We intended to spend our first day already exploring our area and everything around it, especially since we reached Hyehwa around 10AM – which was also freaking early because check-in time was only at 2PM.
Initially, we thought we were all going to be okay with that since we figured we could at least leave our luggage at the main house first and then freely walk around, but because the weather was so crazily cold I think all everyone wanted to do was seek refuge. And I think that morning was probably the coldest morning I remember in Seoul.
Thankfully, we managed to check-in early after walking around aimlessly for a bit till we found the hostel.
After dumping our luggage and piling on a few more layers, we braved the weather to step out once more and check out our surroundings. We were staying right opposite Sungkyunkwan University – which meant a lot of students roaming around the area every day. And most of the male Korean students are tall!! And relatively cute.
At the foot of our home for the next two weeks.
Very pretty withered trees, which I’ve never seen in real life before. Are those plastic bags to protect fruits, like in Singapore? Haha but if the weather is cold why would there be any fruits to protect anyway??
One thing I really like about Hyehwa is that there is a lot to buy along the few streets itself! Plus we had all the cosmetic/shops selling facial products all around us (The Face Shop, Nature Republic, Etude House, Missha, Innis Free etc) so it was much more convenient to buy them and then walk back to our hostel, instead of buying them someplace else.
Discovered a Hello Kitty cafe! But it wasn’t the main one I wanted to visit at Hongdae, so we skipped it.
Innisfree with a really huge picture of Yoona. I bought like 1034034 masks from here. Masks are so cheap there!
We were planning to have dinner at SE7EN’s chicken shop, Yeolbong Jjimdak, and were thinking we had to find out where the nearest outlet was – and by chance we spotted it right in the neighbourhood we were residing in!!
Plus, like I mentioned, there were so many things to buy around the area and tons of coffee and food places – you can see a Coffee Bean in the picture! There was also a Starbucks, a Tom & Toms, a noraebang (karaoke place), a shopping mall with a theatre, and so much more.
Pictures of celebrities decorating the place!
Mel very happy with Big Bang all over the place teehee.
The entire menu was in Korean so we didn’t understand a word, so we basically just pointed to whatever we wanted and we got a lot of food for about S$26! Think it was some lunch time special.
When googling reviews of this restaurant online, I saw a girl blog about her encounter with SE7EN when she went to one of their outlets! Jealoussss.
No SE7EN but we had really yummy food:
Best rice + seaweed + tofu everrrrrrrr.
Delicious spicy chicken!
And we didn’t pay any GST or service charge either so it was really worth it.
Cozy & Grill Eatery
On another evening, instead of eating out around the shopping areas, we came back to Hyehwa to try out the Cozy & Grill eatery a couple of blocks down from our hostel. We really wanted to eat BBQ meat (we had another one that was a lot cheaper another day!) and since this was convenient and within walking distance of our hostel, we didn’t have to walk around smelling like grilled meat after eating.
There’s a more detailed review on the place + a ‘how-to-get-there’ over here!
Keith says this before-eating-at-every-meal pose is necessary.
Delicious, sizzling meat!
I think we paid around S$10 each? Wasn’t too expensive cos we ordered a whole set or something. This was another place where the people understood zero English and I remember someone attempting to show off the English to Korean app on their phone to the waitress.
Will consolidate the rest for another entry! xx
Sungkyunkwan University (성균관 대학교)
Yeolbong Jjimdak (열봉찜닭)