[SOUTH KOREA 2012] Day 2: Insadong (Anguk, Gyeongbokgung)

DAY 2 (12 Nov): Insadong (Anguk, Gyeongbokgung)

- Bukchon Hanok Village
- Gyeongbokgung Palace
- National Folk Museum

- Samcheong-ro

- Yulgok-ro
- Ssamziegil Complex

We started off the day with a light breakfast at Dunkin Donuts (near one of the exit at Anguk station), since breakfast wasn't included at Doo Guesthouse. On the way to Anguk station though, we stopped by the Bukchon Hanok Village since it was just on the way.

After breakfast, we headed off to Gyeongbokgung Palace, which according to Doo Guesthouse's map, was only 10-15 minutes away by walking. I think it was farther than we expected, but this was probably because we kinda got lost along the way lol. Nevermind, we saw some interesting things along the way, which made it worth getting lost.

Interesting architecutre. Apparently this was a French restaurant.

Finally we found ourselves at the end of the road and saw the National Folk Museum of Korea. Decided to make a stop there even though it wasn't really in our itinerary. Carpe diem eh. The museum itself was definitely worth going into. Beautiful presentation and wonderful artifacts.

For those wondering, yes, Running Man was recently shot here. Not during our visit sadly.
We still have no idea what these things are but it's cute!
After that we finally made our right way to Gyeongbokgung.

So this was part of a construction for Korea's Modern Art Museum if I'm not mistaken. Love the way they incorporated the "landscape" into their marketing billboard lol.
Look at the woman peeking behind the billboard. I love cheeky marketing.
Found one of the gates of Gyeongbokgung!


The interior decor.

Panoramic view of the entrance area from the pavillion.
Once we were done touring the area, we were making our way out when we suddenly noticed this man standing near the drum - he wasn't there before. Shortly after this photo was taken, we were ushered to the main walkway - apparently the changing guard ceremony was about to start. It always happens throughout the day but we had no idea of the timing, so our being there was a happy happenstance.


We made our way back to Anguk in search for lunch and somehow got lost again. Happenstance occurred again and we found our way into Samcheong-ro, which had some stores and restaurants along the area. So we settled down for lunch and ate pasta just to be safe. Language barrier means we're staying clear of meat-based food, so we always had to specify we don't want any meat with our meals.

We walked quite far along Samcheong-ro and finally turned back to our previous route to go back to Anguk for a rest. My sister's friends were due to arrive that night, so we had to pick them up from Anguk station just to make sure they got here fine.

While waiting for their arrival, we decided to try on the hanbok at Doo Guesthouse since it was free :D Luckily there were no other patrons around so we camwhored for a bit lol.

After that, we walked along the road at Anguk station. Found a Starbucks and bought a tumbler - I love collecting Starbucks tumbler from different countries :] We somehow stumbled upon Ssamgiezil Complex along our walk and that was an interesting complex - cute items but too expensive for souvenirs. The complex itself had an interesting layout. It was too cold for us that night though so there were no pictures during our walk lol.

My sister's friends finally arrived almost two hours later than they should have - I suspect they got lost around the station or something. Let me tell you, I was tired and I had to get a new simcard for my phone just in hopes to contact her friends since I didn't activate my phone for roaming. Getting a simcard in Korea is a very time-consuming process, and I don't advise you to get it unless you plan to really use it extensively in Korea.

Late night supper
My haul for the day - at least I got food I guess
Just a word of caution: I went back to our hotel room first for a rest since I got tired after all that waiting and walking around. My sister and her friends went to buy some food at the convenience store nearby for tomorrow's breakfast, which was some rolled bibimbap.

I think it was tuna bibimbap from what my sister was saying, so I ate maybe 2 rolls. 

We later found out the next morning that the damned thing contained pork. DAMN YOU BIBIMBAP YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO BE TUNA. This must be how Will Graham feels when he finally found out Hannibal has been feeding him human steak all this time. EVEN THE TUNA IS PEOPLE, WILL. 

So yeah, be careful of what you bought and always always ask if there's meat in any meal! Had I been with them I would've asked the shopkeeper, however awful my Korean is. Asking about meat and meals has always been the first survival communication skill I would pick up precisely because of this.

So. Just be careful.