A Winter Weekend in Jeju

Japan Korea MapRight after we got back from our trip to Japan (Wednesday), we decided Thursday evening to take a short trip to Jeju, also known as Korea’s Hawaii. We left for the airport the next day at 4:00 a.m. How great is it that we were able to up and go on such a fun adventure?! Jeju is an oval-shaped, volcanic island south of Korea. The island is fairly small, only measuring 73km (45 miles) across and 31km (19 miles) wide. When we first arrived in Jeju, we were greeted by the sight of palm trees. While the weather was definitely warmer than mainland Korea, it was still a bit chilly.A Weekend on Jeju Island We started our Jeju adventure by exploring some of the volcanic lava caves on the island. The caves were formed by lava flowing through and melting away the rock. It was really cool to see the flow lines on the sides of the caves, and the frozen melted rock formations.A Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava CavesA Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava Caves A Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava CavesLarge cracks could be seen on the rock walls of the cave. A Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava Caves A Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava Caves A Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava Caves A Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava CavesA Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava CavesA Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava CavesA Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava CavesA Weekend on Jeju Island, Volcanic Lava CavesOur next stop was Seongsan Ilchulbong, on the East coast of Jeju. Seongsan Ilchulbong (a UNESCO World Heritage site) is a crown-shaped formation that was created by volcanic eruptions. Seongsan IlchulbongThe picture above is an ariel view of the volcanic formation during the summer. Since we were traveling to Jeju in the dead of winter, it wasn’t nearly as colorful.

Before making the short hike to see this natural wonder, we stopped for some traditional Jeju noodles and noodle soup. We’ve fallen in love with Korean food, and this stop did not let us down!A Weekend on Jeju Island A Weekend on Jeju IslandAfter our bellies were filled, we headed out to hike Ilchulbong.A Weekend on Jeju IslandThe view as we were hiking up was pretty amazing!A Weekend on Jeju IslandA Weekend on Jeju Island  wpid-Jeju-9.JPG A Weekend on Jeju IslandJeju    A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island A Weekend on Jeju IslandHorses are quite famous in Jeju… both for riding, and eating.A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island   A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island A Winter Weekend on Jeju IslandA Winter Weekend on Jeju Island A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island   In the distance, we could see Udo Island, which means cow island. The island is supposed to resemble a cow lying down.A Winter Weekend on Jeju IslandWe made our way to Seogwipo, the town located at the southern part of the island. We decided to stop and see Jeongbang Falls. However, due to it being winter, the water flow was minimal. A Winter Weekend on Jeju IslandA Winter Weekend on Jeju Island  After the waterfall, we headed out to find a jjimjilbang to stay in for the night. We ended up staying at Water World, a jjimjilbang located directly underneath the Jeju World Cup Stadium. A Weekend on Jeju IslandCards are always a great form of entertainment!A Weekend on Jeju IslandAs we were leaving Water World the next day, we passed by the actual entrance, which is way easier to spot than the entrance we found the night before. A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island  The Daepo Jusangjeolli cliffs were next on our list. These cliffs were formed by lava eruptions. The hexagonal pillars are quite a site to see.A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island  A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island    A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island   Jeju A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island  As we were leaving the lava cliffs, we stopped for a photo shoot with Jeju’s mascots, carved lava figures.Jeju We also walked by the African Art Museum. wpid-Jeju-51.JPG  As we made our way up to the north part of the island, we changed our plans and decided to hike up Mt. Halla that day! Mt. Halla is Korea’s tallest mountain at 6,398 feet.A Weekend on Jeju IslandWe were unexpectedly greeted by snow, and lots of it!A Weekend on Jeju IslandThe hike up was absolutely beautiful!A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island A Weekend on Jeju IslandA Weekend on Jeju IslandA Winter Weekend on Jeju Island  We really enjoyed being in the snow. It was the first time we had been surrounded by snow since moving to Korea. The view at the top was even better.A Weekend on Jeju Island A Winter Weekend on Jeju IslandA Weekend on Jeju IslandA Winter Weekend on Jeju Island A Winter Weekend on Jeju Island   We loved hiking with our Oboz! They did a great job in the snow… which is nice since we will be using these to trek to the Everest Base Camp while we are in Nepal. wpid-Jeju-63.JPG

wpid-Jeju-64.JPGWe spent the next day at the northern side of the island. On our way to see the Dragon Head Rock, we walked through a park that had a gorgeous walkway along a river. A Weekend on Jeju Island A Weekend on Jeju Island A Weekend on Jeju Island A Weekend on Jeju IslandJeju  Look at that blue water! Our next stop was Dragon Head Rock.wpid-Jeju-70.JPG   wpid-Jeju-74.JPGwpid-Jeju-73.JPG  wpid-Jeju-76.JPGwpid-Jeju-77.JPGSo the last experience we had on Jeju was definitely a memorable one, but also one that I did not take part in. Jared and Jacob really wanted to try one of Jeju’s speciality meals… horse meat. Yep, and according to them, it tasted like delicious beef. Eating Horse Meat in Jeju Eating Horse Meat in Jeju Eating Horse Meat in Jeju Eating Horse Meat in Jeju Eating Horse Meat in JejuEating Horse Meat in Jeju  Eating Horse Meat in Jeju I was still hungry, so we stopped for some Col-Pop. Col-Pop is especially popular among the kids in Korea. Fried popcorn chicken sits in a dish on the top half of the cup, while Coca-Cola sits in the bottom half of the cup.A Weekend on Jeju Island A Weekend on Jeju Island  Jeju was a wonderful place for us to spend the last few days of our winter vacation. If you get the chance to go, we’d definitely recommend going, especially during the spring or summer. wpid-Jeju-68.JPG

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2 thoughts on “A Winter Weekend in Jeju

  1. Those pictures of the snow are gorgeous! Reminds me of Kona, Hawaii! SO cool that you guys could go from the water to the mountains on that little island. 🙂 And I’d say you are set to trek to Everest’s base camp with those shoes!

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