Saturday, 11 October 2008

Hongdae & Chuncheon - Korea's Lake Country

The neighbourhood of Hongik University (a major Korean Art Uni), "Hongdae", is "one of the favourite hangouts for trendy young people in Seoul. Rock, techno, hip hop, and jazz enthusiasts gather in the restaurants, cafes and bars to enjoy this lively atmosphere."

It was also the place where my best friend D. - who is currently in Seoul at the Goethe Institut - wanted to meet me. Along some Nachos we had a new (?) speciality: what looks like an innocent large bottle of juice is in fact Kiwi flavoured Soju (Korean liquor). We emptied this bottle and another one with Grape flavour. I drank the last glasses in a hurry because we had to get the last subway around 11:30 pm (this is what sucks about Seoul, just as about Tokyo from what I heard...). I must admit my head didn't appreciate it much :P.

The obligatory traffic jam at the weekend outwards of Seoul didn't keep one of my uncles and his buddy from taking me to Chuncheon. His friend wanted to show his gratitude towards me for being able to use my room in the past (I don't remember, I must have been a kiddo back then) in Berlin for when he was working at the Gruene Woche.

Soyang Lake: And again the following line holds true "Wenn ich den See seh, brauch ich kein Meer mehr"...
The Lake - sometimes called and inland sea - (why does this all sounds so familiar? ;) - resulted by the building of Soyang dam in 1973.

Near Soyang Dam - one of Asia's largest dams - it's a bit touristy, with lots of ladies selling food, snacks, merchandise,...

I like how this photo turned out:

Before returning home I wanted to see a Buddhist temple I had seen on a tourist map of Chuncheon. My uncle's friend agreed and we set out to find it - in vain. After endless paths through the mountains (more and more approaching North Korea) we turned back when it got dark. I was already feeling sick. Eating Dak Galbi, a speciality of the region, was a must. Chuncheon Dak Galbi, "Chicken Ribs", is made of seasoned boneless chicken, vegetables, noodles, sweet potato, rice cakes (Ddok) and other ingredients that are pan-fried on a large steel pan at the table. After finishing the chicken, one can take the remaining sauce and vegetables and fry them up with rice. A bowl of cold maguksu (buckwheat noddle dish) is served along with all of it.

Posted by mer-q-ree at 13:54

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