The Life & Seoul

Trip Start Sep 05, 2011
Trip End Nov 07, 2011

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Where I stayed
Fully Guesthouse, Seoul

Flag of Korea Rep.  , Seoul,
Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The flight from Beijing to Seoul took an hour and a half, we couldn't believe how quick it was and we are so glad we didn't bother faffing around with a sleeper train and ferry. We have found the most amazing hostel in Seoul, it is newly opened and run by two Korean guys. They provide free laundry services and free Korean breakfast every morning. They are also so polite and friendly we recommend that everyone stays here if they visit Seoul.

Seoul is a huge city and is much more advanced than China. The Korean people are also much more polite which is nice. We don't get stared at even though there don't seem to be many Westerners here.

On our first day we explored 'Insadong' which is a traditional cultural area of the city. Unfortunately there was a thunderstorm and it poured with rain constantly the whole afternoon but we enjoyed looking in the art shops, galleries & market stalls.

There is a huge drinking culture here in Seoul, it seems like almost every street is lined with bars and coffee shops. One evening we visited a local bar to relax with a drink. Here we were sitting quietly when the staff turned up the music and started downing vodka direct from the bottle before performing crazy stunts with fire! One of them was even spinning a stick alight with fire over his head. Crazy!

As we haven't researched Seoul in-depth we decided to board a sightseeing bus to see what the city has to offer. This tour was better than the Shanghai bus and gave us some ideas of places to visit over the next few days. The tour bus went up 'Mount Namsan' which is a high mountainous peak in the centre of Seoul. The Seoul Tower is located at the top of this mountain.. We didn't bother paying to go up the tower, but the views from the top of the mountain were great as you can see other nearby mountains and the city below.

We decided to visit an Electronics Market in Seoul on Monday morning. As Korea is home to 'Samsung' and 'LG' we were hoping to find some new products that are not yet out in the UK. We were a little disappointed with this market as it just seemed to sell miscellaneous computer bits like screens and keyboards along with a few computers.

We spent the afternoon at the riverbank where we hired a tandem. The area around the river consists of park areas and grass; you can even go right up to the edge of the river. The views of the city across the river are lovely. It is so good that they have not allowed buildings to ruin the peaceful area. Luckily the weather has improved since Saturday, it is much colder now however days are bright and sunny.

The hostel owner held a Korean barbecue on Monday night. This was so much fun and even better, it was free! The barbecue food consisted of meat wrapped in a leaf with vegetables and kimchi. The Korean food is quite spicy but does taste better than the Chinese food. We also had numerous shots of 'Soju', a Korean liquor. It was a really good night!
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