Jeju: The Third and Final days

So the last two days at Jeju were kind of a blur.   So much stuff happened.


So on the Third day we started out exploring.  We accidentally found a temple across the street from the nearby minimart and we decided to take a look .  It was very beautiful in there.  They had a great main set of statues.

Then we hung out on the beach and Glen ate his MRE that he had brought just in case.  .  I went swimming briefly on the  main beach for the first time.  I wasn’t preparing for it, so I swam in my shorts.  Went back  to my hotel and got ready to go out.

From there the first place we went was an all organic vegetarian restaurant.   They served up a delicious salary bibimbap.   It was one  of the best bibimbaps I’ve had  in Korea.  Everything was delicious, though I put a bit too much red pepper sauce in it.  The decor in the restaurants.

From there we went on to a lava tube cave.  Which was a delightfully cool tube cave.  It’s a fairly straight run down the side of a mountain made by a tube of lava.  Only the middle section of the tube was open to the public but it was really terrific to see the huge arching ceilings along the whole thing.

From there we went just a short hop to a hedge maze.  In the middle of the  maze is a bell to ring.   Our team had a lot of fun but finished last.  We just kept going in circles.

Next we went for  a nice hike at the Jeomul recreational forest.  In the forest included a really cool nature path, a fresh water spring, a buhddist temple, and  a set of super cool wooden statues.

After that we went to dinner.   I was starving at this point so the very average pork and mackerel tasted incredible.  I’m quite sure though that if I had not been quite so hungry I would have been unimpressed again.

Finally for the Third day, we went to the ghost road and Loveland.  The Ghost Road is a neat optical illusion where it appears as if the road tilts up when in fact its going down hill-and gives the illusion that ghosts are pushing your vehicle forward.

Loveland is hard to describe in words but it’ll have to do because most of the pictures are too NSFW to post here.  It’s an erotic theme park with a great many statues and other works of art throughout the park.  Jeju is the Korean destination for honeymoons so you will see many newlywed couples walking around here.  They’re all outrageous, and absurd to the point of being over the top.

From there we went home and more or less went straight to bed.  Next morning we woke up for some last minute beach shenanigans before we had to check out from the hotel.  People piled seaweed on top of one another in a disgusting game of can-you-top-this?

Lastly we went to a botanical gardens where there were many foreign species of plants growing.  A lot of these were very beautiful and something different from what we had seen on the rest of the island.

And that was all of my Jeju holiday.

Korean Food Dictionary App

So a while ago I spent 99 cents on O’ngo School’s K-food app.

It’s really a huge dissappointment.   It did a really poor job of helping me with my restaurant going needs.

If you know nothing about Korean food, then I’m sure it might be useful.  But if you’ve already got a pretty good idea what the big categories of Korean food are, it’s totally useless.

Yeah I know what sam gyup sal and soju are.  What i want to know is the difference between different kinds of sam gyup sal or different variations of guk su are.

I really would like to see something that really digs down into the vocabulary of Korean menus.   If anyone knows of an app that takes a really deep dive into Korean food.

Buddae Jiggae is the best awful food in the world

Budae Jiggae, is something which literally means troop soup.   It dates to the Korean war, where soldiers would  take their  food tins and put them together.  I’ve now been to the nationwide chain of restaurants known as Nolboo Budae Jiggae and smoked meat fish several times.

The food is kind of disgusting to hear it described.  It’s a bunch of  spam and hot dogs and spices, kimchi.  All thrown together  and put in a pot.

However it’s delicious.  It’s meaty and spicy.  I get it with  a portion of ramen noodles in it and it’s excellent.

Nolboo Buddae Jiggae is everywhere, I’ve probably seen 50 locations since I’ve been in Korea.

Vegan dining in Insadong

Let’s face it, Seoul is a tough place to go out to eat if you prefer not to eat meat.

I’m not a vegan but I went to a vegan dinner in Insadong last night and the food was excellent.  The name of the restaurant is Osege Hyang.

I ordered the stir-fried Udong ad split an order of fried kimchi mandu.  It was really quite good.

A guy I was with got the vegan barbecue which consisted of thinly sliced tofu seasoned like barbecue.  Like all fake meats it got the taste kind of right but the texture of course immediately screamed fake.

Salads and soups were ordered as well.  They also started us off with a surprisingly neutral tasting hot tea.  It was quite good.

One of the down sides to this place was the seating.  It was on the floor and it was quite difficult to manuver yourself. on the ground.   On the other hand the decor of this place seemed very nice.

Osege Hwang can be found just a stone’s throw from Anguk Station (line 3).

Noryangjin Fish Market

So on Thursday I went with a friend of mine to Noryangjin Fish Market.  And wow what a site that place is.

They had things for sale I hadn’t even dreamt  were food.  Octopi big enough to justify a “Release the Kraken” quote.

There were tons of regular fish and shellfish of many varieties.  Some of the fish were quit expensive.  One of them my friend tried to request totalled something like 100,000 won.

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Beachside dining in Busan

So Haeundae beach is awesome.   And right by the beach there are a bunch of restaurants there who serve the beach bums.

On my trip with “Lost in Seoul” we hit up two of the more popular joints there.  The Fuzzy Navel and Breeze Burns.

The Fuzzy Navel is a Mexican restaurant with a bar.  They offer a really wide selection of drinks, especially cocktails.  For my money though if the restaurant is named the Fuzzy Navel I’m not going to get clever and try to outsmart them.

The ambience of this place was really nice.   It had a nice beachside bar feel to it with the music rolling.  I only wish there was an actual bar right on Haeundae.  I’d love to be drinking one of their cocktails while I sunbathe or right after I walk up out of the water.

I ordered a Fuzzy Navel.  That was delicious.  I also ordered a chicken burrito and Nachos with toppings piled high.  ( I had just spent 45 minutes in brutally cold ocean water I was starving) Read more of this post

Beaches, a temple and restaurants: Busan day 2

So, our Busan adventures are continuing.   We moved to our new hostel which is right above Haeundae beach.  Went down in time to see that sand festival was underway.

The sand sculptures were beautiful.   They were  mostly themed after fairy tales.  Alice in Wonderland and the Wizard of Oz were especially fantastic.

From there I went swimming in the East Sea.  It was so outrageously cold.   At first it hurt just to be in the water.  But after about ten minutes I warmed up to it.  I spent a good forty or so minutes floating in the ocean.

From there it was on to a beachside Mexican restaurant.   It was called Fuzzy Navel,   and their fuzzy navels were excellent.  I got a burrito and nachos.  They were pretty good.  The Ambiance was excellent, but the service was pretty poor.  Look for a review later this week.

After that we took a long trip to Boneghusa temple right on the beach.  It was beautiful, it even warmed the shriveled heart of this seasoned atheist.   Still not buying it but at least it was pretty.

After that we headed to another beach.   The water there was really weird.   It didn’t really get deep even like meters from the shore.   So I couldn’t really swim.

Then we headed out to  find some dinner.   We found a pork barbecue to eat at.  It was shockingly delicious. There really wasn’t anything amazingly special about it, it was just great Korean food.   Maybe I was just especially hungry after walking around and swimming.

Now we’re about to head out for some drinking and some Noraebanging.

Busan trip: First day

So yesterday was the first day of my Busan adventure. There will be lots of pictures coming later.  

So after we found the hostel we were staying out we set out for the fish market.  We walked around and took a look around at all the different types of fish on offer.  One of my friends along for the trip said he thought there were 100 species of fish on offer there.  

Or as I put it, “If it comes out of the ocean, it’s for sale here.”

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Gogi Surprise….Ju Myeon Gogi in Hanyang

I had the most pleasant surprise yesterday.  I walked into a restaurant I’ve never been to because my regular meat buckets were crowded.   We ordered one of the three  sets on the menu.

And out come the sides.  And wait  a second that’s sundubu not doenjang jiggae.  Hmm that’s different.  And wow it’s delicious!   One of  the best sundubu’s I had had.  And wow the kimchi is very good.  The side dishes were really some of the best I’ve had in a long while.


Then the meat came out and it was delicious and flavorful.   It was really amazing.   It had just enough meatiness to be right and wasn’t stringy or tough at all.  Samgyupsal is one of those things that’s very  hard to excel at but this place was pretty remarkable.

The prices on all of this were very reasonable.  With two pints of beer and some soju it only ran 23,000. Ju Myun Gogi is just a few blocks walk outside of exit 6 of Wangsimni station.

Restaurant Review: Trevia Pizza

Pizza tends to come in three kinds here in Korea.  You’ve got  your foreign chains and those are alright.  You’ve got your Korean chains and I’m less thrilled with those.

Lately however I’ve noticed more and more small pizza parlors popping up near Itaewon and Noksapyeong.   Today I’m going to talk about Trevia Pizza which is a nice little parlor not far from Noksapyeong Station.

Walking in the restaurant it’s nicely lit and decorated and there were plenty of comfortable places to sit down.   The atmosphere was really nice.

I’m sure you’d rather hear about the pizza and it was quite delicious.  I got a small bulgogi pizza for around 6,000 won.  The toppings seemed especially fresh, and the mushrooms were especially chewy.  The sauce seemed very good although it was a bit sparse.   A special note for my friend Sally, the sauce didn’t appear to have a single chunk in it.

I had my pizza with a cola as for me nothing goes as well with a pizza as a coca-cola but they had a modest selection of bottled beers there.  I’m sure they could do better but if you’re looking for a place to drink I’m sure you can find somewhere in Korea to accomodate you.