Sunday, December 14, 2014

Donggang River Village

So I signed up for an adventure trip to go to Donggang River Village in Gangwando.
The schedule was packed with caving, hiking, ziplining and of course, food. 
My friend Megan had done this trip before, and she told me it was worth it, and the price was very reasonable for my budget. 
We began the day by meeting the group at the Jangpyeong Bus Station, and we drove by construction for the new transportation center they are building to prepare for hosting the next Olympics Games. 
It was pretty chilly, but we arrived at the village, which was very quaint and featured a bouncy bridge :)

Our housing was also very nice, and it even had a bathub! (A rarity in Korea). Our roommates were also really nice, and we got along great (which is very important). 
We started the trip with unpacking, then lunch and after that we went caving. 
Paengnyoung Cave (also known as White Dragon cave) was discovered in 1976 near the Dongang (East River). We weren't allowed to bring cameras into the cave, but they took pictures of us, and we should be able to see them soon. 
I met some cool people, including a few fellow Avatar fans, and we talked about TV shows and stories for a while :)
It was an interesting experience. We saw a lot of different stalactites and stalagmites along with a cave flower that looked like a snowflake. The path itself was an adventure with twists and turns, places where we had to crawl and other step areas. At the end of the path we reached a big hole where we turned off all the lights and exprienced total darkness. 
We were pretty hungry after the cave hike, and the lady at the fron office gave us some sweet potatoes for the trip back. 
Once we arrived back at the village, they split us into two groups, and my group did ziplining. I skipped the sky jump part, because I really didn't want to jump off a building. But the zipline was fun, and we got back in time for barehand trout fishing. Megan caught two fish, and Whitney caught one :) 

We went back to the food hall for dinner and I met a lot of cool people. I had an awesome conversation about the Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, webseries, movies and books with a really cool guy from New Zealand who was also an English major and studied film :)
The night wildlife safari was the ridiculous part. Veronica saved me by letting me borrow a head warmer and thick hiking socks :) We bundled up and headed outside in little cars, with flashlights and radios, and we tried to find animals, in the freezing cold. Our group saw a bunch of red eyes that the tour guide said were Wild boars, but I wasn't sure. The stars were beautiful at night, and when we got back, we ate the fish that everyone caught along with hot sweet potatoes. 
A telescope was also set up outside to view the stars, but they couldn't figure out how to use it. 
We looked up the instructions in both English and Korean, but I think we made the guide mad, and we gave up. I did see about five shooting stars, which was amazing, and it's really fun to walk over a bouncy bridge at night. 
After stargazing, we hung out with the guys and played a game called 12. It was really fun because you count to tweleve and the twelveth person replaces a number with a rule, and you go around again, but you're not supposed to repeat the rules. It was fun when people forgot the rules, including me, which were mostly made by me and Whitney. (I am so using this game in class with my older kids- without the drinking of course)
The next morning was a much more relaxed schedule. We went for a morning hike, which was a bit slippery with the leaves everywhere. I felt like a little kid trudging through them :)  It was a beautiful view,  and I made a few wishes on the rock towers by the trails on the way up. 

When we got back it was lunch time, and the rest of the day was up to us. I made friends with a cute dog named Dong Ga, who looked a little chilly and bored outside the general store. 

After that we headed to the aquarium which was a nice way to end the trip. We looked at the fish, and they had a really strange 3D cartoon about a river fish who saves his friends from a monster fish by bungee jumping off the waterfall and somehow not suffering from breathing in air. At the end of the movie, a river fairy, or goddess or something spoke and they recived crowns, like leveling up in a video game. It was very interesting. 
We saw some really cool river fish, and they had a really big catfish in one tank that barely moved. 

Upstairs they had Doctor fish who ate your dead skin. It was really fun, and it tickled when they bit your  fingers. 

They also had a really addicting computer game where you basically tried to keep your aquarium fish alive by saving them from aliens and demons. It would be the perfect mobil cell phone game to replace Angry Birds. 
The bus ride back was fairly straight forward. But all in all it was a fun trip. I met a lot of cool people, and I had some time to write while I was there. I recommend this trip, maybe closer to summer and fall, but it was really cool, and it's a reasonable price. 

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