After watching numerous Korean dramas and witnessing their food and landscapes, what can a foodie and a photographer do? Yup plan a trip to Korea and what’s the best time to visit but during the change of season to Autumn? However being the first time to Korea and wanting to have a taste of what it is going to be like there, I decided (against good judgment) to go with the budget tours one would see at NATAS – National Association of Travel Agents Singapore (spell it backwards folks!)- fair. Those fairs give super cut throat prices so as to entice people to sign up so as to waste more time at those souvenir shops at sky high prices and so it evens out in the end.
Well, I have a fair share of such practices mainly because these people need to earn money. It didn’t matter if you paid a high price or a low price for a trip, when you are with a tour guide that is paid commission, they will bring you to such places to shop no matter what. If you are ok with it, then do support them but go with eyes wide open. I have tour guides bringing to some office buildings in the middle of Hong Kong to buy tit bits that are 3x more expensive than those that sell at street level. There is even those jewellery shops that has mirrors everywhere that confuses you and make you part with your money easily (yup in HK too!). Fortunately for Korea trip, at least they brought us to some cosmetic shops that are not expensive at all though you would question the brands on sale.
In any case, Korea is the land of plastic surgery and cosmetics. For a people who are really in tune with how they look, it is partially due to the landscape that they are in. The trip did bring us to a lot of beautiful places that I will share in this blog post.
Our first stop in Korea was Nami Island or Namisum is a tiny half-moon shaped island located in Chuncheon, South Korea, formed as it was inundated by the rising water of the North Han River as the result of the construction of Cheongpyeong Dam in 1944. It was known as a location for a tear jerker drama serial “Winter Sonata”. Because of this show numerous girls from Korea to Singapore to Japan wanted to Pak Tor with their boyfriends in sub freezing temperatures. Really?!?
Seoraksan is the highest mountain in the Taebaek mountain range in the Gangwon province in eastern South Korea. It is located in a national park near the city of Sokcho. After the Hallasan volcano on Jeju Island and Jirisan in the south, Seoraksan is the third highest mountain in South Korea. The Daechongbong Peak of Seoraksan reaches 1,708 metres (5,603 feet). The Taebaek mountain chain is often considered the backbone of the Korean peninsula.