Thursday, October 7, 2010

Korea Report: Adventure On the Way to Nami Island

Good morning everyone!  I'm back home, but as promised, my Korea Report will continue to share my wonderful journey!  I've got loads of requests to write more as it looks like a lot of you are traveling to Korea soon!!!

If you plan to travel Korea, Nami Island is probably one spot you'd like to include in your itinerary.  You're probably a fan of the hit Korean Series "Winter Sonata".  In my case, it's not because of Winter Sonata that I would like to visit this place (it's actually a cherry on top of the whole ice cream).  In my case, I've seen gazillions of photos online and Nami Island consistently looks gorgeous on all 4 seasons!  I'm sure it's definitely a photographer's dream to take shots in this lovely place!


Nami Island or Namiseom is actually a tiny half-moon shaped island located in Chuncheon.  It's actually a couple of hours away from Seoul!  I'll talk more about Nami Island when we get there, I've created this special post to write about our adventure going to Nami Island!  Boy was I glad I'm prepared with directions before we headed to the said island!  It's one travel experience my calves and legs won't forget! :)

Wherever you are staying, try to get online and click on their interactive Seoul  Subway Map on how to get to Cheongnangyi Station on Line 1.  When you get to the Cheongnangyi Station,  exit  4 and follow signs to Cheongnangyi Train Station which is located outside the subway station!  It's actually next to the Lotte Shopping Center.



When you get in the station, purchase a ticket to Gapyeong Train Station for 3,800 Won (approx Php152.00) good for one way.  If you don't know where to purchase the tickets, you can always ask the helpful information!


As soon as you got your tickets, follow Line 5 and 6 going to Gapyeong.  There are English signs so you won't miss it!


A huge reminder to check your ticket.  The ticket that I underlined with yellow shade is the time of train departure and approximate train arrival to Gapyeong Station.  The blue arrow points to the coach number and the red arrow pertains to the seat number!  I strongly suggest to read it while waiting so you don't need to run from one coach to another! 

After 1.5 hours train ride, finally!  We reached the destination!  Some things to note for:
  • no English voice over on this train so I suggest you take a look at your watch and if 1.5 hours is near, be ready to look out to the window as you can see station signs just like photo below.
  • you can bring your own snacks as you can get hungry, train sells coffee and snacks but they are quite expensive!  I should have known!  I bought my expensive coffee there!  *laughs* 

As we arrived Gapyeong Station, well, we have time on our hands and I've always been dreaming to play on the train tracks without having security screaming on me!  When the cat is out, the mice play!!! *laughs* 
Okay, let's get back to business!  The Gapyeong Station is quite straightforward, I suggest you check on the train schedule going back to Cheongnangyi Stataion, they leave quite frequently!  But it's nice to know the time so you don't have to wait for long!

Tip from AMW:  it's time for bathroom break!  Their toilets are clean!  There are 2 "sit in" toilets the end part and the rest are squat-style toilets!  The squat style is more hygienic!  It takes a bit of time to really learn how to use it! 


Most tourists go straight to the taxi station to take a cab to the Ferry Wharf right away, but looking at the time, it was around 12:00nn and we knew that we'll get hungry if we went straight to Nami Island, we're unsure of the restaurants available there!  So Mr. and Mrs. AMW decided to go on a li'l adventure and explore Gapyeong.  It's extremely quiet there, and there's a lot of "home like" restaurants.  There are a couple of students walking around the street, there must be a nearby school!

Found some cute restaurants that does not need English at all! :P


Tried asking students on which is the best restaurant to try, but none of them understood me (it's okay, they are still helpful and obviously wanted to help!)  I've decided to try this orange banner restaurant because...you'll laugh with my reason...

Cute drawing and they have a website address! hahaha

A nice lady manage the whole restaurant all by herself, she wipes the table, take orders, cooks, wash the dishes, arrange take out orders, and a lot more! One-woman show for sure!  We were given a menu and it was all in Korean and there are no pictures at all!  What did AMW do?

The hungry took out the best in me!  I stood up, went to the next table where students were eating, greeted them with apologetic smile, pointed at the food they're eating and asked them to help me check the order form! 

Voila!  Got our own order!  I seriously forgot how it's called so anyone who knew this dish can help me out! :)  The dish may not look appetizing but it tastes wonderful!  Authentic home-cooked meal!  It's actually made of bean paste sauce with onions, tiny bits of beef and mushrooms!   I find it quite good and tasty!


After lunch, we went to the taxi station (a lot of them) and just tell them "Nami Island" or just "Nami" and they'll know where to take you!  It takes approximately 5-10 min taxi ride and the cost is around 3,800 Won (approx Php152.00).  Not bad!


Taxi driver will also let you know once you've reached the Ferry Wharf.  I purchased 2 tickets each worth 8,000 Won (approx. Php320.00) which includes the round trip Ferry ride and entrance fee to Nami Island.


Took all the trouble to get there...Is it worth the visit?  What will you see at Nami Island?  Well...

There's squirrel eating...


Cute squirrel on trees...


Ostrich on the loose...

A statue that looks like me! hahaha


Kidding aside on the above photos!  Seriously...it is a gorgeous place and the Winter Sonata shooting places are all worth paying a visit for!  I am still smiling thinking about our Nami Island adventure!  Worth the tiresome travel!  


I'll tell you more about it next...
So tired and sleepy...

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!



20 comments:

  1. welcome back sistah! grabe sobrang nakakainggit waaa!!! I want to go to Korea now na!



    Mags

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  2. thanks for all the korea posts! now i'll definitely know where to visit IF i ever go to korea lol

    and i think the noodles you had is called jajangmyeon :]

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  3. looks like you ordered jjajangmyeon! it's a black bean sauce with sauteed veggies on noodles. it's actually considered a chinese-inspired korean dish. i love that you're exploring korea so much. have a fun rest of the trip and safe journey back home!

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  4. i love the last picture! hehe! cute!

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  5. Love love the last pic with hubby.so cute!

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  6. the noodle dish is called Jajangmyeon...i think..

    lol at the reason why you choose that restaurant!
    hahaha!
    i would too if i am you

    love the last photo!
    you look so sweet together!
    ^_^

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  7. Looks like Korea's a gem tourist must-go in Asia chie! I wanna go there! :) and Winter Sonata's my FAVORITE Koreanovela. Like I cried buckets for it a million times! The girl was so good in acting that her eyes were so expressive! and BYJ is my ultimate crushy!!!

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  8. those noodles sure look tasty! =)

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  9. That looks like Jajangmyun. The food in Couple or Trouble/Fantasy Couple. It's noodles with black bean paste. I tried eating jajangmyun sold in korean stores here but it doesn't taste good. I am so envious that you're able to eat an authentic jajangmyun.

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  10. Welcome back! The pictures look beautiful and cute!

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  11. Mags, you'll go there someday, I have a feeling :)

    Mandy, its not hard to visit Seoul, with all the helpful people, it was actually a breeze even with language barrier :) thanks for telling me the name of the noodles!

    Jennynotjen, thanks for telling me about the noodles, I'm glad I tasted it eventhough I didn't know how important it is in Korean dishes! :)

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  12. Valerie Joy, thanks!

    I'm your Random lady, hahah thanks! Glad you liked it!

    Thiamere, thanks for the name, gosh everyone knows the name of the dish except myself, too embarrassed! :)

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  13. Sophie, naku, if you love Winter Sonata, you have to visit Korea with M!!!!!!

    Chelle, yes, it does tastes good!

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  14. ladykristinn, wow I guess you're one Korean Seriees lover eh? Glad to know more details about this noodles! Gosh am I glad that I tasted this!

    Gio, thanks!

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  15. thx for replying to my previous comment! as ~tHiAmErE~ pointed out the noodles are jajyangmyun! (yummy) everyone thinks it's korean, but apparently it's korean-chinese food.

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  16. Rogue Rouge, no worries. yup! Thanks to our li'l adventure I was able to try jajyangmyun!

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  17. nice blog you got here. this post will be very helpful for my upcoming trip to korea, thanks for the tips! :)

    let's ex-link. :D

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  18. Hi, I enjoy reading your posts here. They are vividly described. I can't wait to get to Nami myself.

    We plan to take the shuttle from Insadong straight to Nami Island. However, we would also like to side trip to the Myeongdong Street where the Winter Sonata was also shot.

    I would like to ask if you were able to go to Myeongdong at Chuncheon? Is it anywhere near Gapyong?

    Hope to hear from you...thanks! :)


    mia

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  19. Freeze, I'm glad you find this post helpful.

    Mia, here's the thing, Nami Island and Myeongdong is totally FAR from each other! My suggestion is, if you want to visit Myeongdong and you are staying at Insadong, find a day that you are free for a day trip at Myeongdong coming FROM Insadong! I suggest you book Nami Island for the WHOLE day! The trip itself is tiring due to long ride, and take time to stay there at Nami for the whole day to enjoy sceneries, biking or just taking gorgeous photos :) hope this helps!

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  20. Thanks for the tip, Nikki. I am a huge Winter Sonata fan, so I was planning on a side trip to the marketplace/shopping district in Chuncheon where some of the scenes were shot, I'm not sure how it is called, though. They say it's in Gwangdo or Chuncheon's Myeongdong- really confusing...

    Anyways, I look forward to a great day there!

    Thanks again!

    mia

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