Here comes the overdue post about the great Seoul-Searching trip. One thing you have to understand is that the sister and I were the types of people who prefer to travel on their own, without a travel agency directing our every move. This preference (and the fact that we don’t want to spend money on tour arrangements) has made me a research hound, exhausting all possible informing online, through forums and blogs about South Korea.
I made a solid itinerary, good for six days and booked our lodging online–an overnight stay at Toyoko Inn No. 1 in Busan and a six-day stay on a non-sharing guest house run by Zaza Backpackers located at the busy Myeongdong area.
We arrived in Busan just as it was getting colder, after all it was already past nine in the evening when the plane landed in Busan. We looked for the limousine bus (headed for downtown Busan and Nampadong area and the Busan Train Station), almost got lost but was kindly given assistance by an artiste-nerdy type guy who was also taking the same night trip to Busan station area. We encountered many angels during our seven-day trip…that guy was the first one. After a very quick dinner at the Lotteria across the street (Seoul’s version of McDonald’s, with a more interesting menu line-up), we retired to our room at the efficient and comfortable Toyoko Inn No. 1 directly across the Busan Station since we had an early trip tomorrow going to Seoul and we were dead beat due to the flight. Personally, I was exhausted due to the fact that I was still working and doing last-minute projects at work prior to catching the 4PM flight out of Manila.
Arriving in Seoul
My sister and I took the 8AM KTX trip going to Seoul. The trip took roughly two hours and 45 minutes, and the legs of the trip end exactly at Seoul Station, the gleaming, high-techy train station located right at the heart of the city. In our third-world trained eyes, the train station looked more like our country’s airport. Immediately, the small wonders never failed to amaze us: how the KTX had train stewardesses dressed in impeccable uniform and cute flower hair clips; how the station seemed to be an endless hum of activity; our jaws dropped seeing office girls with their equally cute boyfriends in tow flaunting gorgeous dresses and shoes-to-die-for!
Welcome to the first world, girls!
After our quick check-in at Zaza Backpackers, we headed to Mt. Namsan to try the cable car, to see the N Seoul Tower up close and most importantly, drop my contribution to the Locks of Love perimeter fence below the N Seoul Tower. I bought this miniature lock on my building’s resident 711 for PHP65 (USD2) and carried it from Manila to Seoul. I quickly wrote me and the Hubby’s name on one side and then the name of my whole family (i.e. mom, dad, bro and sis)on the other side. I guess, if I can’t bring my whole family to Seoul…then I am bringing their names with me.
…to be continued