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Final days in Seoul: City Hall, free Hanbok, strange fruit tea, foreign bookstore…

Final days in Seoul: City Hall, free Hanbok, strange fruit tea, foreign bookstore…

2nd and 3rd July 2013. Time flies. We are leaving for Taiwan on Wednesday!

So we did feel like taking in some last impressions of South Korea’s capital. Since we lived so close, we thought it would be a good idea to see the origin of the fascinating and costly city project, the Cheonggyecheon – a reanimated stream running through Seoul.

Location: Cheonggye Plaza. Get off at Gwanghwamun Station, exit 5.

The plaza is marked by this sculpture – a spiral inspired by shells, by Van Bruggen and Oldenburg. The weather was getting more and more cloudy, windy and rainy.

Seoul Korea

 

Cheonggyecheon stream starts right here and moves through the city flanked by modern walkways.

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

 

A sign said that if you throw in a coin, the money will go charity.

Seoul Korea

 

There is a fun interactive screen where you can take your picture and send it to everyone you know. It was so windy, I apologize to everyone who got our unkempt picture card.

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

 

Good we took an umbrella with us.

Seoul Korea

 

Suspiciously many people were wearing wellies. Koreans are great at forecasting the weather.

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

 

Wellies are not just functional they are a fashion statement.

Seoul Korea

 

Pyjamas are fashionable in the rainy season as well.

Seoul Korea

 

Pyjamas and wellies are best suited for stormy weather because this is what happens to dresses.

Seoul Korea

 

We saw another interesting sculpture called Winner’s Face.

Seoul Korea
Seoul Korea

 

The rain was starting and suddenly stopping (typical Asian rainy season), which provided an opportunities to hide in a café and enjoy green tea latte.

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

 

No tipping and a buzzer. Seoul is all about modern service.

Seoul Korea

 

 

Despite the rain it is always hot and humid. The perfect season for ice cream. I swear that kid with the glasses did not pull his cone out of his nostril.

Seoul Korea

 

See! The ice man did!

Seoul Korea

 

Palace soap is incredibly popular and when I think about all the Joseon palaces, Seoul offers perfect filming locations for royal drama.

Seoul Korea
We hoped to do some Hanbok dress-up, an activity provided for tourists for free at MPlaza, where you can also visit a popular restaurant chain serving School Food.

Seoul Korea

Location of Myeongdong Tourist Information Center: 31-1 Myeongdong 2-ga, Jung-gu (M Plaza 5th Floor, Seoul Global Culture and Tourism Center).

 

As we walked in the dress-up corner had closed. The tourist centre was still open for another half an hour, the dresses were hanging and staff was sitting around, still they closed the Hanbok dress up experience 30 min before they closed the tourist info place.

The dresses and pants (they have costumes for men, too) are not complicated to put on, they were the cheap looking costumes.

As long as the lady at the counter took to explain that it is closed, that you have to register but that you cannot do that in advance, we would have been done and long gone. We noticed that places and shops usually close earlier in Seoul than what they have on the door signs.

Come early for a free costume photo session.

Seoul Korea

 

So we treated ourselves to the best burger ever. The last visit to Kraze Burger. This time we tried an exotic fruit drink, from a fruit that sounded like a Russian surname: Maximowiczia. It was served cold with ice and tasted a bit like fruity ice tea. We were told this tea had five flavours. It tasted a bit sweet and sort of spicy and bitter and I thought that nothing really beats one-flavour juices.

Seoul Korea

 

Veggie Burger!

Seoul Korea

 

The next day we said goodbye to Seoul’s City Hall with its impressive modern architecture.

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

Seoul Korea

 

Right underneath City Hall, in an underground mall, we found a unique foreign book store, mainly with English books but other European languages as well.

Seoul Korea

 

The owner was trying to convince us that he was going to put up shelves to sort his books. He was really friendly and just reading a book about Poland, he said.

A lot of choice here guaranteed.

Seoul Korea

 

These were  our last days in Seoul. Byyyeeee Byyyyeeee!

Seoul Korea

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