Goodbye Seoul

We had an early flight back to Beijing. We woke up at 4:00AM to get ready to the airport. The hotel concierge told us it’s too early to call for a cab. So, we had to walk to the main road to try to catch a cab. Fortunately, we did not have to wait long to get one.

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The cab fare was KRW46,000 (about CAD46) which included a toll charge of KRW8,000 (CAD8). The ride took 45 minutes. It is much cheaper to take the subway if it’s not for such an early flight.

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The airport was relatively quiet at the early hour. Continue reading

Seoul Day 8: Supper

After stuffing ourselves with pastries from Paris Croissant, we had to skip dinner. But later that night, we felt a little hungry. So, we went to a neighborhood pub to grab a small bite.

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Pickle daikon as a palate cleanser.

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We had fried chicken for supper.

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We had two types of fried chicken, regular and garlic flavour.

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The fried chicken was crispy on the outside and moist inside. Good fried chicken.

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The fries were good too. Ben had a draft beer since this is a pub. The meal came to KRW19,000 (about CAD19).

Seoul Day 8: Dalgalbi Lunch

We took the subway to Hyehwa station to look for a traditional restaurant which serves twenty banchans. Unfortunately, we could not find the restaurant.

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So, we went to Daehangro (University Road) to look for a restaurant for lunch. This street is lined with restaurants with locals patronizing them. So, it must be good. Not so much a tourist trap place.

We spent some time exploring a Daiso here. Ben bought a couple of toe socks from Daiso.

We then settled with the above restaurant for lunch.

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As usual, banchans were served.

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We had the Dakgalbi with chicken and sliced pork. There were a lot of beansprouts lining the bottom.

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The food was cooked at the table. The server handled the cooking.

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Our meal only cost KRW11,000 (about CAD11). A healthy meal with lots of beansprouts.

Seoul Day 7: Secret Garden Tour

Ben and I joined a guided tour to the Secret Garden of Changdeokgung. The entrance to Changdeokgung plus the Secret Garden guided tour came to KRW16,000 (about CAD16) per person.

Start of Secret Garden Tour

Start of Secret Garden Tour

The Secret Garden is the recreational area and retreat of the royal family.

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This is the heart of the Secret Garden.  The rectangular pond is known as Buyongji. Juhamnu Pavilion which stands on the high ground commands a fine view of the pond.

Lotus shape pavillion

Lotus shape pavillion

Buyongjeong Pavilion in the shape of a lotus flower is designated as a treasure in 2012 (Treasure no. 1763). Continue reading

Seoul Day 7: Changdeokgung Palace

Our itinerary for day 7 is to visit Changdeokgung Palace. Changdeokgung was built as a secondary palace of the Joseon Dynasty. It was left in ruins after the Japanese invasion during 1592-1598. It was rebuilt in 1610 and served as the main palace for 270 years.

Cinnamon Sugar Pancake

On the way to the palace, we grabbed some street snacks. The above was Cinnamon Sugar Pancake.

Traditional Cake

A traditional cake that was sold in stalls in the subway station.

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The Main Gate of Changdeokgung, Donhwamun. The raised stone terrace gives the gate an imposing dignity. Continue reading

Seoul Day 6: Dinner at Gangnam District

After spending most of the day at the Gyeongbokgung Palace, we went to check out the Gangnam District.

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Gangnam is a Sino-Korean place name meaning “south of the river”. Gangnam is known for its expensive real estate. It is lined with high end shops with branded name like Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Prada, etc.

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We had an early dinner in a restaurant in one of the side street in Gangnam. We loved this place as they offered 6 types of banchans.

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We ordered two items to share. The above is a beef soup.

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We also had a spicy stirred fried pork. Both dishes go well with steamed rice. The meal cost KRW12,000 (CAD12). Very cheap indeed.