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[GPGT] First S.Korea Trip Report (Seoul Jeju Vivaldi Park)

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Old 15-01-2018, 10:13 PM   #16
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To finish off the updates for Day 4, apologies in advance for the (lousy) quality of this set as they're all grabbed from mobile phone video, not actual photos.

Since we are in Dongdaemun so popped over to have a glimpse of Cheonggyecheon Stream on the way to dinner place.



Incidentally, dinner place is at the most popular (no idea if it's the best) korean fried chicken: Kyochon!




... and then after dinner we headed up to N Seoul Tower ... or more accurately we walked all the way to the Cable Car station, and were informed that it was a 1 hour queue to reach the top, so we decided to just head back and sleep instead (lol)



(instant noodle supper before bed)

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Old 15-01-2018, 10:15 PM   #17
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Day 5. S Namsan Tower
Day 5 was Christmas day!! My wife's other family members went for Christmas Mass at Myeongdong Cathedral but I was lazy and slept in.



Noob tip for lazy people to go up to S Namsan Tower. Getting to the cable car station from Myeongdong station requires a ~600m uphill walk. To conserve energy take the bus instead from dongguk university station, myeongdong station etc which goes all the way up to almost the tower base.



Area around the tower base ...



We decided to splurge a bit on lunch @ the korean buffet restaurant. It's fairly good, plus (obviously) the view is great. Forgot how much $$ though.
(warning: screencap from video file = lousy quality)



Naturally the views are nice, even from the urinal ...

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Old 15-01-2018, 10:25 PM   #18
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A short update to finish off Day 5:

We decided not to stay for sunset @ namsan tower so we took the bus back down to myeongdong ... where the family went to lotte dept store and lotte young and spent a few hours shopping (again zzzzzzzzz).

After that we went to the basement to see see rook rook at the food section.



I saw a familiar brand



And we bought turkey leg, boiled pork belly and steamed fish to eat in the AirBnB for dinner.



Early to bed cos next morning needed to wake up early to go Vivaldi Park!
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Old 17-01-2018, 12:10 AM   #19
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Day 6. Vivaldi Park (skiing)
Day 7. Vivaldi Park (skiing)
Days 6 & 7 were spent ski'ing at vivaldi park! it's very near to Seoul and is apparently the most visited ski resort in the country. Which also means it's crowded as f**k. Check out blog for full review / write-up (blogwh0re alert!!!) otherwise just enjoy video!

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Old 17-01-2018, 12:18 AM   #20
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Actually the beginner area really is freaking crowded ...



But it's Ok, go ski anyway!



At the top of the hill (I hesitate to call this a mountain) there's a sky lounge / restaurant to have coffee, cake, and even some food:



At 5pm on the 2nd day they closed the slopes to uh ... I dunno. Film a car commercial I guess?



3rd day breakfast before heading down to Seoul was at this gorgeous looking Italian restaurant at the hotel ...



... which strangely served nasi goreng of all things (I didn't try) ...



No food photo cos we ended up not actually eating here, just drinking coffee.
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Old 17-01-2018, 10:53 PM   #21
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Day 8. Itaewon area
I guess Day 8 wasn't really full day Itaewon, rather it was 1/4 day only lol. We basically only went down from Vivaldi Park after lunch, and then headed to our accommodation in Seoul to check in, before going back out to Itaewon to look see look see.

I made some tailor-made shirts at Hamilton Shirts (because it's the touristy thing to do).



... then we did some window shopping



... then we ate some more bbq (but angmoh bbq this time ...)



(sorry for the sucky photos, I guess mobile cameras generally suck in low light.
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Old 18-01-2018, 06:53 PM   #22
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Day 9. DMZ tour (no JSA) and fish market jiak king crab.
So on Day 9 we signed up for full day JSA (the blue tents where NK and SK meet to have talks) + DMZ tour. But on the morning of the tour itself the tour guide found out that the JSA was closed because of military drills. So bopian, switch to a half day DMZ (without JSA) tour only.

Tour departed from Seoul city quite early. As you can see, lots of angmoh (and some indonesians)



Our tour guide was pretty good IMO, good english, interesting accent, nice amount history and trivia.



First stop: Imjingak. Actually we weren't scheduled to stop here, but apparently it's a must stop for the tour guide to buy entrance tickets or whatever.



Anyway since we forgot to eat breakfast ... popped into a convenience store to buy hot chocolates and bread ...



... and then head up to the roof of the building to have a look at the 'bridge of freedom'
(like everything in this area is named after freedom or reunification or something along those lines)



(these photos all are printscreens from compact cam video, paiseh for lack of quality)
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Old 19-01-2018, 05:15 PM   #23
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The first stop of the DMZ tour was the 3rd infiltration tunnel!



Basically, NK dug (at least) 4 tunnels underground from the border with the aim to come out close to Seoul and so therefore launch a surprise attack or something. This 3rd tunnel supposedly can move 30,000 troops and artillery per hour, but I don't know how they came up with that number cos the tunnel is really small.

Anyway before going into the tunnel we have to stop by some museum with some sort of "meh" relics of war, and also some mock-ups of the DMZ area + JSA area:



Then we have to go watch a short 5-10 minute documentary about the NK/SK war (historically) and how SK hopes earnestly for reunification



Then tour guide gives us a briefing / explanation of the tunnel.



Basically they dug an interception tunnel (big one with tunnel boring machine) down to the 3rd tunnel (73m below surface, roughly a ~20 storey apartment?) so that tourists can walk down easily.



Now I don't know if it was language barrier or whatever but I apparently wasn't allowed to bring in any camera or telephone, so no photos of my own. So I stole borrowed this photo from theseoulguide.com to illustrate.

It's a really small tunnel and it's annoying to walk because at 6'0" I basically had to hunchback the entire ~265m to the end of the tunnel (wear it's sealed up with concrete) and then back again.

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Old 20-01-2018, 11:05 AM   #24
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Nice. Came back to see your updates. Haha.
Did u guys go on any other day tours. Like those to Nami Island, railway track bike ride etc?

Where did u book thand DMZ tour from?
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Old 20-01-2018, 02:19 PM   #25
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Nice. Came back to see your updates. Haha.
Did u guys go on any other day tours. Like those to Nami Island, railway track bike ride etc?
Hmmmm, no, we only did this DMZ tour cos it's compulsory to go via tour agency. For Nami Island we DIY'ed cos wanted the freedom to pick our own schedule and timing.
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Old 27-01-2018, 11:24 AM   #26
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For Jeju, I did a video! For your viewing pleasure:



(Yes, I know the editing is inconsistent and some of the photos / videos color grading is terrible, but I have no talent for these kinds of things and lazy to re-edit / re-export)

(Note: The ads on this video are not mine, it's cos I used some copyrighted song then the song owner monetized it)
Mind sharing the iten for 2 day in jeju ?
and the accommodation u stayed
i too has a drone, does 2 battery last for the trip ?
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Old 27-01-2018, 03:05 PM   #27
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which airline did you fly from Incheon to Jeju? I heard some of the budget airline's fleet are very old and shaky.
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Old 27-01-2018, 05:06 PM   #28
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Mind sharing the iten for 2 day in jeju ?
and the accommodation u stayed
i too has a drone, does 2 battery last for the trip ?
which airline did you fly from Incheon to Jeju? I heard some of the budget airline's fleet are very old and shaky.
2 batteries IMO not quite enough for a full day of sightseeing. I have 3 batteries and it seemed just nice.

accommodation: airbnb https://www.airbnb.com.sg/rooms/15106422
but frankly I don't really think that it was all that great (other than the "free" breakfast and really friendly dog).

Airline i flew T'way, I have no idea about the other airlines but T'way was a pretty new plane, the seats fairly comfortable, clean, etc, no complaints.

Itinerary:
Day 1 fly seoul to jeju
- pick up rental car
- early brunch @ jeju town (black pork)
- seongsan ilchulbong
- jeongbang falls
- check in airbnb
- seogwipo market dinner and walk around
- sleep

Day 2
- cheonjeyeon falls
- daepo jusangjoli cliff
- seafood hotpot lunch
- sanbanggulsa grotto
- sanbangsang hot springs (sucks, don't bother)
- osulloc cafe + green tea shopping
- fly back to seoul
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Old 28-01-2018, 11:49 AM   #29
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2 batteries IMO not quite enough for a full day of sightseeing. I have 3 batteries and it seemed just nice.

accommodation: airbnb https://www.airbnb.com.sg/rooms/15106422
but frankly I don't really think that it was all that great (other than the "free" breakfast and really friendly dog).

Airline i flew T'way, I have no idea about the other airlines but T'way was a pretty new plane, the seats fairly comfortable, clean, etc, no complaints.

Itinerary:
Day 1 fly seoul to jeju
- pick up rental car
- early brunch @ jeju town (black pork)
- seongsan ilchulbong
- jeongbang falls
- check in airbnb
- seogwipo market dinner and walk around
- sleep

Day 2
- cheonjeyeon falls
- daepo jusangjoli cliff
- seafood hotpot lunch
- sanbanggulsa grotto
- sanbangsang hot springs (sucks, don't bother)
- osulloc cafe + green tea shopping
- fly back to seoul
The airbnb you stayed is south of the island and quite far from the airport,
how long do you need to drive to the airbnb.
Do you think staying on the north of the island (near the airport) or staying somewhere in the south is better?

I made a reservation on car rental with AJ , wonder which car rental service you used?
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Old 28-01-2018, 12:02 PM   #30
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Jeju apparently grows lots of these Oranges called "Hallabong" (한라봉) but all the tourist places sell the orange juice at chop carrot prices (around krw4000-5000)
Itís not that chop carrot. Hallabong itself is pretty expensive. Itís also called dekopong in Japan. Itís only grown in jeju and certain parts of japan. One Hallabong already cost around 3-4000 krw.
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