South Korea Day 4, Jeju and Busan – Yongduan Rock, Seomyeon, Yongdusan, Busan Tower, Jagalchi Market, Oase Seafood Buffet

The day began with breakfast and coffee at Paris Baguette. I then checked out, and drove to Yongduan Rock. This is simply a rock formation shaped like a dragon’s head. I didn’t feel anything special about it, but it is a symbol of Jeju, hence you gotta visit it at least once.

Yongduan Rock
Yongduan Rock
Small pocket of sea water trapped
Small pocket of sea water trapped
Coast
Coast
Yongyuen
This is a small platform further up from Yonduan Rock. If you are adventurous enough, you can actually descend a small path and jump across to get on to the platform.

From Yongduan Rock, I drove to a nearby LPG station, refueled, returned the car, took the shuttle bus to Jeju airport, and took a Jejuair flight to Busan airport (Gimhae International Airport). It was only a short 30 min journey. I booked a hotel, Angel Hotel, in Seomyeon, which was the new hot spot in Busan. T-money card is accepted in Busan, making travelling a breeze with it. From Busan airport, I took the newly-opened Busan-Gimhae Light rail to Sasang, transited onto Line 2, and alighted at Jeonpo Station. Note that the transit at Sasang required you to exit the Light rail system, i.e. tap out your T-money card, before entering the Busan subway system. From Jeonpo, take exit 7, walk straight until an intersection, turn left and walk all the way downhill until a traffic light. Cross the traffic light and continue on straight and you will be on Seomyeon Young Street. Lookout for the Angel Hotel sign on the left. You probably need to google its location on google map to aid in navigation.

Angel Hotel is located along Seomyeon Young Street, which places it in the heart of a prime shopping, dining and drinking district. Seomyeon Young Street as its name imply, is a favourite among young people, as such, the streets bustle with crowds from evening all the way into the wee morning hours. It is surrounded by international food chains like Outback Steakhouse, hence food and language is not a problem. If you like to chill out at bars and watch the world goes by, Angel Hotel is a fantastic choice. However, if want you want is a quiet recluse, Angel Hotel is not for you. The hotel Lobby is modern-looking, and hotel staffs speak sufficient English to get-by. The rooms are clean, and bed is comfortable. However, my room has no windows, which is a drawback as well as a plus. The plus being that my room is  insulated from the ruckus going on in the area, a point of contention many other tourists had with the hotel. The toilet comes with a bathtub, and the interesting thing is that it drains directly onto the floor! Apart from a daily free bottle of bottled water, the hotel also provides a complementary packet of orange juice daily.

Seomyeon Young Street
Seomyeon Young Street
Angel Hotel
Angel Hotel
Angel Hotel Lobby
Angel Hotel Lobby
Hotel Alley
Hotel Alley
Angel Hotel room
Angel Hotel room
Angel Hotel Bathtub
Angel Hotel Bathtub

After settling down, I took a walk along Seomyeon Young Street to Seomyeon subway station. Growing up in cosmopolitan Singapore, filled with its myriad of shopping centers and shopping streets, Seomyeon Young Street didn’t have much appeal to me. From Seomyeon subway station, I took Line 1 to Nampo Station, and exited from exit 1 heading to Yongdusan Park. From exit 1, follow the road further down, and take a right at the intersection. You will see a covered escalator, something like the Central–Mid-levels escalator in Hong Kong. Take the escalator all the way up, and you will be at Yongdusan Park. Further into the park, is the Busan Tower, where you can get a bird’s eye view of the entire Busan city. 

Yongdusan Escalator
Yongdusan Escalator
Yongdusan Park
Yongdusan Park with Busan Tower at the back.
Bird's eye-view of Yongdusan Park from Busan Tower
Bird’s eye-view of Yongdusan Park from Busan Tower
Dragon sculpture
Dragon sculpture

I then descended back down to street level, took a right turn and walked along Gwangbok-ro. With the aid of Google maps, I made my way to Jagalchi Market, which was about 20 min walk away in the southwest direction. Jagalchi Market is a wholesale seafood market. The reason I went there was for the Oase Seafood Buffet. It’s reputed to have the best spread seafood. It wasn’t cheap though, at 34,500 won per head. Nonetheless, I gave it a try. It’s situated on the 5th floor of Jagalchi Market, and is accessible via the lift on the western end of the building. Dinner starts at 6pm. With my expectation set high, I was relieved that Oase truly lived up to its reputation. The restaurant occupied the entire 5th floor, and the spread was amazingly large. I didn’t manage to sample all their dishes. The sashimi was fresh, and constantly being replenished by the chef. The yellowtail sashimi was fantastic. Sushi was good too, I had quite a few servings of the raw salmon, squid, prawn and scallop sushi. The tempura prawn was crisp on the outside and tender on the inside, I think I had at least 6 of them. Oase served shishamo too. THe highlight of the entire buffet was the tuna sashimi. You gotta try the freshly steam tiger prawns too, they were simply fantastic. With this fabulous dinner, I concluded my day, and went back to Seomyeon Young Street to find a bar to chill and rest my weary feet.

Jagalchi Market
Jagalchi Market
Jagalchi wholesale market
Jagalchi wholesale market
Oase Seafood Buffet
Oase Seafood Buffet

Nov 2012

South Korea Day 3, Jeju South Korea Day 5, Busan
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