Sorry the blog has been so quiet for the past couple of weeks! Ryan’s mom came to visit us so we have been very behind on giving updates! She stayed with us in our humble abode for a little over two weeks. We got to show her some of the fantastic things that Korea has to offer. Here are some of the things we did together while she was here!
The Lantern Festival in Korea is among the biggest events of the year in Korea. Thousands of people get together and line the streets of Seoul in celebration of Buddha’s birth. Over a 100,000 lanterns are lit, some very big and in shapes of dragons or Buddha’s. The lanterns are offerings of light, wisdom and compassion.
We had been dying to try Dr. Fish in Korea! Dr. Fish cafés are coffee shops with tanks of fish that you can put your hands and feet into and let the little guys eat away all of your dead skin. It felt so weird to have your feet attacked all at once. We found this café in Myeongdong. It was a little difficult to find, because the café’s website had directions that weren’t that great. If you are living in Seoul and are looking for this Dr. Fish, click here for a map we made!
Muuido is right off the coast of Yeongjongdo (The island with Incheon International Airport). Just a short five minute ferry ride away, Muuido is like most of the west coast of Korea; covered in mudflats. We spent most of our day on the beach looking for shells and taking pictures. When we got back to our hotel room with our bags filled with shells, we laid down and were just getting ready for bed when Ryan says, “Stephanie… Your bag of shells is breathing…” When we investigated further, we found a tiny crab in the bottom of the bag. We had accidentally picked up a shell with a little crab inside without realizing it. We decided to then clean and double check the rest of the shells just in case there were any other hitchhikers. Sure enough, we found two more crabs and a hermit crab. We gathered them up into a cup and took them back to the beach to set them free.
We did a couple of hikes with Kelli while she was here. We hiked up the mountain behind our apartment to show her the temple and the views of Anyang. The second hike we did, was a bit more strenuous. Inwangsan is a mountain right in the heart of Seoul with views of the Blue House (Cheongwadae, the presidential palace) and the Han River. We hiked thousands of steps to the top and passed quite a few guards who reminded us not to take pictures of Cheongwadae. There is a fortress wall stretching along the mountain all the way to the top. Nearer to the bottom, is a Buddhist temple, Bongwonsa. This temple is famous for Seonbawi, which in Korean means “Zen Rock”. This rock is said to resemble a robed Buddhist monk. You’ll see a lot of women praying there because the rock is said to have the power to give sons to pregnant women.