Seoul Spring 2016 - Vacation Day 2

Posted by Nadia on Wednesday, June 8, 2016. Filed under: , , , , , , , , ,

We were so exhausted from our first day. Mainly because we made that trip from Insadong all to the way to Jamsil. Subway rides through 14 stations and multiple transfers is no joke. So always plan ahead!

Nami Island

I have reserved our second day for Nami Island because it was the only day forecasted to be sunny all day during our trip after checking the weather forecast. Prior to our trip, I made some research on ways to go to Nami Island and finally decided on using their shuttle bus. I emailed the Naminara Republic Embassy to book our our seats which includes the entrance fees. More info here.

The Nami Island shuttle bus pickups are at Insadong and Namdaemun. So if you stay within this area, it's easier to go using their shuttle bus. We booked our tickets online so we had to go to their office a day before the trip to get our tickets. The Nami Island Seoul Office is located in Insadong, opposite Starbucks.

Nami Island Shuttle Bus Tip: Even though on the website says you can purchase the tickets from the bus driver the day you depart, don't. Chances are the tickets are all already sold out. I highly recommend to email them and book your seats and get the tickets a day before you leave.

I initially thought of purchasing the return tickets but the thing is, the shuttle bus leaves Insadong at 9.30am and will only leave Nami Island back to Insadong at 4pm. We don't plan to spend all day in Nami so only got our one way tickets and entrance fees.

The shuttle bus pick up place is nearby to West Gate of Tapgol Park.

About one and a half hours later, we reached the ferry dock. Just as we arrived, the ferry was still waiting for passengers, so of we go!

Nami Island was beautiful! Visiting Nami during Spring was definitely a good idea. There were a lot of picturesque view and we had a great time just strolling around the island. And of course, mandatory pictures with the Nami Island iconic trees paths and the Winter Sonata memorabilia.

For Muslims, fret not. There is a Halal Restaurant on Nami Island but I warn you to be really early or just very late. The restaurant was full during lunch time and we had to wait for a seat. After about 30 minutes of waiting we gave up and decided to just eat some street foods along the way. We had corn on cobs and steamed red bean buns. Yummy and very filling!

It was 2pm and we pretty much covered everything on Nami Island. So it's time to move on to our next destination. Dongdaemun! So how do we go back? We went on the ITX Train.

After trying out both the shuttle bus and ITX Train, I highly recommend anyone to use the ITX train. Though it seemed complicated (it was easy!), the trip felt faster than the bus ride.

Gapyeong Station

Here's how to get out from Nami Island to Dongdaemun using the ITX train.

1. Nami Island Ferry Dock Gapyeong Station
Take a taxi from the ferry dock to Gapyeong Station.The ride will be about 5 minutes.

2. Purchase ITX Ticket Train to Cheongnyangni Station.
You can't use T-Money to go on the ITX Train so you have to get new tickets. We made the mistake of using our T-Money (some miscommunication with the info guy). There weren't much hassle though, we just purchased the tickets on the train and get to claim back our T-Money at Cheongnyangni Station.

3.  Where do you want to go?
That's pretty much it! Wherever you're going, you have to exit Cheongnyangni Station. There's no transfers to other subway stations here. We wanted to go to Dongdaemun, so we got to the nearest subway station to head to Dongdaemun Station.

The rain just stopped and it was really cold!


We're in Dongdaemun to see the Cheonggyecheon Stream and try out Dongdaemun Grilled Fish Alley. From Dongdaemun Station we took exit 8, and we immediately see the stream!

The stream was 10.9km long, so we have no plans to walk all the way. There were some recommendations to experience the stream at the "entrance" where the stream starts at Chenggye Plaza. If this is your plan, you have to go to exit Gwanghwamun Station (Exit 5) and not Dongdaemun Station.

Though Dongdaemun is famous as a shopping spot, we were mainly here for the stream and the Grilled Fish Alley!

Dongdaemun Grilled Fish Alley

If you have come all the way to Dongdaemun, go ahead and try their grilled fish! This is highly recommended. So good that if we live nearby, we might just have this for lunch and dinner everyday.

Here's how to get to the grilled fish alley.

From Dongdaemun Station (Exit 8), walk straight ahead. You will see JW Marriot Hotel on your right. Walk straight and turn right to the first alley. You'll see the whole alley lined with grilled fish. We went to the first shop. 

Our grilled fish chef

We ordered two types of fish and was served with some banchan and cold water. You'll just have to pay the price that is stated in the menu. The banchan and cold water are served part of the set. It was so good! Like I said, we don't mind having this all day everyday (until you know, we get bored of fish).

We were suppose to get back to the station and head back but the weather was good, and google map shows that our hotel wasn't too far from where we were. So we walked back from Dongdaemun to Insadong. It was quite a far walk but it felt nice probably because of the weather and there were so much to see around. We also stumbled upon a street selling all korean cottons!

I knew the existence of this place but had to plans to go there because there's no way I'm gona carry all those cottons in our luggage. But just as we walk out of Dongdaemun, there it was! At the back alley. Most shops and stalls were already closing down.

There was still a few stalls open and... I bought 3 korean cottons. And I got 1 for free. They were irresistible! The patterns were really nice and at it was only 65,000 (RM34) each for 4 metres! I later found out the place is called Gwangjang market.

That's the end of our second day in Seoul. We wrapped up our night lepak at the coffee shop nearby our hotel, Korean style.

I drank Caramel Machiato and ended up sleeping at 2am, woke up at 7am -____-

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