Tuesday, May 27, 2014

My Winter Holiday in Seoul

Travel Dates: November 26 to December 1, 2013

Snow fall at Gyeongbokgung Palace

     Visiting South Korea during winter is a totally different experience for me.  I don’t have any idea how cold does it get, because we only have summer and rainy season in Philippines.  From what I researched, the temperature can drop to below zero degree.

     When going to places, I love packing in backpack for easier movement.  This time I carried two trolley bags with two down feather jackets, boots, knitted long sleeve sweaters, thermal leggings, thermal socks, scarves, beanies and gloves to keep me warm.   I planned my clothes for a week, so I packed what I can carry.  Also, to avoid spending so much money for winter outfit, I borrowed some of the items from my friend of the same body size.  Yes, I’m well prepared when it comes to travelling!

     We touched down the Incheon International Airport in the evening.  As we got out to ride the city bus, we felt the frigid cold air touched our face.  Good thing we were already dressed in winter clothes, before going out of the airport.  We were all excited and happy!

   We checked-in at Duri Guest House, a traditional Korean Hanok house turned into guest house.  The rate was 45,000 won per night.  The owners (Korean couple) were very helpful and friendly.  The room and bathroom were always kept clean.  They provided us with clean towels and a hair blower to dry our hair.

     Cold and hungry, we had our first Korean dinner at a nearby restaurant, just a few steps away from our guest house.  My friend was looking for ajeossi (middle-aged man) who served their food two years ago, but we were greeted by the two ajumma (middle-aged woman).  We ordered Korean barbecue that comes with so many side dishes.  It was a good meal to end the night.

     The next and the following days, we started our adventure going around Seoul and nearby provinces by riding a bus, subway, and city taxi.  The transportation system is efficient, characterized by its punctuality and superb service, making it easy for us to get around.

     We used T-money card for all transportation.  It can be bought and loaded at any 7-11 stores.

     Walking outside was hard when the temperature drops below zero degree.  It was very cold and windy.  At the same time, it can also dry your skin.   So putting a moisturizer is a must to protect your skin.

     It was great going around Seoul, skiing for the first time, playing with the snow, shopping for cheap cosmetic products, eating Korean delicacies, getting lost, practicing my basic Korean language, and everything the city has to offer.

     We went to Gyeongbokgung Palace, Chongmyo Royal Shrine, Gwanghwamun Square, Coffee Prince, and Myeongdong on our first day.

     The next day, whole day fun at Everland and night market at Namdaemun.  Day three, we headed to Jisan Resort to experience skiing.

     While on day four, we travelled to Nami Island, Petite France, and N Seoul Tower.

     Then we shopped some presents at Lotte Mart on our last day and flew back to Manila that night.

     It was a vibrant city you will love to visit.  One week was not enough to see all the attractions.  For sure, I will definitely come back again!  But for now, I don’t know when.

Our room at Duri Guest House

Korean Barbecue

Subway in Seoul

Skiing at Jisan Resort

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