Hi everyone! Finally last part of my Korea trip stories -series is here! To be honest I'm really busy with school, I have 4 courses and lots of things to do but I took a break to write this post~
I have been a bit stressed lately since I changed my plans for studying and I'm trying to graduate a bit earlier than planned. But things are getting more clearer in next couple weeks so all is good and without further ado let's jump into Korea trip stories~
First in the morning we grabbed breakfast from cafe near our hostel and then we were ready for a new day :D Me and Sirja decided to visit Insadong in the morning because we wanted to hunt some souvenirs. Insadong is basically a street for tourists because there are so many shops that sell every kind of items related to korea like for example souvenirs, potteries, art etc.
What we didn't know is that the day was some kind of national day so as soon as we got into subway we met lots of koreans with korean flags and different kind of accessories with korean flags. Luckily, it wasn't that crowded in Insadong but lots of people were wearing hanboks!
Anyway, we walked through Insadong and I visited one shop which sold a lot of bags, I bought one for my mom (she asked me to bring her a nice bag) and bought one for myself also. After walking around for like an hour we decided to head back to Sinchon to drop our stuff and eat lunch.
We found this great restaurant that was located in basement level opposite of cube mall complex in main street. I got a spicy noodle soup while Sirja got bibimpab.
Later on that day we took a subway to Apgujeong where we met with Laura. I wanted to see the famous K-Star road which I hadn't visited before but felt like everyone else had (even though I had visited Korea so many times). You can access there by taking subway to Apgujeong rodeo station, exit 2. It's basically located in the main street of Apgujeong. It's funny because around it the area is very luxurious and full of luxury brand stores.
We had to walk for 10-minutes before we got into start of the k-star road. At the start of it was a small store selling mini figurines of the k-star road figures but they didn't have any group figurines left that I would have liked to buy. So after a quick look of the store we continued our way to k-star road.
We browsed through the area, it's famous also because many big entertainment agencies like SM, JYP and Cube are located in there. We actually went past SM (which was under construction) and JYP and saw Cube from further away. There was a lot of fans in front of JYP with cameras, I guess some of the artist were inside or coming soon to the agency since the group of fans was quite big. The area itself is surprisingly narrow so there wasn't that much space in that road so we decided not to stay in there even though there were couple cafes and we were craving coffee.
At one point it started raining and we walked a while in the rain before spotting a cafe where we went to warm up and eat delicious honey bread dessert.
|If you visit korea, try their honey bread toast, it's sooo good (the calories are worth it lol)|
Next we braved the rain and walked through the streets when suddenly we remembered that Moomin cafe is quite close to our location. So we headed up to Moomin cafe :D It's funny that in these couple years Moomin craze has fallen also to South-Korea. When I visited Korea in 2012 and 2013 nobody knew about Moomins and now about everybody knows them. Moomin cafe in apgujeong is quite easy to find, it's near the main street and near Uniqlo.
The first floor is Moomin store where you can buy different kind of Moomin stuff, lots of it is made in korea and looks like a "copy" of moomins but there are also stuff from Muurla and Finlayson (although those are reeeeeally expensive compared to Finland's prices). Top floor is Moomin cafe, you should come there in the morning since in the evening they hardly have any pastries and stuff left. Basement floor is kind of playground, you can take photos with sceneries from Moomin tv series. It was quite fun actually, playing there :D
We spend like an hour in there before going out and wondering what to do next. We decided to go to Dongdaemun, you can access there through Dongdaemun History & Culture park subway station, exit 1. There we first just wandered through Design plaza but it was starting to rain really hard so we went inside Doota mall. We were starting to get hungry so we went to the food court in there. It was really full but we were so hungry that we just hunted free tables for ourselves and ordered food. We ate really good pasta and were really full after that. And it looked like a gourmet meal but cost about 12000won so about 10€ so it was actually really affordable!
After eating we said goodbye to Laura and headed to Sinchon to get a goodnight sleep after a long day. We had only couple days left and we were starting to feel sad that days went past so fast.
Because it was our second last full day we decided to go to Myeongdong for the last time to do last minute shopping. We walked in Myeongdong about four hours and also went to eat at one place where they cook your food in front of you in a big pan. It was in one of the Myeongdong's side streets and we encountered aggressive restaurant workers and we just wanted to get out of that street. But then when we were almost off of the street we noticed this restaurant and it just looked interesting so we went in. They had very good food and it was very filling also.
We spent the day leisurely and in the evening we met with my friend Hyojoo in Sinchon who was in the same volunteer program as I was when I was doing my volunteer work period in 2012. We went to eat to one place offering samgyeopsal and some other great dishes. Had a really great dinner and Hyojoo offered to pay it for us, it was so nice of her. So when we went to a cafe after dinner coffees were on me. By the way in Korea, this kind of thing is common especially between friends that somebody is paying the whole thing one time and then next time the other is paying the whole thing. Koreans do not expect this from foreigners but I think it's nice cultural thing.
Sports complex + Coex
Day 13 was a fail to be honest. We were going to Sports complex area because Infinite had a concert in there that day and Sirja is a huge Infinite fan. We didn't get tickets through online because it showed sold out but we were told by online ticketing agency interpark, that they may be selling them at the venue. So we went there and this was second frustrating and maddening thing that ever happened to me with concerts. So, we were lingering around ticketing booth (where people got their physical tickets after showing confirmation slip). I heard one korean fan who didn't have ticket asking from staff that if it was possible to still buy tickets. The staff member then answered that if you wait long enough you may get a chance to buy those tickets that are not picked up before concert so come back later. Almost immediately after this korean girl had asked the staff, came a foreigner who asked in english the exact same thing and I was shocked how drastically the replies were different from another. Because the staff member answered like "no, you can't buy tickets anymore". It wasn't even like "come back later and check" but like straight no... talk about discriminating. I was so angry and mad about that attitude that I wanted to leave. Sirja wanted to be around the area for longer and I was just pissed off. Sirja wanted to ask those illegal sellers that in what price would they sell tickets and I was saying to her that just ask them but she was like she doesn't have the courage.. but she still wanted to stay and linger around those sellers.. so I was getting more pissed off and just went to ask myself. When the price was too high to Sirja, I asked Sirja what kind of price she will pay and then I said the price offer to the seller I got cursed and the seller left us angrily. Imagine how I felt around this point. I was also hungry so I said without even considering Sirja anymore that I'm going to eat so Sirja just followed me. We went to Coex where we got our lunch.
Sirja still wanted to go back to venue area while I didn't want to but I didn't want to go our seperate ways in case we couldn't contact each other again for a long time. So I went but we were there for nothing and finally Sirja also gave up. I was seriously angry and pissed off at that point that we wasted our last day in korea to just hanging out in an area where we couldn't even do anything useful.
We went to Ewha and messaged to Su if she was available to join us and pretty soon we met her at a cafe in Ewha. I was calming down a little bit but still annoyed. We just talked for a while and then decided to walk through Ewha's streets and do some shopping also. Little by little I got into a better mood and found some stuff I didn't found in Myeongdong or other places.
In the evening we went to eat to this good chicken place I have mentioned earlier in my previous Korean travel posts. There used to be Baskin and Robbins opposite of it but now it had disappeared, anyway this chicken restaurant was in the same place. They offer really good snacks and chicken meals, really recommending it still, it's on the basement level. After eating and browsing the streets a little more we said Su goodbyes and decided to go back to Sinchon since we still had to pack and wake up early.
Day 14We headed back home. Woke up really early like 5am, went to subway and transferred in Hongdae to airport subway line. We were at the airport around 7 and they opened check-in pretty soon so we just dropped our stuff off and went through security check. All this went by really quickly actually and before we knew we were boarding to the plane. I had fun experience this time also even if the last day wasn't that good.
Next I will start posting about my Japan travels. Also can't wait to get back to Korea again next year~