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Morning flight to Cheongju International Airport -> Four Season Farm ( Melon fruit picking ) -> Everland -> Phoenix Park Hotel

As we stayed quite near Jeju International Airport, our morning call for the day is 7am! 

Writing desk

Their LG TV was good as the screen was big and it seem to be of High definition quality!

1 single and 1 Queen sized Bed
The bed thats nearer to the wall is smaller (Single), while the other bed is of Queen size. The bed is quite comfy to sleep in however their pillows is a little over soft.

Kettle area

Bathtub/showering area

Removable torchlight at the door area
They have a removable torchlight at the hotel door area where in the case of emergency, one can just remove it and it will be on automatically.

We then take all our belongings and gathered at level 1 to meet the rest and Colin.

Our breakfast for the day is at a chinese restaurant. There's plenty of chinese tourists inside the restaurant when we reached at around 8.10am. We had to wait for awhile for them to clear the tables.

Chinese Restaurant
Jeju surroundings (Around the restaurant)
Jeju surroundings (Around the restaurant)
Our last breakfast at Jeju!
Yeah, since it's a chinese restaurant, they basically serve chinese food. It is our first meal since our trip started that we don't see kimchi. There's porridge and the various dishes like cabbage, scrambled egg, fried dumpling, mantou, etc.

We had a quick breakfast and left for Jeju airport. It's only a 5-10minutes drive away and we reached at 9am. We waved goodbye to our Jeju bus driver as we will be switching to another bus when we leave Jeju. Before leaving, Colin told us that our bus driver was once a Korea F1 racing participant! No wonder, we love to be in his bus coach!

Jeju Airport - Departure Hall

Airport shops - eatery / convenience store
As expected, the souvenir prices here are even more expensive than those we saw at souvenir shops in Jeju.

Eatery @ airport
We were due for the 10.20am flight. As this is a domestic flight, and the flight duration is slightly less than an hour ( quite a short duration ) there's no in flight personal entertainment. They have overhead drop down screen to illustrate important information like life jacket demonstration.

drop down screen
Jeju International Airport

So after around 1 hour, we touched down at Cheongju Airport 1 hour later at around 11.20am.

Safely arrived at Cheongju Airport
We saw a few military aircrafts when we landed. This is because Cheongju airport houses the 17th fighter wing of the Republic of Korea Air force. Cheongju is not in Seoul but its in mainland Korea.

We then transferred to our tour bus to continue our tour itinerary of the day. It's a one hour bus ride and we reach 'Four Seasons Farm' at around 12.45pm.

This is our fruit plucking stop! We are each entitled to pick up one Korea melon for our own consumption.
Four Seasons farm has their own website address ( ) and a search on this farm hows that they provide all year round farm experience for visitors. In another words, if you were to come here during winter period, you might be able to pluck the seasonal fruit - strawberries!

First and foremost, We were greeted by 2 dogs at the entrance!
Tame dogs!
They even have a tractor!
unripe Korea Melon
Ripe and ready for harvest!
Once we chose the korea melon, we can use the scissors provided and snip it off by the stalk. We were reminded to choose wisely. In another words, we should refrain from pressing this melon then move on to press another melon to see which is better. As doing so might result in the quality of the melon deteriorating. 

That night, my family went back to our hotel and we sliced one to eat as supper!

Self-harvested Korea Melon!
It is actually ripe however I must say, it is not a sweet as rock melon/honeydew. Its taste and texture is quite similar to rock melon/honey dew.Our final verdict is honeydew is still nicer than korea melon. 

Four seasons farms do not sell the melons or fruits they harvest. However when we went to the supermarket during the latter part of our time in Korea, the price of korea melon ranges around SGD$2.5-5.

Our tour bus for the remaining days
We went for lunch a little later than usual , at 1.30pm. Once again, its BBQ pork!

Pork is free flow - we can just get it from the freezer if we need more. Once again, there's seaweed soup , kimchi and lettuce to wrap the pork. 

Speaking of the fridge, Colin told us that a typical Korean family will have two fridge. One to store their usual meat/vegetable supply, while the other to store kimchi. Ahjummas (Aunties) will normally ferment kimchi in fall - November period a thats when cabbage (大白菜) can be harvested. As such they will buy 12 kilos or more of cabbage and ferment one year supply of Kimchi all at one go. They will normally engage the help of their neighbours to ferment the kimchi. In another words, they have great kampung spirit.
Every household's kimchi taste differently as it's dependent on the kimchi sauce they use. The kimchi sauce consist of several ingredients.

While we were having our lunch, it was pouring heavily as its the monsoon season in Korea.We were stuck at the restaurant place. Since they have a souvenir shop selling korean products (eg. seaweed) and other cute korean souvenirs, we decided to shop here. Colin told us to buy korea utensils ( metal chopsticks and bowl ) if we want, from this store as its cheapest. They typically cost around KRW 5000 for one bowl.

We bought their seaweed biscuits and a few korean bear keychains. They provide samples for the seaweed biscuit and its in 3 main flavours: salted, original and spicy. We did not get the spicy as it's a bit over spicy and it tasted artificial. Each pack of 5 seaweed biscuit cost KRW10,000. If you buy 10 packs, you get 1 free. The korean bear keychain comes in 5 in one pack and they cost KRW 15,000. It is cheaper over here as we saw at Jeju airport and some souvenir shop in Jeju selling KRW5,000 for one. 

Souvenirs + seaweed that we bought 
The 7 handphone straps ( photo above) were given to us FOC. Its sold in the shop as a set of 10 for KRW10,000.

As it was raining heavily, we were having ambivalent feelings on whether to go ahead with our afternoon plan - to Everland! Everland is a theme park in Yongin, it is also South Korea's largest theme park. It includes a zoo and a water park. Colin advised us to go ahead with the plan since we are unable to check in to our hotel at that time and travelling to our hotel would mean we wasted hours in travelling. In addition, there's no more other indoor attractions that we can go and its sort of impossible to reschedule our itinerary to re-slot Everland inside.

Luckily, we went ahead with our plan despite the heavy rain as after the 45 minutes bus ride, we reach Everland and the rain has subsided!

As Everland is located on a mountain, and private buses are not allowed to go up there as such they have Everland's transit bus for visitors to take.

Everland transit bus
The frequency is quite fast, around 5 minutes and the duration of the bus ride was short too.
And finally we reached Everland. It was very windy and I believe after the rain plus being located at a higher altitude, the temperature then should be around 20-25 degrees!

Everland Entrance!

Show timings at the entrance
Colin helped us buy our Everland tickets and for fear that it will rain at the later part of the day, he provided poncho for us too.

Everland one day pass
We were given meal coupon for our dinner that day. In another words we will have to settle it ourselves. The meal coupon entitle us to free set meal (selected) at selected restaurants in Everland.
Meal Coupon
So let say we choose to eat at oriental restaurant, we can choose to eat either seafood fried rice or pho (vietnamese noodle soup) using this meal coupon to exchange for our food! We chose Alpine cafe in the end. Our meal will be described in more detail in the later part of this post.

Brief map of Everland
It's 3.20pm and we are ready to embark on our tour around Everland!

Staff expressing 'welcome'
Next time when you do visit Korea, do take note that when a person shake both hands it is actually a hand gesture meaning "welcome". However to most Singaporeans, it means "Dont have"!

We finally entered Everland at around 3.25pm. 

There's still slight drizzle!

Psy Hologram

3D Theatre featuring Pororo
This cartoon character, Pororo the little penguin is very famous in South Korea since it was created by South Korea animation company.

Oriental Restaurant
Oriental Restaurant is the nearest restaurant from the entrance. With the meal voucher that we had, we are able to have Seafood friend rice or Vietnamese noodle there.

Colin decided to bring us for a ride at safari world before he give us free & easy time around Everland.
Safari World is a zoo in Everland and it features animals like white tigers, ligers, lion and bears. Visitors will be able to view the animals up close while on a bus ride into their respective enclosure.

Along the way
Along our way to safari world, we saw tigers and sea lions too.
Snack stop
And here we are at safari world!

Liger is a mix breed of Tiger and lion. There used to be 2 ligers in Everland safari world, however one died recently. According to Colin, the liger in Everland is through natural breeding.

We needa wait for around 15 minutes before we manage to board the bus.

half our original queue
The bus! Rawr!
As we are in a tour group, colin managed to asked the personnel manning the queue to give us an access to one bus. In another words, the bus that we eventually board, only consist of people from our tour group!

In the bus!
The animals are all kept in an enclosure and the gate guarding the enclosures will be opened for the bus to enter and it will close shut after the bus enters.

Tigers and lions are kept in the same enclosure at Everland Safari World. As such natural cross breeding between the two animals may happen.

Lion roaming freely
Lions - resting on the big rock
There's no restriction to where the animals can roam about except the boundaries of the enclosure. Otherwise their place of roaming is definitely much wider than in zoos like Singapore Zoo.

After viewing tigers and lions, we saw the one and only liger in South Korea!

Liger is believed to be the largest known cat in the world. No one can give a definite number of ligers left in the world, however various news agencies believe there's less than 100 ligers in the world.

Our last enclosure is the bear!

The driver had some interaction with the bear like feeding it and the bear seems trained and prepared for this. They are not scared of the bus. The bus will stop along the way in the bear enclosure and there will be a bear after around every 5m .
Bear in different pose!
1..2...3.. there goes the bear from sitting pose to straining his neck for food!
There's other animals in the safari world like vultures and deer however the bus did not stop for long at those places. We merely passed by them. Thus I would say the main animals attraction in Safari world ( on board the bus) would be tigers, lions, liger and bear!

The whole ride lasted for around 15 minutes. But still its worth boarding since you are really up close with the animals. Its just beside your bus as compared to in zoos when there's still a considerable far safe distance between you and the animals.

After that we were given Free and Easy time around Everland and have to return back to the main entrance of Everland by 7.30pm. This is inclusive of the time for our own dinner in Everland. As such we were given only around 3 hours around Everland, and we must say, it's really not enough! If you are coming Everland on your own, the best recommendation would be one day. Colin recommended 4 main attractions in Everland:

1. Safari World 

2. T- Express (Wooden roller Coaster) First wooden roller coaster in Asia and was the world's second steepest wooden coaster. It has a steep degree of 77degrees! Asia's longest roller coaster ride - 3minutes

3. Lost ValleyIt mimics a natural environment with its carefully-constructed caves, waterways, lakes, waterfalls, and more. It's a new attraction that was opened in 2013 and visitors get to ride on a 40-person amphibious vehicle to discover around 150 animals of 20 different species. 

4. Four Seasons Garden
Millions of flowers welcome you in a magic garden all year 'round The garden provides a 3D picturesque view, like a pop-up book.Enjoy the fascinating themes of seasonal flowers, including the tulips and roses of spring, the lilies of summer, the chrysanthemums of autumn and the snowflakes of winter.
                                                                                                          - Samsung Everland Official Website

We went to queue for lost valley first as its something different that we don't have in Singapore ( Although yeah, Singapore's River Safari - Amazon river was not open yet ). We started queuing when the waiting time was 45 minutes. It decreased to 30 minutes after that.

queuing for lot valley ride
Perhaps it's a new attraction and that explains the long queue. Most of the people we see at Everland are Koreans as its their summer break now. 

Amphibious vehicles
Along the way, there's quite a few animals exhibitions featuring porcupines, cape ground squirrels, turtles and several exotic animals.

While queuing, we had no idea when will it be our turn as the pathway for queuing involves many turn abouts and blind corner. Finally we see the 40 seater amphibious vehicle!

Lost Valley amphibious vehicle
It is somewhat similar to duck tours (Singapore) where the vehicle can travel on land and in the water. And yes, you might wonder why 'Samsung Galaxy' is imprinted on the vehicle. This is because the whole Everland is managed by Samsung Everland, a subsidiary of Samsung. Amazing isn't it?

We were finally ushered by the ever friendly korean personnel onto the vehicle at around 5.20pm.
There's a live commentator in the vehicle however he was speaking Korean and we couldn't understand what he means. But still we got entertained by his very exaggerated actions and tone. He is really entertaining!

On a side note, this attraction is named 'the Lost Valley' as it houses animals that are endangered. By opening up this eco safari adventure, it helps to raise awareness of their situation.

We really get to see the animals up close as the vehicle move along.
Mountain Goats!


In the water! And we see giraffes from far.

And up close!

No zoom! Its really right beside us
The commentator attempted to feed the giraffes with leafy vegetables however the giraffes don't seem to be hungry as they did not take it from his hand :(

Artificial waterfall
Spot the Rhinoceros!
Theres animals along both sides of the vehicle, so do keep a frequent look out on both sides. But in any case, the commentator will announce the animal attractions there. If you happen to be travelling in four or more, like my family, you all might want to separate with people sitting on both sides of the vehicle to capture a fair share of the animals in lost valley!

The ride lasted for around 15 minutes.

Do note, not to mix up Amazon Express with Lost ValleyAmazon Express is a raft ride, where most visitors get wet to varying degrees

We went for an early dinner for fear that the food places will be brimming with visitors during dinner time. As Alpine food Fair is near The lost Valley, we decided to settle for our dinner there.

Since we were given meal coupons, it means that we can order either:

Procedure of ordering

So we will need to go to the food counter to order by giving them our meal coupon and stating what we want. They will give us the pagers (bottom right of the image) and we can find a eat in the spacious restaurant area. It will vibrate once the food is ready.

We ordered 2 fried rice, 1 sirloin Pork cutlet and 1 Skewered fish paste & Udon. The devices vibrated at around 10 minutes later.

Fried Rice
Skewered fish paste & Udon
sirloin Pork cutlet
According to the receipt for their tracking purpose, each plate cost KRW 6,500 (SGD$7.50).

Receipt at Alpine Food Fair
They have water refilling machine in the restaurant too for your water supply! The food tasted good especially the rice. The rice for the pork cutlet is not just plain white rice but there's herbs added too, explaining the fragrance.

After our early dinner at Alpine Food Fair, We decided to visit the flower garden as mentioned by Colin. It was already 6.30pm - we only have 1 hour left in Everland.

6.30pm in Everland
Due to time constraint, we give the theme park area - including roller coaster a miss since we looking for more family friendly activities.

You can take the cable car to the flower garden or you can walk over. As we could't find the cable car boarding area, we decided to walk over and take the cable car back when we return to the entrance later on.

Along the way, we saw the sky lift too. The waiting time was around 20 minutes.

Sky lift in Everland
Along the way...
We spotted the carousel too! Its not only meant for children, but adults too. Since the carousel is quite big, its able to take quite a lot of people in one go. We waited for awhile as we just missed the previous ride.

Carousel ride!
The carousel ride is near the flower garden. We were able to spot the flower garden from the carousel.
Flower garden + Mini Holland world?
Perhaps its due to the timing of the year we visit Everland, we didn't see flowers as pretty as shown on Everland web.

In comparison to what we saw last April in Taiwan at Aboriginal Village ( European Palace Garden), this is quite disappointing. Most of the flowers are actually dying :( I can only come to the conclusion that flowers tend to blossom in Spring instead of Summer.

Rose garden
We didn't stay for long before we moved off to take the cable car within Everland - Sky Cruise.

Sky cruise - Internal Cable car
It can be quite confusing to find the cable car at the flower garden area due to confusing signs. However we were glad that when we finally found it, we didnt have to wait as there's no queue. Probably due to the high frequency of the cable car. Don't expect too much from this cable car ride as its more of a basic gondola system transporting guests between the European Adventure and American Adventure areas of the park.

view from the cable car
We saw many of the outdoor theme park rides from the cable car. They have quite a few different theme souvenir shops along the way out to the entrance. 

We also saw a popcorn station!
Popcorn counter!
We wanted to find this popcorn station as we have been seeing parents/young children carrying elephant/tiger container, containing popcorn . It looks real cute! We decided to check out the price.

Popcorn price list
The tiger one cost KRW12,000 (SGD $13.80) while the elephant model cost KRW 13,000 (SGD $15)! Perhaps the price could be a little lower? But oh well, since this is a tourist attraction, this should be expected.

Everland @ 7.30pm
We bade farewell to everland around 7.30pm and board the shuttle bus back to the carpark area. 

Shuttle bus
On board the bus, we also saw a big group of students from China who seem to be here in Korea for Summer study programme. Overall, we see China tourists dominating the tourists population in Korea.

We departed from Everland's carpark at around 8pm and headed for our accomodation - Phoenix Park. We reached there around 9pm. It's quite ulu in the sense that theres no shopping centres around there, however as its a skiing resort, during summer, you can see the field in lush greenery.
For water or other midnight snacks, Colin told us that there's a convenience store in Centre Plaza that is opened till 2am.

As usual, Colin knocked on all our rooms to know that we are doing fine. This time round, he is staying with us in the same hotel. We didn't wander out that night, since we were deadbeat from a day of activities: flight and Everland. Zzzz


Singapore Tray return practise
Singapore has rolled out in certain hawker centers/food places tray return practices. However most of the time I see trays of food piling up there. Worse still, when you have to slot the trays in the slot accurately (see left image above). I remembered I once witness a quarrel broke out because a lady who was trying to slot her tray with a bowl of soup into the return station and accidentally spill the soup/miss the slot and it ended up spilling it to a diner nearby. Or in those simpler tray return station where you just put your food at the counter ( see right image above), however I see over piling of food trays as the cleaners who clean this need to walk around the tables in the hawker centre to wipe the tables too. They are not stationed at the tray return station. 

I feel that these are quite inefficient and ineffective as compared to what I saw at Everland - Alpine Food Fair.
South Korea, Everland Alpine Food Court Tray return practise
Yes, they make use of conveyor belt! So you just put your food tray on the conveyor belt and it will follow the motion into their washing area! A peep from the side and I saw they have a few "ahjummas" (Aunties) in the washing area waiting to receive these plates and trays and washing them. They only have 1 or 2 at the Alpine food fair to clean the tables. Of course the area is not as big as a hawker centre but it is comparable to Singapore's standard food court size.

Doesn't it sounds good? It does cost money to invest in this but if it does good in the long run and is effective and efficient, why not?


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