My Trip to South Korea 2017

Hi friends!

As many of you who watch my videos on YouTube may know, last year I was incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to finally visit Seoul, South Korea, with my mum. This was a ‘dream-come-true’ trip for me, as many years beforehand I had fallen in love with the Korean language and culture, so this had been the top item on my personal bucket list for a long time! Not only did I want to visit Korea for some sightseeing, but I also really wanted to utilise and practice my Korean language skills, which I must say definitely improved a lot while I was there, as well as experience Korean daily life first-hand. Upon reflecting, this trip truly allowed me to become more immersed into the culture, understand and appreciate cultural differences, and learn so much more about the wonderful city that Seoul is. I would highly recommend anyone to visit Seoul if the opportunity ever arises!

This was my first travelling experience that I ever documented on my YouTube Channel, and honestly, my initial intention was just to daily vlog for memory, because as you can probably imagine, I couldn’t believe that I was finally going to Korea after all of these years! As I uploaded my vlogs to YouTube in real time, I received so many kind, lovely and supportive comments from my viewers- which I am so thankful for- including many, many questions about my trip. To this day, I still continue to get a lot of questions regarding the details of my holiday, and of course I don’t mind that one bit! But to make things a bit easier and to help you as much as possible, I have written up this blog post just for you, covering as much detail as I can remember about my trip to Korea. Hopefully you can find this guide helpful, and if you have any other questions, please leave a comment below, and I’ll get right back! Please also note that everyone’s travelling experience will differ to others, because a huge variety of factors can influence your own trip. This is all purely my own experience, though most of my post will cover factual information such as my itinerary, accomodation, transportation, etc.

So, let’s get right into it!

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General Overview

  • When: Saturday 24th June 2017 to Tuesday 4th July 2017
  • Accommodation: My mum and I stayed in this cute airbnb located in the convenient area of Myeongdong, provided by a very lovely host as well! It was about a 5-7 minute walk to the main Myeongdong shopping area and 1 minute walk to Chungmuro Station, which added to the conveniency as this is a connecting station for some of the busiest lines. There were also plenty of restaurants and shops nearby.
  • Airlines: We flew with China Airlines, stopping over in Taiwan travelling there and back. Our experience was wonderful (especially the vegan meals), and we had booked the tickets in January 2017.
  • Weather: As we were in Seoul during the summer, it was no other than hot and very humid every day. It rained almost every second day, but usually it was just one big downpour before it cleared up again.
  • Transportation: During our time in Seoul, we used the subway system every day to get to anywhere we wanted to go to. It was just so efficient and convenient, not to mention budget friendly too! You can buy a T-Money card at any convenient store or most subway stations, which you simply top up and touch on to use.
  • Itinerary: As this was the trip I had been waiting for, over time I had written down a huge list places that I wanted to visit in Korea. When I was planning for the trip, I looked at the list and generally grouped the places in Seoul that were in around the same area, and turned that into a day’s plan. Even though I had a brief outline of each day before we left off, with the main places we wanted to see booked in to a specific date, we still went with the flow much of the time because we wanted to enjoy the trip, and sometimes the weather dictated our events for the day too.
  • Packing: My best tip- pack light. Thankfully that’s what I did, as the weather is hot and quite humid. Shorts, skirts or light flowy pants are great, as well as many short sleeved tops. Bring a light jacket too, incase the air-conditioning gets a bit cold indoors. An umbrella would be ideal as well, and most importantly, comfortable shoes for walking around in.
  • Language: Korean is, of course, the main language used throughout South Korea. You can get around just fine in Seoul without knowing any Korean, as the subway stations and main tourist areas all have English signs accompanying the Korean, and mainstream stores usually have at least one employee who can speak English. It is, however, always best to learn some basic phrases not only for respect, but to get around easier as well. Not everyone speaks English and it is certainly not used everywhere (as we shouldn’t expect). For example, situations where you may struggle with communication include using the taxi, public bus, local restaurant, local 7/11 store, the supermarket (where everything is written in Korean) or asking for directions from a local.
  • Expenses: Overall, we personally found Seoul to be slightly cheaper than Australia in terms of clothing and public transportation, however each person’s expenses are always dependent on a huge variety of factors. Here are some things you should factor into your budget (if you have one), aside from flight tickets and accommodation:
    • Transportation- The amazing subway system in Seoul is definitely the most budget-friendly way of getting around, which I would highly recommend! You can also use buses, taxis and ubers.
    • Food– High end popular restaurants, especially western ones, will almost always be a lot more expensive than local restaurants or street food. Local food would be the most friendly for your wallet, and you can also find 7/11 stores in almost every corner, which are handy if you need a snack. We found that buying groceries from a supermarket (I personally went to one called ‘Lemon Mart’) more expensive than in Melbourne, however this is purely based on our experience.
    • Entry tickets– I highly recommend researching ticket prices, if there are any, of the places you would like to visit before you go to Seoul. The main tourist attractions do generally charge entry tickets, however there are also plenty of free sight-seeing places to visit.
    • Shopping– This is entirely dependant on what you want to buy and from where. Seoul is home to many shopping areas and variant in terms of what you can buy, and you will probably be overwhelmed by just how many shops there are! It’s also a city that is known for it’s cheap underground shopping malls located in subway stations, selling items from trendy clothing to accessories. Please note that in these places, you generally cannot try on the clothing before buying. (At this stage in my life I wasn’t very focused on minimalism yet, which explains all the shopping I did in Seoul. Though I don’t regret anything, I think I was just overwhelmed by the atmosphere of all the malls!)
    • Emergency– Always have some spare emergency cash with you just in case. Unexpected events can happen at any time when you travel, so it’s best to be prepared than not at all.
    • Phone– If you would like to have some sort of phone/wifi connection while you’re there, you may want to purchase a SIM card when you arrive or book a wifi device rental beforehand. Conveniently, our pocket wifi device came with our airbnb rental, which also had a ‘home’ wifi too. Trust me, you will want to make the most of Korea’s wifi, as it’s classification of having the fastest wifi speeds in the world is no joke! 🙂

I hope that gave you a solid brief understand of my trip to Seoul! Now, I will take you through our itinerary for each day.


Day 1

On Saturday 24th June 2017, mum and I left for Korea at 10:10pm. After our stopover in Taipei, we finally arrived at Incheon Airport at around 11:10am. Upon passing immigration, the first thing we did was exchange some money and buy our T-Money cards inside a convenience store in the airport, which we then used to get onto the Aiport Railway. Everything was quite straight forward, and after half an hour or so on the train, we reached Seoul Station, where we transferred to the subway and exited out of Chungmuro Station. Our airbnb was initially quite hard to find, and even a guard in the area whom I spoke Korean to couldn’t help me, but after asking around some more we finally found the elevator, and used that to check into our cute little room.

We first decided to explore our area a little bit after taking a short rest, and at this point the fact that I was actually in South Korea still hadn’t hit me! (It eventually did though). Pleasantly, we found an ajumma (Korean word for lady or aunty) selling local Korean food inside her little stall on the side of the road, so I opted for some kimbap (probably my favourite Korean dish) for a late lunch. We then also stopped over at Lemon Mart to get some groceries for breakfast and dinner, as we wanted to cook those meals in our airbnb to save some money in that aspect.

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Veggie kimbap from the food stall

For the rest of the beautiful summery evening, we caught the subway to Myeongdong Station and spent some time exploring the bustling area of downtown Myeongdong. We didn’t actually realise yet that it was walking distance from our airbnb, but had we not taken the subway, we wouldn’t have discovered the compact and variant underground mall there. Myeongdong had always the number one place that I wanted to visit as I had watched many Seoul travel videos beforehand, so being there in real life left me speechless- as if I were in a dream! I loved every single part of it; from the vibrant atmosphere of people, street food stalls, street performances, to the loud kpop music playing in all directions and colourful flashing signs. It was surely an unforgettable first day in Korea.

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The streets of Myeongdong at night.

Day 2

The first place we visited on Day 2, or our first full day in Seoul, was Gangnam Station. As I had always loved Korean-styled fashion and heard that there was an underground shopping mall around the area, I couldn’t wait to explore what was on offer. Upon arriving at the station by subway, no matter where we looked, we just couldn’t find the entrance to the mall, so we decided to have lunch at a local porridge restaurant to fuel up again. Knowing Korean definitely came into good use here, as the owner couldn’t speak English, though our comforting meal was indeed delicious. We then retraced our steps back from the restaurant to the station, and somehow finally stumbled upon the entrance to the mall! This was when the sheer size of this underground shopping area became clear to us. Both sides, including the middle of the walkway, were lined with shops upon shops- I couldn’t even see the end, not to mention that we barely walked along one side of it before we were carrying too much. It was also packed with people of many nationalities, trying to grab a bargain for these trendy yet affordable Korean fashion pieces inside every single store.

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Inside the Gangnam Underground Shopping Area

After a rest back at our airbnb, we then decided to visit Myeongdong again, as we had fallen in love with the area and wanted to experience it in the day time as well. We walked around, explored, took it all in, enjoyed ourselves and the weather, and of course, bought some skincare products too. If you would like to try out some Korean skincare, I highly recommend that you visit Myeongdong- this is the area for skincare and makeup stores, and it’s likely that you would need a few days to walk into every single one of them! Many stores were also giving out free samples and masks to lure customers in, which was a bonus. Back outside, I also found some street food that I could try! My eyes casted upon a mochi filled with red bean paste and a sweet strawberry inside, and it sure quickly became my favourite snack and dessert in Seoul.

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Taking my first bite from the mochi in Myeongdong.

That evening, I also did some more grocery shopping from Lemon Mart to stock up our fridge. It was my first time walking in Seoul on my own, as mum was resting in the airbnb, and honestly, I felt very safe! Buying products were a bit challenging at times as everything was written in Korean, but I took my time to read and saw it as an opportunity to practice my Korean again. After cooking dinner ourselves in the airbnb, we then took it easy for the rest of the night. The heat and humidity were starting to take a toll on us due to all of the walking we did (around 15-20,000 steps a day), which is why we always took time to rest every day 🙂


Day 3

We started our third day in Korea in Insadong, known as one of the cultural and art centres of Seoul, and definitely a must visit for any tourist! The moment we walked into the area, a short walk from Anguk Station, we had fallen in love (again) with the cultural vibe of this place. Decorated along the streets were many traditional Korean arts and craft, hanbok and souvenir shops, as well as many Korean teahouses and street food vendors. The traditional hanok-styled architecture of the buildings really captured my attention too- there was just something so unique and peaceful about these designs, which brought together olden day Korea with the new. As we walked along the streets, we also came into the well-known Ssamziegil building, embellished with absolutely gorgeous decorations hanging in all directions. Inside this one-of-a-kind building stood many more modern art stores selling all kinds of cool artistic items, from mirrors to bags to accessories and more- all made and designed in Korea.

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Inside the Ssamziegil in Insadong

After a very satisfying and budget-friendly lunch inside a vegan buffet restaurant called Han Gwa Chae in the area, which I also highly recommend, we continued exploring for a bit because we couldn’t get enough! We also happened to walk inside a stall, where we came across a very sweet and kind lady whom I managed to have a conversation with. Speaking with a local was such an amazing experience, and because she was so friendly, it was truly unforgettable!

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Speaking with the lady inside her store. She was so happy the whole time!

In the evening, we headed to Namdaemun Market for some more exploring and looking around. This market is located just near Myeongdong, and believe me when I say that this market is big. The streets which were filled with more shops upon shops seemed endless, and we actually became lost at one point! But that didn’t matter once we found our direction again, as my mum found some nice and affordable items, and we truly enjoyed walking around in the nice evening weather. Namdaemun Market is definitely a must visit for a great cultural experience, as well as the place to go if you would like try all kinds of Korean street food cooking up right in front of you!

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Walking in Namdaemun Market

Day 4

Our fourth day in Seoul was probably one of my most memorable days, as I had finally met my long-time friend Gloria who I had been chatting with online for a couple of years already! In the morning, mum and I arrived at Dongdaemun Plaza, and after meeting Gloria, which was a truly surreal and exciting experience, she first showed us around this uniquely designed plaza, before taking us to nearby malls and shops. I had seen Dongdaemun Plaza in photos before, but visiting this place in real life was incredible, as its architecture was beyond fascinating!

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With mum in front of the Line store at Dongdaemun

After some fun window shopping, we then headed off to Itaewon to try out a well-known vegan cafe for lunch. It was a bit of an adventure, but we finally made it to PLANT cafe after first visiting PLANT bakery, situated inside a cosy and small building. I thoroughly enjoyed every single bite of my meal, which was this nacho bowl as pictured below, and would strongly recommend anyone to visit this cafe at least once! Set with a modern vibe, there was so much more on the menu, including drinks and mouthwatering desserts in which we shared a slice of blueberry cake afterwards. As we ate, we chatted and got to know Gloria more before we said goodbye- Gloria truly has a such beautiful soul that matches her cheerful personality, and I am beyond grateful to have become friends with her♡

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Our amazing and delicious lunch at PLANT Cafe in Itaewon

Later in the afternoon, mum and I went back to Myeongdong again (no surprises here) as we had only scratched the surface of this large and bustling area a few days ago. We explored the wide and the narrow streets, looked high up to the signs above us, almost lost our way, appreciated the moment, and window-browsed some more. It seemed that no matter what time of the day, Myeongdong was always excitingly full of people! And thankfully, the weather whilst humid, was still kind to us, and the rain held back until the evening after we arrived back at our airbnb and had a delicious home cooked dinner.

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At the Line Store in Myeongdong ft. the iconic bear

Day 5

Day five in Seoul was all about experiencing more Korean culture, and I remember waking up that sunny morning feeling very excited for the day that was to come! In the morning, we caught the subway to Anguk Station and made our way to One Day Hanbok, because we were going to be wearing hanboks (a traditional Korean dress) for the first time! This was yet another activity that I had always wanted to do, so a few days beforehand, I went onto the company’s website and booked an appointment for our hanbok fitting. We turned out to be a part of a rather big group, but there was nothing to worry about at all, as we simply picked out a hanbok that we liked, tried it on, added some accessories such as pins and bags, and we were off. We did have to walk quite a distance to reach Gyeongbukgong palace from the hanbok rental place, which I should have considered before making the booking, however we eventually made it and were offered free admission because we were wearing hanboks! The weather was hot, but the sky was so beautifully blue, and I was simply dazzled by the beauty of this historic and grand palace. It felt incredible walking inside an area with so much history, and I loved how it was blended in with the tall modern buildings in the background. We also had the opportunity to watch the ‘changing of the guards’ ceremony near the entrance, which was very interesting to witness too. Mum and I truly enjoyed our time in the palace, and left some fond memories there.

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Gyeongbokgung Palace
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Changing of the guards ceremony
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Mum and I in our hanboks
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Mum and I♡

For lunch, we decided to head over to nearby Insadong again, but this time visit another vegan restaurant that we had walked past the other day. This lovely restaurant slightly hidden in an alleyway was called Oh Sae Gye Hyang, and it was by far my favourite place to eat at in Seoul. Not only was it budget-friendly, but the food was extremely delicious and nourishing too, and the best part was that it had a more traditional setting- we had to take off our shoes before entering, and sat down on the floor to eat by the low table. The dish I ordered was a simple bibimbap while mum had fried noodles, and I was delighted when they brought out 7 different side dishes which accompanied the bibimbap! I thought it was an absolutely amazing deal, as my meal had only cost KRW 11,000 🙂

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Our lunch at Oh Sae Gye Hyang in Insadong

After an enjoyable lunch, we also went to visit the Jogyesa Temple nearby. It was a beautifully constructed Buddhist temple in the middle of the city, decorated with lots of greenery and colour; peaceful indeed. My mum also found herself a nice KRW 1,000 cup of coffee, before we went back to our airbnb.

In the evening, we visited Gwanghwamun Square for a different night-life experience, located just opposite Gyeongbokgung Palace. This is the place where the renowned King Sejong the Great statue stands, as well as the statues of other important officials in Korean history. It was really, a very beautiful sight, with night starting to fall and rainbow lights highlighting the small fountains beginning to become more visible. Surrounding the square was the more central business district, as we saw many skyscrapers and modern office buildings along with restaurants and all kinds of shops. We had a great time exploring and couldn’t have ended day five in a better way,

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Gwanghwamun Square

Day 6

A first-time trip to Seoul wouldn’t have been complete without a visit to the infamous Namsan Tower, a communication and observation tower standing 236m tall on Namsan Mountain. On the lovely morning of day six in Korea, that’s exactly where my mum and I started off our day, and I remember feeling beyond excited to actually stand at the very place where one of the scenes from ‘Boys Over Flowers’ was filmed (if you didn’t know, this was the first Korean drama that I ever watched, which influenced my love for Korean language and culture). After a short, but quite steep, 10 minute walk from Myeongdong Station to the Namsan cable car entrance, I was also surprised to find myself at the very location of Joon Jae’s house in ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’! Thankfully, we didn’t have to wait for too long in the queue to the cable car that day, so within half an hour we were on our way to the base of Namsan Tower. Although our carriage was packed, the view was just spectacular, with the blue sky looking over Seoul city. Once we reached the top, we had to hike up a few more flights of steep stairs, before reaching a beautiful open area with amazing views and the bottom of the tower.

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View on the way up inside the cable car
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At Namsan Tower with mum

Namsan Tower is also known for its love lock displays, so this was again another item on my bucket list that I fortunately got to tick off. It seemed that in every direction we looked in, there were love locks upon love locks, just like rainbows! In one of the dedicated areas, as pictured below, my mum and I bought a love lock for KRW 5,000, on which we wrote our words of love on it, and hung it up along with the others. We may not know what will happen to that lock, but at least it was a special moment for me, and mum and I literally left a piece of our heart in Seoul.

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Love locks at Namsan Tower

As mum took a rest in the shade and cool air provided by the cafes and shops around the tower, I purchased a separate ticket (which I think was around KRW 10,000, although I don’t completely remember anymore) and went up to the observation deck of Namsan tower. It was a very quick rise in the elevator as I felt my ears pop, and the animated displays on the ceiling, which was super interesting, kept us company for that short duration. At the top, I experienced a full 360 degree view of Seoul as I walked around the viewing floor shaped in a circle, taking my time to soak it all in and observe the picturesque scenery of lush greenery and buildings sitting next to tall mountains in beautiful Korea.

For lunch, we decided to go back to Oh Sae Gye Hyang in Insadong, as it wasn’t too far away and we both loved it so much after our first visit. After a very delightful meal, I also grabbed some snacks while I was there as well, such as vegan biscuits and soy milk.

Later in the afternoon nearing evening, we visited downtown Myeongdong once again, but this time for a different purpose- we were in search of a unique cafe. As always, the streets were beginning to transform from the bustling day to busy night-life, with street vendors starting to set up their stalls. As we walked around, that’s when we came across the Hello Kitty themed cafe! We decided that we had to give it a try, so we walked in and we taken aback by how pink and cute the interior was. Every thing was Hello Kitty- from the tables, chairs, decorations, TV, to the food and hot chocolate that my mum ordered. It was a unique way to end the day indeed, as we relaxed inside followed by getting some fruit juices on the walk back to the airbnb.

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Hello Kitty cafe in Myeongdong

Day 7

On day seven of of trip to Korea, it was surreal to think that one week of our time had already flown by. We began a fresh new day’s of exploration at COEX Mall, a shopping area containing many COnvention centres and EXhibition halls located in Gangnam. We walked around and slowly browsed through lots of unique but on-the-pricer-side stores, however the main reason why I really wanted to visit this mall was because I had heard that there was a beautiful library inside. And I definitely did not hear wrong. Situated in the middle of the complex, was the most dazzling, grand and exceptional library that I had ever seen in my life, called the Starfield Library. Shelves filled with all kinds of Korean books reached up high (with the ceiling of this area actually designed to replicate the sky), and it very much so reminded me of ‘The Beauty and The Beast’. It was simply amazing to be there, and yes, you can really borrow the books and take a seat at a desk on the second level!

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Starfield Library inside COEX Mall

After a nice lunch inside the food court, where there were plenty of tasty options to choose from, we went to visit the one-and-only SM Town COEX Artium! Whilst we didn’t see any kpop artists, it was interesting to visit the displays inside, as well as the cafe full of merchandise and artist-inspired food. If you are a big fan of kpop, I would highly recommend coming down to SM Town!

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SM Town COEX Artium

As we had come to COEX Mall via Gangnam Station, after our visit we decided to have a look inside the Gangnam underground shopping mall once again for some skincare. Like the first time, there were many people inside, but probably because it was the weekend, it was even more crowded and alive!

Later in the afternoon, when the heat wasn’t as strong and intense, we met up again with our dear friend Gloria, this time in Hongdae! It was another area that I really wanted to visit, so once finding each other at the station, we first made a stop to a vegan bakery and cafe called The Bread Blue. Inside, accompanied by a cosy atmosphere, was a fantastic selection of all kinds of mouthwatering bread and cakes- it was honestly hard to choose just a few! The owners were very lovely as well, and they even gave us a free croissant with our bread and cakes. I devoured down every last bite of my banana bread, and if I ever go back to Seoul, I am for sure coming back to this memorable cafe.

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The Bread Blue Bakery and Cafe

As evening fell, Gloria took us on a stroll through the heart of Hongdae, and I came to fall in love with the night life here. Defined as the place where young people hang out, I definitely observed that with my own eyes, as hundreds of high school and university friends filled the streets, turning the night alive. Despite the drizzle, street performances still went on ahead as lots of people watched on, from students dancing to popular kpop songs to singers showcasing their unique voices. Kpop songs also played from almost every single store while colourful signs decorated the buildings, and it was an atmosphere that I will never forget. I also saw lots of affordable trendy clothing stores along the streets too, so if you are into korean fashion, I would recommend coming here. Either way, I couldn’t have spent a more enjoyable evening with Gloria before we said our goodbyes for the last time. It was truly bittersweet, but I am sure that one day we will meet again ♡

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In the heart of Hongdae

Day 8

We kicked started off day eight of our trip in Korea with something extra fun and exciting, and that was visiting the Trick Eye Museum located in Hongdae! After a short walk from the station in the slight rain, we arrived at this unique museum that I was very eager to explore, and from there we bought our entrance tickets and before going right in. Although the museum itself was small, there was still a lot to play around with, each display unique and different in its own way. You could also download an app to take augmented reality photos, however I found that it took up a lot of space on my phone, so we did opted for the more traditional normal camera instead 🙂 Mum and I had lots of fun posing in front of these displays, trying to capture a ‘trick’ photo. I would recommend coming here with at least one other person (otherwise no one can take your photos), though I think the more people the better and merrier. Outside the main museum, there was also an ice museum in which the entrance was included in the main ticket as well, so we went inside, and boy it was chilly! We were given some heavy coats to put on, and inside I had a turn to go down the slippery ice slide as well. Overall, it was a great morning that both mother and daughter enjoyed together ♡

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Inside the Trick Eye Museum
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Mum sitting on a display
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Inside the Trick Eye Museum

For lunch, we walked to a nearby cafe called The Lunch Factory as I had heard that there were some scrumptious vegan options. I opted to try the rice and scrambled tofu, and as I type this I still can’t forget how tasty it was, almost one year later! The greens paired really well too, and the vibe inside the artistic cafe was very calming and quite retro-like. Like most days, after our lunch we went back to the airbnb, this time beginning the process of packing our suitcases in advance of leaving Seoul in a few days.

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Rice and tofu at The Lunch Factory

In the evening, the rain was still drizzling, but we wanted to go out and explore so as to make the most of our time left in Korea. As we were just a few minutes away from downtown Myeongdong, guess what- yes, we went there again 😀 We really enjoyed the night life there, and took our sweet time to appreciate everything, look inside shops, and try on makeup for fun. Before going back to the airbnb, we also went into a convenience store to grab some groceries for the next day’s breakfast.

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Outside Myeongdong’s iconic Nature Republic store
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Inside a Korean convenience store

Day 9

On day nine, our last full day in South Korea, we decided to visit a place that we both loved very much, and that was the beautiful arts centred Insadong. We thought that it would be nice to get some unique Korean souvenirs here, and perhaps stumble across new places the we didn’t see last time. We paced around the SSamziegil building, entering into almost all of the stores for fun, many of which were so cute! At the top of the building, we saw that there was a Poop themed cafe- and naturally, we had to try that out! Mum ordered a latte that came in a bidet-shaped cup (which we thought was hilarious), and according to her, it was quite nice. This was definitely an interesting experience, and from the menu, you could also order food that comes served in larger bidets!

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Inside the SSamziegil
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‘Poop’ latte from the Poop Cafe

On the rooftop, we also found a love alley, with both sides decorated entirely with love notes and messages written on hanging cards. It was such a lovely sight, and we happened to find a little Instagram photo frame to take photos with too!

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On the rooftop of SSamziegil
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Insadong

Following that, we had lunch at the vegan restaurant Oh Sae Gye Hyang once again. As you can probably tell by now, we really loved the food and atmosphere there- plus it was budget friendly too! That was definitely our last meal there, and every single time, we couldn’t have asked for a more delightful place to eat our lunch.

Our next stop for the day was the Lotte Department Store in Myeongdong. At this point we hadn’t yet been into a large department store, so we thought it would be interesting to check it out, not to mention that it is one of the more well-known stores in Korea. Inside, there were plenty of high-end makeup and clothing stalls, and we were so fascinated by the see-through elevator that we went inside it just for the sake of doing so! We realised that every level was dedicated to a specific category, such as electronics or homeware. On the bottom level, there was a huge food court and supermarket, and we found a stall selling some korean rice cakes! I couldn’t resist the urge to try some because of my love for anything sticky-rice, so we bought a few pieces to snack on as we walked. I personally devoured mine down, including mum’s too as she wasn’t a big fan, but I sure didn’t mind. Following a look around, we went back into the streets of Myeongdong, which led us conveniently back to the airbnb.

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The savoury korean rice cakes that we tried

Day 10

Just like that, our final day in Korea had arrived. It was almost unbelievable, but we truly enjoyed every single part of this mother-daughter trip to Seoul. As we had to leave for the airport at around noon that day, we decided go somewhere local to fill in the morning- so of course, we walked to Myeongdong for one last time.

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Myeongdong

Although a bit gloomy, we were grateful that the rain held back for us and the sun still popped out at times, and we were able to enjoy exploring the streets that had almost become like a second home for us here in Seoul. Inside the underground shopping area at Myeongdong station, we also decided to quench our thirst with a cup of fresh KRW 2,000 fruit juice, and after that, it was time to say goodbye.

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Inside the underground shopping mall at Myeongdong station
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Inside a store at Myeongdong

We cooked up some lunch inside our airbnb so that we could use up all of the groceries we had leftover, and after completely packing out suitcases, we then checked out of the room. A few days before, our airbnb host helped us to organise a taxi from the airbnb to the airport, so we met with the taxi driver outside the building complex and made our way to Incheon. We took the taxi instead of driving as our suitcases were a lot heavier than when we came, and also because it was a nice change to experience Seoul from inside a car for once. Along the way, I had a nice conversation with the driver in Korean, and in the mid-afternoon, we arrived at Incheon airport. After many hours of flying, with a stop over in Taipei, we finally touched down back in sunny but chilly Melbourne, and that concluded my first trip to Seoul, South Korea.


Wow, writing this blog post sure brought back many memories and has left me quite emotional. The best word I could use to describe my whole trip would definitely be ‘grateful’, because this simply wouldn’t have been possible without the support of my parents and grandparents. It was the most wonderful journey I could have ever asked for, and travelling to Korea taught me so much about its culture and daily life. I really do hope that you found this post helpful for your trip to Seoul, if you do plan on visiting one day, or found it enjoyable to read. I am almost certain that I will go back to Korea in the future, next time for sure visiting some other cities and areas of this amazing country.

I hope that you have a wonderful day!

Sending my love,

Jasmine

xxx

 

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7 thoughts on “My Trip to South Korea 2017

  1. Jasmine, can you show your exercise routine at gym? Btw, I loved this post and in the first picture you look like your mom, sooo cute ❤

    Like

  2. THE FOOD! *mouth waters*. I will need to go through an watch all those vlogs (and take notes). My husband and I are going on honeymoon there next month, can’t wait to eat ‘real’ Korean food.
    p.s. also looking forward to browsing the beauty products and Korean fashion 🙂

    Like

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