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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Gangneung, South Korea- A short trip with my wife (Part 1)

Three weeks ago, I told my wife that I wanted to go to the beach. I told her that I had been to Sokcho but heard Gangneung (just south of Sokcho on the eastern seaboard of South Korea) was also a great place to visit. Then my wife asked me to take a Friday off from work. Then we could bypass some traffic, come back on Saturday, and be back at church on Sunday. At the same time, we could also miss the Sunday night traffic.

My wife did some research and found that most of the hotels in Gangneung were extremely expensive due to it being the summer peak season. We decided to check and lo and behold, we found a place to stay at. We booked a room with a Korean guy with the English name Damien. We originally thought we were just going to get a room. However, he told us he would be leaving at 12:00pm on Friday, so by the time we arrived, we would have the whole place to ourselves. What a blessing that was!

We took a 10:40am bus from DongSeoul bus terminal at Gangbyeon Station and headed on our way. The traffic wasn't bad as we arrived at the Gangneung Bus Terminal at around 1:10pm. Then we took a taxi to the Jumunjin-eup, the northern section of Gangneung. Although the taxi fare was about W15,000, the taxi driver was very kind and got us to our destination as promptly as possible. When we were near the apartment complex where our airbnb place was, we stopped as soon as we saw a restaurant that looked good to eat at. My wife and I were starving, so we found a great galbitang (beef short rib soup) restaurant. Coincidentally, we later found out that it was one place that Damien had recommended us to eat at! The picture is okay but it was even better than the picture shows:

Galbitang (Beef short rib soup)
After lunch, we walked to the apartment and found out that Damien lived on the 15th floor, which was the top floor of his apartment building. We got a penthouse! Well, sort of. ;-) Here are a few pictures from his floor.

View from our AirBnB apartment
Other side of our AirBnB apartment

Just a 15-minute walk to the beach
We were quite thankful to get a pretty nice place with a great view and all to ourselves. We then decided it was time to head to the beach! We weren't exactly sure how to get there, but we got ready and then started our journey! We walked down the main road in Juminjin-eup and then saw Gangwon State University (강원도립대학) to our right. We thought we could cut through the university to get to the beach. Fortunately, we were correct with our assumption!

Here's a view of the school and it's very well-maintained soccer (football) field:

Gangwon State University football field

Then we came across this academic building right next to the college and we turned right.

An academic building next to the college
Once we turned right, we walked down this street with plenty of shade from these pine trees on both sides.

My wife in the middle of our road to the beach

Once we got to the beach, we didn't realize that we came upon a very famous place. The Korean drama Guardian with Gong Yoo and Kim Go Eun is filmed at this breakwater where you see people taking pictures at:

One place where the Korean drama Guardian is filmed at
As people took pictures, my wife and I just decided to go swimming. There were two people in the water when we arrived at the beach, but once we got in, we were the only ones swimming for about an hour before someone decided to wade in the shallow end. The temperature of the water was perfect although the water wasn't that clean surprisingly. But we still felt great and we stayed for two hours. Once we were done, we headed back to the apartment to get ready for our next stop: Jumunjin Fish Market. To be continued....

Scott Worden (The L.A./Seoul Guy)
Instagram: laseoulguy
Twitter: laseoulguy

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