When Hubbie told me he would have to fly to Seoul for business meetings I immediately said I wanted to tag along as I have never been to Korea, never mind it was still summer (well hopefully very late summer). I could not get a cheap ticket because everything was impromptu but I get a fair deal with Asiana airlines. Cheaper than Korea air and Garuda. It is a direct flight from Jakarta, member of star alliance (so I get mileage points) and timing is also convenient (departing Wednesday 23.45 and leaving Sunday 17.15).
This is itinerary I made for the short trip 2.5 days in Seoul. It is a well packed agenda and definitely involve a lot of walking and not suitable for children. I skip nightlife activity whenever I travel with my kids as I do not want to tire them unnecessarily.
Wed: Midnight fly Jakarta-Seoul (direct)
Thu: Landed Seoul 09.55 Check in Intercontinental Seoul. Lunch in Coex Mall and head off to Gyeongbokgung Palace and Samcheong-dong. Shopping spree in Myeongdong. Back to Hotel and see Boungensa templae at night and Gangnam nightlife
Fri: Morning DMZ Tour (finish 2.30pm), lunch in Myeongdong and off to Namsan Park and N Seoul Tower. At night dinner in coex mall and check out the starfield library inside the Mall
Sat: Daytrip to Petite France, Nami island and Gangchon rail bike. Back to Seoul at 8pm and continue to see nightlife in Hongdae.
Sun: Check out Hotel and off to Bukchon Hanok village, Insadong and Ikseon-dong. Fly home at 17.15
I went to Seoul late August at the end of summer. Summer in Seoul was hot and humid and locals were saying I was lucky to come end of August where the weather was getting cooler with occasional rains.
We landed Thursday morning and the flight was delayed 1 hour. It was a bleak morning with rain and thunderstorm. Traffic was so bad it took us 2+ hours from Incheon airport to our Hotel (Intercontinental Coex). I didn’ t have any choice with Hotel selection as I tagged along my Hubbie’s trip lol. Intercontinental is a really nice hotel and has good review, five star with a high standard of service but location is far from any tourist spots. And gangnam area is known to have worst traffic.
Hubbie immediately left for his meeting as we reached our hotel. I went to the Coex Mall to have lunch with Bu Lucy who also tagged along like me. The rain stopped as we finished lunch so I asked By Lucy if she would like to see the Gyeongbokgung Palace. I have read that if we wear Hanbok we get to enter the palace for free and I saw so many nice pictures of people wearing Hanbok in the internet so I managed to convince Bu Lucy that we may as well rent Hanbok lol. There are many Hanbok rental in front on the palace. I went to the closest one albeit more expensive (18,000 Won for 2 hours) because I don’t want to make Bu Lucy walked too long. I saw the Hanbok stores in Samcheongdong was cheaper (10,000 won for 1 hour). You can also pre book via Trazy or Klook. I didn’t pre book because I was not sure what time I’d be able to go to the palace and whether I would be renting one or not.
Renting Hanbok is very easy, we just chose the size and the colour we like. It is so easy to wear. We don’t have to take off our clothes, just wear Hanbok on top of it. I can imagine in the heat of summer Hanbok will be too much. But this afternoon the weather is nice around 22C.
It was nice to visit the palace late afternoon as there were not many group tours and we got to walk slow and took many pictures with our Hanbok.
From Gyeongbokgung Palace we strolled to Samcheongdong. Stop on some shops and took some pictures in front of the traditional houses in some of the cute alleys
From Samcheongdong we took a Taxi to Myeongdong. The famous shopping heaven for skincare lovers. I have browsed the stores I needed to check in Myeongdong because Myeongdong can get overwhelming. There are so many stores and you can see 2-3 shops for the same mainstream brand like innisfree. We both shopped till we literally can not carry our shopping bags and decided to go home by Taxi.
Back to Hotel, Hubby was already waiting. He wanted to see Seoul nighlife. So off I went again with him. We walked to the near Boungensa Temple
and we walked to the gangnam area and had dinner there. I love Korean food!!!
We walked back to Hotel around 11pm. I have DMZ Tour tomorrow so I have to wake up early.