Chuseok adventures, Pt I: Hello Hongdae, greetings, Gyeongbokgung!

Dear readers, hello! I spent a chunk of the Chuseok long weekend in Seoul, which means a lot of new and exciting photos and stories to share with you. Seoul is such a vibrant and exciting city to explore, and I can now say I’ve officially fallen in love with it after discovering the Cheonggye stream- an oasis of green space in the midst of semi-chaos in groovy Insa-dong.

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I explored the city at a leisurely pace, but kept busy, visiting Hongdae, Gyeongbokgung Palace and the Palace Museum, Insa-dong, Cheonggye stream, Itaewon, and Namsan hanok village. I’ll be sharing photos and memories in several installments. 🙂

I hopped on an express bus with my co-worker Grace and a few of her friends. The bus was much quicker than normal, and we accidentally overshot things –by the time we realized the bus was on its return loop, we had to wait and get off in Suwon. Ooooops.

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Eventually we got off the bus in bustling Gangnam- can’t wait to go back and explore!

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Middle-aged lady’s shirt on the subway. What does it mean? We may never know.

Eventually, we made it to our hostel in Hongdae! Right away, I noted what a cute area it was- there are lots of neat little shops, trees, murals, and plenty of little details to take in. Seeing little cafes and inventive shop signs reminded me a little of Melbourne’s creative aesthetic and attention to detail.

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This is Bolt. Bolt is a big ball of floof at Beegers, the beer + burger joint we visited for dinner.

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Where the crazy saints like to hang out.

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Hey, Cy, what’s that…

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…American smell?

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Megan, Grace and I.

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Wandering around afterwards. Apparently this strange little building sells tickets for various events are sold!

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In the subway station- who wouldn’t want a toilet to sit on?

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It’s a-me! A-Holly!

 

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The next morning, after some toast and coffee at my hostel, I met up with Megan at Gyeongbokgung Palace- originally built in 1395, and one of Seoul’s most famous historical sights. It was quite impressive indeed, with extensive grounds and beautiful buildings- well worth the journey and the 3000 won entrance fee. This fee included entrance to the National Palace Museum as well, with an impressive collection of royal clothing, furniture, jewelry and the like.

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A sundial.

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Megan and I.

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Stone figurines of the Zodiac- Year of the Snake, baby.

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Kids performing traditional drumming as part of the Chuseok festivities. This kind of performance needs to be seen in person to be truly appreciated. Very impressive!

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The Queen’s quarters.

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Royal guards- hard to believe they were real people, with their impressive attire and posture.

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Almost time for the changing of the guards.

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Seen along our walk to Insa-dong for a lunch break.

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Another statue of Sejong the Great- inventor of Hangul.

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Lunch break- Japanese-style breaded pork cutlet, or tonkatsu, with curry, salad, rice and miso! Mmm.







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4 thoughts on “Chuseok adventures, Pt I: Hello Hongdae, greetings, Gyeongbokgung!

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