Thursday, 31 August 2017

Summer in Seoul: Yachting On The Han!

                             (My boat ride!)

About a kilometer west of the Sebitsome, or the three man-made islands in Banpo Park in Seoul, is a small harbor. I had never been to this spot before.

Yachting isn't exactly popular along the Han River because there isn't much to see anyway, and putting up a marina doesn't sound like a smart or profitable thing to do.

            (The marine was on the Gangnam side 
                         of the Han River)

But one summer day, I was lucky to have been able to enjoy a yacht ride along the Han. I already did the Han River cruise on a ferry boat from Yeouido before. This time, I was on a smaller boat with fewer passengers!

I know the Han River so well. My neighborhood, Hannam-dong in the Yongsan District, is next to the river. When I needed to stretch my legs, I'd usually stroll along the river bank up to the Banpo Park. Sometimes, even during the cold months, I still managed to brave the freezing temperatures just so I could burn some calories.

             (The Banpo Bridge from our yacht!)

But on this summer day, I didn't have to worry about freezing or tiring my legs. I just had to be careful I didn't fall overboard. Ha-ha-ha! We all had to wear life vests by the way. No worry about drowning there; only getting wet in the murky river.

        (How I wanted to help out pulling those ropes. 
           But I worried I might fall overboard!)

              (Sail away! Sail away! Sail away!)

The free yacht ride was actually courtesy of an event partially sponsored by the Korea Tourism Organization. And since it was free, you can just imagine the long lines of people who wanted to get into that boat for a short cruise along the waters of the Han River. 

Our boat didn't really cruise the stretch of the Han. We merely circled around the waters near Banpo area for about 20 minutes. Although I wanted the ride to have been longer and reached up to the Yeouido area, I was just thankful for the free ride and for the time under the summer sun that day.

           (The Dongjak Bridge and the silhouette 
              of the Ichon-dong neighborhood)

In the Philippines, I have done a lot of boating around the clear blue waters of the archipelago where you can see lots of fish and other aquatic creatures of different shapes and colors. We probably take our boating for granted there. But here in Seoul, some people might not have even able to experience boating, much less being on a yacht! 

So, the next time you see a yacht cruising along the Han River, you'd probably want to try it yourself.

Have fun!

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