Feb 29, 2012

중앙탑공원 jungangtap park

This week consisted of a bit of being shuffled around at the university, getting books, a somewhat clarified schedule, and some confusing information in preparation for the start of classes next week. Today being 1절 Independence Day (of Korea from Japan in 1919) we had the day off and I convinced the other teachers to go on a group outing to 중앙탑공원 jungangtap park.

We ended up getting a cab, since the bus wouldn't be running out there for a couple of hours. It was a short ride out to the northwest of Chungju bus terminal. The main attraction of the area was...

The symbol of Chungju, the Jungangtap (pagoda), the entire reason for the existence of the park. It's seven stories high and was seen during the Silla Dynasty as the middle of Korea. And now it's seen as an icon for Chungju and you can see its image popping up all over the city on every tourist related thing possible. Surrounding the park are various sculptures and a lake making it a nice place to laze around.

One of the more interesting sculptures. I think the sculptures at Tangeumdae park were better though...

Continuing to walk a bit north, we came upon this gem of an atrocity:

A museum dedicated to the making and history of wine and beer, the Liquorium! The entrance fee was 4,000 won. The pamphlet made it seem pretty interesting as, during peak season, one could learn to make their own... 막걸리 makgeolli (rice wine)!

The museum itself left a lot to be desired, like lighting, since it was pitch black when we first walked in. Although a lot of their pictures were computer images blown up (some to an obvious pixelated state), printed out, framed and then hung on the wall it was still interesting. 4,000 won worth of interesting? No, but oh well, cheesy tourist traps can be fun. I don't think Jesus would agree though.


Also included was this wonderful diagram that explained the tastes of wine. Who doesn't like their wine fat and nervous?

Another good part were the barrels filled with mystery liquids (pictured to the left). There were little nose shaped cutouts, with a small hole for you to test out the smells.

And the final bit of awesomeness was the rifle wine bottle. You won't find a classier bottle of wine anywhere.

After we wandered around a bit, checked out the tourist shop, that featured a lot of apple products (apple wine, noodles, oil, etc) and then hung around a bit until an incredibly kind bread vendor called us a cab, as we still didn't feel like waiting around for the bus.

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