Busan & Jeju island
Busan was the first stop in South-Korea after Japan. To be totally honest, I was pretty beat from traveling around so much in Japan. I’ve seen a lot of mountains, done some really nice hikes and visited a good amount of temples. And not to bring South-Korea down, but it is pretty much the same here, of course there are some cultural differences to be find. Nevertheless, the first couple of days I just chilled in Busan and figured out my plan for the next destinations. Though I did manage to find some stuff to do while I was here.One of the things I didn’t get to do in Tokyo was visit a fishmarket. I’ve been to a markets before in Hong Kong, so this wasn’t all new to me really. But it was rather the stuff they were selling that were new to me. The thing that most people know about South-Korean seafood cuisine, is probably that they actually have live octopus on the menu. And yes, people eat it raw while it’s still squirming around on your chopsticks while you’re dipping it your soy sauce. According to my guidebook a trip down to the Jagalshi fishmarket was a must do while in Busan and try one of the dishes there. And so I did. Little did I know was that Korean restaurants don’t really cater to single diners which means that you are often stuck getting a menu for 2 or more when you just want a quick bite. Since it was one of my first days in South-Korea, I had to learn it the “hard” way.- Quick note – Local eateries often don’t have English menu’s and people don’t really speak English. – So I went to one of the restaurant and ordered one of the menus. As expected the prices were quite high, but since it was a touristic place I figured it was normal. But when the actual dishes came I realised I had actually ordered a menu for two. And for the people that have seen me in real life, I’m just this scrunchy skinny little Asian guy who looks like he can bare finish a bowl of rice. However, if you know my personality, you’d also know that I’m cheap as hell and wouldn’t waste anything I paid money for. So yep, I finished that 2 person meal by myself like a champ! For your information, the menu was a sashimi menu containing a big place of sashimi, tons of sidedishes as you usually get and a big bowl of soup made with the remains of the fish. Sadly I forgot to take a picture before I started, but remembered halfway through to take a picture of my accomplishment. Also in Busan you can find a nice little hike up the old Geumjeong fortress walls. There were several watchtowers which you can hike up to. I started the hike a bit late (around 2-3pm) and the park rangers said it wouldn’t be possible to go all the way up around the wall. But as I started walking I realized I could actually finish it without breaking a sweat so I managed to finish it right before sunset. At the start of the hike you can find the Beomeo-sa Temple. One of Korea’s Great 5 Temples, this large temple complex is located up in the mountains, seemingly much further away from the big city than the few kilometers it is.