Hello Beauts! If you followed me on instagram, you would know that I traveled to South Korea and Japan for 2 weeks. I’ve always been interested in Korean culture since high school. From watching Running Man, kdramas, Korean beauty vloggers, buying beauty products, and listening to BTS (hello fellow armies!), I thought I would be prepared when landing in Seoul. I was wrong. Here are 5 things I wished I knew before going to Seoul.
1. HOT WEATHER DURING FALL SEASON
I went to Seoul during the end of September and did some research prior to packing. From what I researched temperatures are usually around the 60°F range during this time of year. I thought it was the end of hot summers and the beginning of the cool sweater weather. All I packed were layers of clothing and I didn’t even wear half of the clothes I brought with me!
The weather was SUPER HOT in Seoul. Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating because I had thick layers on. During the time I was there, the temperatures were from 70°F – 80°F range. I was envious of the girls wearing cute dresses and skirts. I couldn’t take the heat anymore and bought a light blouse and denim shorts in Myeongdong. Hurray for starting my foundation over again! ): If you plan on going to Seoul, make sure to pack accordingly— unlike me.
2. BE PREPARED FOR A LEG WORKOUT
It’s going to be leg day everyday especially if you’re taking public transportation. Undergrounds subways in Korea has MANY different exits with a bunch of stairs. Yes, there are escalators and a few elevators but some exits don’t have them. It gets crazy during rush hour. Korea also has steep hills in their neighborhoods. The scenery is beautiful but once I hiked up those hills, I felt like death. Make sure to bring a bottle of water in your bag! The steep hills and stairs was a shocked to me when I see elderly people walking the same hills and stairs as me. It’s part of their everyday lives. The thought of them hiking like that everyday amazes me and makes me feel guilty that I shouldn’t be complaining that much.
3. KOREAN MOSQUITOES ARE THE WORST
Since it was fall season, the last thing I expected was to get bitten by mosquitoes. Guess what? I got over 10 bites INSIDE our airbnb at night. Korean mosquitoes are evil creatures and is 10x more annoying then the mosquitoes in America. I wanted to pack light, so for pj’s all I brought was a t-shirt and booty shorts. I slept comfortably in our aibnb but when I woke up, I found a few bites on my arm but didn’t think much of it. The next nights were the worse. I actually heard the mosquito buzzing around me and I woke up with even more bites on my arms and legs. During one particular night, I heard the buzzing around me that I couldn’t take it anymore. I went to the kitchen, made myself a makeshift bed out of the chairs, and slept comfortably there. A guurl needs her beauty sleep.
My bites were hella itchy and I didn’t pack any mosquito bite relief cream. I went to a local pharmacy and showed the cashier a picture of the medicine that I researched on google and he had it! This will be your best friend to heal your bites! It’s written as 물파스 if you need it or you know just show them the picture!
4. MISS EATING SALAD
The first thing that you should know about Korea is the food. It’s all about spicy food and meat over there. I love eating tteokbokki and Korean bbq but I also missed eating my basic salad! There are side dishes with veggies at Korean restaurants but most restaurants don’t have salad. I needed some healthy greens in me after eating spicy food for days and my friend found a salad place in the area! I feel like if you’re vegetarian, it may be hard for you to find something to eat but just know that there are restaurants that serve salad. Just gotta search for them!
I spent more then half of my budget on my first day in Seoul. It didn’t even take me a full day but about 2 hours to blow off my money like that LOL. Myeongdong is heaven for a shopaholic like me. There are many cute clothing, accessories, and stationary stores in that area! I spent most of my money at the Line Friends store to get BT21 stuff. Since they don’t have a Line Friends store back home in Boston, of course I went crazy in Korea. The clothes are cheap but it’s cheaper at the underground shopping center. My budget was $450 for 6 days in Korea. My friends who traveled to Korea before said that amount should be enough Obviously I didn’t budget correctly and I didn’t have a travel credit card. I resorted to having my friends pay for some of my expenses during the trip. – Thanks guys! Korea is credit card friendly so make sure to open up a travel credit card before your trip!