Anyeong! Awesome to finally land my feet in Seoul, Korea. Unlike my several trips in Japan, this was my first time to see Korea on the naked eye. We decided to visit this marvelous country from March 24 to April 3, 2016. Spent a lot of time in Seoul with Richard Bakchansu, a Korean native that visits the Philippines so often and Shemelyn Sespeñe, one of my college friends in the University of Santo Tomas, now studying in Seoul.
The most exciting itinerary for us was when we saw the Cherry Blossoms. The soft side of me showed up when I saw all the pink flowers. haha! Korea gave us plenty of smiles with its happy vibes brought by Korean’s positive energy. I just realized that compared to Japanese’s serious vibe and laid back attitude, Koreans are more outgoing and fun. I felt like Koreans and Filipinos have the same personality given that we are very talkative, fun and a bit noisy, in positive way. haha!
Are you intrigue on what went down on our Korea trip? Check out our day-to-day itinerary below:
- Checked in our Airbnb in Yeouido
- DONGDAMEMUN DISTRICT
- Dongdaemun Gate
- Lunch at Gwangjang Market
- Changgyeochoen Stream
- Moonbeam Pancake must try!
- Gyeongbukgong Palace
- Bukchon Hanok Village
- Myeongdong – Myeongdong Kyoja for dinner
- Changdeokgung Palace and Secret Garden
- Insadong – ssamsiegil
- insa art center and lots of cultural artworks and shops
- Hongdae w/ Shemelyn
There were plenty of street performers and a smaller version of Myeongdong. There were also a lot of Korean BBQ restaurants in the area, one after the other. On the 26th of March, we also went club hopping to different bars and played electronic darts.
Sorry in advance, but we didn’t enjoy what Soul Zoo offered. There wasn’t much special to see and there was a lot of strenuous walking from one area to another. But if you are the type of person who wants to people watch and just learn how the culture of Korean families are when they are at a zoo, then this place might be a thumbs up for you.
Shopping at Hongdae
Surprisingly, one of the famous brands in Manila, Bershka had a 50% off on winter clothes maybe because the spring season was almost there. It was really cold at that time so we were lucky enough to get a huge discount out of all the winter clothes we bought.
Had Chicken and Beer for dinner
another must try if you’re in Korea
- Tour Package
- Together with us, there was a Filipino family of 4, the Rafa family.
- They were very friendly and we had a blast talking about our travels
- Nami Island
A must-see, this is a famous island about 2 hours away from Seoul. A very relaxing and isolated island that we traveled through a 10-minute ferry ride from. You’ll see an amazing symmetry of trees lined to form pathways. If you are into Kdramas you would recognize the location as lot of famous shows and local and internal movies were filmed here.
- Petite France
Small pastel colored town with a puppet show
amazing view of Seoul from above
Since Ynne and I are in a long distance relationship, on that day we made sure and took advantage of our bonding out of the 11-day vacation we have in Korea. We even watched the movie, “Batman vs. Superman” at CGV Gangnam.
We met my Korean friend “Park” that visits the Philippines a lot. He treated us dinner and toured us in Konkuk. Something new to our eyes was that this university has a lake in the middle of the school. On that Konkuk tour, we strolled and talked about the Korean way of living. This was indeed an experience to remember.
My initial concern for the Everland theme park was that it's a bit far from Seoul. We took a 2-hour ride bus at Hongdae to reach the place. It’s not your usual theme park like Universal Studios Japan or Disneyland, this place is different. It’s more about what Koreans like in terms of the rides and entertainment. We only rode a few rides and we chose to explore the theme park instead.
Ate dinner in Hongdae
- Had brunch in Myeongdong
- Explored more of the street food stalls
- NANTA SHOW
- A comedy cooking mime show worth every penny
- A very funny and never ending entertainment show
- Tried the Cat Café
Honestly, I hate cats but we tried to go there anyway to see for ourselves and how it is in this kind of cafe. Sorry cat lovers, but the cats were not friendly at all. Enjoyed the coffee though, and seeing different breeds of cats.
- Met Ynne’s aunt, Rommel
- Aunique place, this place is kind of a foreigner’s land
- A lot of tourists reside here
- National Museum of Korea –
- History and Cultural heritages
- Chicken and beer with Park again
- Yeouido Park
- Cherry Blossoms was already at 80% at this time.
- The Pink bloomed throughout the park.
- Enjoyed taking a lot of photos.
- Myeongdong, for the last time.
- We really enjoyed spending our time here.
- Every visit is like experiencing a new adventure from shops to the food choices
Sadly like any other trip, the vacation had to end. But out of all the days we had in Korea I really enjoyed every moment we experienced. A truly magical and worth it vacation for me, Ynne, and my friends. Don’t forget to add Korea on your bucket list!