Never in my mind i have a thought to visit Seoul or South Korea more than once in a year. No matter how much i love travelling, visiting the same place twice or three times would be a luxury. However, my wildest dream came true! After my trip to South Korea last year in March, i always had this urge to come back there. After months of browsing and comparing flight tickets, i and few girlfriends bought tickets to enjoy an early spring in Seoul. I remember clearly it was in September 2014. We (6 of us) plan to visit Seoul in late March 2015. Then, the universe conspired to send me back to this one place i cherish. 2014 was not even over yet, Alhamdulilah. It was in November, I got to go back to Seoul and Busan this time. Hoorayyyy!!!
My Busan trip will be told in a separate post, but i think i owe a post about some places in Seoul that i haven’t had a chance to tell in my previous posts. My second visit to Seoul was with my office colleagues, and my third was with two close friends. I was said to have a better understanding of Seoul since they thought i’m a Hallyu fans and i was in Seoul before. Well, the latter is spot on, but to have a better understanding of Seoul, i’m not really sure on that one :)) However, i took my responsibility proudly and happily. I made itineraries for both trip, set up the budget, made reservations for guesthouse, trains, and even the airport transfer. I have to say, i did a quite good job.
Since the participants of each trip were all Seoul-newbies, I got to visit exact same places in both trip. Here are some : Gyeongbokgung, Namsan Tower, Myeongdong, and Dongdaemun, Insadong, Hongdae, Itaewon, and Jamsil area. Some are already told in previous posts, now let me tell you about some other places :
This is a tourist magnet, especially after a huge fame of My Love From The Star, a Korean Drama airing a year ago. Namsan tower was more than a shooting place of the drama, it was part of the story. Tourists and fans of the drama come here to re-enact the sweetness of the scenes. There is an area in Namsan Tower where we can put padlock with our name and the loved one’s written on it. Namsan Tower screams out love and romance with pink glitters all over. The Tower stands tall on the Namsan Hill, so if we climb up the highest level of the Tower, we pretty much can see the whole Seoul. It was breathtaking at night.
Namsan Tower can be reached by various means of transport. Please check this out. I myself went there by getting to Myeongdong first, and walked a bit to the cable car station, then took the cable car to Namsan Tower. it was a nice view while walking up and taking the cable car ride.
One of the thing i love about Seoul is how in the massive concrete jungle, we still can find traditional buildings and temples. There are several palaces and temples located in Seoul. The biggest and the grandest of all is definetely Gyeongbok-Gung. It’s a must-visit and also easy to reach since it’s located right in the heart of Seoul. You can read more details about the royal palace right here and here to find out how to get there. I have been here three times, and still didn’t cover the whole palace because it’s so vast and might take half day just to go thru every corners of it. There are also some cool places to visit around the palace, such as Korean History Museum, Gwanghamun Square, and Children Museum.
Itaewon is an area in Seoul where many foreigners and expatriates choose to reside. That explains the amount of foreign restaurants and bars in this area. Itaewon made it to the itinerary because there was a recommended Halal Korean Restaurant and the biggest mosque in Seoul happens to be located in Itaewon. During my visit last year, we went twice to Itaewon, once was for friday pray and the second one was a return visit to the delish kebab restaurant there.
I finally visited Hongdae on my third trip to Seoul. I and my girlfriends even chose to stay in the neighborhood during our trip last March. Hongdae is where Hongik University, one of the best schools in South Korea, located. No wonder, this area is so alive and vibrant. Restaurans, Coffee shops, bars and cute shops selling cute stuff are what we can find here. Street musicians perform on weekend nights. Some of the best korean delicacies i ate on the trips, i found them in Hongdae. I’d be back!
I just gotta split the post into two parts because writing inspirations don’t come easy, but writing about Seoul never bore me. There will be more places to be revisited in the next post, ’till then..annyeong!