I haven't played it in a VERY long time, but I CAN understand the appeal. I don't care about most of the stuff in the game, I quite enjoyed just running around exploring, listening for a sound in the ground and just digging until I found it. In the end all I did was modify my stats or whatever so I had invincible versions of everything and as much supplies as I needed, and proceeded to just dig and dig and dig. I dug down as far as I could, built a simple little minecart tunnel through EVERYWHERE I'd gone, up and over mountains etc.
It was fantastic fun but eventually I just did all the exploring I could and tired of it. Harvesting, cooking, manufacturing etc etc all just sounds really boring to me, too complicated. I thoroughly enjoyed the digging and exploring hahaha. Here's my little base I made, no idea if my old world would even load any more, it's been like a year since I loaded Minecraft;
I used some kind of minecart mod so I could just drive the minecarts effortlessly along the tracks, up or down. I accidentally started that lava flow outside and so on too, was good fun. But that was it... I become pretty attached to characters and things I craft in games, so I wasn't about to just start a new world or anything, so when I took things as far as I could I just sorta gave up on it.
But at the time, it was so fun