No Korean Visa? Visit Jeju Island Instead!
Just off the coast of South Korea is Jeju Island, a mystical island that attracts thousands of visitors (mainly honeymooners and domestic travelers) every year. This island is known for its natural wonder, including a dormant volcano, waterfalls, white sand beaches, and Haenyo Divers (women divers) who goes underwater to harvest abalone, sea urchin, octopus, and seaweed. The island also holds over 20 museums of various interests and lots of good Korean food and beauty brands.
Best of all, Jeju Island is visa-free for Filipinos! Travelers can either fly to Jeju via Shanghai or Seoul (both requires a visa) or booked a guided tour with Rakso Travel, one of the leading travel agency here in the Philippines. There are no direct commercial flights to Jeju from Manila, but Rakso will take you there through a chartered flight with Philippine Airlines.
Here are five good reasons why you should visit Jeju Island during spring time:
Watch The Painters: HERO
People of all ages will appreciate this entertaining non-verbal visual performance. Throughout the 80 minutes of the show, viewers will witness the entire process of drawing and painting combined with visual effects, dance, music, and comedy. The tickets of this show is a bit steep, but trust me, it's worth it!
Take A Photo in The Field of Canola Flowers
One of the highlights of my visit to Jeju Island was this sweeping field of yellow Canola Flowers. Stop by and take photos, absolutely free! Make sure you wear something that will make you pop — like my blue hair and pink sweater!
Word of caution: There are bees pollinating in the area but they won't harm you as long.
Stroll Along Hallim Park
Hallim Park is one of Jeju's most popular attraction due to its vast variety of subtropical plant and two-dimensional caves. This place is huge that I recommend you give yourself at least half a day to explore.
Avoid the Crowd and Take Photos with Cherry Blossoms
Hanami season is a popular tourist attraction in Japan, but you can also enjoy these beautiful trees in Jeju Island. There are a couple of spots for you to take photos and the best part of it? You don't have to deal with the large volume of people!
Visit one of the museums
There are over 20 museums scattered all over the island, including a Teddy Bear Museum and a sex-themed park called Love Land. Choose one that piques your interest. Of all the museums we've visited during our visit in 2015, I liked the Trick Eye Museum, a 3D art museum, the most.
Pick the Sweetest Strawberry
If you're a big fan of strawberries, this is something you need to do when you are visiting Jeju Island. The strawberries (even the mandarin orange) are the sweetest you'll ever taste.
Last but not the least...
Discover the World's Heritage Sites
Jeju has been blessed with natural sites that deserve our undivided attention. This is why UNESCO listed three World's Heritages in Jeju Island: the Hallasan National Park, Manjanggul Cave, and Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak. The Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak or Sunrise Peak rose from a volcanic eruption and has become Jeju's iconic landmark. The peak provides an exquisite backdrop over sunrises and a panoramic view of the province. Travelers can also witness the sunrise here, provided they come prepared by wearing comfortable shoes,
Did you know? Jeju Island is also a great place for digital nomads!
Aside from the natural wonders and delicious Korean food, South Korea has a strong coffee culture — there's always a coffee or pastry shop every five minutes. The internet is also insanely fast. There was this one time I was able to download a bunch of TV shows in a span of 10 minutes. Yep, that fast!
Although rent is subjective, the prices are still a lot cheaper when compared to South Korea's capital, Seoul.