We just had a long holiday in Korea. With Labour day, Children’s Day and Buddha’s birthday scattered in the start of May it meant that if you took the 2nd off, you were awarded six glorious days away from the office.
What this also meant is that the roads were going to be jam packed with Seoulites heading to the countryside for some R&R. If you were smart, you would have stayed in the city. However, my mother happened to be in town from Tokyo, which meant I had to go on a tour of the suburbs to see my aunts and uncles who just so happen to live an hour in the opposite direction from each other. So let’s just say this city girl was not a happy camper for the past six days.
Several trips to Nowon, Yongin and Ilsan later, the maternal unit thought it would be a great idea to head to the East coast, to Sokcho, which is located in Gangwon province. Sokcho is great in that the beach with its blue green waters is just a stone’s throw away from the majestic Seorak Mountains which makes for quite the picturesque backdrop.
We got lucky with the weather. Despite it being quite windy, the sun was shining down and the skies were blue and everyone was in the great mood because it was a long holiday and all. I found out once I got there that this was where Gaeul Donghwa (Autumn Fairytale) one of the most popular Korean dramas was partially filmed. I was wondering where all those Chinese and Japanese tourists had come from…
Make sure you check out Abai Village (122, Cheongho-ro, Sokcho-si, Gangwon-do) for some good North Korean cuisine. My grandmother is from Hamgyung Province and the hamheung naengmyun (cold buckwheat noodles) W7000 got rave reviews from her.
Buses leave to and from Express Bus Terminal in Seoul to Sokcho Express Bus Terminal every hour. It costs W18,100 (one way) for a normal ticket, 19,100 for the night bus and takes 3-5 hours depending on traffic.