Seoul as tourists 16th October

It was a full on pretend to be tourists day today. After toast and strawberry jam (strawberries know no international boundaries) we walked to Dangsan underground station where for £1.00 we travelled to City Hall (only one error in navigation,wrong platform, then the numbering system made sense).

Waiting for the train

City Hall displaying a poster of the meeting of leaders

We walked from here to Changgyeonggung Palace, this is a UNSECO world heritage site. Our walk passed the Deoksugung Palace where they were changing the guard, next on the way was Jogyese Temple (28% of the population are Buddists) only then did we get to the Changgyeonggung Palace.

Jogyese Temple

A palace guard about to be changed

Changgyeonggung Palace was built in the mid 15th century and has a torrid time being destroyed in parts many times by Japan until it’s independence in 1945, even then the Korea War 1950 – 1953 damaging it further. For more information click HERE.

It was very popular to rent traditional Korean dress for your visit to the palace, there were lots of women and girls but less men who did this.

Traditional Korean dress

From here a short walk to Jongmyo Royal Shrine which happens to close on Tuesdays! so we failed here. Instead more walking to Bukchon Hanok Village, this is a traditional Korean village. It was interesting to see signs everywhere telling people to be quiet (in fact several people stood around the area holding signs asking for silence).

A street in Bukchon Hanok Village

Further legwork down through Insadong a large shopping area into Myeongdong another huge shopping area from there to the cable car lift to the top of Namsan Peak.

Busy shopping

Namsan Peak has spectacular views across Seoul but as usual there is a smog cloud over the city (today was classed as a moderate pollution day) cutting down visibility. On the viewing platforms there are thousands of love locks attached to the railings.

Love locks and Seoul

Pollution

Seoul population 10.3 million people

We returned to Myeongdong and ate a very nice meal, it was cooked in a large pot on our table, very spicy.

Seoul after sunset

Our legs now a little refreshed made a final walk to Gwangjang Market, passing so many small shops selling anything you could ever want and an equal amount of everything you never realised you needed, they seem to group together so there would be 4 or 5 shops selling fire extinguishers, then 20 shops selling lighting, then 5 shops selling packing materials etc. At the market it was endless food stalls, here you can get most anything fried or boiled, a lot of the food we had no idea what it was, most looked very nice, a little not so nice and some still moving.

Food vendors everywhere

Not far from the market we jumped back on the train to Dangsan and a final short walk to the guesthouse, at last our feet had a rest.

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