Suncheon Bay

DSCF6223

There are five great areas of tidal flats (a.k.a mudflats) in the world, and one of them is the southwest coast of South Korea. I visited Suncheon Bay, which is the largest tidal flat in South Korea, and the 5th largest in the world. It is a tentative World Heritage Site.

The map shows that Jeollanam province is in southwestern South Korea, and that Suncheon is in the eastern side of the province.

Earlier in 2014, I had visited wetlands in Japan, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, and I wanted to see at least once wetlands in South Korea so I could compare them all, and Suncheon seemed to be the most impressive (or at least the one most accessible to tourists).

DSCF6221

After having seen so many wetlands in 2014, I could not help but wonder if Suncheon Bay would disappoint.

DSCF6224

Well first of all, that clear sky, those white clouds, the green hills, and the wide, flat, reflective river offered dramatic scenery.

DSCF6225

This scenery alone makes Suncheon Bay a worthy place to visit.

DSCF6226

Wetlands are also generally cool because they have so much life – if you pause an observer your surroundings, you’re bound to notice something interesting.

The tall reeds of Suncheon Bay

The tall reeds of Suncheon Bay

There are various spots along the boardwalk where you can look down and see little creatures, such as crabs, in the mud.

DSCF6231

Suncheon Bay is a habitat for many migratory birds, including the rare and endangered Hooded Crane (it’s estimated that there are only about 10,000 hooded cranes in the world).

A depiction of a hooded crane's nest inside the eco-museum

A depiction of a hooded crane’s nest inside the eco-museum

I continued walking along the boardwalk.

DSCF6228

The boardwalk for visitors crossings the river and the flat area to the base on of those green hills.

DSCF6235

Visitors then hike up the hill (there is an ‘easy’ path and a ‘hard’ path) to see the views from above.

DSCF6236

I reached an observation platform where I could see where the wetlands meet the sea.

DSCF6239

I then got another look at where the river meets the sea from another platform.

DSCF6240

And then I reached the final observation platform.

DSCF6241

My eyes were really drawn to red algae, but the most impressive aspect was the sheer scale of the mudflat.

DSCF6243

I also have not seen many rivers shimmer in the sunlight like that.

DSCF6244

The islands in the distance also had a mystical appearance.

DSCF6245

The clouds passing by left diffuse shadows on the sun-drenched countryside.

DSCF6246

I know the sunsets here are beautiful (I’ve seen photos), but I had to catch a bus to downtown Suncheon, and then back to Gwangju City, so I had pull myself away and walk back to the bus stop.

DSCF6250

This wetlands definitely exceeded my expectations. It really is wonderful to observe, whether to appreciate its ecological value, or to simply to enjoy its broad scenery. It’s one of the highlights of my South Korean odyssey.

DSCF6247

Advertisements

About Sara K.

Sara K. is an aromantic asexual from California who has previously lived in Taiwan. She blogs at the notes which do not fit, has previously been a contributor at Manga Bookshelf, and has written guest posts for Hacking Chinese. She enjoys reading, travel, live theatre, learning languages, and gardening.
This entry was posted in Jeollanam, Mostly Photos, Museum, Sea and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Suncheon Bay

  1. Pingback: Bomun-sa, Seongmodo’s Temple of Having Sons | S.K. in S.K.

  2. Pingback: SK in SK: Chronological Order | S.K. in S.K.

  3. Pingback: SK in SK: Climates of South Korea | S.K. in S.K.

  4. Pingback: SK in SK: The Landscape of Feelings | S.K. in S.K.

  5. Pingback: SK in SK: Discovery vs. Construction | S.K. in S.K.

  6. Pingback: Epilogue: My Favorites in South Korea | S.K. in S.K.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s