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Explore Suwon Castle in Korea

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Did you know that Korea has castles? Let's explore Suwon Castle with my friend Jisun, and we’ll show you what it’s like to take a trip into Korea’s past.

Check out the video below!

The post Explore Suwon Castle in Korea appeared first on Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean.


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Classic Korean highway rest area’s food you must not miss!

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highway food

Driving or taking a bus on the highway is the cheapest way to travel Korea. However, it takes pretty long time to drive, making drivers tired and hungry. So let us introduce Korean highway rest area’s food you must eat in order to lighten up your driving! The number of menu being served in many Korean highway rest areas is increasing, yet there are steady-selling menus that highway visitors enjoy a lot. These are the menu you must try!

Grilled Food

Before you enter the inside of a highway rest area building, you can see many vendors selling grilled food. These are the menus that people imagine with when they think about the highway rest area’s snack. Most of people bring them to their cars and eat them while they are driving. They are around 2,000 to 5,000 won. If you have companies, why don’t you guys buy different snacks and share them?

potato
Grilled butter potato is the most popular menu of all.
squid
It is the smell of the grilled squid that makes people go crazy when they visit highway rest areas.
corn
Butter corns are kids’ favorite items

Skewer food

As much as the grilled items, skewer snacks are beloved, especially by children. When you order a skewer snack, the person at the vendor starts frying or making the skewer snack in front of you. You would probably not be able to describe the joy of biting freshly fried skewer snack. There are many kinds of skewer snacks from a fish skewer to a chicken skewer. I bet you are tempted to spend all of your money to taste every skewer in the vendors.

chicken
This chicken skewer is usually covered with sweet red pepper sauce.
hotbar
You can taste shrimp, squid, and fish in a seafood skewer.
hotdog
This is a Korean style hot dog. Instead of soft bread, a Korean hot dog is fried with crispy dough wrapping a piece sausage.

Others

If you have time to sit and have a somewhat proper meal, go inside the highway rest area. You can find a food court serving numerous menus that probably makes you confusing. Try our recommended menus first, if you haven’t. Unlike the food we introduced above, the menus below cost around 7,000 ~ 8,000 won. Due to the crowd, it may take some time to get your food after ordering, so check how much time you can spend at the highway rest area.

pork curtlet
Usually, pork cutlet in highway rest area restaurants are big enough for 2 people.
ramyeon
Ramyeon is one of the menus you can get the fastest after ordering.
tofu soup
You also can have a full meal like tofu soup with side dishes.

Food is an important part of traveling. We bet you will find something at a highway rest area that could maximize your travel fun.

As a bonus, these are highway rest areas with unique characteristics that you may find interesting to visit.

Donghae (meaning East Sea) highway rest area in Donghae highway (East Sea direction) is a well-known place to enjoy the panorama of the vast East Sea. You can take pictures with the background of breathtaking East Sea and send a post card for free to those whom you want to share your feeling of travel.

donghae highway stop
Donghae highway rest area is right next to the East Sea.

Bosung green tea highway rest area in Namhae (meaning South Sea) highway (Gwangyang direction) utilizes a green tea concept from Bosung area, the biggest green tea farm in Korea. Photo zones with green tea farm background are available. Trees with many light bulbs are installed in the highway rest area, which makes a night visit more memorable. Also, you can enjoy many menus based on Green tea.

bosung highway stop
You can find many green tea products in Bosung green tea highway rest area.

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Bluewater Panglao Beach Resort

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If you’re looking for an island getaway, Bohol in the Philippines is the place to go for natural beauty and fun on the beach. From Manila, flights are affordable (~$50 USD round-trip) and quick (an hour and 15 minutes) through Cebu Pacific. Bohol is the province and the name of the main island, but it also has 75 minor surrounding islands. The capital of Bohol is Tagbilaran City, and that’s where the airport is, but I can’t recommend spending a lot of time there. When you go to Bohol, you must stay on the island, Panglao. Panglao is just a short drive southwest of the Tagbilaran airport. 

My favorite place to stay is Bluewater Panglao Beach Resort (book here). Such comfort and luxury with the perfect locale! One could plan a budget vacation elsewhere on the island, but the dollar goes so far in the Philippines, it seems silly to do so. If you try to save money being somewhere else, you will regret the precious time you wasted traveling around the island or just merely being uncomfortable.

On this trip, we flew into Tagbilaran airport. The Bluewater Panglao Beach Resort shuttle was ready to pick us up upon arrival. The resort is 24 kilometers away or approximately 30 minutes driving. Everyone is treated like a VIP upon arrival. The staff is always smiling and friendly. They greeted us with wet hand towels and a cool lemongrass tea in the lounge, while our room was being prepared because we were checking in very early.

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The resort was designed well. There are a total of 54 rooms with 46 Deluxe Rooms (21 Poolside and 21 Poolview), 4 Family Lofts, 3 Honeymoon Villas and 1 Family Villa. The poolside room we had was clean, comfortable, and stylish. The “hanging bed” was a nice touch, and the big wooden doors led an enormous bathroom that even included a freestanding bathtub. 

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Even better, the pool was literally steps away from our room! It was nice to not have to worry about pool noise while we were sleeping, because the pool is closed for swimming at night.

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If night swimming is your thing, you can swim in the infinity pool just a short walk away.

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The ocean, main restaurant, and infinity pool were a five minute walk from our room. It is such a beautiful walk too. I enjoyed walking the path and laying in the hammock under a large mango tree. They do a wonderful job of keeping the grounds perfectly maintained.

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You will eat well at Bluewater. For three consecutive days, we enjoyed their buffet breakfast at their Aplaya Restaurant. Lots to enjoy from fresh fruit juices, heaps of crispy bacon, local baked goods, and omelettes made to order. 

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We also enjoyed a clambake at the restaurant and a pizza delivered to our room. Food always looked and tasted good. As a bonus, the resort staff was so incredibly kind, it made dining an even more pleasurable experience.

Outside of what I’ve already mentioned, there are lots of activities to do on the resort and island. Staff can help you book any tours you’d like, such as visiting the chocolate hills or tarsiers, or even go scuba diving, riding quad bikes, or go on a catamaran ride. Lots of free activities on the resort, such as free snorkeling, stand up paddle board, kayak, bicycle riding, and fish feeding. There are activities for all ages from children to adults. No one will be bored.

And, if you don’t feel like doing anything, why not have a massage? Prices range from 800 php ($17 USD) for a head and shoulder massage to 2500 php ($55 USD) for a 90-minute full-body massage.

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I can’t wait to share with you all the fun things I did on Bohol, even if a lot of it was lounging on the beach and drinking mango shakes. My boyfriend and I loved staying at Bluewater and can’t wait to go back.

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Full disclosure: Our stay was complimentary for review purposes but we LOVED staying there. It is our favorite place to stay on Bohol. Not only is the resort wonderful, the staff were kind and helpful to all guests.

Bluewater Panglao Danao
Panglao Island, Bohol
Tel. Nos: (638) 416-0695/96
Email: panglao@bluewater.com.ph
www.bluewaterpanglao.com.ph


About the girl

Hi, I'm Stacy. I am from Portland, Oregon, USA, and am currently living and teaching ESL in Busan, South Korea. Busy getting into lots of adventures, challenging myself, and loving people. Something more than an ethereal will-o-wisp.

Thank you so much for visiting and reading.

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Food in Busan: Gom Jang- O 곰장어

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We are going to introduce you to a series of infamous Busan dishes. First, let's start with (Gom Jang-O) 꼼장어. Gom Jang-O means hagfish in English. There're many ways to cook the seafood but Korean prefer to cook it with ,of coz Korean Chili paste.

꼼장어  Gom Jang-O
Photo credited to www.mastercoupon.co.kr


Jagalchi is well-known for its seafood market. If you're a seafood lover, then you shouldn't miss this place because you just couldn't get any better place than this.


Now back to Gom Jang-O, here are few of the restaurants in Jagalchi where you can have it.

1. 성일집 (Song-il-Jib)

Direction: Nampo Station, Exit 5. Walk straight and turn right at the end of Lotte department Store. Turn left at the first building block and the restaurant will be on your right hand-side.

Address: 부산시 중구 중앙동6가 79-4 (Busan-si Junggu Jungan-Dong 6-ka 79-4)


Tel: 051-463-5888


2.수덕산꼼장어 (Su-Dok-San-Gom-Jang-O)


Direction: Nampo Station (Line 2), Exit 2. Walk straight and turn left on the first building block. The restaurant will be on your left.


Address: 부산광역시 중구 남포동4가 28-5 (Busan-si, Junggu Nampo Dong 4-ka 28-5)

Tel: 051-241-2983

3.청산곰장어 (San-Cheong-San-Gom Jang-O)


Direction: Nampo Station (Line 2), Exit 2. Walk straight and turn left on the first building block. Walk straight and turn right. Walk straight and the restaurant will be on your right hand-side. You will find CU, a convenience store beside it.


Address: 부산시 중구 남포동4가 30 1F (부림프라자 1층) Busan-si Junggu Nampo-Dong 4-Ga- 30 1F

Tel: 051-245-3480




Question: Where can I find it Haeundae area?


4. 해운대기장곰장어 (Haeundae KiJang Kom Jang-O)
Direction: Haeundae Station, Exit 3. Walk straight and turn left until you see a big signboard of "Haeundae Market" on your left hand side. Keep Walking and the restaurant should be on your left hand side.


Address: Haeundae Market Street

Tel : 051-742-8201



Stay tuned for the upcoming intorduction to other foods.














food i

Honey Butter Chips #honeybutterchips #korea

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Honey Butter Chips #honeybutterchips #korea


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88. – 94. Fall In Coffee, Yoger Presso, ToPresso, Cafe Droptop, Coffine Gurunaru, Alice2046, good & goods

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I have heard stories, anecdotal mostly, how even the scent of coffee can cause one great need to have a poo. Does this happen to you? Because, I also read recently that one of the sneaky causes of constipation can be drinking too much coffee.

Here are some coffee shops in Korea that have English that may raise an eyebrow or two, causing several heads to be scratched in the process.

88. Fall In Coffee (Gimhae). I have seen

88. Fall In Coffee (Gimhae). I have seen “fall in”… so many times in Korea, that it’s pretty obvious that a less-than-correct (at least to us. I understand how malleable language is and how one established way is not the only way. So shut up) interpretation took hold a while ago (the king remains “You are falling in coffee scent” in Nampo-dong. I really need to get back there!). This shop, which I have heard is pretty decent, just sounds like its advocating something potentially painful.

88. Yoger Presso (Dongsang-dong, Gimhae). This is a chain I have seen pretty frequently throughout both Gimhae and Busan, and I am sure it's nationwide. And, I get the allure of Portmanteau. But, while I get that

89. Yoger Presso (Naeoedong, Gimhae). This is a chain I have seen pretty frequently throughout both Gimhae and Busan, and I am sure it’s nationwide. And, I get the allure of Portmanteau. But, while I get that “presso” is for “espresso,” what the hell is “Yoger” for? Yogurt? It’s also yet another time I have seen “393th” amidst the Korean writing. Let’s ignore the “th,” native English speakers. What does this number mean?

89. ToPresso (Dongsang-dong, Gimhae). And, here's the other.

90. ToPresso (Dongsang-dong, Gimhae). And, here’s the other.

91. Cafe Droptop (Yulha Cafe Street, Jangyu, Gimhae). This is one of those, like Cafe Cantata, that I first saw in convenience stores. Wait, it's a shop too? Which came first, the chicken or the caffeinated egg?

91. Cafe Droptop (Yulha Cafe Street, Jangyu, Gimhae). This is one of those, like Cafe Cantata, that I first saw in convenience stores. Wait, it’s a shop too? Which came first, the chicken or the caffeinated egg?

92. Coffine Gurunaru (Dalmaji Hill, Busan). What the hell is

92. Coffine Gurunaru (Dalmaji Hill, Busan). What the hell is “coffine?” Is it actually not a coffee shop at all? Am I being trolled? I should probably go inside to investigate. Or, not.

93. Alice2046 (Gwangan, Busan). Who is Alice? Why 2046? Is this the coffee of the future? To be fair, it's a decent cafe, with a lovely view of the water. It's also a TIME MACHINE.

93. Alice2046 (Gwangan, Busan). Who is Alice? Why 2046? Is this the coffee of the future? To be fair, it’s a decent cafe, with a lovely view of the water. It’s also a TIME MACHINE.

95. good & goods (Samgye-dong, Gimhae). But, does it suck?

94. good & goods (Samgye-dong, Gimhae). But, does it suck?



JPDdoesROK is a former news editor/writer in New Jersey, USA, who served a one-year tour of duty in Dadaepo/Jangnim, Saha-gu, Busan from February 2013 to February 2014. He is now a teacher in Gimhae.


Our Commune: Putting the Community Back in Gyeongnidan

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The neighborhood of Gyeongnidan, which is nestled not far from the bustling main strip of Itaewon, was once a peaceful residential neighborhood inhabited mostly by international expats and elderly Koreans. Over the past few years, however, it has been popularized by food bloggers and television programs, transforming into an overcrowded commercialized district of lifeless cafes and restaurants established with priorities placed on the wallets of their proprietors rather than serving a community.

 
While the gentrification of Gyeongnidan does have its upsides, any traces of the neighborhood it once was have seemingly all but vanished. Long term residents of the area are disheartened by this, longing for a relaxing space they can come together, without having to wait in preposterously long lines. While such a place might only seem like the stuff of dreams these days, the newly opened Our Commune, located on the main road just next to the GS25 (previously 7-11), is the answer to residents’ hopes.

 
This five story complex is the dream of Mok Younggyo, a respected photographer, clothing designer and author. Having spent the past six months dedicated to making Our Commune a reality, he worked tirelessly to ensure that each and every detail of the place was well planned and executed. Mok himself designed every aspect of the interior, from the layout, to the lighting fixtures to the gorgeous wooden tables, which he hand-cut from wood he procured in Ichon.
 
But rather than just focusing on one type of business, as most first-time owners might, Mok sought to incorporate a number of them into what he calls a "city market." As a result, Our Commune boasts a café, a restaurant, a yogurt vendor and a multi-shop. Although each part of the complex serves a different purpose, the concept is consistent, tied together by the building’s simplistic interior and calming vibe.

 
On the first floor, Slow Things serves thick and creamy homemade Greek yogurt (₩4,000) with an option to add premium toppings (+₩3,000/2) such as organic granola and fruit. (In fact, all of the ingredients used at Our Commune are organic and locally sourced, when possible.) Of these toppings, the house jams, which can be purchased separately and taken home, are especially delicious.

 
Weekender Coffee is Our Commune’s café and has a basic coffee menu at standard Gyeongnidan prices (starting at ₩5,000). Unlike most coffee joints in the area, however, the terrace on the third floor offers a peaceful, romantic outdoor terrace away from the prying eyes of passersby and an even better view from the rooftop, which is the perfect place to savor the rich flavors of the Weekender Coffee Affogato (₩6,000) or perhaps a bottle of La Chouffe Belgium beer. (This is also where the herbs used in all the dishes are grown.)



 
Mok collaborated with consultants to create the recipes for lalala, the restaurant, and ended up with a menu that is eclectic, if not a bit confusing, but delicious all the same. 

The Banana Crispy French Toast (₩13,000) makes for a satisfyingly sweet brunch or shared dessert, while the Mashed Potato Omelette (₩10,000) is the ultimate comfort food. Yes, you heard that right. The perfectly fluffy omelette stuffed with mashed potatoes and cheese is rich and glorious and will undoubtedly be a star player in no time. Try it with the Tomato Green Bean Salad (₩6,000), a small but healthy pairing of a boiled-then-grilled tomato atop a bed of crunchy grilled green beans.





The MYG multi-shop, located in the basement, is slated to open next month and will showcase everything from aprons to eco-bags, all of which are designed by Mok.

It’s obvious that Mok has put a great deal of thought and heart into his business’ design, food and sales products. But above all of these things, he hopes that Our Commune will be just that—a place where people can come together, to share and be at one with the community. As such, there is even an additional 20% discount for Itaewon residents (who have proof of identification), to ensure Our Commune becomes a local spot, and perhaps even will help Gyeongnidan retain a bit of what it once was.
 
More Information: Our Commune
 
Address: 225-142 Itaewon-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul (이태원동 225-142)
 
Phone: 02-792-8764
 
Hours: Tues-Thurs, Sun: 11am-10pm; Fri-Sat 11am-12am; Closed Mondays
 
Website: Naver Blog (Korean only) / Instagram
 
Get There: From exit 2 of Noksapyeong Station (Seoul Subway Line 6), walk straight until you reach the underpass. Go down the stairs, cross the street, and exit through the left side. Stay right and walk straight along Gyeongnidan-gil for about 5 minutes. Our Commune is located on the right side of the street, just before the large GS25 convenience store.
 
Map:
 
 
Words and photos by Mimsie Ladner of Seoul Searching. Content may not be reproduced unless authorized.
 



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hi, hope you're doing well. this might seem random, but where did you order the floral cake for your mom? it was awhile back...

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Hey I ordered it online from a flower shop in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. They delivered to my house....

My last 72 hours in Korea: Exploring the outskirts of Incheon

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You know what’s complicated? Personal finances abroad. I discovered the other day that my Korean Exchange Bank check card cannot buy international plane tickets unless they’re from a domestic Korean airline, such as Asiana or Korean Air. So instead of flying out to Vietnam on Wednesday as planned I am now flying tomorrow morning.

I’ve been staying at a really the Globetrotter’s Lounge, which is conveniently located in the middle of nowhere Incheon.

When I first arrived at the hostel I was really creeped out. The hostel is in a residential apartment building, and is suspiciously fancy for its price. I was the only guest in the hostel, and the owner, a small, wiry, old man wouldn’t leave me alone. He kept opening the door of my room to talk to me about random stuff, and seemed to show up when I least expected it. At first, I was nice to him but then after several of his surprise visits to my room, I locked the door and started ignoring him, or speaking to him in a harsh voice. I felt kind of bitchy, but he should know better. Seriously the last thing I want to do is be flirted with by an old man. Definitely one of the downsides of being a solo female traveler.

Anyway, here’s some pictures of the hostel:

DSC_0273

DSC_0271

 

And here are some pictures of the surrounding area:

DSC_0276

DSC_0275

DSC_0278


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