Saturday, July 21, 2012

S e o u l Part 2

Oh hai thur~! I figured that I better do this soon so that I don't forget about what happened. If you haven't read part 1, you should go read that post first! >:D

Well now on to the last 3 days! c:
WARNING! Super long post! D:

Day 3: Lotte World (5/2/2012)
Yayyy~! This was more of a relaxing day. But let me warn you now, Lotte World may be a fun amusement park.... but people there are more for Korean people; there are virtually no people that speak English..... So try to pick up on at least some random Korean phrases (like "where...." and "what is...." and "thank you") just in case you get lost looking for rides (which we did.... faillllll). Oh! But don't worry! There are some people outside of the park (....-____-) at ticketing and info that can speak English somewhat. c:

Anywho! On to the fun!! But first comes breakfast! Across the street from our hotel was the cafe Caffe Bene (??). I think it's like the Starbucks of Korea (along with that Angels and Coffee place)

They had a nice spread, but we ended up getting a strawberry yogurt waffu and some bread thing with mustard. Yummy. But it's just like meh. Not the best food ever. Just something to fill our tummys. After eating, off to Lotte world! From our hotel, the compute to Lotte World took about 40min-1hr so we had to wake up a little earlier than expected sadly. :'( But of course we slept in. ;D So not enough time getting ready. Sorry bout that~ :p

After reaching the spot where Lotte World is (sorry I don't remember how to get there by train, but you end up at Jasmil station), in the mrt station once you get to right exit, there is an entrance to the Lotte Duty Free mall if you turn left and a passageway to the ticket booth on the right. There's also a pretty fountain thing there too! And more cardboard people. Kkkkkkk. ;D Before you buy your tickets, make sure you talk to information first though! You'll be sure to see the sign when you get there! You can get a discount coupon and map from them, so it was really helpful to talk to them. Also, we were lucky because when we went there, there was a special for couples for like half price and you get free lunch at some place! Unfortunately I think the restaurant was in the mall because we kept asking people what it was but no one in the amusement park knew what it was.... -____- so listen carefully and ask directions to this free lunch place with the English speakers while you can!!! D; Oh! ALSO! Make sure to get the full day Passport pass! It's just easier that way and you get perks kinda. c: (Don't ask me what these perks are though! Lol ;D )

Lol. If you look closely, my eyes are closed in the picture.... I like to blink a lot.... -____- Anywho! The park is essentially split into two main parts, the indoor part (ie Adventure) and the outer part which is like the Magical Island I think? The inner portion of the park seems to be more for little kids, so we started off there first; however, I recommend going to the outer part of the park (ie Magical Island) first and ride all the grown up rides first because the lines out there get longer really quick (especially after 4pm when tickets become discounted). 

Let's start with the inside part of Lotte World because that's where we started off! :p 

As I said, this part is more for little kids, but it seems to have an ice rink (or skate rink?) on the bottom level. We didn't go to that part though. There was even some activity booths for little kids and a play along game as well. It was really cute. c: We rode Simbad, the Viking, that Loop ride, the Pirate one, and some old western one where you shoot at things. I placed second at shooting things!! Take that!!! >:D Beaten by a girl~ ;) The pirate ride was nice too because it took us around for a nice sight seeing trip. c: There was one awkward part where we were like right next to a restaurant though.... I would not want to eat at that place! Always being looked at by random people on the ride while trying to get my eat on....? No thank you :( There wasn't much of a wait in line so you don't really have to worry about that.

After all those rides, we were getting a little hungry so we stopped at some random place and got some foods. This is where the speaking a little Korean thing comes in handy.... my friend wasn't given his food because he sucks at speaking Korean and he ordered "the same as her...." BUT! They ran it through and everything and took his money! But the problem was they don't really give us recipts, so when they didn't give him his food, he complained about why it was taking it so long (everyone else behind us had gotten their food as well) and the person had the audacity to say that he never paid and shit like that! So yea. Sometimes speaking only English can suck... but it all worked out in the end. c: The food wasn't too great though. I don't recommend getting the Bulgogi sandwich at this place if you go there.... I think the name of the place was "Speedy Gonzales".

And then after food and random pictures around the place, we did a little shopping at the little kiosks around the place. Let me tell you, everything here is pretty affordable!! It's not like those hiked up prices in America where everything is like 250% inflated.... -____- Prices are pretty much the same as they would be outside of the park! c: I bought some cute cell phone straps for my friend I was visiting in Japan, but I don't have any pictures of them unfortunately... but believe me! It was super cute! :D We also did some Korean Purikira! These are a lot more expensive than the Japanese ones (like 7000won each) and you only get 1 print out, but there was a nice station to cut up the pictures there so it wasn't too bad I guess. And the stamps you can use were a lot better than the ones in Japan imo. More options! But that may just be that we only went to like 2 purikira things in Japan. >< The timer things are no joke though! They run out really quickly so work quickly! Especially in the photobooth! Its more fun if you follow the sample poses too! Then you just look more fobby! Yayyyyy~ <3

Warning! The following pictures are going to be really fobby! :D

OK! On to the outside! This place is gorgeous!! We basically just rode all the rides.... :p The ride that I found the most fun was obviously the ride that is most popular there! It's Atlantis! SO GOOD! Not anything special compared with American roller coasters, but still really fun! We had to wait about 1-1.5 hours waiting in line though....that's why you go to Magic Island first! D: It was kinda funny because there was a corn station right next to the line... and let me tell you, they probably got really good business. ;D Also! I recommend the Comet Express too because it was pretty fun as well! It's not like your normal roller coaster, but it goes really fast, spins, and the visuals are really pretty.

Those last two are pictures of us waiting for the Comet express ride and the flume ride respectively. You get a little wet during the flume ride... so be careful! But still lots of fun~! :'( Well that ends Lotte World! We left around 7pm-ish and we got there around 11am-ish. 

After finishing off riding the Atlantis, we went to get some Korean BBQ in the Lotte Duty Free mall. We asked information which one they recommend and they said this one place was the best there is! I can't pronounce the name but you can see it in the picture. On the way through the mall I also purchased some Vittamin C pills because I was catching a cold again.... -_- Immune system... y u suck so much?! D: That stuff cost me like 28000 won for ~90 tablets but I bought it anyways because I didn't see any pharmacies and the supermarket near us didn't sell any type of vitamins. :( They did throw in a pill case and some Korean ginseng candies though! Everything you buy in Korea seems to come with samples! LOL. I don't mind it~ <3

There it is! The name of the place! It was on the 11th floor of the mall along with some other nice fancy places. c: Now I know what you're thinking! This food looks really fancy! Look at all those side dishes! And that's grade A quality Bulgolgi beef right there! (It was recommend so we didn't end up getting the Samgyupsai that I love but I don't regret it one bit!) So this must have cost a fortune right!? WELL! Actually the cost was just around $16-19 USD each and we were all completely stuff by the end of it. Not too bad for such a fancy place right! And we had ordered extra rice too! Again, bad part, not too many English speakers, but I remember them having just one maybe. Lots of Chinese speakers though. The food was legend-waitforit-dary. OMG. THIS PLACE REALLY IS THE BEST FOR KOREAN BBQ! If you go to Lotte World, you MUST go there! The meat was so soft and tender and well seasoned. The kimchi was one of the best I've ever had. We got extra salad. And lots of super yummy endless supply of side dishes! c: Can't ask for more~ <3

We intended to go do some duty free shopping that day as well... but unfortunately, the place closed at like 9pm so right after we got there... it closed! D: But the problem was, if you bought some of the more fancy stuff (ie Shu Umera, Shiseido, Hera, etc) you have to pick it up at the airport.... -____- Super lameeeeeee! I think the lower brands like Etude House and Dr. Jart++ could be bought in store though! I wasn't quick enough to pick me up anything, but man, the prices were really nice in this place! Try to hop on it before going to buy your skincare/ cosmetics in Myeungdong to save some monies!

We ended the night stopping at the night market next door and buying some soju and makgolli and snacks. Did I ever say that Soju really is cheaper than water in Korea?! Holy shit. It totally is! Those bottles were only like 1500 won each! That's like less than $1.50 USD for a liter of rice wine..... owo;; Here's a little sneak peak! I think it's age 20 that you can drink in Korea? But their age system is weird so idk... Whateves, we're all old enough to drink in the States! :p The fish thing is like some sort of taiyaki snack and its delicious!!! SO GOOOOOOODDDDD! The breading is really soft and everything! Delish! Red bean filling. <3

Day 4: Bukcheon + Dondaemun Shopping + Han River (5/3/2012)
This day was more about doing mostly touristy stuff and then chilling out. We started off by going to Bukcheon by taking the mrt to the Anguk stop I think? We stopped at information again to get a map. From there we went to Hanok Village visitor center place.

Make sure that if you want to take any classes there (like this fancy knot tying thing that I wanted to do.... call ahead in advance to schedule it! Or have your hotel call for you might be easier. c: A little walk away is a nice palace place that a very popular tourist spot, Changdeokgung Palace. Be sure to buy tickets for entry though (3000 won for entry only or 8000 won to include the secret garden). We didn't know this so we accidentally snuck in... so we were yelled at and ended up going back outside to buy tickets... ><;;

Lookit that pretty sky! The nature is really something there so maybe it would be a good idea to go to the garden (there was something about tour guides though? We couldn't understand if we needed to have one or that they would provide one?). Outside it was already beautiful so I can only imagine how pretty it would be inside. The only problem was that our feet hurt so we didn't need anymore unnecessary touring. ;D Inside the place, we even stopped at the little cafe to rest our feet and get some refreshers. Overpriced imo but we were thirsty so ok.... c:

After all the sight-seeing... (hey, we have Japan for sight-seeing! ;D) we went to DongDaemun for some lunch and more shopping! This time we would come back to do our clothes shopping at the Good Morning City Mall that's attached to the mrt station. We also did some shopping at the nearby stores before getting dinner. Ok. So here's the deal. When shopping at the Good Morning City mall (or most likely most push cart stores) you have to bargain with these people! It's best to buy stuff where there are official price tags and stuff like that. If there aren't, the people might try to rip you off! (Remember what I said about the taxis? People just like to rip off foreigners. Happens everywhere so be careful! c: ) They think foreigner and think of money.... This isn't much of problem with the girls clothes because most of the stuff (or at least the cheap stuff) had pricetags on it so it was harder to rip you off. But stuff like purses, bags, jewelry, shoes, and guy clothes were harder to get. So it's best if you try to learn phrases like "dishi-koun-to (say it like in the Asian way/ Japanese way) juseyo" (please give me a discount, or say "discounto jom juseyo" to be a little more polite) and "I-ge (i-ge is optional, you can just point to it) ŏl-ma-ye-yo?" (how much is it/ this?) and basic numbers and stuff like that. It'll really help, I swear! c: I watch too much Korean dramas so this is all too familiar with me (LOL. I even had a conversation with one of them I was so proud of myself! ;D). I had to do it for my friends when they had questions! I helped! :p There are some fitting rooms too so ask to try stuff on if you can (you can say this in English as more people speak English here, but will try to rip you off so bargain in Korean would be better). If you learn these simple tricks, the clothes there are really cute and really cheap!! c: Wait for Korea/ Japanese clothing haul someday! :D

Here's lunch! More Mandu soup and more bibimbap! This time me and V2 got the bibimbap, and Anna again got soup. :p But her soup was really yummy!

Then more shopping and dinner at a mandu place!

The dumpling place was most definitely a chain by the feel of it, and it wasn't too amazing so I wouldn't really recommend it. It wasn't that cheap either....><;; Sorry I don't remember the name of it though. :(

Finally. We ended off the day with getting some snacks and chilling at the Han River. Sorry but I can't tell you how to get there because I wouldn't know! ;D I just followed group leader V2 and my feet really hurt.... Lol.... ><;; Proof is in the first shot! Look! If you look closely we switched A single shoe for a bit because my feet hurt so much ;D LOL. I only got one shoe because she didn't like heels. ;D Oh well. Still something! <3 I can tell you that you want to end up in the park by the Bampo Bridge Rainbow Fountain though! c: The place we were at was definitely a park.

The river is all fancy with it's lights and the building that changes colors and there's a water light show from the bridge. If I remember correctly. The show starts at 8'oclock and plays every 20 minutes. I don't remember when it ends though? I want to say either 9:30 or 10pm. Sorry. ><;; I forgot too much! Wahhhhhhh~ Should have done this post earlier...... Aigooooo~ BUT! Someone actually got engaged during the show! It was really cute! They made an announcement over the loud speaker! c: We just chilled there for a while to rest our poor feet and relax before heading back. Our last night in Korea... T____T I wanna go back~ <3

Day 5: Departure (5/4/2012)
We woke up around 10'oclock to get ready to leave and check out of our hotel. To get back to Incheon (or Gimpo) airport, you can buy your ticket from the hotel staff reception desk (or for Gimpo, you can buy it from the bus driver guy). This one was 14000 won so a little more expensive than the first one but only by a dollar. >< The stop for us was right outside the hotel and the hotel staff will tell you when it's coming so you can wait inside until it's close by. How nice right?! :D We got to the airport a little early, so we stopped for a little snack at a coffee place in the airport and did a little duty free shopping to spend all of our left over won. It's really hard to get small bills exchanged so try to spend those if you can help it or you can keep it as a souvenir. c: I ended up getting a cream blush from the Face Shop in duty free! Lol! It's so cute too! So glad I bought it! Last pictures in Korea.... so sad. :( Boarding the plane (US Airways) to Tokyo, Japan. We actually got checked twice to get on the plane. I don't know why they were so anal about it. I know most Asian countries allow you to bring water/ drinks on board that you bought in the airport but that's what the second security check was for so idk about Korea... >< Be careful not to buy drinks for the plane ride! Well  they give you free drinks on planes anyways so it should matter. c:

Well that sure was long. Thanks for reading! If you ever get the chance to go to Seoul, I would really recommend it! And try getting some fresh sashimi from a fish market on the outskirts of Seoul if you can! We didn't have enough time for that, but it's supposed to be really good according to our Korean friends! :( Don't worry Seoul! I'll be back someday to boost your economy with my copious amounts of hoarding next time! And next time, I'll haul even more~ Buwahahahah~ ;)