So I recently just got back from a solo trip to South Korea, and I absolutely loved it. The last time I had been in South Korea was back in 2006 and man, so much has changed in this country (Seoul, in particular haha).
Having gone in Summer, here are some of my recommendations!
- Deoksugung, Gwanghaemun, Gyeongbokgung Palace
If there’s any place to go to brush on a bit of Korea’s history, it would be these three places. Get lost amongst the beauty of Korea’s ancient architecture (and tourists, and the goddamn humidity).
(If you are planning on coming to Asia in Summer, an umbrella will be your best friend #DontLetHatersTellYouOtherwise).
This is where all the cool kids supposedly hang out. During the day, this district is relatively quiet. But by night, it is bumpin’. Catch a glimpse of various street performers trying to get their names out their and chow down on some street food. If you’re feel extra adventurous, head out to one of the noraebangs (karaoke) or clubs on a week day (for some places, there is free entry for girls – with strings attached, so proceed with caution ladies!)
[As I look back through my photos, I noticed I didn’t take any photos while in Hongdae for some weird reason- so I won’t be ripping off any photos off google to post here haha]
Got a bit of extra time? Then Busan is the place to go. Approximately 2 hours and a half away from Seoul via the KTX, and you’ll arrive at a city with a 360 vibe from Seoul. Laid back, very friendly and cool – how I’d describe Busan.
4. Gwangjang Market
Dongdaemun and Namdaemun Market have always been particularly popular with tourists. However, I’d like to give some attention to Gwangjang market in Seoul. With ahjummas calling you, signalling you to sit down at their stalls, you’re a hot contender at Gwangjang market. Do have a game plan and take time to check out what all the food stalls have to offer, before sitting down. Otherwise, you can become wrecked before you know it.
5. Han River
Up for a bit of leisure activity or ready to call it a day? Then head down to the Han River and rent yourself a bike. It’s one of the best things you can do to unwind from all of Seoul’s craziness. If that’s not up your alley, then grab yourself a spot by the Han River and order some fried chicken. How good is life right now!
Think you’re going to have trouble locating fried chicken in the middle of the park? No worries. You will be swamped with people trying to shove fried chicken pamphlets from their shops into your hands, so you won’t have too much of a hassle. The only problem you’ll experience is trying to decide what to get.
6. Seoul’s Art Scene
Seoul has a thriving art scene and if you’re an art junky – I’d definitely recommend you checking out the different museums and boutique galleries around Seoul, particularly near Bukchon Village and Sinsadong.
You may already have a list compiled of all these foodie places you have to go to. But let me tell you something, no matter where you, be it a hole in a wall type of restaurant, to some dingy-ass restaurant, street food stall or a relatively ‘normal’ restaurant, the food is going to taste good no matter what. So rest assured, your stomach will be happy 🙂
8. Myeongdong and Edae
Ladies pay attention. These two places are the best spots for affordable cosmetic and clothing shopping. Forget Dongdaemun and COEX Shopping Complex. Oh, I am so ready to post a rant about Dongdaemun, but I will save that for another post.
*Hot tip*- Subway stations are also a great spot for shopping as well- particularly for fashion, such as Gangnam station.
These are some very general recommendations. If you do want me to go into further detail, be it food, specific places to go or avoid- do let me know and I’ll post up another blog soon!
Happy Reading! 🙂