Sunday, June 1, 2014

Namsan Seoul Tower and Namsan Han-ok Village

Hello everyone,

Another pair of Seoul attractions that is fun to see is the Namsan Seoul Tower and the Namsan Han-ok Village pair.  I know, I know, we just went to the Bukchon Han-ok Village, but this one is different and much more fun to visit in my opinion!

We began our day early in the morning to try to get to the tower that you can see pretty well just about anywhere.  It should have been pretty easy to find according to my aunt (and many others that we asked along the way), but for some reason we had the most difficult time finding the place!  

It shouldn't have taken a lot of walking and 3 different bus rides to get there, but you know... at least we got there!  haha  and we got to see a lot of different parts of Seoul in the process, like this statue... but we can't really remember who he was..  oops  

Anyway, the important thing is that we got there, and it was definitely worth the visit.  First we started out with the picture taking in front of the tower that we tried so hard to see, only to find that it is pretty difficult to get the whole tower in the picture!  David did manage to successfully take this picture, but we won't tell how many failed attempts there were   ;)

And then we proceeded to take some more photos with this sculpture in the front of the tower. I guess he is the tower's mascot?  either way, he's cute  =)

But the real reason we went to see the tower was for the lovers' locks!  Namsan tower is famous for all of the locks thousands of lovers have left behind either in these trees or on the fence over the years.  

Whether the love lasts or not, whether it's puppy love or for the long term, there's something really sweet about the gesture.
so of course, we got right on board and got our own overpriced lock from the store. haha. If you are planning ahead to go to the tower and do the lock thing, I would recommend getting a lock ahead of the time and saving some $$  ;)  and then you can spend the saved money on food up there! =p

The lock kindly came with a permanent marker, so we wrote our little love message on the lock,

and lock it in place, and there it shall stay until we come to look for it again  =)

The hike up and down from the tower is also beautiful, but we didn't take any photos hiking up because we were (mainly me) struggling pretty badly  =p  so here's a shot of the hike on our way down!

Once you get down the mountain, hop on a bus to the Namsan Han-Ok Village! 

Before you go in, stop at a Hodooguaja stall (walnut cookie) and grab a small bag of these goodies to snack on while you stroll around the village.

It looks like walnuts, and it's filled with sweet red bean filling!  so cute, and so delicious!

Once you're in the village (for free), stroll around the grounds while munching on the cookies!
We got some traditional Hanbok on for the stroll, you know, just to fit in  ;)

The village is really well kept, very beautiful, and quite large.  You can spend at least an hour just strollin' with a companion of your choice  ;)

What I really like about this Han-ok Village is that all of the traditional houses are open and traditional household items are on display!  In the Bukchon Village, we could only see the outside of the houses, and for me, it was much more interesting to be able to see the inside as well.

As we were strolling, we found that people back then were apparently much shorter back then..  David and I are not the tallest of people, and we still had to duck down to go through some of the doorways! So be careful when you go through them  ;)

The different houses/buildings are connected by these giant courtyards, and in one, there is a station with this Korean this traditional game that you should try. I was pretty bad at it, but David almost got it in multiple times!  

Keep trying until you get one in.  haha just kidding  =p  although I'm sure anyone and everyone would be better at that than I was  haha!

In the next house, we found this traditional medicine man who looked incredibly bored! poor guy!  I didn't know they had people on display as well, but it was interesting to see an actual person dressed in traditional clothes, and doing traditional things.

and how cute are his shoes!

If you walk outside, there are more things to see, and more things to try.  Like theses giant ceramic pots that were used to make/store things like kimchi, soy sauce, and various other pastes/sauces.  Or the deceptively heavy iron pot that you can try to lift  ;)

At the end of our stroll, we walked in on these master weavers who can make just about anything and everything out of hay!

My favorite was this guy and his little friend!  so sweet  =)

Once you've had your fill of the past and the Korean traditional life style, go in search of some nice cold Naengmyun to cool off. 
It gets pretty hot in the summer in Seoul, so Naengmyun (cold noodle) is the perfect meal!  We went back to Insadong to try the famous Naengmyun there, but you could really try just about anywhere, I think, and be happy with the results. Also, you could ask anyone on the street where they would recommend, and they will point you to the right place  ;)

Thanks for stopping by!

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