30 September 2013

CutiCuti: South Korea Day 7 - Banpo Rainbow Brigde & Sindang Tteokbokki

Assalamualaikum. 안녕! 


It really does took ages for me to complete this Summer Holiday series. 

Anyway, shoot! It was our last night in South Korea therefore we planned to end the night with something sweet & certainly; memorable. 

Direction to Banpo Rainbow Bridge (Banpodaegyo):
1. Take the subway & alight at Express Bus Terminal Line 3.
2. Exit at 8-1.
3. Walk straight until the end of the road. Do not cross the road.
4. Turn right & walked straight until the first traffic light.
5. Cross the road. In the middle of the road, u will see the Jamsugyo Walking Track (tunnel-like passage). 
6. Follow the track & the bridge is at the other end of the track. U still need to walk few metres from the track exit to the Hangang river bank. 
7. Enjoyed the Moonlight Rainbow show!

This building fancily decorated with colourful signboards will be ur view once out from the subway exit. 
We were there an hour before dusk...hence explain the quite heavy traffic. Orang baru mau balik dari kerja, kami pula keluar cuci mata.
Cross the road here. 
Note that sign at the left side. No smart re-charger of electric vehicles here. 

Seoul Government will begin the operation of environment-friendly electric buses in November. They will start with 15 buses on 3 routes in Namsan; in which I plan to hop on in my next visit. Obviously, this mode of vehicles emit no air pollution. I seriously think our government should consider this type of 'investment' to the rakyat. What's more when there's news that the fuel price will increase again, soon. 

Artworks entertained me along this walkway. If u feel like u've lost ur way, just ask around the local. They would be more than willing to help. Trust me, Korean are very helpful & thoughtful. Show them the 'still I don't get the direction' face...they will personally lead u to the place. Or if u're too shy2 cat to ask, just follow where the crowd goes. Chances they're heading to the same destination as u are high as Banpo bridge rainbow fountain show attracts not only tourists; but the locals as well. 

Moi before the famous rainbow bridge. Highlight of our last day in Seoul. Very relaxing indeed. We engraved such lovely memories for this trip; as per Ms G said to me countless times. 
We arrived at the river bank few minutes before the show begins. I feel so calm & at peace just by sitting there; watching how the Seoulites spend their evening. Loads of couples as usual; also families. I enjoyed watching the show that last for merely ten minutes. The water dance to the music played. I did recorded this show & watched it every now-and-then; which make me miss Seoul even more. Sob! But at least, my wish to go there came true. Another wishlist; ticked. Alhamdulillah. 
There are 2 rainbow fountain shows every evening. First show begins at 1930 & the last show at 2030. I would suggest the latter show to get a more stunning & real view of the rainbow fountain. Like the picture below. 
Credit to owner. 
From Banpo Bridge, we walked back to the subway where we alighted earlier. We entered the subway station through Gate 4; which also lead us to the Go To Mall underground shopping mall. Last mission to finish the remaining Won. There's so many shops there. Rambang mata! Despite being spoiled with too many options & not to forget reasonable price; I ended up buying nothing as I didn't found the thing I looked for. Ms G & Ms Z generously spent their Won at one of the shop that had every items on sale. Gembira sang wanita semua keluar kedai pegang plastic bag filled with barang belian berbaloi2.

Done shopping, we took the subway train & stopped at Sindang Station (Line 2 or Line 6); Exit 8. Perut sudah bising menyanyi dangdut countlessly  warning us that it's dinner time! 
Out from the exit, u will see this 119 Station across the road; on ur right. Walk straight keeping this station on ur right.
Our last dinner in South Korea before we go back to Malaysia early the next day. We opted to dined at Mabongnim Halmeoni Tteokbokki; one of the earliest to start the business at this area in 1953. The other day when we had jjukkumi for dinner, the restaurant displayed the owner's picture; halmeoni (grandmother/nenek). This time pun sama juga. Perlukah untuk glamour wahai halmeoni? 

I got to know about this shop from the same blog I found out about jjukkumi bokkeum in Jegi-dong. 
Service here is super fast. They cleaned up the table soon after the customers left. Time is gold for restaurant business as well; not only when u travel. Gah!
Korean tteokbokki (rice-cakes in red pepper sauce). Empty mandu & eggs are given based on the number of customers at the table. We came in threes hence we got three boiled eggs & three mandu. The ulam (far right) is radish; that's free. Habis, sila jangan malu untuk  minta lagi. Price per meal is determined on the numbers of customers. We paid 30,000 KRW for this dinner. 
Unlike the jjukkumi bokkeum, cooking tteokbokki needs no special skill at all. Tunggu ramen masak, sauce thickens...and it's ready to be eaten. Yumm yumm. Looking at this picture makes me drool! I miss dining in Seoul. Motif poyo gila kenapa? 
We went back to our hostel right after dinner. The two ladies purchased ice cream at a kiosk near the restaurant on our way back to the subway station. Melepas kempunan. Ndak dapat ice cream 20cm di Myeongdong, ice cream Sindang-dong pun jadilah! Did our last minute packing before we sailed to dreamland. Woke up super early the next morning, catches the limousine bus to the airport which bus stop is just minutes walking from the hostel. 

Anyeonghi-gyeseyo Seoul. We will meet again in few months; insha Allah. Si Err pun drama gila berpesan bagai.

Finally, a wrap! Will scribble an entry about the budget & yadda yadda when time permits.


24 September 2013

CutiCuti: South Korea Day 7 - Bukchon Hanok Village & Samcheongdong

Assalamualaikum. 안녕! 


Phew! Finally an update of my Summer Holiday with The Ladies. Things got pretty hectic at the cafe last week. Short of manpower was the reason behind all the chaotic. Managing a cafe is never easy. Well at least I have a job to make ends meet. And of course extra tu boleh bawa berjalan suka ria. 

Shoot! Lets continue with the update. After visiting Changdeok Palace, we headed to Bukchon Hanok Village. Just a few minutes of walking from the palace it is. But enough to drained our energy out. The many cute & attractive cafes along the way to Bukchon made us even thirstier. Walking on a summer day, drenched with sweat certainly the strongest excuse for another tea time session.

And so we stopped at one of the cafe with this huge banner displaying patbingsu in front of their shop. For the Koreans, Patbingsu rhymes with summer heat...and we; the tripping tourists include ourselves.

It only took us less than 5 minutes of walking from the palace to the street home of these cute cafes. We can't resist the temptation to gives Patbingsu another shot that day; after the one we had at Petite France. Dasar! 
Soothing interior indeed. How I wish my hometown could have concept-cafe like this! The ones that are prettily decorated here (my beloved Kota Kinabalu city) always scared the tight-budget people like me. Reason why we opted for kedai kopi cokia instead. 

I told Ms G...if I were to put that bear as a deco at the cafe; I bet it won't last a day. Mesti akan ada comot sana sini. Or some part of his body will go missing. Or worst, the bear disappeared
Our travel map, saved inside my phone. Definitely an ultimate guide for us because I don't favour the idea to search for the place we wanted to go only when we're there. Time is gold when I travel; so I said many times. I prefer completing my itinerary prior my holiday. That includes hostel we're staying, transportations, directions etc etc. Call me not adventurous but that's the way I travel. Playing safe most of the time unless we got last minute change on the itinerary while we're already there...yang tu memang boleh tolerate. Or when time isn't the hindrance. Well, I don't always go by the book all the time.
Referring picture #4, here's where one should turn left to enter the Bukchon Village at the red bricks building; Donmi Yaggug. 약국 (Yaggug) stands for Drugstore or in English; it's Pharmacy. 
Hilly neighbourhood of Bukchon. It is a traditional village composed of many alleys. Korean traditional house; Hanok is preserved in order to show a 600-year old urban environment. 
Was traditionally a residential quarter for the high-ranking government officials & nobility during the Joseon Dynasty. Considering this is a real residential area, voice should be kept down to respect the residents.
Namsangol Village is a museum of Traditional Houses moved from its original places but most of hanoks in Bukchon belong to private owners. Golongan bangsawan pada masa dulu & hartawan pada masa sekarang. 
If u want to experience living in a hanok, there are few hanoks that have been transformed into a guesthouse. Just be prepare to pay for a slightly more than the usual rate. 
Amidst the hustle bustle city...still stand this traditional village.
Alhamdulillah for I did the research of this house's location prior coming. Too many 'lost stories' have I read from bloggers in their quest searching for this house. Hence the research beforehand. And we found it without getting lost. *bangga kembang hidung* Buat preparation macam kambing; siang malam berchenta with naver map demi Sanggojae (Gae In's house in Personal Taste; a Korean drama). 
The most searched house in Bukchon; I supposed. 
Right door or the main door is for the owner...whilst the left; for the maid. 

Building wall made solely from woods. Super creative. 
View of Samcheongdong from Bukchon Village.
Maximizing the use of rooftop. Bukti kukuh. Pretty house on rooftop in many of K-dramas aren't just props. The houses are there for real. Well, some might be built just for filming purposes. The one we saw was a cafe. I wonder sitting there during the sunset; sipping my cuppa & enjoying the breezy air. Tenang!
Rumah orang ada2 kali ni. Siap ada warning ok! Kau mampu?

It means; The House (집). 
We walked along the streets in Bukchon...willingly letting ourselves drown into the peacefulness of the surrounding. Didn't realize we arrived at Samcheongdong after the magnificent view from the top of Bukchon.

And who says shops located further up shouldn't be decorated? In Seoul, isolated location or slightly hidden from the other stores don't necessarily means they're not favoured.
Just look how creative they can be. Strategy in marketing. Obviously, this stairs will lead u to Wine, Coffee shop.
Koreans & their waffle + coffee.
Because my beloved Jonghyun of CNBLUE; posed here once. The exact position. I was trying to imitate how he posed including tangan di poket seluar...but yeah, major failed it was. 
Again, tourists tripping tourist.
Ms G snapped this...how come I didn't see this. 
We strolled along Samcheongdong...admiring its many super cute adorable cafes. Really worth our last day in Seoul lah this walking! We saw too many cute stuffs. Despite the scorching sun in the afternoon it was indeed a rather calm evening walk for us. 

Hatta kedai jual susu pun deco cantik gila! Ouh I wanna have these kinda things in KK!
Exiting Samcheongdong...and later lead us to this road. Security check is needed as that road lead to Cheongwadae (Korean Blue House); South Korean head of state's executive office & official residence. Samcheongdong is adjacent to Cheongwadae's vicinity. 
Another entrance to Gyeongbuk Palace that will lead visitor to the Folk Museum from here. Goodbye for now, I will visit u in Dec. Insha Allah.

We walked back to Insadong, which is just opposite the street. Gonna spend our last night in Seoul wisely. And beautifully; simply to make sure the ladies enjoyed their holiday in Seoul...with me; as their cokia guide. Will update about our last night's activity later. 
When it comes to cuteness & creativeness...leave it to the Koreans & Japanese.

NOTE: If u're looking for a hanok stay, u can get more info here.