Sunday 31 may 2015.
Today is the last day in Hadong. This morning we have free time till we leave with the noontrain to Busan, the second big city of South-Korea.
As we have nothing to do, we stroll the park behind our hotel. It's a sunny and hot day again, it fels nice but very warm after the days of cloudy and wet weather. Of course the park is a steep hill again... And again beuatifully decorated, clean, nicely gardened. We enjoyed the viewpoint.
At noon we took the train to Busan. Not teh KTX. So the train made a few stops. we could enjoy the scenery of the agriculture from the window. Around 16u30 we arrived at the Busan station. we took some cabs to drive us to our Hotel. The problem is the hotel seemed to be in a carfree pedestrin zone and the driver who didn't talk english seemd not to be albe to know where to put us off and wanted to call our guide. It took some phonecalls here and there to get DJ's number and then finally he knew where to deliver us. OK we checked in in this beautiful hotel in the hear tof the shopping streets of Busan. Busan seemed lots more busier then Seoul. Lot's more traffic, lot's more people, lot's more noise in the shopping streets where every shop had someone outside: shouting, calling publicity to attract customers, even fortified with microphones... imagine the noise.
But hey this city is vibrant and vivid and seemd even more endless then Seoul.
So we freshed up, and gathered to go for a walk to the most famous fishmarket: the Jagalchi fish market. Not only in the open air but also in two buildings were you can eat.
Alaways nice to stroll around see those kind of weird fish, see the local streetfood and smell it and taste it. We ended up in a tourist trap. hahaha.
When I asked what the difference was between all those restaurants our local guide said: "there's no difference, 'cos they are the same, all the fish comes from the same sea."
Thursday 28 may 2015 - Yeosu day 2 (all pictures copyright myself unless otherwise mentioned: smartphone and dslr)
yeosu central city local market
don't you think all the old Korean women look all the same? :-)
In this hotel I found breakfast a bit poor, mostly due to the fact there was no good coffee! So I went outdoors straight out of the hoteldoor to the coffeebar to get some hot americano. Not iced. Don't get it why I would drink iced coffee... something Korean I think. So we're ready for the next level. With taxi's we drove to the ferryterminal. The ferry terminal is right in the city close to lots of shops and markets where we ought to find some lunch. Also the ferry tickets were on name and left punctual. It's kinda an old boat with place for some vehicles. We really enjoyed the sight on all the islands and fishing boats. I missed the Dolphins!!! Aaarggh for that second that I closed my eyes.
Anyway after one hour and a half we arrived at Guemodo island.
my only selfie with the Korean flag :-)
call the ships to port, actually this is when we left :p
arrival point Guemodo Island
We had two options: we could walk an esay walk along the coast, or we could do a more challenging climb in the hills. With a 6-7 people we choose the hike in the hills. We saw some viewpoint far out on the hills and most people didn't think that was the point we were headnig to but as the hike was a small 2 km long I kinda expected to arrive over there. So we started walking but a few hundred meters it was clear we didn't have to follow the road but had to look for a path leading up in the hills. And so we found it and there it started. What a hike! Again the steepness could easily compete with the hikes I did in the Mountains of Corsica of Nepal... it was 30 degrees and no wind in the forest :-)
where the F are we??
I liked the path very well, beuatifull not to hard, great nature. Me and my mates were long ahead of the rest and just when I thought that we had reached the poitn were nothing was to be seen, we finally came acroos a board. But it said everythign in Korean so we didn't have a clue where we were. I decided to go a bit further where the path was already leading downwards and then suddenly the trees went aside and I was at the viewpoint!
It took an average of a big hour to 1u30 to reach it.
We rested and enjoyed the beautiful view over the other islands and the ocean.
'olsan rechtendeure', always straight on
still no clue but I am on top that's for sure!
voilà!!!! magnificant and worth the hike!!!
The way down went lot's easier of course and faster.
We were at the ferrypoint very early while the rest was still somewhere at the other side of the island, we waited an relaxed for a few hours till the ferry brought us back.
Everybody wanted to go back to the hotel but me and my mate decided to explore the city: why wouldn't we take that chance?
After a few minutes we bumped into Café de Paris. They seemed to have coffee and smoothies. So we entered. A very friendly nice lady which clearly ate to much of her own cake sat in the tabel at the wall. I mistook her for a customer til she broadly smiled at us and came to serve us.
The paper of the walls were a stitch of French newspapers and at our table Tom Boonen was featered. The cussions were cats, so this was the closest to a cat café we were eveer getting I suppose.
I took this kind of cinematographic picture. The guy was a acquaintance of the lady apparently and they both waved us enthousiastically friendly out when we left their café.
cafécafé, yeosu :p
Nightfall: we did some shopping streets, wandered one way in a street full of restaurants, did it the other way round, decided to go back to one of the first we saw were some old people were dining. Good choice. Didn't know this time neither what we ordered, we just pointed at the table next to us and waited till I was served.
When we misunderstood the price. We took the American 7 for a '1' we tought first it was the price for one person... we kinda felt being rpped of but as I got the big money out, the man made refusing gestured and jsut took some small bills out of my hand. This honesty is much appriciated so the dinner was 27.000 for two persons and not 21.000 or 21.000 each :p.
soupdish with a very big fish in it
We went back to the ferry point and the square were some tens of people were doing Korean zumba in the open air.
There was a big turtleship which was open for visitors. So we went to take a look and I posed with one angry warrior.
We searched a cab to go home. I had asked our local guide the fee, she said 5000, so I showed my hand to him signing 5? and he said no: and showed only three fingers and pointed a a bill of 1000 won. Again, this honesty is much appriated. We were home in e few minutes and joiend the others at the tabel in front of a store where we could buy some beers or other drinks. Again a nice day in South-Korea.
View from Coit Tower
Well, let's say, I went with my friends to California for a road trip (20 march - 8 april 2013). This road trip brought us to more then just Californian Dreaming. We actually ended up crossing 4 states! Yeaj! (CA, UTAH, NEVADA en some desert of Arizona. 18 days of travel. Way too short to enjoy the beauty of a country of which I was and maybe still am full of prejudices. Anyway, bordercontrol and US-laws didn't really cause a hazard as we were never in trouble, we got no speeding tickets whatsoever, never had accidents, Trouble with hotelbookings, car breakdowns, so one happy trip! And this with a 16 month old little bastard. Yes travelling with kids demands a certain state of mind and change of your daily rythm (early mornings, early evenings). Why travelling with a baby so many of my friends asked, that's going to be horror. It wasn't. Adapt and everything will be fine. Sure there were difficult times, but the times we all had fun with that little guy were also many. As long as you have enough me-myself-and I-time. Which I always need. I like to get out on my own, but when the day ends, it's always nice to rejoin your friends. And there was springtime, full sun! over 20 degrees! While here in Belgium at the time it was still hell freezing over!
While planning the trip it all started with the idea of getting abroad. I'm used to travel in groups, not only pure Belgian travelagencies (vreemde kontinenten, joker, anders reizen) but also international (intrepid, gapadventures, dagboekreizen.nl => Brasil ,...). I've also been travelling with friends lately. I prefer travelling with people i know than to be in a group with people I need to get to know to have good times with.
And the US of A was already some time on my wishlist. Then my friends told me they wanted to go to San Francisco. Then I said i'd like to join them. All of sudden they told me thye had booked tickets. So in in hour I booked my flights too. Air France, leaving with THalys from Brussels, ending up two hours later in Charles de Gaulle for our flight. And then we needed to plan. The interwebz has it all. Shortly we ended up booking all best westerns and shared accomodation. Only a few days I had a private room for myself. No big deal.
Booking a car with Alamo rental went quite fluid. And finding suitable housing in San Francisco neither.
With Flipkey we ended up quite in the middle of the things-to-see, right next to a cable car and walking distance from everywhere we neede to go. It was a nice topfloor appartment. Old, maybe a bit chilly, but the heating worked fine in the living room. Contact with the owner was per email exclusively but we had no troubles finding the keys and making the place cosy. Well let's say it was full of babystuff and we had to fit in between. We found ourselves supermarktet and coffeebars at walking distance, we were even very close to Fishermen's Warf and Pier 39, the Embarcadero and Washington Square: the gate to Chinatown.
WHAT TO SEE & TRANSPORT
As every city San Francisco has a lot to offer for everyone. Everything you need. Even if you might be that one person that needs to stay ot of the sun, is allergic to masses or jsut wnats to dive into the undergournd nightlife. Look and you will find. I like to go off the beaten track, but anyway off the beaten trakc means most of the time: places where actually ther's nothgin to see but the daily life, like you would be strolling your own neighbourhood where you live. Local places are local and yes they have their nice thigns to discover, otherwise it would be boring for the people livign there. But Le Louleur Local, it is always somethign you need to dive in.
Colourfull San Francisco: mind the steep streets, yes it is like in the movies. So if you aren't used to hike, i'd can be quite tiring running up that hill.
I like running up hills. If you don't: take a look at the map and follow the flat big streets as much as you can before you turn to a side street. Take the old cablecar or take one of the buses. We bought ourselves a 3 day munipass: about 24 dollars each i guess to take all the buses you want. Well not all, but most.
the mansion of Danielle Steele
One of the must sees is walking down the piers at the coast line. Call it the boardwalk. Yes it is full of tourists. Yes it's even full of tourist traps. Anyway start at Pier 1 where the fresh market is. walk down further along the pier and then you find Pier 39 Fishermen's warf with tons of places to eat and you can watch to sunbathign sealions. Walk further to the museum with vintage games and World war II old warships. Taste some Crab Cioppino. Rent a bike and to all the way to the Golden Gate Brigde: put your feet in the sand and the beach. Cross the bridge, take pictures, go downhill to the next little village, have some icecream, don't forget to watch the ferry to take you back to SF along Alacatraz.
Famous neighbourhoods are the Castro and the Mission. I went walking the big lanes up to Alamo Square along lots of famous mansions and ncie shopping streets before I took the bus to Mission. There i followed a walk in my cityguide along the Latino graffitti streetart walls.
In the bus it was strange. In SF you have a lot of Asians...when entering Mission, slowly Asians made place for Latino's and even the district itself looks more like Sout-American slums: loud, not that clean, more macho and more nacho. I felt quite safe on my own. Though some streets can be very lousy and deserted even in daylight.