The Summer 2013 in Seoul
My entree today is about my trip to Seoul last June. Because I am running out of idea what to write next in my blog hahahaha.
Actually I booked the ticket to Seoul for March during springtime. The ticket was from Aur Asia X and so darn cheap. RM1500 for 2. Cheap right? Usually it can cost you RM1200 for one person. That is why you have to check Air Asia Page regularly, just for fun.
Sadly, my leaves were not approved in March so I had to delay the flight till June which was summer. Hmm not my favourite season as it is hot, dry and the flora will be similar to tropical looks such as Malaysia. Besides, I would be 6 months pregnant. Horror walking non stop in this condition.
So off we went.
I will say that Seoul is just amazing. It is an urbanisation in a conventional way. A city with traditions and heritage.
They build the city around several old palaces and shrine.
So, when you wander around the city and admiring its architecture, you might stumble on The Gyeongbokgung Palace, Changyeongung and Gwanghaemun.
The palaces were exactly as feautured in korean dramas such as Ok Jung and korean dramas featuring princessess and king. You can buy a ticket which permits entrance to all the palaces and could last for 3 days if I am not mistaken. That way, you save more. The palaces were made from wood and they use no nails.
We had a tour guide in English who showed us around Jongmyo Shrine. This is a place where they believe all the Joseon king and queen's spirit remain. It is not a grave. It is a big sort of palace for the deceased king's and the ancesters.
You see, a modern city is almost similar to the next city but what makes it special is the heritage. That is how we can grasp their culture and history. Each country has different culture and history which gives a unique identity to each one.
I love culture and history.
Seoul is a such a big city. Imagine how tiring I was walking around carrying my belly. Still, we wander around from morning till night. Exploring all the hot places, shopping centres and gardens.
Luckily the public transportations were superb. As long as you have the public pass card, you will be fine. We use underground everywhere. Our hotel was just opposite the underground station so just cross the road.
We chose The Hamilton Hotel in Itaewon. Why? Because Itaewon is a street with Muslims and lots of muslim's food. I didn't see any other halal place when I walked around in Seoul. Besides, Itaewon is a lively place where Korean hanged out at night and during the day. There were also pubs and restaurants on the hill behind the hotel. Very alive. For us, we just explored the street, bought souvenirs, tried the Turkey Falafel, kebab, Indian food on top of the hill(candlelight dinner facing the night scene of Seoul) and visiting a mosque which is also at Itaewon.
Be warned that food in korea is very expensive. Practically everything in Korea is expensive including a small bottle of mineral water. We ate in the restaurant once-our candlelight dinner and the rest we enjoyed the Paris bakery and falafel. That is the way of travelling. The baguettes, croissants and pastries were to die for. Very European. We are not fans of korean food so we avoid that completely. We can't abide the taste. Japanese yes. Korean No.
Hamilton hotel is a very big and established 4 stars. It is close to halal food, at Itaewon which is a street to visit and it is close to the centres. A good choice. When choosing a hotel in korea, be careful not to choose a cheap hotel because they are what the local call 'a love' hotel. You know where they come for ahem ahem and leave. The decorations were kinky and too lovey dovey making us want to vomit. Okay ya I booked a love hotel from Agoda because the price were RM 200 plus in 1 night. Okay la. I thought of saving. When we reached there, the place was far from centre, it was near Lotto world, the hotel used red light made me think that we were in red light district where ladies gonna perform a lap dance behind the curtain. Hotel was clean and they gave everything complete. However the decorations were to lovey dovey kinky making me feel uncomfortable. So my dear husband suggested for us to change hotel. So we checked in to Hamilton Hotel. The usual kind of hotel that we are used too. I was thankful for him and his wallet hahaha but still I didn't hear the end of it.
Koreans were so pretty. They looked like their movie stars. It was like you were walking in a set. The girls were tall, fair, skinny and the skin was to die for. Not even 1 blemish, so moisturised. They dressed up very well with the curly hair and clip or headband, very well put on. They don't put too much make up but they just don't walk outside bareface. The skin foundation was good and they applied the natural dewy look. No fake eyelashes or bright pink blusher.
Language was a barrier. The locals can't speak English and they assumed I was Korean so they always asked,'Are you korean?' in korean.
I downloaded korean dictionary in my ipad. We managed to learn few sentences to help us get by. Lucky I watch korean dramas too much. It helped.
We managed to go to Naminara Island and got ourselves a couple t-shirt.
Naminara is where they shoot Winter Sonata. So pretty. We rode the small bus around the island because hubby said I would hurt my feet more if i walk around in the big island.
Enjoyed the lake, ice-cream and scenery.
We should have been here in Spring or autumn or even winter. Sigh*
This was like a babymoon to us. We took our time, walking around, enjoying a foreign city, culture, nature while rejoicing our love. To me a couple vacation is very essential. Imagine making memories while learning and experiencing other cultures with your loved one. Irreplaceable. I have been to many countries in Europe but I have never been there with my husband. I kept thinking how wonderful it will be going with him. Both of us walking hand in hand in the city of London and Paris. Wow!!hahahahaha daydreaming. It is not the place but the company that matters. So if the place is superb and the company is wonderful, you will have a double great time.
So if anyone of you wish to visit Europe this year, just check Qatar Airways website for cheap ticket. I got 3 tickets (2 adults and 1 infant) to Geneva for RM 4213. That price is usually for 1 person.
As for now, I have to work hard for our annual trip:)