least – you have bad apples everywhere). I had originally planned for us to stay at a jjimjilbang so my friends can experience the jjimjilbang’s awesomeness, but take note that there are no jjimjilbangs by the ferry, as our spontaneous guide told us, so he set us up at a decent motel owned by a friend that was located just up the street from the ferry – just 50,000 won for a room.
Early the next morning, we packed up our stuff and made our way to the ferry, bought our tickets (30,000 won), and at 9AM, we boarded our ship (because it sounds more spectacular than ferry).
The ship itself was large and the passengers were assigned a “room” to relax in. Take note that this room is just that – a large empty room. I took a liking to this room and caught up on the rest and sleep that I missed from having to wake up early and sleeping late to take care of my work, since I was still getting paid to do work, and to get everyone up on time. There was also a cafeteria and some shops on board as well as some live entertainment. At one point, a friend and I even made it out on the deck to see what was going on. We passed by islands… many islands. And as it usually is on most moving vessels at sea, it was very windy but at least the sky had cleared up.
Finally, after nearly 5 hours at sea, we arrived in Jeju. Following our check in at Rainbow Hostel – this really cute and clean hostel in Jeju City – we got some lunch and picked up our car (2 days’ rental for roughly 50,000 won), complete with a Korean GPS system.
Once I figured out how to use the GPS (we were cheap so we opted out of the English GPS they offered us), we were off on our mini adventures for the remainder of the day! First, we stopped by a nearby beach just to the east of Jeju City: Samyang Beach.
At first look, it appears to be fairly normal – perhaps a bit lackluster, even. At least, I thought so. Then, when you look a little closer…
…you realise that the sand here is black. It felt really nice between my toes. However, because we were running low on time and the sun had already set, for the most part, we only spent around 20 minutes at this beach before heading off to our next – and last – destination. Plus, half of my friends refused to take off their shoes so they just took pictures and awkwardly stood. That aside, we made our way further east to Woljeongri where a friend of mine had recommended a coffee shop but not just any coffee shop. It was a coffee shop by the sea by the name of Moraebi Cafe.
Sadly, because it was night by now, you could only see silhouettes of chairs and tables by the beach as well as the soothing sound of waves. You bet my camera couldn’t catch much out there! Even so, it was a cute little place and rather crowded as well, especially for the time and the secluded feeling of the place. It was a place that people knew because they had heard of it from someone else. We all got a cup of coffee each and one of my friends and I were starving, so we opted for an ice cream waffle (they ran out of the cheese waffle).
Here, we talked and drank and enjoyed ourselves. Once it appeared as if we were the last ones still there, we left and headed back to the city. Ah, yes… island life! It was a good break before what our remaining 1.5 days at Jeju were going to be like…