Browsing Category: "Life in South Korea"

Travel Guide to South Korea

Before going to a different country or a new place, it is important that you perform some research first. The following are some of the things that you as a traveler need to bear in mind before making up your mind to travel to Korea.

To start with, obtaining flight tickets to Seoul does not wholly guarantee you entrance. Nationals form various countries are supposed to obtain visas from the Korean embassies back in their home nations to enter legally. Depending on the purpose of entry, an appropriate visa is going to be issued. Legal procedures should be followed after the submission of the outlined requirements.


Travelers also need to bear in mind that it is not all the Koreans can converse fluently in English. In some of the cases it has been realized that some of them usually get terrified being addressed in that foreign language. But signs have translations and taxis have free interpreters. Thus, travelers need to take time and study even the basic phrases. It would be enough to use simple greetings such as “kamsahamnida” meaning thank you.

As a tourist, you need to stay informed of the Korean weather conditions before you decide to travel. Spring comes between March/April to May/June. Summer falls between June/July to August. Autumn falls between August/September to November/December. Winters comes in between November or December to February or March.

The benefit of knowing the seasons is because it will help in selecting the type of clothing you should bring about. For those who live in subtropical and tropical nations, the cold seasons can be literally very cold for them. It is advisable to bring scarves, earmuffs, jackets and coats when visiting in such a season. Staying comfortable during the nights is assured of as most of hotels in this country have heaters installed in the rooms.

The above sums up some of the things a tourist should know before heading to Korea. A travel adventure is truly worth the experience in case you are prepared to travel to this wonderful nation.

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Dumpling Soup

I have been hooked up playing Candy Crush Saga in Facebook when my husband asked me how willing I am to go downstairs and buy Tteokbokki and mandu, I just replied I will buy later and continue to play the game. I have been trapped for two days already in Level 27 of Candy Crush Saga and I don’t want my life to be wasted again and again.

While playing I have noticed he is preparing food in the kitchen so I get up and asked if he don’t like Tteokbokki anymore. Little did I know my husband is waiting for me to get up and he think I am not interested so he prepared a meal with gochujang instead. Anyway to cut the story short I went down to the nearby canteen and ordered “Mandu” the woman says “guk” I just said yes thinking she is saying cook, the mandu to be cook. I waited and sit in one of the vacant chairs,  there’s two middle school student eating and two little girls which I think her kids.

When she is already preparing the dumplings or mandu I think something is wrong I am expecting a steamed dumplings but as what I am seeing she is making a soup,  oh well it was really a soup. I paid for my order though it is not the first thing in my mind but I have said yes when she asked me isn’t it?

I bought Tteokbokki on the first floor of the apartment building and went back to our apartment. The soup tastes good and it is my favorite at this time, I will probably choose this one over the instant fresh noodles I am buying in GS25.

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A Day in Seoul

Today is my husband’s birthday but we celebrated it yesterday when we went to Seoul to buy new lens for his DSLR camera, we ate in a Kazakhstan Restaurant that serves Kazakh and Russian food. Most of the food we ordered are Russian cuisine, anyway after our sumptuous meal we looked for A La Do a Russian Bakery but we already spend a lot of time looking for it we never found it so we decided to take the subway back to the bus terminal, better luck next time.

We are not able to get the current bus when we reached the platform the bus is already moving away, I felt embarrassed when my husband pointed out the long line to me . So we went at the back on the line but when a new bus arrived which is not going to Icheon the people moved to the bus and there’s a new line forming in Icheon platform so we transferred there but as the line is growing a not so old man caught are attention, saying that the old line is going to Icheon. Confusing huh? So we transfer again in the line and just on time a new bus to Icheon arrived.

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Tteokbokki, Sundae – Korean Street Food

I am craving for baked goods today so I have planned to go to Tous Les Jours after shopping our daily supplies but while on our way home I have seen some students eating Tteokbokki and I remember its been a long time since I went to my favorite canteen at the front of the elementary school so my craving changed to Tteokbokki.  After keeping all the items we shopped in their right places I went out to feed my urge.

Outside the canteen are young girls with their box of candies (it is White Day today) and inside are three boys enjoying their large cup of  Tteokbokki, one boy say hi to me and I say hi too.

I just ordered a large cup Tteokbokki, the last time I have visited the canteen all they got is a small cup now they have three cups, small, medium and large.

While walking out to the door I have seen the  round sweet snack and I have ordered all of them. They taste  like the sweet glutinous rice I love to eat during noon time in my hometown. As I still have a plenty of coins I also bought chicken nuggets, as well as the sundae (in sticks).

As what I have read Sundae is a mixture of  small and large intestines of pigs that are salted and stuffed with a mixture of pig’s blood, rice, green onions, garlic, minced pork, and vermicelli before being steamed. The sausage is sliced when served and some steamed lung and liver slices usually accompany it.

Korean Street Food: Tteokbokki

There are times I am curious to food here in Korea, so the other day after shopping, when I passed along the student canteens across the elementary school, I return a little bit and decided to step in one canteen/food store and ordered a cup of Tteokbokki. Oh well I did great because I was able to pay the right amount, haha!

Tteokbokki, also known as Ddeokbokki is a popular Korean snack food which is commonly purchased from street vendors or Pojangmacha. Originally it was called tteok jjim and was a braised dish of sliced rice cake, meat, eggs, and seasoning. Tteok jjim an early variant of modern tteokbokki, was once a part of Korean royal court cuisine. This type of tteokbokki was made by boiling tteok, meat, vegetables, eggs, and seasonings in water, and then serving it topped with ginkgo nuts and walnuts. In its original form, tteokbokki, which was then known as gungjung tteokbokki, was a dish served in the royal court and regarded as a representative example of haute cuisine. The original tteokbokki was a stir-fried dish consisting of garaetteo ( cylinder-shaped tteok) combined with a variety of ingredients, such as beef, mung bean sprouts, green onions, shiitake mushrooms, carrots, and onions, and seasoned with soy sauce.

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Buying Green Peas at Icheon Public Market

Last week when I went out to buy something for home, Pookie bear told me to look for beans in Kim’s Club but before going to the supermarket  I decided to walk in the town market to see if there’s beans, I saw an old woman selling something like beans so after going to Kim’s Mart to buy some supplies I return to the place where I saw the old woman, I don’t have a plan to buy but the way the old woman looks like she is so sad and lonely, like business is not good that day as I don’t see anyone stopping and buying something, so I stop in her front and pointed the beans which is green peas by the way and asked how much, she said “Samcheon” but as I don’t know how to speak Korean and I cannot understand anything, I gave him 5,000 won ($4.62) , then asked her if it is enough or right, I don’t know if she understand me or not but she wave her hand like telling me its okay and I can go away now, anyway as I am not really sure I waited for few seconds  to give me change but as what I can see she slowly put the money so I said to myself maybe I have no change, so I walked out and she never called me to give a change or something.


When I reached home, I feel like the green peas is quite expensive for 5, 000 won so I went to Google translator and translate the monetary amount English to Google, and there I found out Samcheon is 3,000 won ($2.77). Lol! Then Pookie bear who just came out from the bathroom asked me what did I bought. I said I bought a green peas aside from the items he told me to buy, he gets little angry as I didn’t follow our rules again not to buy items not on the list, he added he told to look for beans and not buy green peas,  I replied I feel pity at the old woman so I bought something to her.  He asked me how much is it, I told him the woman says “Samcheon” but I gave her 5,000 won. He laughed after hearing it and says I feel pity but the old woman ripped me off, lol.

To make it short, I pay for the green peas from my allowance he don’t want to shoulder it as it is my fault and it is not in the list and I am the one who bought it and I am the one who will eat it.  So I eventually paid, I didn’t think any bad thoughts about the money but had a slight thoughts that maybe she really ripped me off, anyway I just told myself maybe the old woman thought what I am saying to her is, I am giving her a tip as we cannot understand each other. So next time I guess I should learn how to say to numbers, price, amount in local language. Anyway as the Bible says if you do good things to others God will bless you it means  it is a good Karma but I don’t know if I do a good thing,  I feel blessed these past few days, I  am quite busy designing WordPress Theme, I got a direct advertiser on my site and now I have a page rank.  Thank you Lord!

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The Apartment Stench and Febreze Air Freshener

Had a busy day today, I wake up around two o’clock in the afternoon, read bit of news online, clean around our small apartment and cook my food.  Pookie bear and I also fixed our bathroom sink as the water is moving slowly so we are like plumbers unplugging a plugged sink, so the end result I need to clean the bathroom, that’s why the whole apartment is smelling bleach right now.

Nothing else happened this weekend aside from I can’t wait anymore for a perfect time to wash the thick blanket, so I washed it today so for sure I have no blanket to use tonight, well I thought my task for the day is finished well it looks like not yet.  I just finished cleaning the kitchen specifically below the kitchen sink, its kinda moldy and it is hard to clean as there’s only small space, haist!  Into my observation this apartment was built in a wrong way, much better if the kitchen is in the place where the balcony is so when you are cooking the smell is directly going out and not wandering inside the apartment before it popped out.


Just thankful that we have this sample from Febreze (Hawaiian Aloha™) where you don’t need to plug it or use batteries and it will eliminate odor and freshen up. All you need to do is insert the cartridge and it will activate upon insertion then pull up the bottom for full freshness experience or just remain it close for small spaces.

So right now our apartment especially our kitchen smells like scented perfume, with the bright, tropical scent of Hawaii’s beautiful and fragrant hibiscus blooms, such an exotic smell eh. Love it!

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Dream of UFO, Address Change in Korea

A loud thunder storm wake me up this morning then I went back to sleep with dream about UFO’s, where I saw a UFO in the sky (looks like a flying saucer)  and I am trying to take photo of it but it keeps moving right and left so I was not able to get a good shot then when the UFO moved away I followed it and I have seen it carrying a carabao then a realization came to me why I didn’t take a video of it instead, when I check my camera all I found is a one blurred shot. After it I’ve seen a lot of soldiers in my dream in alert together with their trucks, helicopters and other military vehicles. It’s dark too,  it feels like there’s no electricity and with my two eyes I’ve seen one helicopter crashed with a burning tail. I don’t know what is my dream all about but it is weird and the sound of thunderstorm this morning is also weird and so loud.

BTW, we received a mail yesterday about the changes of address here in Korea, the government will implement it on July but we can still used our old address until December, then next year we have to use our new address.  The Korean government change their address system, actually I didn’t understand the mail but that’s what Pookie bear’s co teacher had told him.  Anyway you can check their website about the address change and the timeline

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Mandu with Kimchi

This is the mandu or dumplings we have eaten on Lunar New Year, it was fried. If you don’t know what is Mandu, they are dumplings in Korean cuisine. First brought to Korea by the Mongols, they are similar to pelmeni and pierogi in some Slavic cultures. The name is a cognate to the names of similar types of meat-filled dumplings in Central Asia, such as Turkish manti, Kazakh manty, and Uzbek manti. It is also a cognate with the Chinese mantou, although mantou is a steamed bun rather than a dumpling. – Wikipidea

Because there’s two packed of it we cooked the other packed after few days in boiling water. This mandu is made from Kimchi and Meat so it’s a bit spicy.

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Eggs and Kimchi Fried

Aside from cooking Kimchi Fried Rice every night I also cooked this meal,  eggs and kimchi. Kind of tiring to cook this meal but is it worth it. I just used white eggs on cooking this meal.

My ingredients:

Eggs, kimchi, garlic, onion, soy sauce, salt, oil


  • Saute the garlic and onion
  • Put the kimchi, mixed it with the onions and garlic and cooked for few minutes
  • Then add the eggs and soy sauce mixed and fried it together
  •  Seasoned it with salt to taste
  • Serve hot.

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