▲ Like the lava tubes on land, Jeju’s underwater world contains many treasures just waiting to be discovered by those lucky enough to have the right equipment. Photos courtesy Korean Diverse Association.
From snorkeling and scuba to surfing and sailing, Jeju offers a wide variety of ways to enjoy the wetter side of island life.
Surfing: Catching waves on Jeju can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. Adam Turner has been living in Korea for two years, previously teaching in Daegu and now residing in Jeju. He’s been surfing for 14 years including in his native New Zealand, Busan and Jeju.
“I’ve caught better waves in Busan more often, but here on Jeju when the weather’s right it’s awesome!” says Turner. The strong wind so common to the island makes for water that’s often choppy and difficult to navigate on a surfboard.
“The best places for easy access are probably Samyang and Iho. You can just swim right out, and there is actually beach instead of just rocks.” says Turner. “But go to Jungmun a few days before a typhoon if you really want some waves!”
If you just want to try it out, the Wave Club in Jungmun near the tourist complex offers surfboard rentals in summer.
Windsurfing: At times the wind may make the sea too choppy for reliable surfing, but why not take advantage of a Jeju natural resource and windsurf instead? Reaching speeds up to 60km, windsurfing is a popular and exciting Jeju pastime. Wind surfing in Jungmun is particularly attractive in the winter as the wind is more intense and constant.
For beginners the southeastern Sinyang beach is recommended, the water is shallow and there is more protection from strong winds. Iho and Hamdeok on the northern coast are also attractive locations with nice beaches for relaxing afterwards.
Scuba: Nestled near the harbor of Seogwipo-Si, Ralf Deutsch’s Big Blue 33 dive shop offers guided scuba adventures to small islands off the coast. Take in beautiful purple-colored kelp, zebrafish, and even large pods of squid if you’re lucky, all courtesy of the excellent visibility Jeju’s sub-tropical water affords.
Deutsch speaks English, German, and Korean, and has been living and diving in Korea for many years. He’s safety-oriented and professional as a dive master. For groups of five or more people you can even arrange a five day NAUI certification course.
The best visibility is in fall and early winter, October to November, due to the low plankton count, however the best weather is in the spring.
Dinner, noraebang cruise: If you love being on the water, but not necessarily in the water, Jeju Cruise is the perfect option. Starting at the port in Dodu, just ten minutes west of Jeju Airport, Jeju Cruise is a relatively new addition to the Jeju aquatic scene. It offers sunset and evening cruises. Each cruise offers a buffet and even has an onboard noraebang.
Jeju Cruise is an enjoyable experience. Whether it’s for a romantic evening out with a loved one, or simply for some relaxation as you take in the Jeju coast and impressive views of Hallasan from the water.
Tickets are 15,000 won up to 40,000 won for dinner. Currently they have a seasonal 10% discount option on their Web site: www.jejucruise.co.kr. The site is in Korean, but if you call they have English-speaking receptionists to help with reservations.
Whether under the sea or above, Jeju has water activities for everyone.
ⓒ Jeju Weekly 2009 (http://www.jejuweekly.com)
All materials on this site are protected under the Korean Copyright Law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published without the prior consent of Jeju Weekly.
Mail to firstname.lastname@example.org | Phone: +82-64-724-7776 Fax: +82-64-724-7796
#505 jeju Venture Maru Bldg,217 Jungangro(Ido-2 dong), Jeju-si, Korea, 690-827
Registration Number: Jeju Da 01093 | Date of Registration: November 20, 2008 | Publisher: Hee Tak Ko | Youth policy: Hee Tak Ko
Copyright ⓒ 2009 All materials on this site are protected under the Korean Copyright Law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published
without the prior consent of jeju weekly.com.