I have left my Heart in San Francisco with Free SF Tour

  
If you are planning to come and visit San Francisco but at the same time you are also having limited travel budget, you could try Free SF Tour!
What is a Free SF Tour? It is a fully guided walking tour, starting from Union Square, continued to Chinatown, Financial District, and then Port of San Francisco.

 

The City Hall

 
What is the best thing about this tour? The best thing is definitely because it is FREE and the tour guide Filip is a very fun and caring person!

We learnt alot from this tour, especially the history of San Francisco, and what’s exciting is we are able to meet new people and even make friends from the tour.
 

Great Grandmother of San Francisco

 
The tour starts at 10 oclock in Union Square, and you do not need any bookings or appoinment, so you would just need to come and find Filip in the Union Square, just right in front of the ‘Heart’ of SF.

Although it is free, the tour guide is definitely professional, also gratitutes are very appreciated at the end of the tour.

 In addition, there are 10 bucket lists of things you ought to do while in SF, unfotunately Filip only gave it to those who joins the tour with him, so I wouldn’t be able to share em to you! Enjoy the tour!

USD 92.65 of Sim Card Sold in Los Angeles Airport Terminal 3

  
This is one of the important thing many have asked while travelling to U.S, whether or not they sold Simcard and data plans?

In my case, I bought myself a prepaid simcard with 1 GB of 4G, unlimited 3G data plan, and free text and call within U.S region for 30 days.

Expensive? Yes it was, some told me that you could find that kind of deal with only half price in downtown. So i bought the simcard for 85+tax so total 92.65 dollars.

But the thing is I am a solo traveler and I desperately need internet, as much as I could, so I do not mind paying more.

Once you get out of the arrival hall, you can ask the officers where you could find a simcard, and the stall is on the left side of our arrival hall (still inside the airport building).

Fyi: There are various of data plan depending on what you needed, free wifi are available in the airport.

Unforgettable Hollywood Night Experience with a Limousine

  

 Since you are in Hollywood, why not pamper youself for a night?

Dress yourself up, put on high heels, get into a limo and have yourself some parties!  

  
Recently I have used the limo service from LoveBoat, their standard is USD 150 with 4 hours minimum and gratitutes, so total is USD 720.

  
You could have all you can drink of champagne, vodka and boozes in the limo. 

 
There are many kinds of limousines available and the price are different. There are limos for 6,8, and even 16 passengers!

   

and you even get free entries to clubs in Hollywood!

  
No queues are needed, and definitely treated like a VVIP!

  
Enjoy your celebrity night out in LA!

What To Wear in Winter? How To Keep Yourself Warm While Travelling?

Christmas is coming, are you going somewhere cold or snowy this winter? Are you a first time winter traveler? Do you want to keep yourself warm and stylish instead of looking like a walking Hamburger?

Don’t worry, you would definitely be looking good after this!

  1. Thermal Wear


Whether you will be travelling to countries with snow or not, as long as the temperature is under 20°C and there would be a strong wind forecast, then I suggest to put on yourself some Thermal Wear (usually known as Long John).

Thermal is a pair of long sleeves shirt and pants that normally worn during cold weather. So, thermal is worn for the first layer of cold protection, and you could wear flannel shirts or sweater on the second layer.

You could find yourself a softer and thinner thermal if you are afraid of looking fat. There are many thermal brands sold in department store, but my favorite has always been the Heat-tech by Uniqlo. There are many colors available, such as Black, Navy Blue, and even lighter colors.

Point:

By wearing a thermal doesn’t mean that you would not feel cold no matter how low the temperature is, this is something that many had misunderstood. A thermal is worn to kept the heat or warmth inside your body, and protect you whenever the wind is strong.

  1. Flannel Shirt/Sweater


You definitely need to wear a second layer after you put on your thermal, such as flannel Shirts and sweaters. There are no restrictions to what kind of second layer you should wear, but remember to choose a warmer fabric.

Remember, it is so wrong to think that the clothes will keep you warm as long as they are long sleeves or cover your body. No, they are not! put in mind that long sleeves shirt or turtle neck made from cotton are not able to keep you warmth enough,  but wool could, so bring yourself a more suitable clothes to keep you warm.

  1. Winter coat

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My Winter Wear While in Brig, Siwtzerland

You thought two layers would be enough, no, not yet. If you would be travelling from day and night, what makes you so sure your body is able to handle the 24-7 cold? You definitely need a winter coat. The type of winter coat depends on where you would be going as well as the temperature; you would need to buy a thicker wool fabric because they are warmer.

Winds are usually strong while winter, so a decent winter coat would keep you away from it. One or two piece of coats are enough, you could have one in brown color, and the other one in black, keep in mind that these colors definitely never die.

Many has asked me whether or not they need a very thick winter coat, the one that would make you look like a Definite Hamburger? Well, the answer is yes if the place you would visit are snowy as having a strong wind. I was in Brig, Switzerland last time, it was snowy but no winds, so an usual Winter coat worked well for me at that time.

  1. Scarf


I am a scarf collector, and it is my most favorite winter fashion accessories. Why? Because you will be wearing your same winter coat over and over again. I wouldn’t want to look the same in the picture all over the time, and different kinds of scarf would give us different kind of looks.

Nobody would know what I wore inside, but they certainly could see differences from the outlook, wouldn’t they? However, scarf not only about the look, but scarf is also effective in protecting our neck from the cold.

  1. Gloves

Gloves are effective to keep the warm in our hands, and you have to wear it while your hands are still warm, and not after they are cold. The common gloves we had would not allow us to use our phone, but with a touch screen gloves, you wouldn’t need to put on and take off your gloves while using your phone anymore!

  1. Wool Socks


Every part of our body is important to be protected from cold, and feet unconditionally. You walk and travel with your feet, right? So you need to make sure they are healthy and warm as well. You need to buy yourself a couple of wool made socks to keep them extra warm, because cold and even wet feet would affect your activity.

  1. Boots


I prefer leather boots, because they are usually stronger and better made. If your wool socks have warmed your feet enough, then basically you don’t need to buy boots because boots are expensive. However, if you compare common shoes or sneakers with boots, then definitely boots are better.

Not only they are stronger, but some are even waterproof. Black colored boots are easier to match with clothes rather than brown colored boots, make sure you bought 1/2 or a size bigger than what you usually wear, because cotton socks are definitely thicker.

Now you definitely are ready to look good this winter! Have fun!

Visit Three Main General Guan Temples in China, Three Kingdom

We’ve heard stories about General Guan, one of the most well-known generals in Three Kingdom. He is famous for his bravery in the battlefield, as well as his deep sense of loyalty to Liu Bei, who would eventually become King of Shu.

History recorded that Cao Cao treated General Guan very well and would like to made him a lieutenant general in his own army, but the loyal General Guan refused his offer, and then he was allowed by Cao Cao to rejoin back Liu Bei alive with one condition, which was to kill General Yan Liang who served Yuan Shao (Cao Cao’s rival)

However, General Guan and his son were captured and executed by Wu Kingdom in the battle of Jiangling, then his head was later sent by Sun Quan’s troop to Cao Cao in order to frame him.

After the death of General Guan, he was defied as the God of War, and many temples are built as a form of worship to the deceased General Guan. However, there are three most well-known temples of General Guan that you have to visit while you are in China.

  1. Guan Lin Temple in Luoyang 关林庙,洛阳

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Luoyang Guan Lin Temple

Guan Lin Temple is the most popular General GuanTemple in China, because his head was burried in this very land. The temple CaoCao built was just outside the South Gate of Luoyang City.

After seeing General Guan’s head in the box, Cao Cao collapsed and did not regain his consciousness for some time, and when he was conscious, he claimed “General Guan is truly a god from heaven!” and ordered the head to be buried with honors”.

  1. Guan Ling Temple in Hubei 关陵庙,湖北

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Hubei Guan Ling Temple

Guan Ling Temple in Hubei is the place where General Guan’s body was burried. It was located around 3km in the northwest of Dangyang County in Hubei Province.

The Temple was built during the East Han Dynasty (25-220) and called “Yiyong Ancestral Hall of Emperor Wu’an”, but then the name changed to Guang Ling after repaired in Jiajing 15th year.

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Hubei Guan Ling Temple View While Winter

According to history, after General Guan was defeated, Sun Quan took his severed head to Cao Cao in Luoyang, while the body was buried there as the feudal lord.

It was just an earth grave at the beginning, but then time over time, some pavilions were built, gate was added, and then the temple was established in 1467.

  1. Guan Di Temple in Xiezhou 关帝庙, 解州

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Xie Zhou Guan Di Temple

Guan Di Temple is in Shanxi’s Xiezhou County. This temple was built because General Guan was born in nearby Changping Village. Xiezhou’s Temple of Guan Yu is located in Xiguan, Xiezhou Township, Yuncheng City of Shanxi Province.

Changping Village 10 miles southeast away from Xiezhou is the birthplace of Guan Yu, and the temple was built in the ninth year of Kaihuang Period during the Sui Dynasty.

The three temples of General Guan are regarded as important General Guan temples because his head, body and soul were remained in each temples.

If you wanted to visit these temples, I recommend you to use the service from http://www.chinadiscovery.com

I extended my stay in China by using the tour of chinadiscovery.com and their service was definitely excellent.

You will just need to tell them the place above, and they will plan you the perfect itinerary.

Subway Experience in Seoul with T-Money and M-Pass!

Subway is one of the most convenient public transportation service in Seoul, it consists of Line 1 to Line 9, also additional lines in the metropolitan area.
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Seoul Subway Map taken from Cyber Station

In addition, each subway station has a name, number, and a color representing the subway line. Although taxis are not really that expensive in Seoul, subway is still one the cheapest and easiest option for Solo traveler.

T-money
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Seoul Card T-Money

T-money is just like EZ-LINK mrt card in Singapore, PASMO or SUICA in Japan. However, it can only be used on public buses and subways in several different metropolitan cities and locations (Seoul, Gyeonggi-do, Daejeon, Incheon, Daegu and Busan).

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T-Money Vending Machine in Seoul Subway Station

We purchased T-Money in this machine with the price W 2,500 (W 2,000 balance, with a W 500 nonrefundable service fee). You could recharge with amounts ranging from 1,000 won to 90,000 won (maximum value the card can hold is 500,000 won). The credit will be deducted each time we use it.

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Deposit Refund Machine in Seoul Subway Station

Note: You could refund your remaining balance in T-Money at convenience stores, such as GS 25, CU, 7-Eleven, Mini Stop, With Me, Buy The Way (bearing the T-money logo with remaining less than W 20,000). But, if the remaining balance exceeds 20,000 won, you may receive a refund at the T-money Headquarters (1F of Korea Smart Card Corporation Ltd.*), so it’s better to recharge only as much as you will need. T-Money is not returnable, so you could keep the card for a momento!

T-money fare is slightly cheaper compare to cash, so here is a comparison table of T-Money and Cash.
fare comparison
Table taken from english.visitkorea.or.kr

T-Money card could be used in subway, buses, taxis, and transaction at convenience stores (must have T-Money Logo) as long as you have sufficient fund in the card. Also if you forget to tap your card on the sensors as you get off the bus or exit the subway, you will be charged double the next time you use it, so beware!

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T-Money Tap Machine in Subway Station

So, after you had this magic card, the next thing you shall do is to decide where to go and knowing where you are at the present time.

hong

Example: How to travel from Hongik University to Seoul Station?
Get on the subway at Hongik University, take the Green line (Line 2) and get off at City Hall station. Then change to Deep Blue Line (Line 1) and Seoul Station is the next stop!

M-Pass
If you would be taking more than 5 rides a day, I suggest you to have yourself an M-Pass. According to korea site, M-Pass offers 20 rides a day for the duration of the pass in the Seoul Metropolitan City area and Jeju, including Seoul Subway Lines 1-9, Incheon Subway, AREX’s (Incheon Airport Railroad Express) standard train (i.e. not the express train), metropolitan trains (except the Sinbundang and Gyeongchun (ITX) Line), and Seoul buses (except red buses).

There are five types of M-Pass, check the table below:
m pass
Types and Prices taken from english.visitkorea.or.kr

M-Pass will expire at midnight on the last day of validity. M-Passes are available for purchase at Seoul Travel Information Centers in the Incheon International Airport Passenger Terminal (Gate 5 & 10 at 1F), Jeju International Airport and Jeju Tourism Information Center.

A refundable deposit of 4,500 won is mandatory while purchasing an M-Pass, and a non-refundable service charge of 500 won. The deposit as well as any remaining T-money balance on the M-Pass is refunded when you return it to any of the aforementioned locations. M-Pass can be returned at either Seoul Travel Information Centers in the Incheon International Airport or Jeju Tourism Information Center at Jeju International Airport.

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M-Pass Card taken from source

M-Pass has the T-money function, so it can be used on buses, taxis, and at select convenience stores as long as there is a usable T-money balance. Once you have used all of the M-pass’ allotted subway rides, it can still be used as a T-money card after adding to the balance.

So, if you ask me which one is better, then it depends on what you will need. if you will only need a few rides a day, then you will not need to purchase M-Pass Card. The benefits of each pass will depend on our itinerary.

Simple, isn’t it? Hope you enjoy your subway experience in Seoul, Good Luck!

Joyo Private Island, Indonesia Hidden Treasure

No, Summer is not over yet, in fact, it will never come to and end here!

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Island Picture is the Courtesy of Pulau Joyo

Wax, skin treatment, sunglasses and bikinis on, yeah, these are the preparations for a total Summer Holiday! Many would visit top tourist resorts, Bali or Maldives, you name it, but not much know that there is another treasure hidden. A private island of your own to enjoy sunrises and sunsets!

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Picture taken at the departure harbor in Bintan Island

Joyo Island is known as Pulau Joyo in Indonesia, which Pulau itself means Island, and is located in Indonesia’s Riau Archipelago, easily accessible from Singapore and Bintan. The transportation from Bintan/Singapore to Pulau Joyo is fully arranged, so don’t worry about How to get there.

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Picture is the courtesy of Moomedia

The island is surrounded by white sand beaches and clear blue sea, and consist of 6 palaces and 2 small bale house. Each Palace has one King sized bed, an ensuite shower and bathroom and a Balinese day-bed. The spacious living area and sea-view terraces are furnished with sun-loungers and sofas-perfect for simply drinking in the peaceful atmosphere of Pulau Joyo.

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Picture is the courtesy of Moomedia

The best thing about Pulau Joyo is you may book the whole island to yourselves, with minimum 12 adults for 2 nights. We were there last time with 26 adults, and were welcomed with warm by the staff once we get there. The rooms and palaces were beautifully designed, meals were all served and fully taken care of, everything was so perfectly arranged.

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Fresh Swimming Pool with Turquoise Water

Sea activities, such as snorkeling, canoes, sailing dinghies, and even fishing are available. There are also other activities you could do while in the island, such as billiard, badminton, also fresh water swimming pool, full body massage, and Free WIFI Yeay! So, need no worry about missing your posts in instagram!

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Picture of Our First Day Fun in Joyo Island

We had so much laughs and fun exploring the whole island in the first day, such as canoeing, sun bathing, and a little drinking at night.

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Our Second Day in Pulau Joyo

However, we decided to continue our second day by enjoying the serenity and peacefulness of the island before the night ends. We told stories, share our big dreams in this small island, and ended our getaway with ‘happiness’ and ‘love’.

Click here for direct transfer to Pulau Joyo Website

We believe this is an island that brought love into one, and may you have yours too!

10 Unique Korean Local Cuisine You Must Tried

Have you wondered what to dine while in South Korea? I have prepared 10 unique Korean dishes that you must tried while you are there, and they are all local cuisine.

Be aware that most Korean do not speak English, especially seniors, so I have also attached the Korean Characters of the food which might probably be a good help for you while doing order. Make sure you tried them all!

Remember to say 잘 먹겠습니다 (Jal moke get sum nida) before you have your meal.

1. Kimchi 김치
kimchi
Picture taken from source

All of us definitely have heard about Kimchi, it is a fermented korean dish made by various of vegetables. There are over 200 varieties of kimchi recorded according to my source while I attended my class in Kimchi Academy, but the most common kimchi are made from radish, napa cabbage and cucumber. Restaurants will always serve various of Kimchi for complimentary, so don’t bother to order.

The taste of Kimchi depending on the vegetables and seasoning itself, some are spicy, and some taste sour. However, the most favorite kimchi is this napa cabbage kimchi, you could find this Kimchi in almost every restaurants in Korea. How does it taste then? It has a sour and little spicy taste. Kimchi is not only eaten with rice, but some also mix Kimchi in their cookings, such as in pancakes or even soup.

You might find the taste a little weird if you have never had Kimchi before in your life, because Kimchi is not served while hot, mostly are kept in refrigerator, so many exclude kimchi in their meal because they are not used to having cold vegetable dishes. Every restaurants kimchi taste slightly different, so it is worth a try!

2. Tteokbokki 떡볶이
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Tteokbokki sold in Myeongdoeng

Tteokbokki is a popular Korean food made from soft rice cake, fish cake with sweet red chili sauce, and you could easily find tteokbokki sold in stalls and street foods. FYI, tteokbokki was a part of royal cuisine in Joseon Dynasty, and the older type of tteobokki is savory, while latter version was much spicier, which then becomes more popular than the traditional tteobokki.

3. Japchae 잡채
japchae
Picture taken from source

The name japchae means “a mixture of vegetables” (jap means “mixed and stirred”) and (chae means “vegetables”), and may be served hot and cold. However, Japchae is usually cooked with sweet potato noodles, it was stir fried in sesame oil with vegetables (sliced carrots, onion, spinach) and served with beef, and cooked with soy sauce and sugar.

There are also Japchae without noodles according to source, they are:
Gochu japchae (고추잡채), made with shredded fresh green chili pepper and vegetables
Buchu japchae (부추잡채), made with Korean chives
Kongnamul japchae (콩나물잡채), made with kongnamul (soybean sprouts)
Haemul japchae (해물잡채), made with seafood and vegetables
Beoseot japchae (버섯잡채), made with mushrooms

4. Bibimbap 비빔밥
bibimbap
Picture taken from source

Bibimbap is usually served in a hot stone bow white rice topped with sautéed vegetables, egg, sliced meat, chilli paste, soy sauce, or a salty soybean paste. You will need to stir everything until it evens, then you can start tucking in! The taste might be a little strange to you due to the chilli paste, so I suggest you to have a taste of the chilli paste before you stir them all.

5. Bulgogi 불고기
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Combination of Red Chilli Paste Squids with Bulgogi Grilled

Bulgogi means Fire Meat, it usually made from thin slices of beef and marinated before cooking (soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, pepper, ginger). Bulgogi sometimes are served with lettuce, so you could wrap them together with sliced onions, and whole cloves of garlic and eat them all together. You could add chilli sauce or sesame oil if you would like to have more flavors.

6. Budae Jjigae 부대찌개
Budae Jjigae is also known as an Army Stew, due to food scarcity in Seoul after the Korean War, and the surplus foods from U.S. military bases, such as hot dogs and hams, the food were then being consumed together with Korean traditional flavor and cooking style, and this was how Budae Jjigae was ‘invented’ accidentally.

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Kimchi is added in this Budae Jjigae

Budae jjigae is often served with instant noodles, ground beef, sliced sausages, baked beans, onions, tofu, chili peppers, macaroni, garlic, mushrooms, and sliced American Cheese. The Stew taste differently depending on the seasonings and flavor added, but my favorite Army Stew is definitely the one with Kimchi.

7. Samgyeopsal 삼겹살
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Samgyeopsal is commonly served as an evening meal consists of thick slices of pork belly meat that could be marinated or not seasoned. We could grill the meat ourselves and eat directly from a grill in the diner’s table. You will need to dip the grilled meat into sesame sauce for a better taste of Samgyeopsal!

8. Galbitang 갈비탕
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Picture taken from source

Galbitang is a soup from beef short ribs with stewing beef, onions, and other ingredients. Galbitang has a clear soup, the beef rib is cooked in water for a long time and is eaten as a meal. Galbi and Galbitang are different, galbitang is beef short ribs ‘soup’ while galbi is a marinated or nor seasoned grilled beef short ribs.

According to source, “historical records on galbitang are found in records on table setting for Korean royal court banquets held in the 1890s. However, galbi, was assumed to have been eaten since the end of the Goryeo Dynasty (918 – 1392).”

9. Seolleongtang 설렁탕
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Picture taken from source

If Galbitang is soup from beef short ribs, then Seolleongtang is a broth soup made from ox bones (mostly leg bones), brisket and other cuts. The process of Seolleongtang making is not different with galbitang, which is to simmer the ox bones for over a period of hours and even entire day in a low flame. The simmering process is to ensure the flavor from the bones could be gradually extracted.

Usually Seolleongtang is not seasoned in the process of cooking, so you will need to add salt or any flavors according to your taste. It has a cloudy and milky appearance on the top of the soup, and is eaten with rice (the rice is sometimes added directly to the soup)

10. Samgyetang 삼계탕
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Samgyetang means chicken ginseng soup and usually refered as an energizing soup. Samgyetang is extremely popular during summer days, as nutrients can be easily lost in summer due to excessive sweating. In the making process, a whole young chicken filled with garlic and rice, scallion and spices is boiled in Korean Ginseng Broth.

Also you will need to add some seasoning according to your own preference, such as salt, white pepper. Samgyetang taste slightly the same with our home made chicken broth, only Samgyetang has a distinct ginseng flavor. The dish is also usually accompanied by side dishes and sometimes a small complimentary bottle of insamju will be served in some restaurants.

You could save the names of meat in Korean to help you in ordering the other dishes:
Fish 물고기 mulgogi
Beef 쇠고기 chwi gogi
Chicken 닭고기 dalq gogi
Pork 돼지고기 dwaeji gogi

And don’t forget to say 잘 먹겠습니다 (Jal moke get sum nida) after you finish your meal!

Photos mostly credited to Susi Chen, thank you dear.

10 Must Go Destinations in Seoul, South Korea

1. Myeongdong
Yes, Myeongdong is No.1 Tourist Destination in Seoul, over 1 million shoppers pass this street each and every day. If you are a shopaholic, then you should come to Myeongdong for shopping. Tony Moly, The Face Shop, Etude, you can name all of the Korean Beauty Products easily spotted on Myeongdong Street.

Thousand of brands are sold in Myeongdong, you could also find two anchor department stores there, which are Lotte and Shinsegae. Myeongdong’s history significance as well as the attractions have made it becomes a top attraction for tourist destination.

2. Namdaemun Market
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Picture of Namdaemun Market from the 2nd Floor Local Store

Not only shopping, but visitors can also check out the Namdaemun Market with over 600 years of history. Namdaemun Market is located in the east of Namdaemun and in the area between Seoul Station and Myeongdong. Namdaemun Market is quite large, and the streets could a little bit tricky, so I suggest you to go to Tourist Information Center, around three-minute walk from Namdaemun Market Gate #6 for maps or information.

According to source, Namdaemun or formerly Sungnyemun refers to the southern gate of the four gates leading to the castle town during the Joseon Dynasty. As the oldest remaining wooden structure in Seoul and National Treasure No. 1, Namdaemun symbolizes the history of Seoul from the past to the present. The opening hour is 07.00am to 05.00pm, and closed every Sunday, make sure you come at the right time.

3. Itaewon
Itaewon Street is full of stores, restaurants, and stalls. Different from Myeongdong, the fashion shops in Itaewon specialize in various imported clothes, leather goods, fur goods, and antique furniture. According to source, after the Korean War, American soldiers began to stay in the Yongsan Garrison and over the time, numerous businesses and housing complexes were formed here; Itaewon is in the middle of Yongsan-gu.

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Picture of Itaewon Street at night from source

Not only that, Itaewon is also popular with its night life. The clubs, bars, and pubs come alive when the sun goes down and the lights turn on. Itaewon is the heart of many clubs, pubs, and why not having a try here?

4. Hongdae
Hongdae’s name is derived from Hongik University; therefore, it is no surprise seeing many students and youth in the area. Many clubs and cafes could be found in the street, which is why Hongdae is regarded as the heart of the club culture.

The streets around Hongdae are home to shops, cafés, and bars that express the artistic talents of the area’s youth, starting from selling handmade clothes to artistic creations and luxury goods. It is also very common to see students perform and sing on the street as Hongik University is regarded as a top fine art college in South Korea.

5. The Blue House
It is named as The Blue House because of its signature blue tiles that could catch one’s attention upon entering the premises. ‘The blue tiles and the smooth roof blend beautifully with Mt. Bugaksan in the backdrop’ according to visitkorea.or.kr

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The Picture of Blue House from eastasiaintel

The buildings all have distinctive shapes, which are unique, beautifully designed, and built in the Korean traditional style. There are approximately 150 thousand tiles compose the roof of the Blue House, and each were baked individually so that these tiles are strong enough to be used for hundreds of years.

A walk around the path just outside the Blue House grounds is a pleasure as the surroundings are beautiful, and the path would lead us to Gyeongbokgung Palace as well. The Blue House closed every Sunday, Monday and National Holiday, the admission is free but you have to register online as a foreigners or even natives. It is strictly guarded by plenty of MIB (Man In Black) and these guy have a great look btw, so it’s worth a visit! You could click here for more information about tours and other details.

6. The National Folk Museum of Korea
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Picture taken from source

This museum is located in 37, Samcheong-ro, Jongno-gu, inside Gyeongbokgung Palace. The National Folk Museum of Korea presents over 4,000 historical artifacts of Korean people.

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The opening hours taken from source

The museum exhibits Korea previous domestic and agricultural lifestyles, also cultural beliefs. It is free to enter the museum, but an admission is needed if you wish to enter Gyeongbokgung Palace (ticket sold in Gyeongbokgung Palace).

7. Gyeongbokgung Palace
Gyeongbokgung Palace was built in 1395 and commonly referred as the Northern Palace, and is furthest north compare to Changdeokgung (Eastern Palace) and Gyeongheegung (Western Palace) Palace.

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Picture of Gyeongbokgung Palace

The palace were once destroyed by fire during the Japanese Invasion in 1592-1598, but the buildings were then restored under the leadership of King Gojong in 1852-1919. At the present time, Gyeongbokgung Palace is the most beautiful and the largest of all five palaces. The operating hours of each season would be different, so I suggest you to click here for more information and details.

8. N Seoul Tower
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The picture is a courtesy of onedaykorea.com

The N Seoul Tower is commonly known as the Namsan Tower or Seoul Tower. It was built in 1971 and is a communication and observation tower located on Namsan Mountain in central Seoul.

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Picture taken from source

Visitors usually ride the Namsan cable car up the Mt. Namsan, and walk to the tower in order to enjoy the beautiful Seoul cityscape. In here, you would find museum, cafe and restaurants, N Seoul Tower Lovelocks, also observatory.

9. Kimchi Making School
One, Two, Three, Kimchiii. Kimchi is Korea’s signature dishes, and there are hundred kinds of Kimchi you would find in Kimchi Making School. There are plenty of Kimchi Academy, I recommend you to find it in the local tour travel, because usually they only teach lesson in groups.

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Picture of Kimchi Making Session

They will provide you to the ingredients and utensils, so all you need to do is to be here and learn how to make Kimchi. The time would be short, around 30 minutes, and as far as I know, we can not bring the Kimchi back home. Usually after the end of the session, they will introduce you the products they are selling, and yes the academy is just a part of their marketing strategy.

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Picture of Wearing Hanbok

Not only that, usually they will provide Hanbok (Korean traditional costume) in the academy. Visitors are allowed to take on the costume, have some pictures, before the class started.

10. Lotte World
Lotte World is located on 240, Olympic-ro, Songpa-gu, Seoul, and is the perfect spot for entertainment and sightseeing. The theme park is filled with thrilling rides, ice rink, parades as well as a folk museum, a lake, and many more.

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Lotte World Picture is the courtesy of explorerguidebook

According to source, about 6,000,000 visitors are welcomed every year, and about 10% of them are foreigners. Lotte World is open for visitors all year round, regardless of the weather, but closing time may vary, so I suggest you to check on the website for more details upon your arrival http://www.lotteworld.com

There are several kinds of day pass to enter Lotte World, but the normal adult admission fare costs around W48,000. If you use train to visit Lotte World, then get off in Jamsil Station (Seoul Subway Line 2 & 8), Exit 4, the park is directly connected to the station.

There are plenty to do while in Seoul, and you just need to have research, research and more research!

Teddy Bear Museum in Seogwipo, Jeju Island

The Teddy Bear Museum located in Jeju Island shows exhibits that tell the 100-year history of teddy bears including famous scenes, popular teddy bears of different eras, also antique teddy bears; Elvis Presley, Mona Lisa, you named them all.

The museum was opened on April 24, 2001 and contains two galleries. The merchandise shop is on the ground floor, and the museum is on the 1st & 2nd floor. The museum gallery was grouped into three sections: the History Hall, the Art Hall and the Project Exhibition Hall.

The History Hall
You can witness the famous figure from the past in this hall, such as America’s 26th President ‘Theodore Roosevelt’, also Teddy bears of the “The Last Supper” from Leonardo Da Vinci. There are also teddy bears featured in some historic events and scene from the past, such as:

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Teddy Bears of Terracotta Warriors

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The First Man Landing on Moon

The Art Hall
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The Michaelangelo Teddy Bear

The latest artworks of world’s famous designers are shown in The Art Hall, such as Mona Lisa Teddy Bear, also the luxurious Louis Vuitton Teddy Bear.
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Louis Vuitton Teddy Bear

Project Exhibition Hall
The teddy bears are grouped to suit the theme of each exhibition, also the smallest Teddy Bear in the world at the size of 4.5mm. There is a museum bar opened only for adult, so you can dine or drink coffee at the museum cafe or bar while appreciating the beautiful scenery of Jeju Island. However, it only opens in the summer. There are also other places besides the fancy cafe or bar, such as the museum garden where you can meet the marvelous teddy bear sculptures and models.

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The Past of Hanyang

The garden was decorated with various themes such as the Korean bear family and the magical pond.The opening hour is 09.00-19.00 depending on the season, and the admission fee for adults is W 9,500; teenagers W 8,500; Children W 7,500. The price for groups more than 20 visitors are different, you can click here for more details and information.

An interesting way to learn history and art, definitely worth a try!