It’s been a long time (3 years) since I went to Seoul, but, having found my guidebooks, notes and other things to lend them to my colleague, I realized that memory is fading fast, so I should record it now. The only blog entry I wrote about that trip was this.
- Old Tea Shop in Insadong (address 2f 2-2 Kwan Hun-dong, Chong Ro-gu, close to Atelier Seoul) – an impressive cafe with birds flying around, friendly staff, nice tea and desserts, and cozy atmosphere. I was taken there by a couchsurfer, who thought I absolutely have to see this. Closes at 11 pm.
- Artist commune in Mullae. This is an industrial neighborhood that is rapidly being gentrified. Owners of small workshops are not willing to move out, but business is slow. To maintain the neighborhood as it is, a group artists settled there on now abandoned top floors of these metal workshops. Now it became a bustling arts commune with resident international artists.
- Seoul Forest, where you can see deer and other creatures, but most importantly – tropical butterflies. I visited a similar butterfly garden in Luxembourg, but this is larger and more ‘flowery’. The ‘forest’s’ leaflet says that it is comparable to NY Central Park and London Hyde Park, and is one of the locals’ favorite urban hideaways. There is also a playground accessible for people with disabilities
- Changgyeong Palace close to where I was staying (Line 4, Hyehwa station) – first built in 15 c, repeatedly destroyed and rebuilt in 1877, then turned into a zoo and finally restored as a museum again. I liked not because it was architecturally impressive, but that it felt really like a space that people use. I saw many people jogging, stretching, walking, sitting with children, etc. The entrance is only 1000 won after all.
- The area around is quite impressive too.
I enjoyed living there, and it’s really worth visiting the Sungkyunkwan University’s ancient campus. Wannabe bureaucrats in the middle ages used to take their exams there.
- Lotte World. You know I’m not a fan of Disneyland-type places. But this one is impressive. Don’t try the spinning cups if you have a weak stomach.
- Dongdaemun Design Plaza – a futuristic getaway, designed by the famous Zaha Hadid.
- Korea House – one of those compulsory visits to venues of folk art and performances. It is established in what used to be one official’s private residence.