Budget Travel Korea | Jeju | Hanwha Aqua Planet
This place never came across my mind when I was researching about tripping South Korea; it was never on the list.
We found it by accident when we were walking on the olle trail from Seopjikoji to Seongsan Ilchulbong and were very glad that we did.
Just as Seopjikoji, Hanhwa Aqua Planet Jeju was also around 10 minutes away by taxi from our stay, Kim's Cabin.
|Hanhwa Aqua Planet Jeju is located on the same cape as Seopjikoji, on the east coast of Jeju island|
It was around 11 am when reached it, just in time for the first dolphin show of the day scheduled at 11.10 am.
We puchased our tickets at the counter for KRW39,000 per person and after looking at several tanks upon entering the exhibition hall, we quickly rushed to the amphitheater.
They started off with an aquatic musical drama show by a group of synchronized swimmers. I mean, they were acting and swimming and diving following a story line. They were also hanging off a hoop tied to a rope above the pool while doing some acrobatic acts. I remember thinking if it ever came close to a cirque de soleil show.
|A sea lion act before the much awaited dolphin show|
And later came the dolphins which was a separate and the highlight act.
It was my very first experience watching real-life dolphins in my life and certainly the first ever dolphin show for me, so I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say that it was mind-blowing for me to see the gentle creatures leaping and clapping and swimming and occasionally showcasing their high-pitch ultrasonic sound.
They were so playful, adorable and smart; aawww I hope I could see them in a natural setting in the future.
I didn't take any photos of the show but checkout a part of the dolphin act in this video I uploaded on youtube,
After the show ended, we made our way back into the exhibition halls and continued where we left off.
|I never though I'd see this gilled in real life!|
The biggest tank I've seen in my life yet ..
|Another animal that I never thought I'd see in real life - walrus ^^|
|The dolphins again, after their show|
|This viewing window is on the wall of the same pool that they performed in|
|Sardine bait ball and sharks in a tank!|
When we left the aquarium for Seongsan Ilchulbong, it was around 2pm+. There weren't many cabs around then so we had to walk for a bit before we managed to get one.
So now you know our ambition to make it to Seongsan Ilchulbong on foot was shortlived ha ha .. We would have done it though if only we had more time to discover Jeju (and proper shoes) but that was just not the case :P
This tour (along with the other aquaria I've been to in Malaysia) was a guilty-pleasure for me as deep down in my heart I do feel that it's not right to keep animals in a confined area like this. I mean, there can be no amount of space that humans could possibly provide that would suffice these animals' needs. However, I was also curious to see them in real-life and learn about them so from time to time I do succumb to these temptations =D
Call me bipolar but whilst I enjoyed Hanhwa Aqua Planet Jeju it also hurts me to say that it's my most memorable aquarium visit yet. Sigh.
Easiest way is by taxi, but could cost you a lot if you stay way outside the east coast of Jeju.
More details on transportation here.
Visit Hanhwa Aqua Planet Jeju website for details on admission fees and operation hours.