Tuesday, 13 January 2015

South Korea, Seoul Trip: Day 1-3 | Gwanghwamun, Tosokchon, Insadong Ssamziegil, Cheonggyecheon Stream, Myeongdong

I recently uploaded my Korean food vlog on my YouTube channel and the next blog posts will basically tell you where I went because I didn't specify in the vlog. There were a lot of things I didn't get to vlog or even put into the vlog because I didn't want it to get too long and secondly my video editing program was stuffing up.

So here are the pictures from Day 1, 2 and 3 of my 10 day trip to Seoul! And to complement this post, here is my vlog! My YouTube account can be found here.

10th of December

Incheon Airport!

Riding the Airport Express to Seoul Station, I think it took 40 minutes? 

Auntie bought us some cakes and bread from Paris Baguette, which is an amazing bakery YOU HAVE TO TRY THEIR ICE CREAM MACARONS (BLUEBERRY) AND WALNUT CREAM CHEESE BREAD.

The apartment I stayed at was Sunny and John's Artistic Duplex from Airbnb



I arrived in Seoul at around 9pm on the 10th of December so the 'first' day was spent settling in to the apartment. The first place we went to on the 'first full day' was Myeongdong! We tried Myeongdong Gyoja which was really good since it was cold out. After shopping for a little while, my cousin and I separated from our parents and headed to Suwon via the KTX. The transport system is super easy, all the machines have english so you dont have to worry about speaking to an actual person about your purchase.

Now why did I go to Suwon? Because I wanted to see VIXX. And did I? Yes.... for about 15 seconds. But it was worth it because I knew I wouldn't be able to see them elsewhere during my 10 day stay. My friend and I were monitoring their schedules closely and they didn't have any public events I could attend.

Now on the 11th, they had their STAFF Fansign because they are models for the store and they recently opened up in Suwon AK Plaza Mall. It took 30 minutes to get to Suwon, compared to over an hour on the metro. I can't remember how much the ticket was....

I initially thought the fansign would take place in a public area but after asking a STAFF member, it turns out it was in a 'different place'. But I knew VIXX was definitely in the AK Plaza so my cousin and I walked around for a bit. We bought our tickets back in advanced and had a few hours to spare. We walked to the food level of the plaza because we didn't get to have dinner yet but then my cousin spotted security personnel guarding the elevators and basically blocking off the elevator access. People had to walk around outside to use both the escalators and elevators. We thought it was ~fishy~ so we camped out for around half an hour? Defeated, we started walking away and down through the aisles of food stores UNTIL I SAW A CROWD OF GIRLS WITH CAMERAS so I ran to join them LOL Later on security actually blocked the path to go into the area where I was with a whole bunch of other Starlights... luck was definitely on my side.

Now they weren't bunched together in one big crowd. There were Starlights on two sides, leaving the middle for VIXX to walk through to get to the elevators.

I waited for maybe.... 20 minutes? before security started telling us "that VIXX is not coming from this exit, they will be appearing from OVER THERE~~~" By the way, I only understood this because of his hand gestures THANK YOU FOR BODY LANGUAGE. By then a few Starlights ran to the other side while a few others seemed really confused as to where to wait. But there were stubborn fans who looked like they knew what they were doing and didn't really pay any attention to what the security were saying so I stayed... my cousin on the other hand went to the other side to check it out and said he'll come running if VIXX really did appear from that side. Too bad he got caught by security and couldn't come back in.

Now when you see a crowd in a shopping mall, you would wonder what's happening. People passing by would ask us what was happening and I would reply in Korean "Idol" and when they asked I said VIXX. LOL And after that I would be crossing my fingers that they would leave because my Korean is as basic as it gets. Out of maybe 10+ groups of people who asked me and the other Starlights around, only one seemed to know who they were. It was a couple and the girl was like "Ahh... VIXX" while the boyfriend went "Who?"

Anyways after 40 minutes they exited through that first brown door you see with a 'hand' poking out. Instead of going towards our direction they walked straight through down the back so everyone ran. I had no idea where I was going, I was following the K-Starlights HA. Hakyeon is really adorable, I came out of this experience loving Hakyeon even more (which I didn't even know was possible because I already really adore him). He was the only one to look at the Starlights, eye to eye. Everyone else kept walking straight. I can't remember the height order but Leo was the tallest, followed by Hyuk. They were both definitely taller than me... I was maybe 175cm on that day because I had my boots on. I didn't notice Hongbin at all, he was walking with Leo so Leo's tall stature basically.... covered him HA. Ravi was walking beside Hakyeon? Jaehwan was walking by himself near the front. I did film it but it's not long enough to be uploaded. Hyuk either walked at the front or at the back... It has been more than a month since I met them so I apologise for the fuzzy memory.

Then we walked back to the station and bought kimbap for the night. We rode the Mugunghwa back which is cheaper than the KTX. The Mugunghwa train I wanted to get on to Suwon was sold out when I went to buy it so I had no choice but to go with KTX Express.

12th of December

My auntie lives in Seoul and owns a restaurant at Yeongdeungpo. There is a Shinsegae mall and underground shopping area that can really give Gangnam, Myeongdong and Hongdae a run for its money. Its a great place for shopping. Well we were lucky enough to have her guide us for the whole day so we walked from Gwanghwamun to Insadong to Cheonggyecheon Stream to Myeongdong ^^

 If you buy the single journey tickets, you get a 500 won deposit refund after your trip. These machines are next to the ticket buying machines.

 There were protests happening about the Sewol Ferry tragedy.


TOSOKCHON FOR GINSENG CHICKEN~ The lines look long but they go quickly. The chicken here is a must have. We went twice.

Normal cabbage kimchi and radish kimchi

Gyeongbokgung Palace 

 We experienced our first snow in Seoul on the 3rd day! It was so cold we had to have a small break at a cafe store inside Gyeongbokgung Palace. The workers were wearing pretty hanbok.

Then we walked down this street I do not know the name of. It's a really gorgeous location, I even saw a Moonshot flagship store which is YG's new cosmetic brand?


Ssamziegil is full of small shops with an assortment of goods. 

 Walking through Insadong we came across a traditional dance performance which I featured in the vlog.

Cheonggyecheon Stream


Walked through Cheonggyecheon Stream to get to Myeongdong where we had bibimbap for dinner. I do not know the name of the store because it was in Korean and my auntie brought us there. It's in an alleyway through (which really isn't helpful because there are a lot)

Food stalls ^_^ You will find the most on the stretch to Lotte Young Mall.

So that concludes the first part of my post! I will be back for the other days tomorrow I hope.

See you next time!~
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