Vacationista: Korea

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I’ll be honest. I am not a K-pop or a Koreanovela fan and I don’t really like their celebrities (men are too feminine and women have no unique features). But I love their food and when I went there, I instantly fell in love with their landscape and scenery (and yes, their cheap cosmetics too).

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Day 1. The afternoon we arrived in Incheon, it was actually their Lunar New Year so we expected that most businesses would be closed. Thankfully, after checking in and settling down in Kimchi Hongdae Inn, we were still able to go around and see the places near our inn. Dinner first at this Samgyeopsal place where we roughly paid 10,000 won each. There were lots of beauty stores and restos around! Shopping agad! Haha. My best buy was my brown winter boots for 9,900 won (roughly P450) seen in the photo below. Street foods are everywhere so don’t worry that you’ll get hungry.

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Day 2. War Museum. I enjoy going to museums and this was no different. The place was huge and so nice! Plus, it was free! Unfortunately, it rained in the afternoon so we spent it indoors for more shopping! Haha! For our transpo, we went to the spots by ourselves via their public trains. Having a map was really helpful. To hell with looking like a stereotypical tourist! Haha. Maps were our friend while making our way around Korea which has one of the most complicated train systems ever (that even Koreans get lost).

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Day 3. As I mentioned, I don’t watch Koreanovelas so I am not familiar with the drama Winter Sonata which was shot in Nami Island, which in turn made the island famous and a tourist spot. But via research, I found Nami Island pretty in the pictures so I wanted to go there. Though it was wet, I was not disappointed. The place is pretty nice and huge so be prepared to do a lot of walking. Entrance fee is 8,000 won and you’ll ride a ferry going there. Couples would definitely love to visit the island *wink wink*.

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We also had dinner at Palsaik which I highly recommend! their Samgyeopsal is to die for and super sulit! Only 30,000 won for the whole huge set good for three people (or more if you’re not a hearty eater like me).

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Day 4. The day for the palace, about 8,000 won entrance fee. It was super freezing cold this time! We spent an hour inside then luckily got to see the colorful changing of the guards. Then luckily again, we were able to line up for the “dress up as a Korean guard” activity which only accommodates about 10 people per hour. This was for free too so even though we had to take off our winter coats just to play dress up, we took the chance to look a bit like a Korean. Haha!

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PS. Korean convenience store food is so good. My meal below only cost 3,500 won with free cold cafe latte!

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Observation: I usually dislike the Koreans that go to my country (to learn English) because most of the time, they are very loud, noisy and rowdy. I was actually surprised that when I went to Korea, most Koreans were very subdued, polite and helpful. My theories are (i) those that go to Manila are from the provinces and therefore, might not be as refined as the city dwellers or (ii) once they go out of their own country, they unleash their inner loud selves. Hehe.

It may seem we didn’t do much but take into account that it was freezing so we were more like sloths than humans. Haha! We actually just wanted to take things slow. Plus, the tourist spots we wanted to go to we’re pretty far apart so commute time had to be taken into account. Next, I’ll share what I bought, as little as they are, during our shopping trips! 🙂

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