Day 3. Our plan for the day was to spend our whole day at Boseong Green Tea Plantation. The place is quite far and it takes about 5 hours from Seoul to Boseong. We hired a driver and a van to took us there since we thought going with public transportation would probably took us longer. All4U Korea Tour is the service that we used for the transportation arrangement. The communication for planning and reservation was really easy and the driver and interpreter who met us were really nice and friendly. They even took time to tell us information about the place that we were visiting. I highly recommend this company if you ever thinking of using private transportation service (they offer services in Seoul and outside Seoul).
We started our day very early. 6.30 am, Mr.Choi (the interpreter) met us at our hotel lobby ready to go. We immediately got on to the van and so began our (short) road trip. An hour into the trip or so, we stopped by at a rest area for bathroom breaks. And since we haven’t had any breakfast, we bought some snacks for our breakfast.
After getting some snacks, we continued our journey. The scenery was pretty nice. There were lots of trees and mountains that we passed by. Definitely a different vibe from Seoul’s urban environment.
After almost 5 hours drive, we finally arrived at the plantation. Coincidentally, that day was the first day of the green tea festival. So there were tents set up near the parking lot area. We took a quick look at the festival tents and saw some food stalls and people selling stuff in different stalls. We were going to get lunch since we arrived there almost at noon, but since Mr. Choi recommended us to get lunch inside the plantation—where they sold various green-tea infused food apparently—, we immediately headed for the entrance of the plantation to get in.
We bought our entrance tickets and headed straight to the restaurant.
So the menu on the restaurant is pretty limited, but still give you a decent options to choose from. We ordered a couple of different dishes to try on, and yes, everything on the menu have green tea as their ingredients. So we ordered Naengmyeon (냉면), Jajangmyeon (짜장면) and Bibimbap (비빔밥)—which came with green-tea infused noodle and rice. Everything was tasty. We even ordered seconds.
After we finished our meal, we wanted to start exploring. The view of the plantation was amazing! Although, I have to say, from the beginning, the thought of having to hike to the top of the hill is a little daunting to me.
And surely, after we finished our hike around the plantation, I was completely exhausted. Some of the track was steep and me being not in shape was definitely not helping. Nevertheless, it was a great experience. We ended up going on a slower pace and made jokes along the way to make the hike bearable under the scorching sun. The one thing that I ended up avoiding doing was to look up. It’s just better to not know how far I need to climb :P After we got to the top though, the view was gorgeous. It was worth a hike :)
Halfway to the top, we saw an ahjumma resting with us on one of the rest stop. All of us were really surprise when we looked at what she wore on this hiking trail. High. Heels. Seriously. We couldn’t even begin to understand why would you wear high heels on a hiking trip. I ended up asking the ahjumma if her feet hurts, but she replied, “괜찮아.. 괜찮아” (It’s alright, it’s alright) as if this is something normal that she does everyday. Props to the fashion-concious ahjumma. I would never be able to pull off wearing heels on a hike.
After we finished our hike a couple of hours later, we finally back to the entrance of the plantation. We were sweating and exhausted and in need of something refreshing. So we headed to the dessert stalls and bought green tea ice cream and green tea latte. Afterwards, we took a quick peak at the souvenir shop, bought a couple of boxes of green tea and headed back to Seoul.
On our way back, we stopped by Jeonju for dinner. Jeonju is famous for their Bibimbap, so we thought we give it a try. We visited Go Gung (Mr. Choi picked the restaurant for us) which apparently are famous for their Bibimbap. We each ordered one and after we finished stuffing our stomach with good food, we continued our journey. We arrived at our hotel around 11pm. It truly was a long day.