Apr 20, 2016

Day trip to Jinhae Gunhangje & GyeongHwa Train station

Everyone should probably know how obsessed with Cherry Blossoms I am, having flew to Japan twice in a row to catch it. This year, I decided to do something different. I decided at the very last minute to fly to South Korea for them. Yes, It was a blizzard and frivolous arrangement. 

In case you’re interested, Cherry blossoms are called beotkkot in Korean.  


I didn't feel like going to Japan again because I've been there 3 times last year and the bloom I witnessed last year left me entirely satisfied. Fuelled in part by the fact that the flights were all horrendously expensive, I ditched Japan and hopped to South Korea instead! After all , it's been 5 years since I've been there! I want to make an entry about how I plan my itineraries/trips to make it both fun and budget friendly but I don't think anyone would be interested haha. 
Anyway I flew into Busan via Vietnam Airline, had a longgggg layover in Noi Bai Airport and finally arrived in Busan. And after checking into my lovely hostel, sped straight to Jinhae. Check out my vlog below!



How to get from Busan to Jinhae

1) Go to Seobu Intercity Bus Terminal

From my hostel, I took a train to Sasang Subway station and then walked to Seobu Intercity Bus Terminal. Exit from Exit 5, go up an escalator or a flight of stairs to the street and then turn left. The Bus terminal is the brown building on the left. The area is undergoing construction now so the Bus Terminal was hidden by canopy when I was around. 

Photo from WIkipedia

Sasang subway station is near the AIrport so if your accommodation is further out, it might be better to store your luggages at the lockers, go to Jinhae and then check into your accommodation afterwards. Something I forgot to do and regretted! There are lockers in almost every subway station and even inside Seobu Bus Terminal. They go for 1000 – 3000 won a day at Sasang Bus Terminal and I reckon I could probably fit my cabin baggage into a 1000 Won locker. Not bad at all considering a single subway trip cost 1200 won! 

bus terminal lockers

2) buy your tickets to Jinhae.

You can either buy from the counters or like me, purchase straight from the automated ticket booths. Purchasing from the automated booths require payment with a credit card so make sure your card is enabled for overseas use.  The automated booths comes with English option so don’t worry about it at all. It took me less than 2 minutes to get my ticket.


The automated booth screen entirely in english!


The ticket doesn’t show the time so you’re free to jump onto the bus whenever you want.

3) Queue at Platform 16-17

Now proceed to queue at Platform 16 –17 for the bus. The bus journey is around 1 hours 10 minutes and cost 5100 Won. The bus are always full but no worries because the bus frequency is very high. I reached and bought my tickets around 10:50 am and this is the queue for it at 10:51am. 

Still queuing at 11:03am but as you can tell, it moves very fast.


And by 11:14am, I was seated on the bus.


In short, the queuing took roughly 23 minutes. Which isn't bad at all considering this is peak season.

I couldn't understand the Korean announcement by the Bus driver so I alighted at the terminal stop which is Jinhae Bus Terminal. This is also where I take my bus back to Busan. I believe the bus will go past the scenic attractions such as YeojwaCheon before reaching the terminal station so I guess you can alight directly at the stream If you understand Korean. Best you prepare a picture or name of the place in Hangul and show the bus driver before you alight so he can tell you when to alight. 

image IMG_1954IMG_9535
After alighting at the Bus Terminal , I walked to the YeojwaCheon (YeoJwa Stream) via Google Map.

The entire city of Jinhae was like a Cherry Blossom heaven! Every corner, every street was filled with rows after rows of Cherry Blossom trees! It was so beautiful! Thank God for letting me be there at such a good bloom day! Big, fluffy and happy looking blossoms makes me happy too >w<!


I walked past the Jinhae Museum of Changwon first and decided to take a trip up.  Cherry blosoms all around the building!

Here is the view from the Top floor. 


You would be happy to know that the museum is free entrance and displays exhibits of changwon's history.


The only downside is it takes a lot of stairs to reach.  But it’s ok, because cherry blossoms makes everything better!!! *Cherry blossom fanatic>///<  *


The festival was also a food galore as rows after rows of street vendors lined around. I wasn't sure what to buy so I only got myself a barley drink for 3000 won. There was also a stage performance with its very supportive audience.   


The festival seemed to extend from the city centre all the way to the stream. There were even tents/ booths set up for lost children and first aid. There was a big wall with the locality map printed on it, and in front of it was a hardworking staff giving directions to tavellers. The super friendly staff gave me some directions in English though I had a little difficulty understanding but oh well, I’ll just start walking. I’ll get there some how.

Saw an Ahjuma preparing cabbages, probably to make Kimchis, along the way!


I arrived at YeojwaCheon around 2:12pm. I definitely took too long by stopping to snap pictures every other minute but I have arrived!


There was SO MUCH people but I managed to snap a few nice shots. The place was filled with cherry blossoms and they were in full bloom! Praise the Lord! 


The installations of umbrellas and LED bicycles added a really nice touch to the place. They make the stream so much more photogenic. I’ll just let the photos do the talking.

IMG_9749 IMG_9739

I know the past few photos looks repeative but… they are (mostly) not the same umbrellas! It’s just a very long stream xDD


One thing that pisses me off greatly was the amount of people picking and hurting the cherry blossom trees all because they want a piece of it for themselves. Please don’t do that! It might seemed like a small action but it really shows your lack of graciousness. Once you pluck the flowers off, they die and the person after you will not get the chance to appreciate their beauty . Especially in such a popular attraction like JInhae where people travel all the way to see these bloom. In short, if it doesn’t belong to you, don’t take it!


And along the stream, was streams (pun intended lol) of street vendor selling a variety of products.


Saw a guy carrying a tiny corgi puppy! It was so cute!


And look what I found among the vendors!


It’s a raindrop cake! Otherwise known also as Mizu Shingen Mochi!


It was selling for 3000 Won. And how does it taste? Sweet, watery and squishy. I think the mochi itself doesn’t have much taste, the taste comes from the syrup and kinako powder (soyabean powder).


For the walk back, I decided to walk along the stream.


The sun is setting.

The stream of Cherry Blossoms went on for a long distance. Since I was running short of time, I stopped midway when the street vendors ended and headed to Jinhae Train station. I knew I was supposed to get a bus from the bus stop opposite the Jinhae Train Station but I wasn't sure where the bus stop is and which bus to take to Gyeonghwa Station so I asked one of the traffic police on duty. Shameless tourist alert here hehehe!

I took Bus 307 to GyeongHwa station and as you can tell from the photo, it was packed! I alighted when the Caucasian travellers behind me alighted hehee *sly look*. And I knew they were going GyeongHwa because they asked a korean passenger where GyeongHwa is wahaha. I know right, travelling with myself is so scary because half the time, I'm just going by faith. But God is on my side so I am victorious Ehehhehehee. Also the reason why I can't travel with other people. I would drive them crazy and they would drive me crazy LOL. 

I can't remember how long the journey was but from the timestamp of my photographs , it was maybe close to 30 minutes due in part to the peak traffic. Yeah, it was quite a distance away. 


The GyeongHwa Train station was just across the street from the bus stop. If in doubt, just follow the crowd.


The place was really beautiful too, with a long stretch of cherry blossom trees surrounding the train tracks. Unfortunately for me, I came a little late both in date and time. I only got a few pictures before it went dark. 


There are also musicians and magicians busking!


If you're hungry, don't worry because there are lots of street vendors. The worm like snack piped my curiosity but I didn't want to risk it so no, I didn't try it =( I got a fried fishcake on stick instead, it was ok. After a bit more strolling, I decided to take a bus back to the Bus Terminal.


What Bus did I take? I honestly cannot remember. It was most probably 307 from the Bus stop on the side of GyeongHwa Train Station (opposite from the bus stop I alighted). I basically went up, asked the bus driver if this bus goes to the Bus Terminal in slow English, he answered me in Korean and I comprehend via his body language. Yup, this is how I travel. I think I even fell asleep along the way.  I alighted when the kind Bus driver bellowed something and gave me an eye contact. 


I alighted to a pitch dark place along with a few other passenger. I googled the Bus terminal and followed the 3 guys walking in front of me. Thank goodness I pinned the Bus Terminal's location on Google Map when i arrived this afternoon. That made this walk so much less scary. 

The Bus terminal looks big on the outside but the actual waiting area is pretty small. I quickly bought my tickets from the Automated machine because I was too lazy to talk to a staff over the counter. 


There was a long queue back to Busan but because I was traveling solo, I got to cut the queue when the staffs announced that there is one seat left and nobody claimed it. Everyone came as either a pair or a group LOL.

Along the bus ride back, the bus driver would stop at some bus stops to let people get on. People would get on and then decide to alight after a few more stops. I can only guess they're not keen on standing for an hour haha. 3 men smelling of alcohol also boarded the bus in one of the stops, making a big ruckus. But the bus driver adamantly commanded them to get off and after much persistence from the driver, they eventually did. I wish I understood everything that happened ! Such drama haha!

This marks the end of my day trip to Jinhae! Hope you guys enjoyed the photographs and travel journal! Took me a lot of time to get everything together hehe!


Unknown said...

Hi.. When exactly u go to jinhae? I plan to go on 7th april next year. Do u think the cherry blossoms still full bloom?

Kaika ( aka Elpheal) said...

@Azure travelogue : Hi, I went on 5th april. 7th april sounds like an ok date though the exact blooming week fluctuates according to the weather. Best to check the weather forecast again when it's closer tot he dates =) Have fun!

Unknown said...

Thanks.. :-)

Anonymous said...

Hello, this is very interesting and detailed itinerary. Can I ask if I can squeeze Gyeonghwa Rail Station, Yeojwacheon Stream and Jangboksan Sculpture Park all in one day? Thank you :)

Jones Morris said...

Nice post! This is a very nice blog that I will definitively come back to more times this year! Thanks for informative post. train pnr status