Korea has been one of the most memorable holidays I’ve taken with my parents, possibly because it is the first overseas trip that we have taken with Ellie. Sometimes I scroll through the photos and the sweet memories do make me smile again and again.
As I thought through my thanksgivings for March, it was easy for me to give thanks for the special time spent together: our trip to Korea. 🙂
Travelling to Korea
It was the tail-end of winter when we were there, so temperatures were around 0 to 5 degrees Celsius. As I mentioned in my previous post on <Travelling with a Toddler>, my main concern was how Ellie would fare during the plane ride as well as how she would adapt to the cold. So upon arrival, we got ourselves hot drinks (I love my mocha) and bought bus tickets to get to our hotel.
We stayed in L7 hotel, which is a small boutique hotel with modern furnishings and decor. It was very convenient since we were close to their malls as well as Myeongdong metro station.
[Add.: 137, Toegye-ro, Jung-gu, Jung-Gu, 04537 Seoul]
We took turns to crash on the hotel bed. 🙂 While I rested, my parents brought Ellie for a stroll along their streets and there were so many sights that caught her interest. She is such a curious little one.
It was only when I had some quiet time to myself that I finally took a moment to look around and realized, “Wow, we’re here. We’re actually vacationing in Korea.” I guess it is this way with most Mums, isn’t it? We get so caught up with tasks and looking into all the details to make sure things run smoothly, that we tend to forget to enjoy the process along the way.
I was glad I had those moments looking out the window to myself. It was a mix of feeling accomplished and being hopeful for how the holiday will turn out.
After getting our rest, we made our way to N Seoul Tower. We walked quite a distance and took a few lovely pictures along the way, but we were too tired to go all the way. So we ended up having our dinner at a small local shop, and the food was fantastic. I loved how they provided fresh lettuce for us to wrap our meat in, yum.
The next day, we woke up refreshed and so much more rested than the day before. I loved the cold weather, and it seemed like Ellie did too. We had breakfast at Caffe Bene which was a 5-minute walk from our hotel.
Alight at Myeongdong station, Exit 7 or 8:
Then we headed to Bukchon Hanok Village . I have to say this was one of my favorite parts of the trip. 🙂 Seeing the old architecture reminded me so much of what we usually see in Korean dramas. It was so lovely. Plus, though the area is catered to tourists, there are people still living there! So surreal and beautiful.
[Add.: 37, Gyedong-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul]
Alight at Anguk station, Exit 2. Walk straight for about 500m till you start seeing the hanoks.
This was an interesting morning because we decided to visit Ewha Womans University and saw the streets dotted with many selling flowers. We wondered if it was a special occasion, and then realized that it was their Graduation Day! There were many proud parents, happy selfies and excited friends all over the campus and it was special witnessing that joy, even if we caught only a small glimpse of it. 🙂
[Add.: 52, Ewhayeodae-gil, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul]
Alight at EwHa Womans University station, Exit 2 or 3:
We walked out for a bit of a breather and Ellie fell asleep at Angel-in-us Coffee. So my parents walked around on their own while I sat there resting for a good 2 hours+! She sleeps best if I’m not moving around, so this is what I do if she falls asleep in the carrier.
After she woke up, we popped over to Lotte Department Store! What I love about their malls are their spacious and beautifully decorated nursing rooms. These rooms are so pretty and clean, you can change your baby’s diapers on one end, and feed at the other end! It would be so nice if we have such in Singapore.
[Add.: 30, Eulji-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul]
Their nursing room at Lotte Department Store, level 7:
My dear Mummy’s 60th birthday!
It was extra special because we got to celebrate Ellie’s 16 months old milestone too. 🙂 We enjoyed a quiet breakfast at Wood & Brick, a very cozy cafe that I would really love to visit again.
[Add.: 14, Bukchon-ro 5-gil, Jongno-gu 1F, Seoul]
Alight at Anguk station, Exit 1
Mummy wanted Korean Army Stew for her birthday lunch, so off we went to indulge at Mukshidonna Tteokbokki for a hearty meal! This was so filling, yet it was one of our cheapest meals (worked out to be around SGD8/pax). The only thing was that since it is so popular, there was a perpetual queue, so we couldn’t sit for long to have Ellie continue her nap (in the carrier). But other than that, the food was really good and my parents were happy. 🙂 I especially loved their chewy rice cakes!
[Add.: 19-1 Anguk-Dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul]
In the evening, we rested a little before heading out to the stores around our hotel and introduced Ellie to the HUGE Brown Line Bear. 😉 She started out quite fearful, but soon got very excited to meet the bear! We got a number of adorable trinkets and stationery as gifts for my niece and nephews too.
We were much too full to have a proper dinner, so we had waffles and ice-cream at BeansBins Coffee (2nd floor) at Savoy Hotel instead. SO yummy! We are not fans of whipped cream, but everything else was delicious.
[Add.: 10, Myeongdong 8na-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul]
This was our shopping day at Shinsegae Department Store! I loved the wide variety there and that they had affordable options along with high-end brands. Ellie enjoyed walking around their Sky Park on the 11th floor too where she made friends with an adorable Korean boy!
[Add.: 77, Toegye-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul]
Later, we had grilled beef for dinner because it was raining and the restaurant we stumbled on seemed warm and cozy. There was hardly anyone around because it was still early, which was good because the owner spent a lot of time chatting with Ellie and feeding her rice wrapped in seaweed! Such sweet and memorable service.
Home sweet home! But not before we had a delicious porridge for breakfast. 🙂 This tiny, nondescript place is near Myeongdong station, about 10 minutes walk. It is on the second level, and their porridge (especially the ginseng and abalone porridge) is really tasty!
Alight at Myeongdong station, Exit 10
So there you go – our highlights for our trip to Korea, and my big thanksgiving for March. 🙂
I hope you enjoyed reading! My parents are already dreaming of their next trip there…
And no matter what is going on in your life right now, here is a FREE desktop wallpaper for April to remind you that God is in control and there is no need to worry. Just as He saw me through the solo-parenting trip to Korea, He will see you through any of life’s challenges too.
Take care friends!