Saturday, May 30, 2009

071223 – Sokcho, Abai Village, Daepo Port Seafood Market, Sokcho Beach

Bookmark and Share
According to some websites, we can have magnificent views of the sunrise from Cheongchoho Lake. So I asked the hotel attendant, what is the best time to view the sunrise. He confidently said 4am and can be viewed from the hotel, or even better if we walked toward the lake. My wife and I were so excited and we decided to wake up at 4am. We woke up on time, prepare our camera and thick winter cloth as the temperature outside is between 0-5 Celsius degree. We walked toward the lake and the temperature was so freezing cold, we had no choice but to hide inside the broken dummy telephone booth, but that did not help much either. The chilling wind made it even worst.

Later we found out that this area was the shooting site for the famous Korean drama, Autumn in my heart. The love story of Eunseo and Junseo where both of them were switched at birth at the hospital. It is a sad but beautiful love story between these two. One of the episodes showed the lead actress made a phone call from this telephone booth. This was the first Korean drama I finished all the episodes and every episodes will definitely made me teary eyes, same goes with my wife. Always make sure a tissue box is always beside me.

Both of us waited for almost an hour and we can’t even see any orange rays of sunrise. Darn, probably the hotel attendant gave us the wrong information or there was a miscommunication along the conversation. We only saw the full moon shining in the dark sky; I guess this is what we call moonlighting with misery (with my wife inside the telephone booth). Without any hesitations, we decided to walk back quickly to hotel and continued with our sleep.

After checking out from the hotel around 11am, we walked to the Tourist Information Center near the Expo Tower.

Decided to go to Abai Village by foot, we strolled along the Cheongchoho Lake for almost 45 minutes. Along the way, we bumped into a fishing boat docks and the fishermen were busy unloading fresh catch of the day, really fresh crabs.

Below is the view of Abai Village from Sinsuro Arch Bridge. Abai Village is the hometown for those elderly people who fled from North Korean during the Korean War and now still resides in this village. Abai means aged people.

Abai Village is another famous shooting site for the Korean drama, Autumn in my heart where the lead actress’s mother owned a supermarket here.

Photo shot inside the supermarket

It’s already lunch time and we headed to one of the local shop which is facing the beach.

We ordered the popular dish, Hamheung naengmyeon. Naengmyeon means cold buckwheat noodle. The soup is made from a pickled flatfish broth, which is mixed with sesame, sesame oil, beef, veggie and egg with spicy red chili paste. Imagine eating spicy food, but with cold ingredient, sometimes there were crushed ice into it. My wife and I liked it and it tasted refreshing. Naengmyeon is typically associated with North Korea, especially the cities of Pyongyang and Hamheung, from which the two most famous varieties are said to come. The lady voluntarily showed us how to prepare and eat the dish. Because the noodles are long, she will cut the noodles with scissors.

Another popular dish here will be the Abai sundae. Sundae is a Korean dish made from boiling cow or pig’s intestines and stuffed with various ingredients. So I believe Abai sundae has its own ingredients and specialty. The lunch cost 15000won for these two dishes.

Another shooting site for the Korean drama, Autumn in my heart at the nearby Cheonghodong beach.

Due to the chilling wind, we quickly walked back through the alley and passed by the supermarket. Nearby the supermarket, the lead actress of the Korean drama often took the ‘Gaetbae’ boat which was also another popular tourist attraction.

The boat ride cost 200won per person and it ran on manpower where a man will be pulling the ropes to move the boat across the waterway. I tried to do it alone and it’s not an easy task as it required lots of energy, shame shame shame on me…

At the downtown Sokcho, we went to the local Jungang market which sells mainly fresh seafood and dried fish

While exploring the town, we bumped in to this pub called Dumb Bar, haha. Is it for dumb customer or the owner can’t think of a name? What a dumb name…

Ahh, my wife favorite snack, I do not know what it called, but I called it squid balls. It made of squid and flour, then steamed it in a round shape, seasoned with mayonnaise and dried salted seaweed. Once you bite, it was so succulent as if your mouth going to burst with juices.

We strolled along the town doing some window shopping. At one point, we saw many people fishing along the shore.

At this area, there were many stalls selling dried fish.

Feeling a bit hungry at 4pm and no other destinations for us to discover, we took a bus to Daepo Port for our early dinner before heading back to Seoul. At the seafood market, there was a row of stall selling fresh seafood which we did not explore yesterday. We quickly stopped at one of the stalls selling fresh mussels, clams and scallops. Due to language barrier, we were expected to be slaughtered with a neck full of bloods. Personally we managed to get some good negotiation, I guess.

We also ordered the famous squid sundae. Since it’s a squid sundae, definitely I’m expecting lots of squids, with the mixture of bean curd, onions, carrots, eggs and other ingredients. This stuffed squid is baked then cut into small pieces. Emm, this is a must try and it tasted much better than Abai Sundae, yummy yummy yummy. I wanted to ordered more, but it’s too filling. My cholesterol level definitely will shoot up like a rocket at the end of this tour.

After a satisfying meal, we strolled in the vicinity of the Daepo Port.

There are ample of parking if you decided to drive to Daepo Port and it’s about 5 minutes walk to the seafood market.

Then we headed to Express Bus Terminal to buy our ticket back to Seoul. The ticket cost 22000won per person and the bus will depart at 6pm. I wondered why it is so expensive when heading back to Seoul, probably different bus company. We still have an hour to spare; we walked about 500m to the nearby beach called Sokcho Beach. The beach has white sand with clear water, surrounded with pine trees.

What amazed me was the hotels nearby which have the influences of Aladdin or Middle East and they were colorful like a toy world.

Finally the bus arrived and we had to endure the 4 hours journey back to Seoul.

No comments:

Post a Comment