If you consider I missed an chance to be punnier with the word Seoul, you are not incorrect. But right after all this travel time, the old brain ain’t churning like it made use of to, and so “Sold my Seoul” and “Seoul sister” are the only choices I’m receiving up in right here.
Realizing I’d have only sixteen hours in Seoul, it was clear I had two choices. I could either obtain a single of these Hermoine time-turners to magically cover far more South Korean ground, or, I could obtain a nearby to show me about. Just this after, I chose the latter.
With This Is Korea, obtaining a nearby was straightforward.
I do not normally go on guided tours – which is ridiculous thinking of my strategies with a map leave considerably to be preferred – but since of time constraints, I knew a tour had to come about.
And as my exception to the rule, This Is Korea knocked my socks off. Here’s what we did…
Incheon to Seoul central
In spite of my flight becoming a delightful 3 hours late, I arrived at Incheon Airport to obtain my guide Matt waiting for me at the gates, wielding a sign with my name on it. The sign study: “Davidson Demelziano”, and this is the story of how I stole Mr Demelziano’s tour.
Ok. Fine. It stated “Serena Coady” and if I’m becoming straight up, it produced me really feel like a single of these effectively-loved individuals who arrive at the airport with an ecstatic welcoming celebration flanking the exits.
The journey into the city was surprisingly lengthy, but you’d hardly know it. My guide Matt was one of a kind in his capability to expertly inform stories with no it sounding like he’d told them a million instances prior to. He gave me a rundown of Korea, from the North/South split to the reality that Seoul has far more Starbucks than any other city.
In spite of me becoming as tired as Satan’s lazy lap cat Frank, I was wide awake thanks to my guide’s quick sense of humour and willingness to answer all of my queries about Seoul, no matter how left field some have been.
Although it was midnight by the time we reached central Seoul, I was determined to see at least a single or two items prior to turning in. So in the surrounding streets of my accommodation, Matt showed me about the ethereally-lit laneways of Gangnam.
Naturally, I was not photo-prepared right after a 10 hour flight. Nonetheless, Matt sprung into action as chief image-taker. I had forgotten that This Is Korea included a photo service.
Quickly adequate, he shuffled me onto the Gangnam Style stage for an unmissable photo op, and he whirled about obtaining angle right after angle. His dedication to #DoingItForTheGram was a treat.
Bukchon Hanok Village
Early the subsequent morning, we produced our way to a historic Seoul village.
On the way, Matt continued with his historical tales and take on contemporary Korea. His English was ideal, but he drew diagrams just to aid me out.
Subsequent up was Gyeongbokgung, exactly where witnessed the guard altering ceremony. The drumming was remarkable in its precision and harmony, and I’d be lying if I stated I didn’t want a single of these skinny beard and moustache wigs.
Although the cultural aspect was fascinating, the highlight was when Matt – I kid you not – slid onto the bare ground like a water snake. He wanted to snap a very good angle of me and the temple. Matt, my a single accurate Instagram Husband.
Jogyesa Temple and Korean dress-up
The final quit was Seoul’s principal Buddhist temple, the nearby meals spots as effectively as a single final surprise.
Soon after a bit of exploring – and the buying of a scrumptious waffle purposely shaped like an actual swirly turd – the thoughtful Matt took me to the Insa-dong Center where this occurred:
Even although we each knew I’d by no means have the organic suaveness of a South Korean, I had the chance to dress like a single.
So there it went, sixteen hours in Seoul. If you will need some inspiration for your upcoming South Korea trip, visit This Is Korea on Facebook and Instagram and start out preparing your an adventure of your own here.