I woke up after the second night in my private bedroom of the spacious Jeju apartment and was greeted by this view when I walked to the balcony overlooking the waters. Looked like it was going to be beautiful weather for the rest of the day as we did more sightseeing.
E had to attend to some work matters so she stayed behind in the apartment to work on her laptop while the rest of us headed out to a waterfall nearby (there are a total of 3 in the vicinity). Jeongbang Falls 정방폭포 [GPS: 733-1530] is interesting in that it is the only waterfall in Asia that falls directly into the ocean.
It is fairly easy to reach the waterfalls. First, climb down a long flight of steps from the carpark and then navigate through a short stretch of rocks and stones. You can probably tell from the picture above, visitors of all ages managed to reach the foot of the falls.
Amongst the 4 of us, A confessed that she is an aficionado of waterfalls. We actually spend most of our time taking pictures of each other in front of the falls, taking turns and waiting till the crowd dispersed a little. Grateful that some of the pictures turned out fine. But also realised that we really should start wearing coats of brighter colours; they capture more attention and bring vibrance to the pictures.
A little away from the falls, a group of three elderly ladies were selling seafood. I’m not entirely certain if they are the legendary Haenyeo 해녀 (or sea women, female divers Jeju is famous for) or just hawkers. We were curious about the taste more than hungry since we already had breakfast, so we went for the safest choice – abalone, sashimi-style. It wasn’t too bad with the spicy sauce. Just not really what we associate with the taste of abalone since the only ones available back home are canned.
After having a taste of the fresh abalone, it was time to tackle the long flight of stairs up. Strangely it wasn’t as painful as I thought it would be. 😆
I honestly cannot recall how we located this field of rapeseed blossoms although I was the main planner for the trip (we might have come here on the recommendation of the hotel staff). What I do remember was the huge statue of Buddha above the fields, probably an important temple located there.
It may not look the case in the pictures captured, but there were quite a number of local tourists walking within the fields and posing for pictures. Didn’t come across international tourists though. Rapeseed blossoms are probably not at the top of their list when they visit Jeju, I reckon.
Next, O’Sulloc Tea Museum 오설록 뮤지엄 and Innisfree Jeju House 이니스프리 제주하우스 [GPS: 794-5312]. I’m not a tea enthusiast (which makes me a very sad person since i don’t touch coffee at all either), not in particular, but I love green tea. Possibly my default choice whenever I can’t decide. So you can imagine my joy when it was finally time to visit the tea museum.
There was an ample parking area, and some rows of tea leaf hedges just beside it. Judging from the number of tour coaches parked there, we knew it was going to be crowded. And it was. There was barely any empty tables so we had to wait a bit for one before we could sit down and get some refreshments.
Innisfree Jeju House is connected to the O’Sulloc building by a path to the back. Before we unleashed the shopping monsters in us, we first went to take a look at Innisfree’s flagship store and cafe. If you’re unfamiliar with Innisfree, it’s one of the top three most renown cosmetic and skincare brands in Korea, alongside Nature Republic and The Face Shop. What sets Innisfree apart from the rest is how it specialises in using natural ingredients from Jeju for their products. There’s a unique experience offered only at this store – making your own organic soap under the guidance of the staff. Looked fun, but none of us were really keen so we left without trying.
One final stop before we bid farewell to Jeju? Hunting down cherry blossoms. While we were all on the lookout the entire three days, we had not been able to sight any of the blooms. I think we were just a tad too early. Eventually we heeded the advice of the hotel staff and went to a road leading to the Jeju National University because apparently it was lined with cherry blossom trees on both sides. Indeed it was. And I could imagine how beautiful the whole street would be during full bloom. It was still a little cold so the buds, save for some, have not even opened. We took some pictures of the lower-lying branches with some half-opened buds but that was about it.
And then it was time for us to return our rental vehicle and head for the airport to catch our flight.
Managed to catch a glimpse of the sunset as we left Jeju on Jeju Air bound for Incheon Airport. Onward to the second leg of our travel!