Thursday, June 4, 2009

Jjimjilbang Videos

To give you more of an idea of what the saunas in Korea are like if you've never been, you can check out these videos.
First is a news report from Al-Arabiya TV showing one that has just opened in Virginia! The only difference I noticed were the tables outside the cafe - western style with chairs, as opposed to floor cushions and foot-high tables.

This one is a Korean commercial for a jjimjilbang. Might want to turn the volume down. (This is a typical Korean commercial, by the way!)

This is another promo for a jjimjilbang in the U.S., but I'm not sure where. This one looks great, but the difference this time is the handrails to get into the tubs. Here, if you slip, it's your own fault!

Yeah, I kept looking, but most other videos are crap. There you go.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Boseong, Yulpo Beach - Yulpo Haesu Nokchatang *Green Tea Bath*

This one is a little secret on the coast just south of Boseong. If you want to see some green in Korea, you must visit the green tea fields (녹차밭) near Boseong. Then you can take the same city bus farther south to Yulpo beach. The beach was on the small side, a bit grey and full of shells. Maybe not so good for swimming, but then again, I was there last weekend - before bikini season had begun.

Anyway, on to the sauna. Just a sauna, you and your opposite-sexed traveling companions will need to spend a bit of time apart to enjoy this place. It's reasonably priced and incredibly well located. As you enter, you can choose your own locker (some are worn) then head into the baths. Shower off all the sand and sweat, then hop in.

There's a nice, bathwater temp saltwater tub just beyond the ice tub, also saltwater. (You'll likely think it's too cold, but after spending as much time as you can stand steeping in the green tea bath, it will feel great!) The tea was around 41*C when I was there. But I enjoyed going back and forth between green tea and ice water, and I also used a towel soaked in cold water to chill my face.

I saw many women rubbing the green tea foam on their face, so I suppose it's good for your skin. The green tea and warm tubs are next to the warm tub, on the ocean-side of the building. The walls are tub-to-ceiling glass so you can steam away while staring out at the receding tide. Sooooo relaxing!

Enjoy the pretty tea fields and various green tea products, and cap it off with a soak, my kittens!

전라남도 보성군 회천면 동율리 678 (율포해수욕장)
Jeollanam Do, Boseong Gu, Hoecheon Myeon, Dong Yulri #678 (Yulpo Beach Area)
Open 6:00 - 20:00 Daily

Rates: 5,000 won - Basically
3,000 won - Kids (7 and under)
3,500 won - Seniors (over 65)

Wikimap of Yulpo Green Tea Spa