A few years back, there was an online popularity contest to name the new seven wonders of the world. Last year, that same group ran a second poll to determine the seven wonders of the natural world, and Jeju island off the southwest tip of the Korean peninsula won a place among exclusive company. Jeju has long held the title of Honeymoon Island as the destination for newlywed Korean couples. The island decided to test the mettle of our romantic spirit as we had sporadic rain showers every day.
We arrived on Jeju via ferry from Mokpo. It’s a medium size cruise ship and the ticket doesn’t buy you a seat or a room, but simply floor space with a bunch of other strangers. But the charm of the ferry is wandering around and seeing the unique amenities offered to passengers.
We based ourselves in Jeju city near the port, at a hotel right next door to Black Pig street. Perhaps Jeju’s most famous delicacy, the restaurants like to leave the hair unplucked for authenticity. These pigs were notorious for their diet of human waste until the 1960s, but have moved to more traditional feeding. We honestly couldn’t tell the difference in taste or texture, but still delicious.
The immensely beautiful parts of the island are not within walking distance of the city. What you do get is an E-Mart (a welcome sight when you’re traveling long term), casinos (bring your passport; only foreigners allowed), and one uniquely shaped rock.