Volunteering for the Korea Wetland Project — Description

The Korea Wetland Project has released PDF versions of my photo journals of a Korea Wetland Keeper (smiley face). The Jirisan Wetland Eco-Tour Journal tells of visiting areas of the park usually restricted to researchers. The Upo Marsh Circuit Hike Journal describes how I got more adventure than I had bargained for in endeavouring to walk around this enormous wetland system.

My photo journals of volunteering for the Korea Wetland Project include this scene from Upo Marsh featuring wooden canoes.
Creating my photo journals of a Korea Wetland Keeper brought me to Upo Marsh, where I saw this beautiful scene.

I learned about the Korea Wetland Project on CouchSurfing. I thought it was perfect for me. Volunteering to go hiking and to write, all in the name of the environment and travel — does it get bundled in a better package than that?

Language barriers don’t generally scare me off, so in mid-August, I went on an all-Korean eco-tour of Jiri Mountain’s wetlands as a volunteer.

My task was to participate in the tour and write a photo journal about it, which would be used to attract more tourists to the eco-tours offered in all of Korea’s national parks.

The tour itself was interesting at times, a bit boring at others. I had people translating for me when they could, but they just couldn’t deal with the technical language of science and botany, so I was often left in the dark. Still, they were able to convey a lot of interesting information and I was thrilled to be visiting prohibited areas of the park.

It was definitely different from the crowded three-day Jirisan trek I’d done in May!

In early October, I gave myself a self-guided eco-tour of Upo Marsh on a circuit hike, after checking with the Korea Wetland Project that Upo is the type of wetland they’re looking to promote through the photo journals of a Korea Wetland Keeper. Once I got the ok, I planned an educational day trip for myself.

Too bad I wasn’t with the Korea Wetland Project when I went to Eulsukdo in Busan, at the mouth of the Nakdong Estuary!

Still, I’m so happy I had this opportunity. I love hiking in mountains, but I was brought up by lakes and rivers. Living by the ocean just isn’t the same. I missed swamps! Thankfully, I found some (smiley face).