Tuesday, September 24, 2013

East Side of Jeju and Udo Island

Another tour we did was on the east side of the island and Udo island. The day was filled with riding ATVs, hiking, and explore underground lava tubes. It was pretty great.

The first place we went on the east side of the island was the UNESCO site Seongsan Ilchulbong, also known as Sunrise Peak. Jeju is a volcanic island, and this tuff cone was created through volcanic activity about 5,000 years ago.  This site is not only important because of its beauty, but also because there are six rare species of plants that reside here and 300 species of marine algae.

It kind of looks like a castle, but there were many fantastic views from the top and on the short hike up. There were some fun rock formations to look at and beauty all around. Below are some pictures from the hike up.

After visiting Sunrise Crater, we took a short ferry ride to Udo Island. We spent four hours riding around in the sunshine on ATVs. At first I was scared of them (if you know me, you know that I am quite accident-prone), but I quickly got used to them and dared to go at a pace faster than a snail. There really isn't much to say about it, so I shall let the pictures speak for themselves.

Cecily, me, Danielle.

There were a few caves on Udo that we walked/climbed through. The rocks were literally purple, and the striations of the rock were striking. The cave was also filled with bangsatap. These are small, round towers made of stones. They are meant to be a protection against bad luck.

It was hot and sweaty in the cave, so we jumped in to cool off a little bit. This was definitely my first time cave swimming, and it was incredibly refreshing.

Nice photo bomb, ajosshi.

Purple rocks!

Some of our group, wet and waiting for the ferry back to Jeju.

The next place we visited on Jeju was another UNESCO site, the Manjanggul Lave Tubes. Lava tunnels are formed when lava deep in the round spouts from the peak and flows to the surface. The cave was quite cool, which was great on such a hot day. The lave tube has many interesting features such as stone pillars, stalactites, stalagmites, and The Stone Turtle, famous because it is said to be shaped like Jeju Island.

The Stone Turtle.

In front of the stone "castle" at the end of the lava tube.

Danielle and I at the entrance/exit.

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