Seoul, South Korea

Seoul, the Soul of Korea

A friend asked me for my Seoul itinerary, which I went to in autumn 2008. Now I wouldn’t be a good travel blogger if I don’t listen to request, aren’t I? Plus Seoul is also one of my favorite travel destinations ever! Since I left my travel notes in Sydney, I had to do a little detective work on the names of the places from photos and emails and lots of browsing.

Kids, remember to always keep notes of your travel. At that point of time you think you’ll remember it forever it was the best time of your life. But you do FORGET. It’s only human. I do keep travel notes for all my trips and they’re super messy. But all the details are there for future references.

Rendy and I spent 8 days in Seoul, South Korea. My best friend at the time happened to be Korean :), so I stayed at her house the entire time we were there. Her mom was the best host I’ve had ever. We were given whole proper Korean breakfast every day (with rice!). We’re so touched.

Note that at the time I had not invested in a DSLR, so all photos were taken with my trustworthy Sony pocket camera.

The 8 days Itinerary

Day 1: Arrived in Seoul. Night shopping and dining at Insa-dong.

Insa-dong, Seoul

Mee with authentic Koreans :)

Day 2: Gyeongbokgung Palace. N Seoul Tower at night.

We went to two palaces during the trip. It was really tricky to find out which ones they were just from pictures, but I am now sure that the two palaces were Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung, because they’re next to each other in the center of Seoul, and we went to the most memorable book cafe located just next to these palaces. (so that sort of became my landmark)

More info on the palaces: The 5 Palaces of Seoul | The Great Palaces of Seoul

Gyeongbokgung Palace

Gyeongbokgung Palace

N Seoul Tower

N Seoul Tower, the highest point in Seoul

Day 3: Lotte World

Lotte World has the world’s largest indoor theme park, noted by the Guinness World Record. Initially we wanted to go to Everland, but it’s further (a bit out of the city) and it’s outdoor so better in the summer.

Lotte World, Seoul

Lotte World, Seoul

Day 4: Naejangsan

“Naejangsan is a famous mountain in the Jeolla-do province, and the best mountain in Korea for viewing autumn’s crimson leaves.” according to the website, and it was indeed beautiful! We went specifically to Seoul in autumn for this and the place was highly recommended by my friend. It’s not a touristy place at all so though there were lots of people, they were all locals. I wish I already had a better camera when I was there. It was so pretty and there were plenty of photo ops!

Luckily my friends had a ridiculously good camera, so the following Naejangsan pictures are courtesy of Jeremy Seunghyun Roh :).





Day 5: Changdeokgung Palace

At the time of visit I didn’t know, but Changdeokgung Palace is a UNESCO World Heritage (entry with guided tour only). It’s located just next to the Gyeongbokgung palace I mentioned above.

Changdeokgung Palace

Hank's Book Cafe, Seoul

Hank’s Book Cafe, my aforementioned landmark

Day 6: Korean Folk Village. Dongdaemun at night.

Korean Folk Village was very fun. It’s a huge complex full of Korean traditional buildings to promote Korean culture and history. Many Korean movies are shot there. I’m not a big fan of Korean dramas, but if you are this would be the place to go! They put the movie / tv series posters everywhere. There were also a few shows throughout the day, like traditional wedding ceremony, Equestrian, acrobatics, and so on.

Dongdaemun is a 24-hour shopping complex. So go nuts! :)

Korean Folk Village

Korean Folk Village

Korean Folk Village

Kinda random, but I love this picture somehow :). Photo courtesy of Jeremy Seunghyun Roh. Also at Korean Folk Village.

Day 7: DMZ

I wrote a whole post on Korean Demilitarized Zone here.

Day 8: We’re off. Aaaw :(

Not quite shown in the pictures were the two times we went to Korean public bath (wrote a whole post on it too). And of course the myriad of fantastic food we had over there. I’ll show you a few pictures below just as a teaser :)

Korean fried chicken and beer

Korean fried chicken and beer – a MUST try popular food!

South Korean meal

OMG the side dishes are the best thing about Korean food! A whole table of side dishes! (and the waiters hadn’t even finished delivering. We had to stack the bowls on top of each other.)

the most authentic kimchi

The most authentic kimchi you’d ever want! Made by hand inside Korean home by a Korean auntie :)

Korean rice cakes

Korean rice cakes

Korean pancake and soup

Korean pancake and soup

Korean silk worms

and don’t forget the uum.. silk worms

So there you go, a quick rundown of Seoul! Good luck, be adventurous, and have heaps of fun! :)



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The Traveling Reader
I left home when I was 17 and never stop exploring the world since. Most days I'm a digital technician at one of the London's biggest visual effects studio. My alternate persona writes and travels and dreams of doing these as a living. I alternately call myself Indonesian or Australian whichever is more beneficial at the time, and I've been a Londoner since 2011.