Yeosu Expo


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August 10th 2012
Published: August 21st 2012
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Yeosu Expo
10th Aug: Met up at the express bus station in Seoul, a little after 11. Since it was a small group, only 16 people, we had a mini bus instead of a proper coach. Tried to get comfortable and get some sleep.

11th Aug: We arrived at a beach near Yeosu around 4:30 am after a couple of toilet stops. We all got off the bus to inspect the beach, however it was a bit dirty and grotty looking, so most of us got back on the bus to sleep. Woke up around 6:30. Had breakfast sitting by the beach. Stocked up on ice coffee from a little shop nearby, as it was going to be a long day. Headed to the public bathrooms to try and make myself look presentable.

We left just before eight and headed to the Expo site, the drive didn't take too long. Bus driver lost his rag with some young kid, who wouldn't let him drive down a certain road. We got there handed in our ID and got our tickets. One of the perks of being a foreigner is that we only pay 10,000 won per ticket, while the Koreans pay 30,000
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won. Score!

Our first stop was the aquarium. We had a reservation for 9 am, so we didn't have to wait in the huge queue and so we just headed straight to the front. The aquarium was quite good, however it was far too busy, meaning that it was hard to get to the front and see the fish and other sea creatures. I'm glad I didn't have to wait in the queue for 3 hours or longer, as I would have been seriously disappointed! I went to the Local Government Pavilion, as it had info about a lot of the different regions in Korea. It was quite good. Our next reservation was at the Climate and Environment Pavilion, that was a bit meh! But atleast we didn't have to wait in the queue.

We then decided to head over to the International Pavilions, (that was the main draw for me), to grab some lunch. We ended up going to an extremely expensive international buffet, 24,000 won plus a service sharge on top, however the food was really good and just what we needed after our long journey last night. Also there was free coffee at the buffet,
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so I was able to top up my caffiene levels.

After lunch we had some free time before our first pavilion reservation, so we went and looked round a few pavilions, i.e. those with no queues. We went to Brunei, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Philippines. Cambodia was great because the smell inside totally reminded me of Cambodia. Also Malaysia had a guy outside doing a cool show with some roti dough. The Philippines' pavilion had some funky lights in it suspended from the ceiling.

Our first reservation of the afternoon was at the Japanese Pavilion. We were ushered inside and in the first room we went into showed the relationship betwee nthe forest and the sea. It was okay, the next room was a lot more interesting, however it was so dark we were struggling to keep our eyes open. On the screen, they told the story of Kai (Japanese for sea), a boy who lost his family in the tsunami. He finds a white bicycle, while out looking for his family and goes on an amazing adventure over land and sea, showing how life goes on. Pretty cool!

The rest of the afternoon was spent
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going round more of the pavilions. Angola totally blew me away. They had a great promotional video and really friendly staff. I never thought I would say this but I really want to go to Angola, the beaches looked great! Peru was a bit meh, apart from the giant squid table, now that was cool. Sweden, I really liked, they had a pretty simple concept stating loads of quirky random facs about the country. Pakistan was impressive and I wish I had had longer to read all the information they had on display. Switzerland was really innovative. They had projectors in the floor and you stood cupping your hands over the projectors to see the images. They also had an ice room, it was lovely to feel cold again, something that hasn't happened since I was in England. We also got some mineral water to drink and they put on a cool light show.

Some countries were nothing really to write home about, Italy, Denmark, the Netherlands, Monaco, and Belgium, although Belgium were selling their chocolates off for cheap, well it would've been rude not to buy any. Nigeria and Sri Lanka were just shops really. Egypt was a
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real disappointment. There were just a load of cardboard boxes clumped together to look like a pyramid. Also Tunisia left a nasty taste in my mouth. I bought some harissa paste and handed over 10,000 won. When I asked for my change the bloke told me, that the harissa was 10,000 won, to which I replied it wasn't. The bloke then asked me to name my price, so I said 4,000 won and then showed him the sticker on the tin, with that price on. He then tried to say that was the price for the smaller tin, of which they didn't have any. I was about to tell them just to give me my money back, when he finally gave me my change. If you're gonna try and rip someone off, don't put a price tag on the item, you numpty.

For dinner that night we left the Expo site to go to a cheaper restaurant outside. We ended up going to this raw crab place. The crab itself was pretty nice, however it wasn't very filling and it was a bit of a faff onto suck it out of its shell. Also the side dishes weren't great,
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so I left still feelnig pretty hungry. We stopped in at an outdoor bar for some makgeolli. Then it was back to the expo site to watch the big O show. The big O is exactly that. A big O in the water. the show was really good with different coloured light and the O shot out fire and water. Very impressive! We left the Expo site just before 11 and it took about 40 minutes to get to the minbak. The minbak was very ghetto. our bus driver was pretty irate when he got there as the minbak didn't have a sign and he was sure to let the proprietor know. It was a bit of a nightmare sharing two bathrooms between all 16 of us, especially as we all needed showers. However I mamaged to get showered and in bed just before one, and fell straight asleep.

12th Aug: Woke up around 6:30 as people were starting to get up. However I didn't move until after 7. Got dressed and ate breakfast, which was really nice, and big thanks to Christopher for cooking it for us. We were due to leave at 8 am, however breakfast took
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forever to cook, and some people went to the coffee shop next door for breaky and it took the poor girl there 40 minutes to make some coffees and a few bagels. This led to our bus driver being even more pissed oof than yesterday. We eventually got on the bus around 9 and we had missed our reservation for the robot pavillion. Comical moment, when about 5 minutes along the road we realised we had forgotten to get the free expo tickets that the minbak owner was meant to give so we had to turn around and go back.

We finally arrived at the Expo and headed to the Korean Pavilion for our reservation there. I was really pleased with the Korea Pavilion, they obviously went ot a lot of effort with their show, take note Egypt. For the first part we were surrounded on thre sides by views from around Korea, a woman was singing behind the main picture and then 4 or 5 women in Hanboks came out and started dancing around us. It was cool, because it was totally unexpected. Then we moved on to the second room, and we all lay on the floor
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and looked up at the ceiling above us, on to which the image of the sea was projected. It was amazing and you really felt part of the ocean.

We headed to the robot pavilion, to lie that we got held up in traffic and could we possibly be let in now. They were amazing and they let us straight in. So kind because they could of told us to take a hike. The robot exhibition was pretty good, but it's not really my cup of tea, and I felt they should of let less people in as it was hard to see what was going on in some parts. There isn't much difference between a K-pop star and a robot.

None of the corporate pavilions would let us queue jump, so they all got the cold shoulder. So we went back to the international pavillions, checking out the other Atlantic pavillion, which housed a lot of different nations. We didn't really do that much else. Just had a wander around the gift shops, got henna tattoos, bought tat, and had lunch sitting out in the sun, Turkish kebabs and Turkish ice cream, nom nom! We left the
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Expo around 3 and got back to Seoul around 8:30, then it was the long treck home and finally to my bed.


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7th September 2013

Can't Remember Turkmenistan
I noticed that one of your photos says "Can't remember" - it was Turkmenistan, and the photo was of its emblem (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Emblem_of_Turkmenistan.svg)
8th September 2013

Turkmenistan
That's brilliant. Thank you!

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