Nov 4th, 2013
It took 2.5 hours from Seoul to Sokcho. While on the bus, I e-mailed Casa Seorak – the place where I would be staying during my time in Sokcho, asking for a pickup service at Sokcho e-mart at 5 PM. The bus arrived in Sokcho Intercity terminal at 2 PM. I had 3 hours to see the city.
The bus station is near the port. So, I think the beach is also nearby. Silly me for not checking the map first. I followed the road sign to Sokcho beach and boy….I didn’t know then that it took forever to find the beach…. T_T
I stopped by at GS 25, a convenient chain store like 7-eleven. I looked for a hot pack to warm my hand, but it only sells food. So I bought Pepero stick and a ready-to-eat pork sausage and then continue walking to the beach.
I saw people were transferring the fish from the big plastic container at the back of a pickup car at the fish market. After that I was on Rodeo road, the shopping district.
I was hungry because I hadn’t had lunch yet and I wanted to eat Korean food but I was not sure which restaurant was good. I found Lotteria – a fast food chain owned by Lotte Group – on the Rodeo drive but I didn’t want fried chicken. So I walked and walked….passing several restaurants but couldn’t decide what I wanted. After almost 1 hour walking, I started wondering, where the beach was.
I stopped at a junction at the end of Rodeo road, checking my map on my mobile phone and then I saw the road sign to Cheongchoho lake. I ditched my plan to walk to the beach and changed my direction to see the lake. It was closer and I was tired walking around the city, towing my luggage and I was hungry. I desperately needed a place to sit. It was only 10 minutes walk from the road junction to the lake.
A lady approached me when I was taking picture of the lake. She spoke to me in Korean and I told her in English that I don’t speak Korean. Then she asked me where I came from and after I told her, I left her to take more picture. Not long after that, she approached me again and showed me a booklet in my mother tongue. I skimmed the article and it the content was offering salvation through her church…geez…I told her that I’m a Catholic and then she left me alone.
I took a rest by the lake, eating the sausage…it’s yummy. The lake was quiet, only a few people passing by.
After restoring my energy, I checked Google map, looking for the e-mart. It was on the other side of the lake. I saw the building sign when I was looking around the lake. It looked quite far but I had to go there anyway, so I started walking again.
While walking to e-mart, when crossing a bridge, I saw a crane standing on a wet land on the side of the lake. I took picture of it and I was glad that I was lost or otherwise, I won’t see this kind of scenes that evening.
I walked pass the Expo tower. At the tower, there’s a loudspeaker, playing k-pop music. Nice but it was almost deserted….so maybe the song was played especially to cheer me up ^_^.
It looked like the side with the tower is the official entrance to the lake. It has nicer gates…kekekeke….
A short walk from there, I found a patch of land with…..pepper field…..kekeke…..it’s a rare sight in a city.
I finally arrived at e-mart and when I was walking into the store, I was told to deposit my luggage to the information desk. I went shopping for chocolate – emergency snack for hiking the Seoraksan. The Pepero stick was on special sale….due to 11-11…the Pepero day…. I also bought bananas, instant chapjae (glass noodle), a pack of Pepero, 2 packs of grilled pork meat and then sat near the information desk, waiting for the people from Casa Seorak to pick me up.