Train from Busan

Time to return to Seoul. Almost time. There’s still a morning in Busan.

We explore the Busan station area. Many of Busan’s residents live in the steep hills overlooking the city where the only access is via stairs or a few monorails, or slope cars, as they are also known.

There is one in the hills behind Busan Station. We walk the steep roads up to the 168 Step Monorail, only to discover that it’s under maintenance until 2024!

We climb about two thirds of the way to the second monorail station. The neighbourhood is an interesting place from an architectural perspective and there are fantastic views over the harbour, but it’s hard work and the steep climb down was a bit scary.

The walk down is past the Choryang Church and Wall Gallery, showing some of the area’s history. On level ground again, we spot the historic Choryang market, a covered arcade of small shops and stalls selling meat, vegetables, herbs and other cooking necessities.

We eat Japanese food for lunch, or rather the other two do as I have no appetite. The flight anxiety is back and I’d rather be throwing up food than eating it.

It’s a rush to collect our luggage and return to the station, but we make it in time to catch the KTX, another TGV version back to Seoul.

Much of the journey seems to be through tunnels in cities and under mountains. Between tunnels there are views of mountain ranges, rice paddies and animal feedlots, apartments and artificial lakes where people fish from little cabins and platforms.

The whole journey is less than three hours. Once in Seoul we catch the metro to Myeongdong and our hotel where nobody but robots man the desks and animatronic T-Rexes guard the lobby.

After doing the washing we head down the street for a charcoal grill dinner, then it’s back to our old haunt of Dongdaemun History and Culture Park to look for clothing bargains at the APM wholesale market.

We return to Myeongdong and walk the streets through the busy-with-tourists market stalls, trying egg bread and another grilled marshmallow ice cream. The shops and stalls are closing as we trudge back to the hotel after a long last night back in Seoul.

Filed under: