My Half Day Habok Experience in Seoul

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I’ve read so many blogs and posts about wearing Habok (traditional Korean clothing) and people taking amazing photos in them, I just never had the chance. Most of the time I’m in Seoul for business on my own, and would be a bit weird if I’m doing the experience by myself, plus no one will be able to take photos for me… Finally, this time round I managed to squeeze in half a day of free time during my business trip, and got my pretty Korean friend to do the experience together with me!

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There are lots of places where you can rent Habok in Seoul, and Insadong is quite a popular destination for such activity. Not only because there are more than 10 Habok rental stores just along the main street, but also it is so close to all the attractions, such as the Gyeongbokgung Palace. My friend and I randomly chose one when we arrived in the afternoon. A popular store is the Oneday Habok store which you can make advance booking online. Oneday Habok is slightly more expensive than those along the main street, but they provide multilingual service, which is great if no one in your group can speak Korean to avoid any un-necessary confusion.

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Main Street
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The Habok Shop is next door to the Starbucks

The Habok store we chose is not big, but it’s very clean and organized, with hundreds of styles to choose from. You will be asked to put all your personal belonging into the locker provided before you choose your Habok. The Habok consist of 3 pieces of garments – the white underdress (you can choose the pomp om style with the metal frame for an extra 1000won, or just a normal one), the one piece sleeveless dress, and the outer top. The cost of rental also includes a handbag, hair piece, and simple hair styling.

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Colourful Haboks

Once you are dressed, you are ready to go out and explore the area wearing Habok! My friend and I chose the lighter color ones, which later I regret, as when the photo came out, the colors and the patterns didn’t really show, and it looked more like a wedding gown…

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Looks more like a wedding gown…

As we were on a tight schedule with only about 2 hours to spare, we have decided just to walk around the Insadong area. Below are the places we end up visiting, some are great, some are just okay.

A. Cheonggyecheon Stream

This is a beautiful walk, a very popular spot amongst Koreans. You can see lots of couples or friends just chilling along the path. Be sure to take photos with the amazing graffiti wall!

B. Tapgol Park

This park is quite interesting with all the olden day’s Korean architecture, and will make a great background for your Hanbok photos! A great spot for those with a tight time schedule, as it is literally just a 5 mins walk from the Habok rental shop.

C. O’Sulloc Tea House

Organic tea from Jeju island since 1979 – a great place to shop for tea leaves, and it’s an absolute MUST to try their tea desserts. My friend and I had the shaved ice, they are not too sweet, and is rich in flavour. It is a great way to cool down the heat. They also serve tea and other drinks/desserts. The feature wall on the ground floor is another great backdrop for your Habok photo.

D. Ssamziegil Mall

A one-stop solution for all your shopping needs. During the weekend, they will also have a flea market in the centre of the mall. Be sure to check out the Sky Garden on the top level too!

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E. Anguk Area

This is a very interesting area, you will see street artist, souvenir stalls, little boutiques, olden days’ architecture etc. This is also the area to the famous Bukchon Hanok Village (which I didn’t have time to go). During the Spring/Summer months, you will see many pretty flowers along the street here, and in Winter time, the scene is changed with the rows of yellow Ginkgo trees.

Make sure you have enough memory and battery left on your phone and camera, because you will be taking all kinds of photos! Sometimes if you are lucky, you will even bump into interesting people like we did! (Or unlucky… haha)

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If you ever visit Seoul, even if you only have half a day to spare, I would highly recommend you to do this Habok experience, which I’m sure you will enjoy very much!

MAP (Insadong Main Street):

 

Luxury Boutique Hotel x Filmography Museum in The Heart of Seoul

Travel_Korea_Seoul_Myeongdong_Hotel_Stay_Hotel28_韓國首爾_酒店If you have ever read my previous posts about hotels/accommodations recommendations, it’s not hard to recognize that I usually like to stay in either boutique hotels, or places that have unique design elements to it. Location is also an important factor, as it will greatly affect the overall routes and trip planning.

This hotel review is a bit longer than my usual, as there’s just so much to write about this hotel! I hope you will find the information useful, and enjoy this hotel as much as I did!

I was so excited when I find Hotel28 Myeongdong in Seoul. Not only it is centrally located in the heart of Seoul, it is also a boutique hotel with a very special theme! So this little gem is in one of the busiest district of Seoul – Myeongdong, and is easily accessible by a direct limousine bus from Incheon Airport 6015, Being a part of the “Small Luxury Hotels of the World”, the design, facilities and services provided will not disappoint you!

Now, let me take you on a mini tour!

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My Check-in Ticket

Continue reading “Luxury Boutique Hotel x Filmography Museum in The Heart of Seoul”

A place to read, rest, relax – OPEN Library in Seoul!

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It’s been a while since I wrote my last blog entry, I have been busy travelling and working the past month or so. Stepping into July, I have decided to pick up blogging again, and also to start writing a new destination – Korea!

So I was in Seoul (capital of Korea) about a month ago for work. Our office is located in COEX mall in the Gangnam area. I have been to this mall many times so nothing really excites me here, but, my jaws dropped when I walked past the atrium on the 31st May 2017! It was the opening day of the Starfiled Library (often referred as Open Library).


This library is 2800 square meter, and with over 50,000 titles, you could easily spend hours, if not days here! An interesting concept of the library is that there are no doors, no gate, no librarians, no nothing. Passer-by can freely pick up a book and read it at their own leisure, and return it back to position when finished – all free of charge. I do however wonder if some of the books are for “display” only, as I have no idea how you can reach some of them…

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The concept of the library is to combine shopping, culture, and relaxation all in one. Not only will you find books from different genre, there are also study space, independent community space for reading related meetings, all with gentle indirect lighting (and some natural lighting), creating a very comfortable environment for the readers.

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A little bit different to the traditional “library”, here you can also find more than 400 kinds of the latest magazines (both Korean and overseas), preparing you for the latest trends in the world. E-books are also available.

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So, next time when you are in the Gangnam area, and your feet are tired from all the shopping, why not come here to rest a bit, read some books, grow some knowledge, before you walk onto your next destination?

Useful Information:

Operating hours: 10:00-22:00 (Open all year round)
Location: Located at the center of Central Plaza within Starfield COEX Mall, B1-1F, 513, Yeongdong-daero, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
Closest Subway Station: Samsung Station (Seoul Subway Line 2), Exit 6
Official Website: www.coexmall.com

MAP:

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