I left on a Friday night at midnight on my 277.6 km journey. I took a night bus called a 우 등 [uh dung] which means it is a luxury bus that has only 3 seats per aisle and they are like armchairs and they recline so you can really relax and even sleep if you want. It was very posh and very nice.
The first place we were off to on Saturday was a green tea planation. It was in a place called Boseong 보성. It was called Boseong DaWon 보 성 다원 which means tea planation or garden. I was surprised to discover that green tea grows in waist high shrubs. I'm not sure how I thought it grew but I guess I thought it grew close to the ground. This is me and my three friends at the tea planation.
There was a stream running through the tall trees leading to the gardens surrounding the tea planation.
We had lunch at a Korean restaurant and the food was great! It was seafood and there were posters on the wall saying that they used green tea in the preparation and cooking of some of their dishes.
After lunch we were off to Nagan and a Folk Village that included a walled fortress. It just outside of the city of Suncheon 순천. It is called 낙안민속마을 [nak an min sok ma ul]. It was amazing! At the gates of the fortress there were these Pages. I felt like I was living in The King and the Clown movie with Lee, Jun-Ki.
There were musicians playing instruments and dancing around. I've seen them before elsewhere in Korea but it seemed more athentic to see it here.
I love the totem poles that can be found at most tourist attractions in Korea.
Me and two of my friends posing for the camera.
A picture from the walls of the fortress looking off into the distance.
I am told that although this is a Folk Village people actually live here. They are subsided by the Korean government to live and work here. There is even a water wheel.
There are thatched huts and squash vines growing everywhere.
Later that night we went to a resort. It was amazing. It even had a fablous pool.
The next day were were off to the Gwangju Biennale. It is an art show that is held every two years [in case you did guess that by the name]. There I was interviewed by Arirang TV about my impressions of the art exhibit. The problem was they asked us on the way into the show and despite our protests they pressured us to comment. So, since I had read about the exhibit in my Lonely Planet Korea book I bluffed some sort of answer. Wonder if it will ever air on Arirang? I'm not sure I want it to.
One of my favorite displays was this massive outdoor display of flowers. They are made of some kind of fabric and air is blown into them to keep there puffed out.
A close up look at the same flowers.
This photo doesn't do the exhibit justice. It was my favorite piece. It was a room with a piano and chairs and artist had constructed a giant spider web out of black string. I keep looking at it wondering how long it took to construct and marvelling at the fact that it only seemed to be tacked to the walls in a dozen or so places and still hung in the air. It still boggles my mind how the artist was able to do that without more stabilizing from the ceiling and walls.
After three of four hours at the exhibit we were off to dinner. Duck soup 오리 탕 [ori tang] is famous in Gwangju so we decided to try it for our last meal in town. It is supposed to stain your clothes terribly if you get it on you so we were given these aprons to wear to protect our clothes.
At the end of our day we were off to the Gwangju Bus station in U-Square. Gwangju might be only the 6th largest city in Korea but its bus station puts some of the bigger city stations to shame. U-Square has make-up stores, convenience stores, a bookstore with 3 aisles of English novels [even Lonely Planet Guide Books in English], and restaurants. I wish Busan had such a nice bus station.