Korean BBQs and so much more

We had a fantastic introduction to the food in Korea when we caught up with Jamunah and Shyamalan, friends who now live in Busan. They took us on a food tour in the Nampo-dong area. We started with a Korean BBQ of course! Then some street food, a delicious Bingsu (shaved ice dessert), some sangria at TGI Friday and a light dinner at the Lotte food hall to end the day in style! Wow!

With Jamunah, Shyamalan and their kids
With Jamunah, Shyamalan and their kids
(Jamunah took all the photos as we had forgotten our camera!)

We managed 5 BBQs in a week – the meat (beef or pork) is great and all the condiments delicious and we were craving more meat after the relatively light food in Japan.

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We counted 12 different condiments including 2 soups

After Busan we took the train to Seoul and were delighted with the location of our AirBnB flat in Hongdae, near Hongik University. Very central and surrounded by cool cafes, shops open till 11pm and a great atmosphere.

Hongdae on a Wednesday night
Hongdae on a Wednesday night

Although we exercise in the room with our elastic bands we relish opportunities to be active (even in a hot & humid 30 degrees). In Seoul the obvious choice for an uphill walk is the N Seoul Tower.

N Seoul Tower
N Seoul Tower
On the way up
On the way up

You can go there by cable car or bus, but we chose to walk to the top of mount Namsan. Apart from the view which is not always great because of the mist, the reason people visit is to secure their love with a padlock!

Love locks galore
Love locks galore…
... provide plenty of photo opportunities
… provide plenty of photo opportunities
There are several hills in the city that have been left as parks
There are several hills in the city that have been left as parks

Overall we really enjoyed our week in South Korea. We had been wondering if it would be more similar to China or Japan and the answer of course is that it’s different to both. It’s noisy and chaotic like China and most of Asia with only a few small nods towards Japan’s more structured ways however at the same time it’s more Western than even Japan.

Helping pedestrians at this crossing must be a Japanese influence
Helping pedestrians at this crossing must be a Japanese influence

We could happily have stayed a few more days in Seoul but we are now only days away from our Pacific crossing and we therefore boarded a flight (our first since arriving in Cambodia in March) for the quick trip to Shanghai…

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