Sometimes life is full of the unexpected. I didn't expect to travel to Bangkok so last minute, I didn't expect to travel once again to Bangkok for CNY. And definitely the booking of the plane tickets to Seoul two weeks after our CNY Bangkok trip came as a surprise to myself.
I wasn't sure what we wanted to do for this very short Seoul trip. What I knew was, I would follow Kwee Tin's advice to just plonk ourselves in Myeongdong and base ourselves there and walk around. There were so many things to see, and places to walk around just in Myeongdong, so we should be quite occupied.
"Let's just keep it simple and relaxing," said Serene. That was precisely what I intended.
- The famous Namsan Tower where drama stars locked their loves with colourful padlocks
- The romantic Cheonggyecheon stream leading to the oldest traditional market in Korea, the Gwangjang market.
- Namdaemun traditional market, where everything one wanted to buy can be found.
- A traditional Korean Hanoi Village or two.
- If possible, to throw in a palace visit.
Kat said: "Why don't you all go paragliding in Seoul? That would be exciting!"
"Myeongdong is full of cosmetics. And everywhere we go after a while it became repetitive," said Ah Li. "And I got bored. I much preferred Ewha University." She was right in some sense. So did I.
"I booked myself into a Guesthouse when I last went to Seoul," said Joanne. "But it was so small and so cramped I laid in bed the whole night thinking and finally decided to check myself out and check into a hotel." She was so cute.
"You all must eat all the seafood you can find," reminded Kat. Wow.. that conjured the image of the raw still-moving octopus sashimi I saw in a blog about the street food in Gwangjang market. If I could I would try it.
In my heart, one of the best ways was to travel easy and travel like locals. So we would take Bus number 6015 from Incheon Airport right to Exit 8 of Myeongdong station, and for the rest of the trip, we would simply walk. I studied the map and realised that we would not need to take the subway at all. Everything was within a few kilometres of each other.
- 14 Must Eat Street Food when you visit Seoul, Korea
- 50 Best Korean Street Food at Myeongdong
- 6 Awesome places to eat in Myeongdong (Seoul)
- 10 Myeongdong Street food you have to try
- 6 Must try foods at Gwangjang market
- Gwangjang market: Awesome Korean Street food in Seoul
- Seoul - Namdaemun market - Kalguksu alley
- Namdaemun market Seoul - my review
- 6 Recommended buys at Namdaemun Market
- Namdaemun Market - official website (very good. With detail map.)
- Namsangol Hanok Village
So on Wednesday evening, 15th February 2017, we lugged just our 7.5kg hand carry luggage each and boarded the Air Asia flight, departing at 2245Hr.
"Hey that's our name!" A surprised Serene pointed to a petite Thai Air Asia staff who was waiting for us at the Arrival hall to bring us to the CIQ.
|Bus 6015. Easy to find at Exit 5B. Comfortable and hassle-free.|
|The unforgettable 王妃家 traditional Korean barbecue.|
|The pork belly. [Photo: Serene]|
The waiters took turn to cook them to perfect Chao-dar-ness on the charcoal grill and both Serene and I could not hide our pleasure at the taste! This was really a WOW meal!
A guesthouse would forever be a guesthouse. At 215000W (S$266) for three nights I must admit that it had everything one needed to enjoy Seoul- bathroom, TV, hair dryer, fridge, washing machine at the 6th level, and a kitchenette with free simple breakfast and coffee and teat any time one fancied. The only thing that they did not have in abundance was space. So small luggage were easier.
"Come, let's take a walk to Namdaemun," I suggested. And we took a nice 10 minutes stroll and arrived at Shinsegae. The the Hoehyun underground's shopping centre we popped out to the other side and in no time, the whole Namdaemun market was on our left.
|Namdaemun, the Ajuma market.|
|"I want to eat the Yong Tau Fu!" said Serene. [Photo: Serene]|
|Came upon this lovely Hotteok store run by an Ajuma.|
"Let's walk over to Namsan Park since we still have some daylight time," I suggested.
|At the top of the track on the Eurumi.|
"Chagiya! Honestly, I just want to come here to put on our locks. I don't really fancy having a meal up in the revolving restaurant at the top of the tower. Just being here seeing it is enough for me," and I was glad Serene concurred.
So with many a young and old couples and visitors roaming around the heaps of colourful locks, Serene and I found a spot at one corner which was easily located should we return one day, and with some difficulty, we managed to lock our blue and yellow padlocks right in the midst of all the others. Quite a momentous task, considering how tightly packed the locks were. For once we felt like some Korean stars.
* Video 003: Myeongdong supper! *
"Don't wake up so early lah, can or not?" pleaded Serene. Ok lor.
"Ok you relax first. I shower and then I go downstairs to the kitchenette to make breakfast for you," and I excitedly walked down the freezing cold stairway.
I texted Serene: "Come lah, join me for breakfast."
|Almost chao-dar toast. Serene kao beh kao bu: "I don't like Chao-dar toasts!" Ok OK...|
|Early morning at Namsangol Hanok village.|
|This Namsangol Hanok is one of those rare gems that is so peaceful and serene. And it is free. I loved it.|
It was a really leisurely breakfast, and soon we were on our way to Namsangol Hanok Village, about a 15 minutes walk from Myeongdong station. What I really liked was everything was within walking distance. And there were many interesting sights on the way to Namsangol.
|Serene: "I always liked outdoor wet kitchens."|
Me: "Ok lor. Here you are. If you were a Korean woman, this would be your outdoor kitchen,"
|The wishing well in Namsangol Hanok.|
|It was really like a scene from the Period Korean dramas.|
|We have always loved visiting old buildings.|
|Papa, Mama's study room.|
We strolled to Namsan Park behind Namsangol Hanok village and we were delighted to see so many of the local Koreans, both young and old, taking the same stroll with us, enjoying the cold air, and enjoying the lovely scene in the park. I was sure some of these young people would be walking all the way up to Namsan to visit the observation deck at Namsan's N Seoul Tower. Such was life in an aircon country.
"Wow the Korean men are so handsome!" Exclaimed Serene as we walked to part of Namsan park behind the Hanok. The ancient Korean aristocrat really knew how to enjoy their lives, living in the valley of Namsan with backdoor access to the top of the hill.
|Fascinated with all the many rare Pokemons in Euljiro, en route to Gwangjang market.|
"Hey Dar, since we are already here at Namsangol, we might as well walk straight north to Chongmuro and towards Gwangjang market and visit that. We can have lunch there, then after that we will slowly walk along Cheonggyecheon back towards Myeongdong," what a brilliant idea!
Indeed, no point walking back to Myeongdong. Our walk up north brought us through Euljiro, the oldish part of Seoul with rows of small shops selling lightings, tools, industrial equipments, printers and such. This was what I read about in one of the blogs, this traveler who simply wandered around Euljiro and enjoyed the local atmosphere. Somehow by taking this route, I accomplished my initial plan of walking around Euljiro too.
"This place is like Geylang back home," said Serene. "They sell all these lightings and things. It's also very similar to HCMC. The lights shops the printers are all arranged street by street."
|Street scene along Euljiro.|
Well I couldn't tell more apart from food. I read on another blog that food is never absolutely cheap in Seoul. Which I tend to agree. Compared with prices back home in Singapore, I still feel that things here, even the street food, are just a little pricier than back home.
"Neh! That's Kwangjang market across the road lah!" pointed out Serene, spelling out the actual word 'KWANGJANG market' on the wall of the building, as I was still peering into my Google Map trying to figure out our direction.
|Some of the shops selling ling-ling-long-long things.|
|Fresh dried dead fish hung by the necks - at the Gwangjang.|
|This place reminded me of the Dongmun market in Jeju.|
Gwangjang market 广长市场 was the result of a string of events that started from the abolishment of commercial monopolies during the Joseon Dynasty. This abolishment allowed any commoner to participate in commerce. Gwangjang market was originally named Dongdaemun market. It started off during the Japanese occupation when in 1905 the Japanese took control over the businesses in Namdaemun, and a group of wealthy Korean businessmen bought over the piece of land at its current location and built a single stores market for the locals to operate in without Japanese influences. The old Dongdaemun market used to be selling agricultural products and seafood. From 1957-1959, it was extended into a much bigger complex and its named was changed to Gwangjang market, with the name derived from a Wide (Gwang) bridge and a Long (Jang) bridge as it was constructed between these two bridges. The ensuing name Gwangjang replaced Dongdaemun market. Eventually the stalls in Gwangjang market expanded to selling textiles, clothes, traditional Korean handicrafts, souvenirs, traditional medicine, and of course traditional Korean food.
|The Seoul Shitang [Seoul Canteen] that sells the famous Seoul Mae EunTang.|
"Would you eat the live squid when you are there?" Ah Li asked me before the trip and my answer was an affirmative.
|The fish roe and what appeared to be fish brain but actually wasn't.|
|Fish brain or fish intestine?|
|An eye for an eye. [Photo: Serene]|
|Moving squid Sanakji.|
Food, food and more food in Gwangjang Market
|The Karetteok Halmeoni.|
Finally we gave up and started eating again, though our stomachs were still brimming with the recent meal. We came upon an old halmeoni 할머니 in the middle of the walkway selling 가래떡 (Karetteok), the bar rice cake. Serene die die also wanted to eat this because she had been eyeing it since we landed in Seoul. And it was a hard piece of rice cake but chewy and very steaming hot.
|Oh, the karetteok!|
"Oh it's so nice to hold it in your hand in cold winter like this," said the happy Serene.
|The Sun Hwi Nye stall of Bindatteok|
* Video 004.5: The famous Bindaetteok *
Deeper and deeper we went and out of a sudden the whole central of the market opened into a sprawling colosseum of rows of stalls all selling almost exactly the same food. One just had to find an empty slot on the bench and plonk his bum there and start ordering. The Halmeoni and Ajuma who tended the stall we patronized gladly whipped up our order of Sundae (blood sausage), Tteokbokki, Mayak Gimbap and Ddukguk (steamed fish cake). Although we told her laughingly 'small small' servings of each, it came up quite un-small-small-like. With a friendly smile she urged us to just eat.
|The Sundae and Kimbap|
|We just sat down and joined the locals and ate.. despite full stomachs!|
|The Ajuma who ran the stall.|
So with a groups of old Hal-abeoji (grandfather) on our left and another group of pretty well-dressed young ladies on our right, we dug in. What a unlikely combination of clientele! But that was what Gwangjang market was all about. It was where the locals came to shop, to do their grocery purchase and to eat. Being here was precisely living the life like a local Korean.
"They don't have mango here one hor?" noticed Serene. "They have only strawberries."
|Walked through the small little streets along Euljiro back to Myeongdong. Very interesting.|
Samgaetang in Myeongdong!
|I must one day come back to explore the supposed 24-hour section of Namdaemun.|
|The young lady who sold the berets at Namdaemun.|
I thought Namdaemun was a 24 hour shopping market. But it was only about 7pm and most of the shops were already closing. Well, I guess in winter the shop keepers tended to close early. Sorely disappointed, we walked back via the Hoehyeon underground shopping centre and back up to Myeongdong.
|My favourite Samgaetang.|
"I haven't had a samgaetang since coming to Seoul," I remarked to Serene. "I would rally love to have a samgaetang."
* Video 005: Namdaemun & Myeongdong's Samgaetang *
I seemed to have developed an affinity for anything Uniqlo in any city I went. I particularly remembered this Myeongdong Uniqlo not only as a landmark, but also where I bought mine and Serene's lovely winter coats. A trip to Myeongdong would never be complete without popping in to smell the airs of Uniqlo. This time round I managed to grab four brand new season style Uniqlo briefs in Korean fashion, and cheaply so too.
"Dar, your favourite sotong stick!" Serene excited pointed to a stall just outside Uniqlo.
International surveys in 2011, 2012 and 2013 found Myeongdong to be the ninth most expensive city in the world. Understandably, Myeongdong's rental prices are one of the most expensive in the world.
Despite that, the presence of famous brands and shopping institutions like Lotte Departmental, Shinsegae, Noon Plaza, M Plaza and international boutiques officially designated it a most popular shopping area for the younger generation and tourists. The main streets and small alleys of Myeongdong are closed to vehicular traffic except for early morning and late night deliveries, thereby totally rendered this main shopping area to be a pedestrian zone.
It was 12:45am, and we were still both wide awake in bed. Half way through watching the local Korean TV Serene suddenly asked: "Want to eat chicken ai-mai?"
|Eat from the moment we opened our eyes until just before we close our eyes to sleep. Jiaklat!|
"Wah lau eh! We keep eating the whole day!" complained Serene jokingly. But that was the fun mah, walk and eat and eat and walk some more.Actually I believed on this day two we must have easily walked about 20km, right from early in the morning to Namsangol and up north to Gwangjang and westward to Namdaemun and then back to Myeongdong. The whole day we were on our feet. No wonder by the end of the day Serene was complaining that her archilles tendons were aching.
"Dar, later on when we walk out hor, you just see for yourself. I guarantee that you will feel very very warm after eating warm food and drinking so much alcohol one," the truth of my reassurance was soon confirmed as we stepped out and felt no cold even though the temperature remained 10 degrees sub-freezing. The power of alcohol!
|The weather was too aircon at 2am for Serene's comfort. Outside on the streets of Myeongdong also no more people walking around liao.|
"Don't wake up too early tomorrow ah!" insisted Serene, and I willingly complied.
DAY THREE: A totally relaxed day
9am. Serene was still sleeping when I got up and changed and went rece-ing down to see how the weather was like. The weather station reported a minus ten degrees with a RealFeel of minus eighteen degrees. Luckily I tested. The base layer plus T shirt, plus vest middle later was not enough. I really needed the outer coat.
|Getting to love the breakfast.|
The breakfast in the guesthouse was really DIY simple creaks and coffee with orange juice. Still, I really enjoyed it. Perhaps the cold weather made even simple little stuffs like these so nice.
|A totally aircon morning.|
"Dar, ok my plan for today is very simple," I told her during breakfast. "I just did a research and found a place where we can take photos with traditional Korean costumes. And after that we will take the subway to Ewha University."
"Haha! I sure know you will want to go Ewha University one!" laughed Serene. "Last night I talked about Ewha I see your expression I aga aga know already."Hey, that's the fun of free and easy mah, right? Happy happy go some places, not happy don't go lor. Anyway the timing was just about right for the planning.
Seoul Cultural Exchange and Tourism Information Centre
|10:30am the centre was still quiet.|
Serene had been harping on wanting to take photos together wearing the traditional Korean costumes even since our last trip to Korea. Somehow it hadn't materialized. A quick search online found the availability of this service on the fifth floor of M Plaza, about 150m away from our guesthouse, at the Seoul Cultural Exchange and Tourism Information Centre. And it started at 10am. What was more, it was totally free of charge for tourists!
The customer service staff was very courteous and helpful in helping us with our costumes and even helped us take several shots. This was really an unforgettable experience. I was sure Serene loved it.
|The old Korean Emperor probably wore no glasses and wore slightly different shoes.|
"This golden gown is for the King, right?" I asked the lady, who nodded. "Hmmmm... but I have always liked to wear a red gown." So I chose the red one.
|Not bad lah.|
She even showed me to a long smoking pipe which the Korean Emperor used to smoke as a prop for our shoot.
"Do you have the Korean wig for the ladies?" asked Serene, hoping to replicate exactly the wig oft seen in the Korean dramas. Sadly they didn't. So she had to make do with the Korean head band.
"The Korean Emperor cannot wear spectacle one right? I must removed my spectacle right?" I asked the Korean lady.
She smiled and replied: "The last Korean Emperor he DID wear glasses."
Well we couldn't expect it to be of the same quality as a studio shoot but for something that cost next to nothing, we were very happy. And the photo of both of us looked authentic enough.
Ten minutes later, we walked out of the Seoul Cultural Exchange and Tourism Information Centre, happy as larks with beautiful shots of ourselves in our handphones.
|Wah.. take MRT wor.|
* Video 006: Traditional Hanbok, Ewha University & Protest in Myeongdong! *
Ewha University, here we come!
|Such lovely weather. Bright and sunny but aircon totally at full blast.|
"OK we have been walking the past two days. Today we will take the subway for once to Ewha University," I told Serene.
|"Dar, nice or not?"|
|Addiction knows no boundary.|
|The source of the addiction.|
Ewha Women University 梨花女子大学 was the children's favourite place on our last trip, as the Ewha University shopping streets had plenty of fashionable accessories and clothings and shoes that catered to the young females' taste and pockets. Things were generally cheaper than elsewhere yet styles still remained trendy. This shopping street was understandably evolved from the needs of the young female students studying in Ewha University.
It was particularly reminiscent for me because I bought my favourite pair of spectacle frame from a old Uncle here. Serene was correct. I longed to return to rendezvous with that stall.
|Right at the corner.|
|Compared with Myeongdong, Ewha is small.|
So how to get to Ewha?
Simple. 1350W ticket from the vending machine and hop on Line 4 (light blue line) to Dongdaemun Cultural and history station, and then walk a helluva a long distance to the transfer platform to take the Green Line 2 to Ewha University Station. The subway ride was relatively short - about half an hour.
The second time round to Ewha was so much easier. Everything was deja vu the moment we stepped out of the station. We could identify the YongTau Fu stall we bought from on our last trip, the shop where Ah Sing bough her shoes from. And finally, my favourite spectacle frame shop - the old Uncle still there tending to his stall.
This time round both Serene and I had little reservation and we did not hold back. And we were very happy with our acquisitions. This trip out to Ewha was specifically for that purpose. We attempted to shop around for some shoes and dresses but somehow the sizes and style didn't suit Serene.
|Give the bear a hug before saying bye bye to Ewha.|
"I want to eat the very nice barbecued Korean pork belly and the pork collar meat we had the first day," said Serene.
Tried as we did, we were not successful in finding any recommendations around Ewha. So we ended up back in Myeongdong 王妃家 again, this round ordering the Beef brisket set and three separate dishes: Pork belly, pork collar meat and pork cheek.
The PRC Chinese waiter fascinated me endlessly by patiently grilling our meat over the charcoal grill until they were once again cooked to perfect cripsinss outside while keeping the flavour full jiuciness inside. We didn't know how they did it, but we had never had anything like this back home. I guess it was like this, one had to come to the country of origin for the Soju, the kimchi, the Korean barbecue meat to taste especially tasty. It must have been something to do with the air quality, the coldness, the water, and the soil here. This was a memorable meal that I would cherish.
Right into a Myeongdong protest!
|Protesting against President Park.|
Serene and I were awe-struck. Never in our adult lives had we seen such massive turnout for protest. The whole street was filled with marching protestors. I turned to one police officer and asked him what happened. In halting English he told me it was a protest against the South Korean President. Oh, now I remembered. There was this recent corruption scandal by the President Park Geun Hye and the people were urging her to step down.
What an experience this was! I could remember as a teenager I used to watch the South Koreans protesting violently on the streets on news. Finally I had a chance to be right here in the heat of the action. The only different was, this was a peaceful march. But the fervour with which the protesters shouted was no less than before. We would have stayed to watch longer but we still had to search for some more items for the children.
In search for Bingsul
|The famous one!|
Following our Google map, we took another turn to somewhere a few blocks away.
"Neh! Here is the Bingsul!" said Serene, pointing to a signboard of delicious-looking Bingsul photos on the right side.
|Bao gao liao, but still eat cold Bingsul.|
Finally diagnonally across we found the famous Sulbing Korean Dessert Cafe on the second floor. There were so many people in this cafe and the tables were constantly full. We were taken aback. I never thought Bingsul would be so highly sought-after in a winters cold weather like this. I was utterly proven wrong.
"Wah, Dar you see the next table, the family of four sharing one bowl of Bingsul leh. Here we each have one bowl. Hahaha!" laughed Serene, pointing to our Injeolmi and Milk Red Bean Bingsuls.
|Our Injeolmi. [Photo: Serene]|
Here they would give you small cups of condensed milk to pour onto the Bingsul to add more sweetness to it. Delicious! Serene was right. We came all the way here in search of Bingsul we must really at least enjoy two different flavours.
Another foray into Namdaemun via the Myeongdong underground shopping centre brought us further up north to Sinchon station. We ventured further up than we expected. The whole of this Myeongdong underground shoping centre was opened but what the shops sold were art galleries stuff, antiques, some camera shops and mostly ajuma clothes, according to Serene.
Emerging to road level, my Google map guided me back to Songryemun and then back into Namdaemun market. The road side stalls were still opened. But there were hardly any shoppers walking around. Some of the shopkeepers were already closing.
We managed to find in one corner shop, an Army styled T shirt at 18000W for the army boy and a black beret for Serene. The shop owner said he was closing at 8pm. Hmmmm... so much for 24 hours shopping. As I walked I kept wandering, was there a part of Namdaemun market that remained opened through the night?
Was it the multi-storey buildings in the Namdaemun market areas that remained opened instead? The one that Serene and I walked up to the day before but seeing all children's clothing we didn't explore more? Well, maybe it was. But we could only find out on another trip.
Into the heart of Myeongdong
Our stomachs were definitely not in the state for dinner after the Bingsul, as we strolled deeper into Myeongdong to search for T shirts and collared shirts for the children. It was winter, and the shops were all selling winter wear and clothes more for the season rather than casual wears for summer time. So we continued our search.
We wandered further inwards and arrived at the street food part of Myeongdong which was a whole street of food vendors selling Fish Takoyaki, squids in various styles, ice cream, waffles, Tteokbokki, Eumulguk, Sausages, tarts. Lining the street were a dazzling display of accessory shops and fashion boutiques, something which I was sure the young girls would go gaga over if they were here.
"Wow, I never knew Myeongdong had so much more exciting things here."
On our left and right were many trendy shops. I could really imagine the girls going wild here if they were to be here once more. Serene was right. It was never easy to buy clothings for the girls, because each of them had their own preference. We would rather they come here themselves to choose. And that strengthened my conviction to make another future trip here with the family.
In the middle of the road a stall manned by two Ajumas was selling Eumulguk and Tteokbokki and sausages.
"How? Want to eat?" asked Serene.I never said no to food, especially when it entailed standing at the counter of the stall in the cold, drinking the hot tasty soup and chomping down rice cakes and sausages and bacons, all going at 3000W to 6000W apiece. Food made more tastier with local Koreans and Taiwanese and Ang Mohs standing beside us enjoying the same food.
In and out we explored the shops and found nothing suitable for the girls. Finally we gave up. It just had to be another trip with the children to accomplish that. And what followed was more eating: fried squids, tarts, and ice cream waffles! Yes, Serene's favourite ice cream waffles. The lady packed it nicely wrapped by paper and placed into a brown paper bag. My initial astonishment was quickly replaced by reasoning- in this sub-zero temperature the ice cream would never melt. Even if we held it in the brown paper bag and walked a long long time more the ice cream would still stay frozen! Oh, these lucky Koreans!
The power of iPhone 7 plus
"咦，那看起来好像是单反相机呀!" one young PRC lady exclaimed as I was taking a shot of Serene eating the tart.Serene gamely showed her photos of herself shot using the portraiture mode of the iPhone 7 Plus.
Her girlfriend and her both were impressed.
"我们的也是 iphone 7 plus 呀!" said her girlfriend.I had to show her how to activate the Beta version of the 人像 mode on her iPhone and viola! She got Depth of field already! But the first girl didn't have the 'Portraiture' mode on her camera.
A guy companion with them laughed and said: "你买的是假电话吧!"Haha actually what he said could be quite true. In China there were plenty of fake stuffs. Either that or she was a blur sotong who bought an iPhone 7 thinking it was an iPhone 7 plus. But whatever it was I told Serene it was interesting how observant the young PRC girls were in seeing how our photos turned out to be almost like DSLR shots- the power of iphone 7 Plus.
The only problem that I realised on his trip was, even the much enhanced battery life of the 7 Plus fell victim to sub-zero temperatures. Every time we were out in the street the whole phone turned icy-cold in matter of minutes. And I had to place a heat pack on its back to keep it warm. I anticipated that for our future climbing trips we would need to have many power banks if we were to use the iPhone 7 Plus as a camera. And we would need plenty of heat packs to keep them alive. Most importantly, this trip consolidated Kai Sing's words: "Aiyah.. bring a film camera for the last part to Kalar Patah lah!". Indeed I was expecting my iPhone to die on me up there at minus fifteen degrees and that would be a time for film camera.
DAY FOUR: 回家了!
It was never easy to leave Seoul. We flew all the way here to enjoy the nice aircon weather and the vibrance of the city and soon we had to return home. What made it easier was my determination to return again, even if it meant that I will be doing the same things and going the same places once more. What I have found during this trip was, we could easily get the Guesthouse to help us book day trips to Namli island and Petite France, and go on strawberry picking trips and day trips to skiing resorts. That will easily spice up the trips. Keep to the routine, but flavour it with new activities.
Travelling made simple
|Waiting outside Exit 8 of Myeongdong Station. The bus came very quickly.|
What I have also learned was it was wonderful staying next to Myeongdong station because the airport bus arrives here and departs from the exact same spot every ten minutes. And there would be no need to fret getting back to the airport. In fact our bus trip from Myeongdong to Incheon airport took only one hour.
* Video 007: Go home liao lor!*
The wonderful Korean people
What I have also found out was, differing from what many have said about the roughness and rudeness of the Korean people, almost 99% of the Korean we came into contact with: the old stall keepers of Gwangjang market, the Airport bus driver, the service staffs in most shops, the waiters and waitresses in almost all the restaurants, could hardly be called rude. They were accommodating even though we couldn't speak the language and communications were established with the wonderful Google Translate App on my iPhone.
No wonder Korea is such a popular destination for many Singaporeans, Malaysians, Thais, and Indonesians we saw in Seoul. The only interesting finding from Serene's observation was, there seems to be not many Ang Mohs in Seoul, yes the scattered few, but really not many.
We were certain we would be back. And even as I sat in the airport boarding area, I was already checking Zuji and Korean Airline for dates. Hahaha!
Till the next trip then!