Winter (again!) in Korea – Something old, something new: Doseonsa Temple and Dongdaemun area

extremely picture-heavy post

Waking up, I can’t help but feel giddy with what’s ahead of our first full day in Korea. Of course, I was still feeling very sick. But there is really something about adrenaline that makes you forget your sore throat.

The good thing about the hostel is the free breakfast. It is not much (e.g. coffee, bread, butter, jam and cereals), but compounding the amount we will pay outside for food, it is still something.

Seoul Tower silhouetted against the winter sun

Our hostel being a station away from Myeongdong, we just walked for 5 minutes before reaching the busy intersection. Was it cold? Yes. But cold enough to wear gloves? Not really. So what we felt in the airport last night still rang true the day after. We also were able to rent a Wi-Fi egg from the hostel for the whole duration of our trip. We just had to pay KRW 50,000 deposit, which will be returned when we leave.

However, I still have to buy a pair of earmuffs. Like mentioned back in 2012, I have lost it somewhere in COEX mall on our last day.

First foray at Myeongdong

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Winter in Seoul – Day 1: Testing out the winter breeze

*extremely picture-heavy post

So, here starts the strenuous “Winter in Seoul 2012” series. As earlier mentioned, I will not be doing the typical day by day account of our trip, rather complement it with thematic and specific posts that can’t be elaborately explained within a ‘daily’ post, and that will include the breakdown of our budget for the trip (note: like all-in-all, with the tickets, accommodation and dues we paid in the Philipine airport, I have personally shelled out less than Php 25,000 for the whole trip. =D)

Our flight to Incheon International Airport wasn’t until 1:30 AM but we were already in NAIA Terminal 3 before 10:00 PM. When the check-in counters opened by 10:30 PM, we immediately rushed to present our itinerary ticket and paid for the Php 1,620 travel tax. The staff manning the counter also weighed in our baggages to check-in and even if they were already quite heavy, we were still almost 7 kilos short of our combined 30kg limit as we have already paid for 15kg each. It was actually our first time to check-in luggages because since we started travelling together, we only have two carry-ons each and has been used to travelling light. But as we were obviously travelling to a wintery place, our usual baggage won’t cut it.

Mon and I waiting for check-in at NAIA Terminal 3 for our flight to Incheon

Mon and I waiting for check-in at NAIA Terminal 3 for our flight to IncheonAt around quarter to 1:00 AM, we decided to head for the boarding gate. Going there, we had to first pay for the terminal fee, which was already lowered from Php 750 to Php 550. Then next to the immigration officer who had to take a look at our passports and ask questions on how long we will be out of the country, as well as our employment record. It took me only three minutes to finish the whole thing over, but Mon took a longer time. The immigration officer even mistook him for a Korean and immediately talked to him in English. LOL One more thing, they no longer made us remove our shoes, which wasn’t the case when we travelled last year. Good thing because I was already unknotting my laces when the security personnel stopped me.

Cebu Pacific weighing our check-in baggages and we were almost 7kg short of the combined 30kg limit

Cebu Pacific weighing our check-in baggages and we were almost 7kg short of the combined 30kg limit

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