Korea 2015 Day #5: Journey through the Countryside, Exploring a Farming Town, Making Soap and Samsung Resort

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Click to Read Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4.

Compared to the crazy day we had the previously, day 5 was quite relaxing. We set out to the countryside, specifically to the land of 비빔밥~ Bibimbap, 전주~Jeonju!

This trip was like going through a time swap, the countryside as you can imagine is a huge contrast from the metropolitan Seoul. We passed through the skyscrapers and huge apartment complexes and went into lush greenery, forests, mountains and farmlands. 

If you have seen the drama Modern Farmer or you watch the My Korean Husband Vlogs then just imagine that! The journey was around four hours and halfway there we stopped at a rest stop. I had always wanted to go to one of those, this is probably not how it is done in your respective countries. Korean rest stops are a tourist destination on their own! They had stalls filled with all kinds of street food, from the western to the Korean, bakeries and coffee shops. They also had a cafeteria just like the one on that episode from Runningman that Bigbang was on.

There was also shops selling books and clothing stores. I went into the supermarket to stock up on snacks and my favorite Banana milk. And I also bought some 떡볶이~ddeokbokki for the road!

Top: A view of the farming town we spent the night in. Bottom Left: Scarecrows wearing traditional outfit of Hanbok. Bottom Right: A view of the rest stop. It was huge!

We arrived at our destination, a resort owned by Samsung. The grounds were magnificent and huge! The place is used for training and conferences etc and so it was built to suit that purpose. It was modern and it had this calmness and relaxing feeling about it. 

This seemed like feng shui done right—at least the way I understand feng shui. We had the same roommates from Seoul so we headed to find our rooms. The rooms were set up like a dormitory hotel. There was two single beds, a shower room, a toilet and a small dressing room. There was also a massive window with the view of the town and farmlands.

The Grounds! Can you spot our four buses for our four teams. We spent a lot of time on these buses!

I changed, prayed and set about to explore the resort and the grounds. At 4:30 we were asked to head to the conference room for the afternoon activities. After we were all there, a nice ahjumma introduced herself and gave us a lesson on the history of bibimbap and its significance in Jeonju and we also watched a video of people's reaction to Jeonju Bibimbapdisclaimer, I may be remembering this lecture wrong.

Random snapshots of the room and our hotels. Also have you noticed my fascination with bathrooms in korea? Well you would be too. It has all these buttons that does things like warm the seat and wash you. 

Afterwards she showed us how to make Bibimbap soap and we set about doing that. Then there was a quiz with a few prizes won. After this we headed to dinner at the refectory. On our way to dinner, we discovered more secret hallways and interconnecting buildings. Seriously this place is massive! On the walls there are random words and quotes written to uplift the spirit and inspire.

Top: At the conference room and the soap we made. Bottom: Dinner tray and a display of Bibimbap Jeonju Style!

At the entrance to dinner there was this massive display of bibimbap made with real food. I was hoping to sample the bibimbap for dinner but instead we got this food platter which was equally delicious. The ahjumma's that served us we really nice :) Oooh and we also got bottles of yakult which is this tiny milk drink that is apparently very popular. Not my cup of tea.

After dinner a bunch of us decided to go out to explore the town. It was like 10 mins walking distance from the resort. We stopped at the first MartSupermarketwe saw and it was like a small "one stop" for various things you will need, down to clothing—Picture ahjumma style pants and shirts ;). We bought more snacks and cute Korean socks for me. Then headed to the next store which was slightly bigger than the first but stocked with the same thing. There wasn't much to see or do in the town besides that. There was a restaurant/noraebang which was closed and that was about it. 

A view of the town's high street. Mart one is on the left and Mart two is at the end on the right. This is it basically. 

So we headed back to the resort and found out that there was a gym and an  indoor sports room somewhere in the building and also wifi in the canteen. So we headed in that direction and played table tennis and just hung out. Those in the teams that could do practice rehearsed their performance for the last day. Me and Sakina headed back to the room area cos we were tired and got ready to sleep. 

I then remebered I needed to iron my top for the next day, so I went in search of Iron which meant I needed to learn the word for it which is 다리미! I was able to find the "right person" to ask after using my broken korean at the front desk. 

Unfortunately for me, my broken korean could not wing it with the "right person" so I got a translator and finally figured out what I needed to do. I also met Şeyma who wanted to do some ironing as well so we went to the laundry room together. The security guard took us to the room and he left after leaving us instructions on what to do when we were done.

After ironing and chatting for a bit we headed back to the front desk but we kinda missed a turn and ended up in a part of the resort that had lines of rooms identical to ours, but empty. It was a bit creepy to be honest. You could say it felt like a horror movie were it was just the two of us left. ㅋㅋㅋㅋ

But we found our way at last and then it was back to the room to get a good rest for the activities of the next day. 

I think I took more snaps of this day than photos and to be honest half the time we were traveling or just chilling so there wasn't much pictures to take. I got some of these photos from James's Facebook so credit goes to him.


 See you on my next adventures! 

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