Day 2 in Seoul

Checked out of the Dragon Hill and made our way to May’s Airbnb in Yongsan – right across the street from Seoul Station. Since check in wasn’t until 3:00 and May’s mother was still cleaning, we dropped our bags and headed to Gwangjang market for sightseeing, shopping, and eating.  We got off the metro at Euljiro 4 station which may not have been the closest stop to the market but we found it anyway.  Gwangjang is adjacent to a sunken walkway along a canal (looks like it might be an old rail line) that would be a nice place for a stroll.  From what we could tell the market seems to be textile-oriented, until you get to the food section which is really cool.  Countless small stands with bench seating in front, serving a wide variety of things – lots of large black blood sausages (a Korean specialty), live sea creatures (octopus, sea cucumbers, shrimp, oysters, miscellaneous unidentified aquatic life), Korean pancakes (more like omelets with vegetables), fried savory dough cake-like things (they grind some yellow grain right there to make the dough), and on and on.  We’re kind of here for the food so the markets are one of the highlights of our visit to Seoul.  They can be hectic and crowded but the food choices are wonderful.  They’re almost overwhelming but we’ve narrowed down our food list by watching tons of travel videos and blogs.  The markets also have tourist info folks and tourist police to help out if needed.  They’re easy to navigate but it’s fun to get lost and wander.

A walk across the Seoullo walkway that evening for a quick visit to Namdaemun market to cap off the day.  The Seoullo path is beautiful – it’s an elevated walkway over the train tracks and streets around Seoul Station.  It’s uniquely lighted, planted, and signed, a great place to stroll and watch the night activity including electronic displays on  the building faces.  Just watch out for the park ‘guards’ with light sabers who are there to keep an eye on things, including making sure people (me) don’t get too close to the railing.

The only ‘glitch’ today was that we couldn’t figure out how to get hot water at May’s so she and her husband drove about an hour to show us what to do.  They brought their dog Lotto and snacks for us (a bag of shrimp chips, another of honey and butter chips, and two kinds of instant noodles).  They’re great hosts and the apartment location is equally good.  Definitely recommended – check it out if you need a place in Seoul.  Today’s weather was perfect, around 64 degrees F, and sunny.  Another good travel day.

spicy kimchi noodles and dumplings in Gwangjang market (one of our best meals)

deep fried twisted dough coated in sugar (as good as the ones at Namdaemun market)

fish cakes for dessert (fish-shaped waffles filled with red bean paste)

kimchi

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