The Kyoto of Korea
Trip Start Aug 30, 2010
201Trip End Aug 26, 2011
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After that outing, I got myself a train ticket to Gyeong-ju. It's about an hour bus ride northeast of Busan so pretty far south. When I arrived, I had to get on a bus and travel for 45 minutes to the center of the city. Gyeong-ju is kind of like the Kyoto of Japan. Lots of history and lots of things to see. The guesthouse I stayed at was located on the same street as a local market so there was lots of action before I even made it to the door.
Once I dropped off my backpack I was off to Tumuli Park
I then went and saw the Royal Tomb of King Naemu. It was a big green hill.
I then walked over to Cheomseongdae Astronomical Observatory. It's a pretty small tower but I'm sure it was a challenge to build hundreds of years ago. I actually walked by at night too and it was truly beautiful. All lit up. Really nice.
Next up was the Seokbinggo Ice Stonehouse. I would describe it as a cave. A king built it to store ice. That's the first time I've ever heard of storing ice I believe.
In the same park as the above two attractions was the Lotus Flower Complex. A huge area covering acres of land with nothing but lotus flowers
Tumuli Park also had a massive flower field. Full of orange and pink flowers. Not far from there was Gyerim Forest. The myth about this forest is that a man heard a crow and when he came to investigate he found a baby. That baby eventually became king. There is now a monument erected at the site telling the story.
Unlike Japan, in Korea, at least in Gyeong-ju, restaurants are hard to find by the tourist attractions. It was even harder to find a restaurant with an English menu or with pictures of the food. Here I thought Gyeong-ju was tourist heaven but maybe people only make day trips out from Busan. I stumbled across a Chinese restaurant with an English menu. By this time I'm starving so it'll do. Once again though, I'm sad I'm not eating Korean food. What a bad idea it turned out to be. The food was anything but Chinese. Nasty black stuff covered half my plate when all I did was order fried rice. Live and learn.
I went to Anapji Pond at night. It is a very beautiful area by night so that's why I went. I wasn't let down. It was amazing. Three buildings sat on the shore of a man made pond all lit up. I couldn't stop taking pictures it was that nice.
There were so many couples out tonight too. It was really evident I wasn't in Japan anymore with all of the public displays of affection going on. You don't see hand holding all that often in Japan. In Korea, it's impossible not to.