I woke up this morning and said to myself, what shall we do today?
But when I checked the pollution air quality, as I do every day, I decided to NOPE straight out of Seoul.
Seoul AQI PM2.5 was 163 and Sokcho was… 25. Most small US cities are between 20 and 50.
I immediately booked a hostel for the same day in Sokcho. Then I did laundry, went to the gym, and headed directly to the bus terminal where I was able to book a ticket for the bus coming in 30 minutes.
The bus terminal has changed much since 2016 when my friend and I visited: The floor has been re-done, the squat toilets swapped out for Western, and most importantly there are automatic ticket machines with an English option.
I could see the pollution thinning out as we headed east and once we made it to town I was really blown away by the view. I wandered down to the lighthouse, which is the closest beach access point, and also meandered around the fishmarket. The local sellers were quite kind and one lady patiently explained the price of sea cucumber as I was so curious how much it costs in a beach town.
The hostel gave me directions on how to access the building and room and I have yet to see any other patrons or the owner. I guess I’ll pay… Tomorrow?
Speaking of tomorrow, I’ll wake up early to see the sunrise. There’s a famous beach about 40 minutes walking from here.
I’m just so happy to breathe.