Thick smog hung over Seoul for most of my visit, casting a beautiful steel blue light on everything. In fact, the first smog free day didn’t arrive until it was time for me to leave. The air quality was consistently “very unhealthy” according to my weather app.
I could smell these green onions before I saw them. Quite a few people prepared food on tables outside of their shops and restaurants.
These are the Tmoney cards for public transport. The cute designs are Kakao Friends. Mine was Little Muzi (a radish in rabbit clothes), the one playing with a caterpillar.
Cash was needed to purchase and top up the cards — you can top up in convenience stores or machines in subway stations. Station machines had a multi-language option, so the whole process was really easy despite me not understanding a word of Korean.
The subway stations and trains were SO clean. Impressive given how populous the city is! They also had these Relief Goods Storage boxes filled with emergency items like smoke masks, water, first aid kits etc.
Then you board the train and watch videos explaining how to cope with various disaster situations. Oddly comforting in that everyone would know what to do, regardless of whether they speak Korean or not. One of the videos was slightly more comical because it explained the dangers of travelling on an escalator with untied shoelaces.
느티책방 (Neuli Bookstore) is a gem of a bookshop café, tucked down a scrappy alley. I loved this place and could have spent hours looking at all the books! They had seating and reading rooms on other floors, as well as a small roof terrace. Noting this place doesn’t show up on Google Maps, it’s better to use Naver Map if you plan to visit.
I’d love to know why these flowers were placed in the letterbox! I’m even more curious about the fact they’ve never moved — the postie has clearly adjusted to working around them.
Myeongdong Night Market was a fantastic experience. We walked through the streets grazing on whatever we fancied. I tried cheese balls, japchae (rice noodles with vegetables), gyeranppang (egg bread), vegetarian dumplings and tanghulu (sugar coated strawberries) . The strawberries were nice but I’m more of a savoury person, so I enjoyed the other dishes a lot more. I wish I’d taken more photos of the food market but I was too busy eating.
Dishes I never see at home… tripe and pork entrails!
Bar 302 was a hidden gem. We walked down a dimly lit side street, up a seedy looking stairway, and found the bar behind a metal gate in a dark hallway. Not somewhere you’d stumble upon randomly. I forgot to take any photos inside but there are a few here. We drank some great wine and polished off some fantastic cheese. It had a really relaxed atmosphere too, perfect all round.