What started off as a fantastic day ended up being quite the travel fail.
I left my guest house in Gangneung 강릉시 early (4am before the busses ran) and walked to the train station. I took the first train out 20min down the coast to Jeongdongjin beach 정동진 to watch the sunrise. Despite freezing my butt off, the sunrise did not disappoint. I can see why this beach is known as the sunrise beach; the vibrant red of the sun as it rises over the ocean is unforgettable.
After the sun rose, I headed back to the train station to Donghae, where I then hopped on a bus to Samcheok 삼척. Samcheok is where I was hoping to see the infamous penis park erected (pun intended) to please a vengeful virgin ghost. When I got to Samcheok, I walked 20 minutes to grab some coffee and double-checked the park’s location before I took one of the three buses out to the park.
Good thing I did because after doing a street view of the park and seeing it was a flat area of dirt, I realized that the blog I got the address off had posted the wrong location. After further digging, I realized it was another hour away. I thought it was no problem, so I went to the local bus station to find out if non of the local or intercity buses went that way. If I wanted to see the park, I would have to backtrack to Gangneung and then hop on a 2 and half hour bus. At this point, I was pretty tired, so I was debating on giving up but decided once I got back to the train station in Donghae 동해시, I would decide how I felt.
Instead of waiting another hour for the local bus to the Donghae, I hailed a taxi. After saying it several times in Korean and English and pointing on a map “train station,” he dropped me off at the bus station. The earliest bus back to Gangneung or Jeongdongjin, where I was spending the night, was in 3 hours. So I hailed another cab to the train station and decided that I was done for the day. It was 2 in the afternoon, and I was hangry. So I made my way to Jeongdongin, hoping to check in early to my hotel since the bus from the beach only came once every two hours to the hotel.
I was relieved when I arrived at my hotel. Haslla Art World was better in person than in photos. The hotel is a modern art museum hotel. It had art installations, sculptures, and interactive artworks that provoked the mind and were instagramable.
Unfortunately, just as I walked into the museum to look around before I checked in, my phone died, so I didn’t get to take any photos. Then after I wandered around the indoor portion, I was marly able to go any further, finally making it to my check-in time. So I ended up missing the sculpture garden. Despite all that, I enjoyed the art non the less, and I highly recommend a stop if you are in the area.
Exhausted and starving, I was more than ready to check in, and I have to say the splurge in accommodation didn’t disappoint. My bed was soft, the view was excellent, and the rock bathtub was awkward but amazing after an exhausting strenuous (emotional) day. I got in the bath, ordered a spicy octupus dish, and had a couple of drinks before I passed out and headed to Andong 안동 in the morning.
I really did not do this area justice, but I hope to go back to
Jeongdongjin beach and finally make it to Haesindang penis park 해신당 공.
Jeongdongjin Beach 정동진 – free – 50-13 Jeongdongjin-ri Gangdong-myeon Gangneung-si Gangwon-do
Haslla Art World – Museum: $12 USDA – Room: + $130 USDA per night – 524-19 Jeongdongjin-ri Gangdong-myeon Gangneung-si Gangwon-do
Haesindang penis park 해신당 – $2 USDA– 301 Gallam-ri Wondeok-eup Samcheok-si Gangwon-do
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