Monday, June 06, 2005

Korea 200505n: Busan arrival

It is nightfall when I reach Busan. The slow-ish express train from Gyeongju takes 2 hours, passing through the industrial city of Ulsan, and a city called Hyaeundae (Hyundai?).

At night Busan looks dynamic, lively and colourful. The plaza in front of the glassy Busan Train Station is alive with buskers, stalls, and crowds. The nearest to the KL teh tarik culture can be seen here - a stall selling drinks with stools and small tables, set up just next to the station entrance. Other faves are roasted corn, roasted squid/octopus (which the Koreans like to munch as snacks) and some other roasted stuff which I can't quite recognise.

I quickly check into my hotel, located just next to the Busan station, for US$50 a night. Another old but comfy hotel with the usual amenities, including countless cable tv channels - one showing 24/7 pr0n and another showing 24/7 fishing! After refreshing myself, I go out for an evening moon-lit and neon-lit walk.

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Korea 200505m: Bye-bye, Bulguksa

On the way out, past the gate with the four bullies straddling the four poor blokes, and past the ancient bridge, I take a rest at this pretty spot. Soon a bunch of old Korean ladies join me. What a relief to be able to remove the backpack. After a simple lunch of bread (which I share with the huge koi fish - and some giant catfish - in the pond) and orange juice, I am soon back at the car-park waiting for the bus to Gyeongju Station.

Forty-five minutes later I am at Gyeongju Station (the bus driver took 900 won for fare, which is odd, since on my earlier trip from Gyeongju to Bulguksa, I was charged 1,300 won!), waiting for my 5pm train (pic #3) to Bujeon, a suburb of Busan (old spelling - Pusan), my next stop.

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#3: Gyeongju train station. Posted by Hello