Muuido (Moo-edo) Island is a small Island near Incheon, which is where the airport closest to Seoul is located.  We left Cheonan at 8am and it took us about 2 hours to get there.  We made excellent time.  The others in the group were going via bus and they didn’t leave until 930 and arrived close to noon.

We had to take a ferry to the island.  The trip is only 10 minutes, and most of that is docking and turning the ferry around.

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The ferry and the line of cars waiting to get across to the other side.

The passengers on the ferry like to feed the seagulls so they swarm around the boat.  It is almost like an aquatic version of “The Birds”.

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The island is really pretty, lots of big trees and winding roads with cute little houses as you drive towards the beach.  After setting up my driving companions’ camp site we walked down the beach a bit.  The tide was out, so the water was back several hundred feet exposing the rocky bottom.

 

 

You can see the vast difference between the island’s inland terrain and the beach.

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By noon, the rest of the group had arrived.  All together there were about 20 of us invading the shores of Silmi Beach.  Around 1pm the tide had come back in and we all went swimming.  It is pretty amazing that I can say that I have swam in the Yellow Sea! The water was great.  It was deep enough that we completely forgot that we were floating above all those rocks.  After we were significantly wet we sat out on the beach talking and drinking beers.  Went in for a second time and then most of the group went to check out a party happening on the island’s other beach, Hanagae.

I stayed behind and had a nice, relaxing conversation with three teachers originally from Ireland and another from the US who was dating one of the Irish teachers.  They were way more chill than the others who returned from Hanagae pretty smashed.  Maybe it was the sun but I was not in the mood to drink all night.  I hung around with the Irish group who, not surprisingly, were much calmer drunks.

When it got dark we made a bon fire which raged on until the nicest police man ever came over to tell us we had to put it out because of the possibility of forest fires.  We asked if we could make one of the beach and he said that was fine, so we started a new one down on the sand and sat around that talking for the rest of the night.  I retired to the sleeping quarters around midnight with one of the girls sharing our pension and were joined some time later by the others.

In Korea, pensions are a popular and inexpensive place to sleep for the night when traveling.  The closest thing to a pension I have experienced would be a hostel, but it is really not anything similar.  It is basically an open room with a bathroom and you sleep on blankets on the floor.

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Perhaps one of the worst nights sleep I have ever had, but at least it was only one night. The floor was probably concrete under the linoleum with a wood pattern and floor heating that for whatever reason was turned on.  The blankets were slightly thicker than a bedspread and did very little for cushion.  The pillows provided were pretty bad as well.  Imagine stuffing your pillowcase with socks and you can get an idea of how soft these pillows were.  I was changing positions throughout the night.  Even still, I got a decent amount of sleep and my body didn’t ache as much as I expected it to in the morning.  I could think of worse places to sleep.  Heck, I have slept in worse places.

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