Thursday happened to be Thanksgiving, and there was so much to be thankful for!
Thankful the opportunity to be back in Korea, and so thankful to be able to share it with Matt.
We decided to do some sightseeing since this would be our only full day in Seoul. Our first stop was Changdeokgung Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Palace was constructed in the 15th century and was used throughout the Joseon Dynasty. The site was beautiful. Despite the cold, we walked around in awe thinking about what life would have been like within the walls. Admission was 3,000 won (roughly $3), but if you show up in hanbok (traditional Korean dress) you can enter for free.
After, we took a walk towards Insadong, where you can find many traditional arts and crafts. It is one of my favorite neighborhoods; there are so many cute shops and hidden alleyways. We stopped for some odeng (fishcake on a stick served with steaming broth) as well as twigim mandu (fried dumplings with pork and glass noodles). We walked down the main street until we came across Ssamziegil, a collection of shops connected by a spiral walkway. In the basement, there are artist studios where you can make your own crafts and at the very top, you can visit the Sky Garden. Matt and I also took a rest at the Ddong Cafe (Poop Cafe) for some tea. There were handmade pillows shaped like poop and hot lattes and food items were served in toilet shaped cups and bowls.
Then, we took a walk to Bukchon Hanok Village, a traditional village with cultural centers, guesthouses, and restaurants. We stopped for some roasted sweet potatoes and more hot broth. So perfect to warm you up on a cold day.
The icing on the cake was our Thanksgiving dinner. I found out that my friend Rachel from college has been studying in Seoul, so we decided to meet up. It was so nice to see a familiar face so far from home. While there wasn’t any turkey and stuffing, we had lots of tasty samgyeupsal (pork belly bbq) since I had been playing it up to Matt for weeks. Everything was delicious! After, we explored Hongdae (the area around Hongik University) and ended up going for a drink at a local bar.
All in all, it was an excellent day.
How did you spend your Thanksgiving? What are some of your favorite traditions?