Jeju World Cup Stadium; Jeju Island, South Korea

Inside the Jeju World Cup Stadium on Jeju Island there is a jjimjilbang where I stayed for two of my three nights on the island. Here is the stadium at six in the morning, my first full day on the island. I woke up early to go hiking on Hallasan, South Korea's highest mountain, only to learn immediately beforehand that there was still snow on the gently sloping trail, in April. I was unprepared for a nine-hour hike in snow so I spent the day visiting waterfalls instead.

The stadium hosted matches during the 2002 FIFA World Cup, held in both Korea and Japan. Its design was inspired by the island itself, and also nature on the whole. Its shape is that of an "oreum" (volcanic site) and its roof is reminiscent of a "teu" (traditional Jeju raft) and "geumul" (fishing net). The entrance road suggests an "olle," a traditional local pathway often found on the coast, and the pillars (three shown) represent the world's oceans and continents.