Never miss Seonyudo this summer!
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Never miss Seonyudo this summer!
  • By Kim Seol-won,Editor-in-Chie
  • 승인 2009.07.01 12:45
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Have you imagined white beaches, bicycles and free time simultaneously?
Do you believe that Shinsun(神仙, Taoist hermit with miraculous powers) can live in the middle of the sea? It seems like a probable story in this fantastic island, Seonyudo. Seonyudo is a treasure of the West Sea and a rest area like a friend to people who live in the city.
I missed the lapping of the waves and smell of the blue sea, which completely relieved my fatigue from my tired and boringroutine. Sometimes, we all dream of breaking away from the routine of daily life. And I made up my mind to leave to Seonyudo. My decision didn’t disappoint me. Although it was a day trip, I could understand what its name, Seonyudo, meant.

Seonyudo, where more than 500 peoplelive in an area of 2.13㎢, is one of the Gogunsan islands(고군산군도) together with Sinsido, Munyeondo, Bangchukdo, Maldo, etc. It is the central island of a group of islands. It is connected with Jangjado through Jangja Bridge, so traveling is easy, and regular passenger ships depart from Gunsan. It was originally called Gunsan Island, but it has been called Seonyudo because the shape of the summit at the 100m peak in the northern part of the island looks like two Shinsuns sitting opposite and playing Baduk(바둑). It was not only a port for trade to China in the Goryeo period, but also a marine point where vessels used to anchor during the Japanese invasion of Korea(임진왜란) in 1592. One example is the reorganizing of the line of battle while staying in Seonyudo for 11 days after General Lee Sun-shin won the Myeongyang battle.
If you want to run in the wide sea in this hot summer, how about going to Seonyudo? I would like to recommend to go to Seonyudo, which has beautiful nature and a historic meaning. It will be better than leaving to a noisy beach to escape theheat blindly.
Now, are you ready to go to Seonyudo with me?

Part 1. Gunsan coastal passenger ship terminal
I have to hurry because the first ship departs at 9 a.m. I am so tired, but quickly feel better as soon as I see bright expressions of people. People seem to be happy thinking of traveling with lovers and friends and fishing freely in the calm sea.

●Transportation Budget
* Intercity bus fare from Jeonju to Gunsan : 4800 won
* To the Gunsan coast passenger terminal:
- It takes about 60 minutes by bus.
- It takes about 10-15 minutes by taxi, and the fare is 8000-9000 won.
* At the Gunsan coastal passenger ship terminal:
- Swift ship - about 45-50 minutes, 16650 won.
- Express ship - about 90 minutes, 12300 won.

● Tip!
Operation time and intervals of ships change frequently. It’s convenient to inquire in advance by phone or through internet.
Though you want to take the ticket of a returning ship in the early morning, it could be sold out through reservation beforehand.

Part 2. At the swift ship
While going to Seonyudo, I can smell the refreshing sea. I mistake a sparkling on the sea for golden powder sprinkled on the sea. While the ship runs on the open sea, I forget the worries.

Part 3. Trip by bicycle
After landing at the Seonyudo dock, I rent a bicycle. I hear that it takes about 3-4 hours to appreciate all the scenery of Seonyudo by bicycle. Riding a bicycle along the white sand beach makes me feel like a romantic movie hero.

Part 4. In the Pyeongsa Nagan
Pyeongsa Nagan is on the right side of the Myeongsasimni Swimming Beach. Pyeongsa Nagan seems to be a white drawing paper on the sea. It looks like the shape of a wild goose sitting on the sand. So, it has been called Pyeongsa Nagan. We can view the whole Pyeongsa Nagan’s figure at a high place like Mangjubong (see below).

Part 5. Mangjubong
‘Bald Mountain’, called Mangjubong is over there. Mangjubong seems likely to be a mountain shown in an oriental painting. I think Seonyudo’s Shinsun might live somewhere in Mangjubong. When it rains a lot in summer, seven or eight water currents fall from Mangjubong like a waterfall and createsupreme scenery; it is called Mangju Waterfall.

Part 6. Myeongsasimni Swimming Beach
The white sand beach and shallow and blue sea is opening wide before me. I can’t see the far islands because of fog but its scenery is an unusual sight. Looking at children playing in the white sand, I think I would like to return to the innocence of childhood. Suddenly, silver fish jump up powerfully not far from beach. I can feel what nature’s vividness is.

Part 7. Jangja Halmae Rock
When just arriving at Daejangdo by bicycle, I see the projecting rock. This is a rock with a sad legend: a wife waiting for her husband, who went to Seoul to take a public servant exam, became a rock with her baby on her back. It is known that if a couple makes a promise of love looking at this rock, its love continues forever. How about praying with a lover at Jangja Halmae Rock?

Part 8. Seonyu Bridge
As soon as I get off a ship, I can see the Seonyu Bridge, which connects Seonyudo and Munyeodo. I can appreciate the distant sea on the bridge. It is a good travel point where you can see one side of Seonyudo totally.

Part 10. Munyeodo
Munyeodo has dual figures. When I see the Munyeodo on the Seonyu Bridge, it is full of thick trees, but there are strange rocks and bizarre stones such as Manmulsang Rock in the opposite side. Magnificent sights of these strange rocks and bizarre stones provide me with nature’s mystique. There seems to be a hidden secret in the holed stone toward the sky called Cheongonggul Cave.

I am so sorry that this was a day trip. I think that an overnight trip is appropriate to draw a lyrical appreciation about Seonyudo. I can obtain a valuable experience I couldn’t buy with money through bicycling and hiking. The attractiveness in an island of sea is different from the land in which we have lived. An island is a place that we can’t go frequently, but once we set foot on an island of the sea, we cannot help cherishing and loving its nature.
Why don’t you ride a bicycle along the Myeongsasimni Swimming Beach with friends and a boyfriend or girlfriend? Would you like to be consoled by the calm of the blue sea? If so, don’t hesitate to go to Seonyudo!

- Fresh seafood
In this fantastic island, I can’t help eating fresh seafood and going to a nearby sushi restaurant. I try to taste Nolaemi(Green Ling), which dwells at the bottom of the sea. Nolaemi slices melted in my mouth. I could eat not only sashimi but also a variety of seafood thanks to the generous owner.

● Tip!
It is quite windy on the shipboard although the season is summer. Don’t forget to take a blanket or long-sleeved clothes to keep up your body heat.

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