LIFE&STYLE

Ulsan family crosses Eurasia in minibus

By Korea Herald
  • Published : Oct 22, 2013 - 19:42
  • Updated : Oct 22, 2013 - 19:42

Choi Dong-ik (second from right) and his family jump at Cape Roca in Portugal after arriving there Sunday by driving a minibus from Cape Ganjeol, Ulsan, Korea, for 140 days. (Yonhap News)
A five-member family from Ulsan has crossed Eurasia by driving their minibus from Cape Ganjeol in the southeastern city to Europe’s westernmost point Cape Roca in Portugal.

Choi Dong-ik, 51, his wife Park Mi-jin, 45, daughter Da-yoon, 19, son Jin-young, 17, and son Jin-woo, 16, arrived at Cabo da Roca or Cape Roca on Sunday, Yonhap News reported.

Cape Roca is a well-known European tourist spot where the land ends and the sea begins.

They departed from Cape Ganjeol on June 3, took a boat from Korea’s east coast to Russia and drove through 10 countries until they reached Cape Roca. It took them 140 days to cross the massive landmass of the two continents.

They drove about 200 kilometers a day for a total of 22,500 kilometers through Russia, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Luxembourg, France, Spain and Portugal.

Choi kept a travelogue (doegi.blog.me) and wrote about road conditions, service stations, Korean restaurants, tourist spots, guest houses, roadside restrooms, his impressions about the places his family visited, and much more.

Their minibus once broke down after passing the rugged Ural Mountains and dirt roads near Lake Baikal in Russia. They had a hard time finding an auto repair shop. In some parts of Russia, they ate meals and slept in the bus in a fire department parking lot. They waited for more than two hours before being allowed to cross into Finland.

“In traveling, everything comes by chance. Have I taken a wrong way? No way has turned out wrong,” he wrote.

Cape Roca is the turning point for the Chois, who plan to make a 52,000-km Eurasian round trip that no Korean has ever made within 365 days.

By Chun Sung-woo (swchun@heraldcorp.com)