FRIDAY MAY 10TH
Today was full of surprises and knowledge about the history behind the Korean war and where and South Korea stand today. We went to the Korean Demilitarized Zone and visited the Han River. I didn’t really have any expectations on what the DMZ looked like, but it definitely wasn’t what I observed. I learned a lot from today and I will remember today for years to come.
When we first we first enter the DMZ, I was astonished by how rural and peaceful the area is, despite the harsh connotation it holds. Rob, our tour guide, noted that since less than 500 people live in that area and can only work there for agricultural purposes, the in total 4km thick region is left for environmental prosperity. While we were in the DMZ area, we also stopped at the last train station in South Korea. It was deafening quiet when we entered. The train station reinforced the tragic distance the two countries now share. At the DMZ, one site we visited was the one of the hidden tunnels the North Koreans built for a potential future invasion. It was quite the trip down hill and once we entered the tunnel, it was extremely small. The DMZ experience was quite memorable, but the Han River was a treat.
At the Han River Cruise, we enjoyed the scenery, felt the ocean breeze and the sun glaring. Some people even fed the seagulls flying in the air. It was great. The real exciting part occurred after the cruise. At the end of the trip, Dr. Yun told us about a game. We were supposed to get to the hotel from the port without any transportation app. We could only ask locals. Luckily, we could work in our group of six. We all got off on a rough start, but we ended up just using the subway and getting back first!
We ended out night trying some Korean BBQ and it was a wonderful experience.