Annyeong Haseyo – the only Korean word I know not until my recent visit to Seoul that I got to learn my second word, “kamsahamnida” meaning thank you, haha. It’s not that learning Korean language is so hard but it’s more of not paying attention to it and rather giving much appreciation to the country’s distinct beauty. Kamsahamnida Korea!
Though it’s 3 degrees below zero at daytime during my visit, it didn’t stop me to explore more of Seoul for the second time.
Day1 started with a blast, got a free Korean pass from the Korean Tourism Office worth of KRW20,000 (approx. PhP1K) which could be used at various shops including 7-11, really a pretty warm welcome for tourists! Not only that, I was able to wear the Korean costume worn by Kings in ancient times and also got my name written in Korean script, and that’s absolutely free..Cool..only in Seoul!
And at night of Day1, I witnessed the fantastic illumination show of the Seoul Tower. Located at Mount Namsan, Seoul Tower offers great panoramic view of the city.
I started Day2 by attending the mass at the Myeongdong Cathedral- the house of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Seoul, also a neighborhood landmark and a symbol of Christianity in Korea. The mass was in Korean then yet I still felt its solemnness. And though unusual, it’s nice to see people falling in line “by rows” and one at a time during offertory and communion. Of course, my friends and I did the same thing. I love the culture, it’s so organized.
I spent the rest of day2 exploring the Gyeongbokgung Palace where the National Palace Museum of Korea and National Folk Museum are both located. Lucky we had a Korean kid tour guide (absolutely free) to explore the whole thing. A bit tiring though but it’s worth to have seen and learned some of the country’s cultural heritage.
The Everland Resort, Korea’s counterpart of Disneyland finished my day3. An hour bus ride from Seoul, the Everland is the home of the world’s first and steepest wooden coaster. Wow..but I didn’t try it tho. My spirit then was frozen..it was like minus nine, haha what an excuse!
The Demilitarized Zone popularly known as the DMZ conquered my day4. As I’ve mentioned in my previous post about Korea, DMZ is the common grounds for the two nations.
The mountainous region in the photo is part of North Korea and the bridge in the middle is what they call the Unification Bridge, also a part of the DMZ. I learned that this bridge is built in preparation for possible union of the two nations in the future. Let’s just hope and pray that it’s gonna be opened soon. World peace??
After having the historic DMZ tour, what happened next was kinda chilly haha.. got lost in Seoul. Trying to find Yongsan City (the electronic town of Seoul) by walking, we got lost because instead of taking the subway as clearly instructed in the guidebook, we opted to walk since the map says it’s just two stations away from our current location. Thanks to the Chinese lady who speaks English, she guided us to just take a cab. Lesson learned, follow instructions, don’t dare! Haha!
My adventure wouldn’t be complete without visiting for the second time the “Coffee Prince Road” to have some ice blended coffee at the Coffee Prince, this time with other set of friends. Cool and relaxing!
The Olympic Stadium highlighted my second visit to Seoul. It was so fortunate that our group had the chance to enter the stadium and even allowed to run the full stretch of the Olympic track! One of my cool experiences!
My last stop was at Lotte World – the biggest indoor theme park in Korea. Christmas is in the air at Lotte World, full of fun games, adventure rides all themed with spirit of Christmas.
Of course, not to mention all the Korean food I tried, I would like to share my favorite, the Korean Bibimbap..SARAP!
It’s been another memorable and awesome Korean adventure for me and I’d say that it’s not only the two Korean words I learned that matter but of course the fantastic memories and experiences I got from revisiting and exploring remarkable places like Seoul.