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We took the airport limousine from our hotel (Toyoko Inn Dongdaemun) to Gimpo Airport for our flight to Jeju. There was a playground at Gimpo Airport for kids, but MF was underage and the security guard didn’t let him play there. Bummer. 🙁
We arrived in Jeju as planned and strolled around Jungmun beach just behind our hotel, Jeju Lotte Hotel, which is a great place for kids!
The beach was beautiful, and the weather in Jeju was much more tolerable than in Seoul. MF slept throughout the stroll, leaving hubby and I to take a slow, quiet, romantic walk.. One of the best moments of the trip.
We rented a car from the hotel in the morning. As usual, we left the hotel later than planned, so we decided to skip the scenic spots and drive straight to Jeju Folk Village Museum first.
Did I mention I’m a Da Chang Jin fan? The only reason Jeju Folk Village Museum came into my radar was because it was a film location for Da Chang Jin.
Frankly other than the cheap thrill of taking photos with Da Chang Jin posters, Jeju Folk Village Museum wasn’t very enjoyable. Because it was infested with swarms of flying insects!! There were insects all over us by the time we came out.. and I was so worried some had flown into MF’s mouth.
Continuing our drive on to Seopikoji and Seongsan Ilchubong, the scenery was absolutely breathtaking and we stopped a few times to take photos. MF was happy to get down to run around a bit while enjoying the view of Seongsan Ilchubong from a distance.
We arrived at Seopikoji / All-in House.
Here is where you find one of the most famous (or touristy) olle trails in Jeju. There was quite a bit of walking involved, but you can actually push a stroller most of the way. It is only if you want to go to the top where the lighthouse is that you will need to ditch your stroller.
After all that climbing (while carrying a baby), I think I deserved the feast we had for lunch.
After lunch, we proceeded to Seongsan Ilchubong, which is a place totally NOT recommended for visiting if you have a baby with you.. It is a MOUNTAIN that you need to climb all the way up via very steep steps!
Believe it or not, we managed to climb all the way to the top with MF!! I carried MF half the way and my knees started quivering, so hubby took over and carried MF all the way to the top. After that, I carried MF all the way down. Everyone was staring at us! I think MF is one of the few babies to ever make it to the top – all 180m up! And do not underestimate the long climb back down…
After the climb, we started our drive back to our hotel, stopping at Jeongbang waterfalls (which required us to climb down and up a long steep flight of stairs!) and Oedolgae. We skipped the rest of the waterfalls, because we were simply too tired to do any more hiking to see them.
We decided we have had enough of mountains, waterfalls and stones.. So after flipping through several travel brochures, we decided to visit Jeju Mini Mini Land, Trick Art Museum and Ripley’s Believe it or Not. Well, it was definitely a lot more relaxing than the previous day and MF got to come down to run around quite a bit, a relief for both of us!
Before that, we made a detour to the Mysterious Road, where our car is supposed to roll ‘uphill’. There were two Mysterious Roads on the Jeju map, we went to the one near Jeju Love Land.
We drove to the starting point (there was a sign that said ‘Starting Point’ along the Mysterious Road) and waited to see our car would roll up.
Okay.. Our car didn’t exactly roll uphill the way we expected.. So we decided to try something else. We put a water bottle filled with water and watched it roll uphill.. It worked much better than the car!
Alternatively, do what we saw a tour guide doing: Just pour the water directly onto the ground and watch it trickle upwards.
After we have verified that the ‘anti-gravity phenomenon’ really worked, we headed for Jeju Mini Mini Land, where MF had great fun running around and playing with the exhibits that were as mini as him! They had downsized versions of landmarks from around the world.
As well as popular cartoon characters.
Next, at the Trick Art Museum, we tried to make MF take photos with the art works, but he wasn’t too cooperative.. But it was fun nevertheless posing with all the quirky trick art!
And our last stop, Ripley’s Believe it or Not:
Initially we had planned to visit Teddy Bear Museum, but after we found out there was a playground within Jeju Lotte hotel, we decided to just make use of it to keep MF occupied until it was time to catch our flight home.
At Incheon International airport, I thought there would be time for MF to play at the kids playground there. But the staff had difficulty checking us in and wasted more than an hour of our time! So by the time we were checked in, we had to board our flight immediately. So MF didn’t have the chance to play at the playground in the transit area of Incheon Airport. Zzz…
Overall, Jeju was a great place to visit and drive around on our own. It is very easy to drive in Jeju. The car rental company provided a very good driving map and there are road signs in English pointing to all the major tourist attractions. The GPS uses phone numbers, just like in Japan, and the map that the rental company provided displayed the phone numbers of the major tourist attractions. Having a car is great for nursing and changing the baby, because nursing facilities are not easily found in Jeju. (Read more on nursing in Korea.) If I were to travel with a baby / kid again, I think I would definitely opt for a self-drive trip if possible.
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