Day as a Tourist – Gwangjang Market and Jongmyo Shrine

Since I’m relocating back to the states in a few months, I have decided to explore Seoul every weekend.

Ever since I moved here six years ago, all I’ve done is study, work, study, and work. I said no to a lot of things. I turned down weekend trips to surrounding cities, hangouts at popular hipster bars and restaurants, and events. I have neglected to immerse myself in the local area. Yes, I understand the culture and language, but I didn’t get the chance to see all of Korea. My primary focus was my education and career. I did, however, had my fair share of traveling the world in the last few years. I’ve visited Japan (4 times), Turkey, France, Indonesia, and the Philippines (3 times).

I now have only two and a half months to traverse the Korean landscape before moving to Florida. I won’t have the chance to visit faraway places since I’ll be slaving away and preoccupied with work. Therefore, I’ll be exploring Seoul and the surrounding areas.

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If you ever visit Gwangjang Market, you’ll see free-standing stalls along stretches of the corridors with hungry tourists and locals gawking at the mounds of Korean delicacies. Most of the dishes ranged from $3-$8.

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Some of the local delicacies you can find in the market include soondae, spicy rice cakes, kimbap, pig trotters, fish cake soup, etc.

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My first stop was spicy rice cake ($2.75), odeng ($2), and mayak kimbap (2.75). I split these with my friend. The total was $7.50 (my share was $3.75).

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This market is recognized for its popular bindaeteok. Usually, people eat this with makgeolli (Korean rice wine). We ordered two bindaeteok (mung bean cake): one seafood and one regular. If you ever visit this market, I highly recommend savoring this oil fried delicacy.  Here we spent $16 ($8 for my share).

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After hitting the market, I headed to Dongmyo. I decided to visit and take a tour of Dongmyo as it was my first time visiting this shrine. According to the Seoul Guide, “Dongmyo is a shrine where ancestral sacrifices to the Chinese military commander Guan Yu were performed.” Although it was informative and enlightening, the tour was a bit dull and dry. Good thing it was only $1.

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Overall, I had a great day revisiting Gwangjang Market and touring Dongmyo.

Total Spending: $12.75 + $4.75 (fresh fruit juice) = $17.50 

 

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