So the plan was to wake up really early to catch sunrise at Seongsan Ilchubong – apparently the best place for sunrise in Jeju. But of course, we didn’t proceed as planned….
So we woke up at 9 plus, missed the breakfast provided by the resort as breakfast ends at around 9.30am. I must say 9.30 am is too early to end breakfast. I mean, holiday makers are likely to sleep in right? Who wakes up at 8 am to prepare for breakfast….
So we had sighted a few Paris Baguette cafes in Jeju and the husband decided to bring us there for breakfast. There’s Paris Baguette in Singapore too; I saw one at Ion Orchard and at Bugis Junction. But I’ve never set foot in one of the chain’s cafe. So we decided to dine in at the cafe and plan the day’s journey while enjoying our breakfast.
So this time round, armed with the map containing the tel. numbers for the sightseeing places, we headed to Seongsan Ilchubong. It was some distance from Seongwipo and the journey took at least 45 mins.
On the way, I noticed that my sneakers seem to be coming apart. I thought the shoes would be able to last for the day, but after we parked the car and started the walk towards the entrance, I realise I would not be able to go up in those shoes. There are a few souvenir shops at Seongsan Ilchubong, so I hoped that I would be able to get a pair of shoes from one of the shops. I suppose I was lucky we were in Korea, where appearances matter. This was the only reason I would think of to explain why those souvenir shops would sell shoes! And pretty nice ones too!
So I was happy with the shoes bought and we proceeded to the entrance of the Ilchubong. Entrance tickets had to be purchased first and we proceeded to climb. The climb was not very difficult, although it was probably because we had stopped at multiple points for the various photo opportunities.
The top of Seongsan Ilchubong has a nice view; one could take in the seaview and the view of the crater. We thoroughly enjoyed sitting on the top and enjoyed what nature has to offer. As the Ilchubong is a very famous and popular tourist spot, there’s really quite a lot of people. After a while, quite a long while, we made our way down.
On our way down, there was loud sound from below and upon looking down, I realised its the haenyo showing off their unique skillset. I had wanted to bring us to watch the haenyo perform but it started to drizzle and with the wind blowing, it was rather cold. So I decided we could skip the performance this time round.
When we reached ground level, the drizzle seemed to have gone away and we decided to walk around in the area to look for food. We came by a small restaurant that sells pork noodles, which seem like a good choice on a cold rainy day. And they sell dumplings too!
That seems like a lot of dumplings but they are small dumplings, so it’s not too much. The pork in the noodles were a bit tough for my liking but the noodles and the soup were yummy!
After lunch, the plan was to hang around in the attractions not too far from Seongsan. So we headed towards Manjanggul cave.
Given that we stopped along the way, the journey took longer. And we were okay with that because that’s the whole point of self-drive: to be able to stop as and when we like.
Not quite sure what these are but they resemble lalang back home so shall call them ‘lalang’.
Manjanggul cave is touted as one of the must-seen attractions on Jeju island. Some blogs said that the cave is not worth a trip but some said it was something thats quite interesting.
Be prepared to walk a fair bit in the cave to reach the end to see the lava tube. It was a rather chilly walk and luckily the attire we were dressed in served us well. Along the way, there were occasional small educational boards which mentioned about the various formations that occur as a result of lava flow.
It was really quite a long walk and to be honest, it was not the most interesting of all walks. I was relieved when we finally reached the end and saw the lava tube. Not that I know how to appreciate it, but seeing it means we can turn back and head to more hopefully a more interesting destination.
Gimnyeong maze park was our next destination. It is located near Manjanggul cave and we thought it might be fun to engage in some form of activity.
There was a small garden leading into the maze; there were cats playing around the garden – a rather cute sight!
We were excited about the maze! There’s hardly anything like this in Singapore and this was our first time in a maze! The goal was to go up a small wooden bridge and ring the bell to indicate success. In our first attempt, we decided to go for it together. After that, the competitive streak in us got us to compete with each other to see who would ring the bell first. The husband was surprised that I managed to get to the bell; to be honest, I was surprised by myself too!
By the time we were done with the maze, it was about 5 and time to head back as it would be a long drive back to Seongwipo. While the husband was driving, I was thinking about abalone porridge. So upon googling, it seems like we could get good abalone porridge from one of the restaurants located at the carpark at Cheongjiyeon waterfall (the place we were at last night).
There were a few restaurants and we decided on one that looked very traditional. And this turned out to the restaurant that some bloggers had recommended for abalone porridge. And what a lovely dinner we had! It was very simple as the husband was not very hungry, so we got a mackerel and abalone porridge. Seeing others eating stew made me so very tempted to get the stews too but the husband objected.
So we got the abalone porridge to share and it was quite a big portion. The taste of it was simple but addictive. We cleaned out the bowl and very nearly ordered a second bowl!
The highlight, however, was the grilled mackerel. It was soooooo fresh and so very ‘juicy’! I have never had mackerel that was so yummy! The husband was delighted with the fish as well and between the two of us, we totally cleaned out the fish! It was so good that we considered coming back the next night again for dinner. Such a satisfying dinner and a great way to end the night!!!