Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Hope everyone is enjoying their holiday season wherever you are. By the time this blog post goes up, it will have officially been 4 weeks in Korea! Out of 12 weeks, that’s already one-third! Time is going by so fast.
For us in Korea, there were no breaks over the new year, so we were at school every day, but that meant that things were open every day! On Christmas, some of us went to Lotte World, the largest indoor theme park in Seoul. I had heard that it would be full of people, but surprisingly it was not as busy as I had expected, and we managed to go on a couple rides and take lots of pictures! There’s also an outdoor area, but for something to do in Seoul in Winter, the indoor space is good, as you can hide from the minus-degree temperatures outside. For anyone considering visiting, I would recommend spending a bit extra to get Magic Passes that let you skip the line. If not, on a busy day, you’re probably looking at a 2-3 hour long wait per ride on average! Like Japan, it’s a thing here to wear uniforms at theme parks, so we rented a few for the day from a place nearby called Ewha School Uniforms in Jamsil. They had various accessories, shirts, skirts, pants, and even blazers in different colours and styles. The uniforms we chose may look slightly familiar to you if you’ve watched the Produce 101 series.
Unrelated to theme parks, but related to new experiences – though I have absolutely no dance experience, I joined the KPOP Dance Club! The club meets for two hours every Wednesday, so in the first week, we learnt Candy by NCT DREAM, and in the second week, we did Groove Back by JYP. Our teacher said we were starting easy and building up, but let me say that I’m definitely pushing myself a little more than just out of my comfort zone.
I also got my nails done here! There aren’t too many things to do around the Korea University neighbourhood. Maybe everyone here is too studious? But the next area over at Sungshin Women’s University has a lot of stuff catered to young people, such as nail shops, clothing stores, and many highly-rated food places.
In the past few weeks, I’ve been back to Hongdae, but I also explored Garosugil, walked around Gwanghwamun, and stopped by COEX in Gangnam.
I have noticed that every Monday, when our Korean teachers ask us what we’ve been up to over the weekend, at least half of our class will say they were at Hongdae. It seems to be the place to be among young people in Korea – foreign or not – and is probably the reason why I, too, find myself there at least once a week.
That’s it for now. Our midsemester exams are coming up very soon; wish us luck!