So now for the story of my Korea trip!
As most of you may have seen from my Instagram, I didn’t go alone to Korea. I went with my beautiful Irish friend, Kayleigh.
A few helpful tips when travelling to Korea:
- Get pocket wifi! There aren’t many places with free wifi and you will need it for maps and translations. You can order and pay for it easily online and pick it up at the airport. It’s cheap and usually a group of people can use it at once.
- Fly to Korea with only hand luggage and fly back with a checked-in bag. Whether you were planning to or not, you will probably shop a lot and exceed the weight of hand luggage. Bring only the utmost necessary, and then adjust your luggage quantity online on your return flight. This way you won’t have to pay twice for checked in luggage.
- When travelling from the airport to your Airbnb/hotel, use the train, not a bus. We took a Limousine bus the first time, but noticed later on that we could’ve saved a lot of money by taking the train.
Our flight was at Haneda airport at 1 a.m… so we had to leave “the day before” to get our flight. So, we were there at night time but guys… let’s take a moment to appreciate the beauty of Haneda airport. I have been to Narita many times but it completely fades into nothingness compared to this airport!
The decorations certainly were inspired by Japanese art and culture. Even the restaurant setting looked as if from a little traditional village. And since it was the height of the cherry blossom season, this theme was very noticeable as well.
Our flight took about two to three hours. You can imagine that by the time we arrived at Incheon Airport in Seoul, we were pretty much in zombie mode. We barely got any sleep on the flight, arrived at 4 a.m. and hadn’t eaten anything in a long time. So the first thing we did upon arrival, was hunting for food. We found this great restaurant that was branded “healthy Korean food.” To be honest this was just the first thing we found but it turned out to be really good and we ended up going again the last day before our return flight.
Since this meal I fell in love with gimbab (I think I ate it every day of our trip). Kayleigh had a bibimbap and kimchi.
After a long bus ride and a long nap at our Airbnb, we started to venture out. We were very lucky with the location of the Airbnb apartment, as it was in the center of Myeongdong.
Myeongdong is known as the shopping center of Seoul with brands from all over the world, as well as Korean brands. Oh, and one other thing, 80 percent of all the shops were cosmetic and skincare shops. I’ve never seen anything like it!
As Korea is known for being THE country of skincare, we didn’t hold back on our first shopping day!
What’s really fun about shopping in Seoul, is the food that comes with it! Everywhere you look, there are food stands. This is not only in shopping districts. It’s safe to say that we indulged… a lot.
We ended the day with Starbucks (this will be a reoccurring theme). The cups were so pretty! I love how the Starbucks in Japan and Korea celebrate cherry blossom season. It makes the experience even better.
That’s it for our first day in Korea. Stay tuned for more!