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Thread: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

  1. #21
    Member Cashmere's Avatar
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Nikkornos View Post
    Korea has her charms.

    You will enjoy Korea. I lived there a few years

    Really? Then do you have any places to recommend for some postcard-worthy landscape photos? I have a better idea of my trip for now after some "migrainic" research.. lol!
    So far, this is my itinerary..

    - Seoul for about 2 days
    - Train ride to Mokpo
    - Mokpo to Jeju Island
    - Jeju Island - Busan
    (Thinking about flight cos I don't think I can stand the 11hr ferry ride....)
    (Anybody took domestic flight or something before? How expensive is it?)

    The rest to be filled in later...

    What do you think? Am I missing out something?
    I'm very, very interested in Jirisan National Park but I don't know how to fit it in..
    Anybody experienced?

  2. #22
    Senior Member Nikkornos's Avatar
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Sounds like a solid plan.

    - Seoul for about 2 days
    Kyong Bok Kong
    Nam Dae Mun

    - Train ride to Mokpo (Muk Pu-)
    Many things to see along the way. Seaside Sunset is nice.

    - Mokpo to Jeju Island
    Many nice pictures. Bring enough film.
    Jeju will have many nice seaview... postcard-worthy landscape photos, yes.

    - Jeju Island - Busan
    Busan sea ports. Many nice pictures.

    Korea was smashed during Korean war. Gone are the nice scenes.
    Girls are ugly, don't be fooled by the media and movies.
    Men are chee kor peh. If you are female, expect to have your backside pinched. If not, means you need cosmetic surgery. Just a joke.

  3. #23
    Member Cashmere's Avatar
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Is it safe and easy to drive ourselves around Korea?
    I guess I will get myself a GPS and a map cos I know the signboard wont be in English.
    Is it expensive? The car rental and the petrol.
    I figured the best way for me to get around freely and for me to go to certain places is by driving.
    Cos I think some places will be a bit impossible to go if I take a train.

  4. #24
    Member Cashmere's Avatar
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Fallenphoenix View Post
    i traveled from busan to gyeong ju on bus....that's 12ish...and busan to seoul....that's 50ish, if i didn't recall wrongly
    How long is the journey?
    Is the ride comfortable? Do you have stops along the way?
    Don't your butt hurts? How to know which bus goes to where?
    I'm sorry for the many questions.. Hope you dont mind..

  5. #25
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Cashmere View Post
    Is it safe and easy to drive ourselves around Korea?
    I guess I will get myself a GPS and a map cos I know the signboard wont be in English.
    Is it expensive? The car rental and the petrol.
    I figured the best way for me to get around freely and for me to go to certain places is by driving.
    Cos I think some places will be a bit impossible to go if I take a train.
    Yes, it's safe. And these days with a GPS you can't go wrong. All the major roads/places are have signs in English. Highway exits have numbers. So it's easy. Only when you hit the remote country side, signs will not be dual language.

    For the latest prices - just check out http://www.hertz.co.kr/rentacar/rese...OnHomepage.jsp

    Their website is also in English. So driving is the easy part. More difficult - finding hotels. Because calling in advice - works only when you speak Korean. Don't expect a countryside hotel front desk to speak English. But people are really friendly. At least that's my experience - I've lived 7 years in Seoul. And seen more of Korea than most Koreans.

    My favorites - beside the last few recommendations. Go south. Cholla-do province. I really enjoyed Boesong. And the tea plantations. And then Jin-Do island. Really cool. and you can drive there by car - the island is connected with a bridge to the mainland.

    Other nice areas are parts of the west coast. There is one peninsula called Anmyeon-do (that's the spelling on google). Great place for long weekends away from Seoul.

    Mokpo is also nice; and you had that on your list. Then of course the east coast is great; but more something for autumn, when the color changes.

    Middle of the country has some fantastic original Korean villages. And you can stay in historic buildings. We've slept once in a farm house that was original 14th century. But that was in the middle of no-where. Easier is the village called Andong. On highway 55 to Daegu.

    email me if you need more

  6. #26

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Korea is nice and unique in her own way and probably unfair to compare with Japan.

    As Korea enjoy the seasonal changes, you may consider what is attractive; IE events and specialties in May to zero in on the places you like to go.

    I had backpack Korea twice and thoroughly enjoyed my trips. I had traveled with Korean friends as well as venturing out on my own. Stayed in hostels, motels and inns where the price range around 20-30 USD. They were clean and had internet accessibility.

    For express buses, they will stop for a short break (10-15minues) every 2 or 3 hour and even more for intercity buses as they pick up passengers along each city's terminal. Buses are comfortable and have good leg room.

    I had done > 20 business trips over the decade but did backpack only twice. Korea has changed and improved a lot in terms of foreigners' traveling. For instance, during my trip in last autumn, the tourist information offices in Sokcho and Nami Island could speak Mandarin and they were local Koreans. English is generally not widely spoken especially in less touristy area but you can get by somehow. Just for your guide - in remote area, bus tickets are purchased on provision/grocery shops. So in general, it will be helpful to write the place (destination in Hangul language).

    Feel free to PM me if you have more specific questions.

    Check out Korea posting #28-31 and 117-126
    http://lestwe4getphotos.blogspot.com/
    Last edited by lestwe4get; 20th March 2010 at 11:22 AM.

  7. #27

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    During a week of vacation last year there, I found that Seoul does not have much interesting places to see (except for shopping on cosmetics!)

    But Busan and Jeju are terrific.

  8. #28

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    I'll be doing 12-days in Korea in early April (less than a fortnight to go) and I opted for a packaged tour (including Jeju) and extension to walk around and meet some friends around there as my Korean isn't good enough to explore around entirely.

  9. #29
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by btrenkel View Post

    My favorites - beside the last few recommendations. Go south. Cholla-do province. I really enjoyed Boesong. And the tea plantations. And then Jin-Do island. Really cool. and you can drive there by car - the island is connected with a bridge to the mainland.

    I've only done my research on Cholla-do.. I'm so loving it!!
    Thank you so much for recommending it.
    Do you have any recommendations on a proper place to stay over there?
    I'm not comfortable with motels though..
    And is last min bookings hard due to communications and is there a possibility that they will jack up the price walk-in?

  10. #30
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    OMG! Thanks so much guys for your generous help and recommendations.
    As of now, I have a very long list of places to go and I'm not even finished yet.
    I need to catch up on some of your comments and recommendations.
    I thought wrong of South Korea.. (Blame Flickr, etc... hehehe!)
    After doing a thorough research on dedicated places, I now have an overwhelming number of places to go and I'm afraid 12 days will not be enough..
    I'm sure I will have more questions coming after some more research.
    But for now, I only have 2.. Do we need an international driving license there? And which side are they driving on?
    Lastly my current concern is, since I'll be hopping around, I don't know where to stay as I can't pre-plan my accomodations..
    Any recommendations on where to stay in specific area?

  11. #31
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by shanshine View Post
    I'll be doing 12-days in Korea in early April (less than a fortnight to go) and I opted for a packaged tour (including Jeju) and extension to walk around and meet some friends around there as my Korean isn't good enough to explore around entirely.

    After your trip, come back here and tell me where you went, your take and pictures! So I can drop by if i like it.. Will you?

  12. #32
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    how is the weather in Korea now ? i read that the sandstorms from China will travel as far as Taiwan

  13. #33

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    1) American or European style Driving -- opposite from ours

    2) If you are taking buses, can always stay near to Bus terminals where the amenities are available (24 hour convenience store, tourist information centre).

    3) The motels are not exactly "love motels." It is brightly lit and common for tourists; It is a small or mini hotel but have several floors, say even more than 200 hundred rooms. In some tourist places like Seroak Mountain, the streets are filled with only family-run motels in contrast to only 1 or 2 hotel. To play safe, hit the tourist area and avoid the KTV or bar places. Go to Korea Tourist website to see pictures of accommodation.

    4) You can walk-in and even ask for discount if this is not the peak season. For the popular one, you can book online in Korea Tourist site. I have not been ripped off but then again, not easy to get discount for foreigners who don't speak the language.

    Have fun ....
    Last edited by lestwe4get; 22nd March 2010 at 10:15 AM.

  14. #34

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Awesome. Will be watching this thread.

    I'm going to Seoul this mid april as well, tho only for about 6 days, followed by HK.



    Z

  15. #35
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Zoobiee View Post
    Awesome. Will be watching this thread.

    I'm going to Seoul this mid april as well, tho only for about 6 days, followed by HK.



    Z

    Cool! Where are you going exactly? Are you on tour package?

  16. #36
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by lestwe4get View Post
    1) American or European style Driving -- opposite from ours

    2) If you are taking buses, can always stay near to Bus terminals where the amenities are available (24 hour convenience store, tourist information centre).

    3) The motels are not exactly "love motels." It is brightly lit and common for tourists; It is a small or mini hotel but have several floors, say even more than 200 hundred rooms. In some tourist places like Seroak Mountain, the streets are filled with only family-run motels in contrast to only 1 or 2 hotel. To play safe, hit the tourist area and avoid the KTV or bar places. Go to Korea Tourist website to see pictures of accommodation.

    4) You can walk-in and even ask for discount if this is not the peak season. For the popular one, you can book online in Korea Tourist site. I have not been ripped off but then again, not easy to get discount for foreigners who don't speak the language.

    Have fun ....

    Aaah.. Left hand driving huh? Hmm.. That's gonna be hard.
    Thanks for the info..
    I think near the bus terminals sounds alright since I like convenience..
    In case I go hungry or something...
    The period I'm going will be a peak season or not? I'm not sure myself..

  17. #37

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Cashmere View Post
    Cool! Where are you going exactly? Are you on tour package?
    Well I will be there with my wife. I will be staying at Lotte City Mapo hotel, which kinda looks nice.

    I'll be hanging around Seoul and it viscinity and be hiking for a bit around some mountain trails and the wife wants to shop. shop. shop. :

    I won't be with any tour package

    Z

  18. #38

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Hi there,

    I was in Seoul in early January this year. I stayed in this little hostel called Korea Hostel ( http://www.hostelkorea.com ). Cost me approx S$30 (W30,000) per night for a single room with bathroom. The floors are heated during the cold winter. Room is small but sufficient for you to lay open your suitcase luggage for packing. Wifi connection is free in the hostel. However, in the room i stayed the toilet does not come with a basin. The location of this hostel is not that far from the MRT (about 8-10min walk from the surface exit of the MRT station). The bus stop that serves the airport bound bus is about 5minutes walk from the hostel and it accepts the Seoul stored value MRT ticket or tourist stored value MRT ticket.

    Language is a barrier in Korea. Do try to use your mobile to take the food which you want to eat together with the korean words beside it before you go Korea. Photos of cow, pig, chicken, rice, noodle, udon, bread, international toilet symbol, etc will be nice to have too. Atleast you do not need to act it out to show the waiters what you want to eat.

    You can easily find many Chinese national ladies working in shops such as Faceshop and other cosmetics house. They speak chinese and Korean. If you speak chinese, you might be able to ask them for help and local information too.

    Transportation in Seoul is cheap. I took the MRT out and walk my way back (excess of 10-15KM per day) to the hostel most of the nights. Very interestingly, their wholesale markets are open from 11pm to early morning.

    If you need a guidebook for Seoul (latest 2010 edition but in traditional chinese characters as I bought it in Hong Kong late last year), I could lend it to you.

  19. #39

    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    After doing a thorough research on dedicated places, I now have an overwhelming number of places to go and I'm afraid 12 days will not be enough..
    I'm pleased to hear that. How one likes to travel and tour is quite a personal thing, I think. Some like to sit in a bus, some like to explore on foot, some like to chat and eat

    I've been to Korea many times and love the place. I'm afraid I can't recommend any specific itinerary as I have always had locals accompany me to their favourite spots. From Seoul to Busan there's plenty to see. Don't try to take it all in at one time. Relax, you can always go back again.

    The highlights for me have alway been the people (#1) and the food (#2), and also how seriously they take their food. Unfortunately photos don't really do any of those things justice.

    Hope you have a wonderful trip. Take it easy. It isn't really like any other place.

  20. #40
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    Default Re: 12 Days In Seoul, Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Zoobiee View Post
    Well I will be there with my wife. I will be staying at Lotte City Mapo hotel, which kinda looks nice.

    I'll be hanging around Seoul and it viscinity and be hiking for a bit around some mountain trails and the wife wants to shop. shop. shop. :

    I won't be with any tour package

    Z

    Wow! It looks good... Shower from ceiling...hmmm... I like!
    Too bad it's too pricey for me.. lol! It's way over my budget.

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