Exploring Village Roads
It had been a long and eventful day. We had explored Sanbangsan and the yellow canola fields. We had also walked along Yongmeori Geo Trail A and got a sneak peek of Geo Trail C. After a quick meal at a local cafe, we walked back to our pension house. The roads of this idyllic coastal village were deserted in the evening. Few cars passed by and fewer people crossed paths with us. This village town was untouched by local tourism and seemed like a passage between important tourist landmarks. I relished the solitude and fresh sea breeze drifting from the coast.
There were quite a few bike rental shops. It would have been nice to cycle along the narrow roads and explore hidden nooks in the neighbourhood.
We couldn’t find the reception to the pension house in the morning. We managed to communicate (on the phone) that we were early and had to drop our bags. The person in charge, halmoni (grandma), requested the local convenience store guy to keep our bags inside a storage unit in his store. It was nearing five by the time we reached back and I needed to crash for a bit. We picked up our bags and called the contact number once again. I don’t remember the conversation, but I remember feeling frustrated for being unable to communicate with ease. Halmoni said that Hal-aboji (grandpa) would come with the key. I felt like the cat outside the coffee shop. So near and yet so far.
The Room with the View
Basil decided to enter the pension house and we found a room open. We entered this large family room with a stunning view of the coast. Hal-aboji came pretty quickly with the key and escorted us to our room.
Our room was cosy with a splendid view of the sea and Sagye Port. It was worth the pain of communicating in broken Korean. Pension houses are preferred by most local tourists, but can be difficult for foreigners who don’t speak Korean. In the evening, Halmoni came to take the payment for the room. She was apologetic when she realised that we were actually waygook saram (foreigners) and not gyopos (of Korean ancestory/diaspora). She kept apologising and bowing. She ensured the bed heating was set and we were comfortable. I softened and melted. Her warmth was genuine and I felt guilty for being irritated earlier.
Many tour companies offer boat rides around Yongmeori Coast. In the evening, most boats were tied and swayed gently with the waves.
This Geo Trail (not sure if is A or B) was a stone’s throw away from our pension house. The course started at the lighthouse and continued all the way to Yongmeori Geo Trail A. We spotted the faint silhouette of Hamel’s Ship. Sanbangsan rose majestically behind it and the tuft ring of Yongmeori Coast stuck out like a dragons’s head at the tip of the coast.
We wanted to watch sunset before exploring the beach. The promenade is paved all the way to the lighthouse.
Sunset at Sagye Port
It was very windy and devoid of human presence. The clouds created the perfect background for the setting sun. It was nature creating natural mood lighting.
We walked the long walk to the tip of the coast. Red lighthouses are quite common in Jeju and it’s possible to enter some of them. This particular one was shut and we focussed on the sun instead.
The Yellow Submarine
We spotted a yellow submarine parked at the port. Submarine tours are also quite popular in Seogwipo (the southern part of Jeju Island).
We didn’t wait for the sun to set completely. We didn’t want to lose daylight before exploring the beach. The beach was uneven and had a few glass pieces. Few stray dogs were enjoying the cool sea breeze and the emptiness.
The waves pulled back from the beach — exposing giant volcanic rocks covered with moss. It was quite a sight.
Hyeongjeseom Island (Brother’s Island)
We spotted the faint outline of Brother’s Island. I couldn’t figure how those two islands resembled brothers looking at each other. It didn’t matter because the view of the sea rocks looked stunning with fading light. It reminded us of Seongsan Ilchulbong.
We were woken up by sunlight on the next morning. It was our last day in Jeju and I couldn’t wait to come back again.