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  • Day27

    Over to South Korea

    September 23, 2019 in South Korea ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    Time to leave China! Had our breakfast downstairs (the proper one this time), checked out and headed for the station where we caught the metro across Shanghai. We'd hoped to do the maglev train which runs at a ridiculous 450km/h, but unfortunately it only goes that fast after 9am and we were too early - damn! Saved a lot of money, but it would've been cool.

    The airport felt quite empty and we breezed through check-in, emigration and security with no problems, and of course had ages to wait at our gate. Eventually it was time to go and we hopped on a bus out to the plane. It was actually a really comfortable plane, where I had genuine leg room and a wide tray table. Just a shame the flight was only 90 minutes!

    We'd actually mis-calculated the flight time as well, forgetting about the time difference, so what we thought was a nearly 3 hour flight was actually only about 90 minutes. Whoops. We even got a meal on the flight: Korean bulgogi of course.

    Landed in Seoul where again we cruised through immigration and walked straight past the baggage carousel, which was for some reason being patrolled by a friendly robot. We're not in China anymore! Got some cash from the machine, sorted out our pre-purchased SIM cards, bought transit cards and off we went. The subway from the airport took almost as long as the flight, since the airport is located way out of town (in a different city, really).

    Navigated okay through to our hotel where we checked in - it's basically a hostel where everything is Korean style. No shoes inside, sort out your own recycling, no housekeeping etc. It's nice enough, though the bed is up against the wall - Shandos's turn this time. At least the bed is semi-soft!

    After gathering our thoughts we headed out into the late afternoon. Our hotel was in a large area of alleys with cool cafes, restaurants and funky shops. Interesting spot, though all the prices on things were sky-high. Seems indicative of what Korea's going to be like, so I think we'll struggle budget wise with food!

    We wandered for an hour or so, soaking up the vibe of the place before finding the cheapest restaurant we could for dinner. Even then it was about $10 AUD for a dish. I had an odd ice-cold noodle dish (there were literally ice cubes in the broth), while Shandos had bibimbap, a Korean classic of rice and various pickled spicy vegetables. Korean food is also an acquired taste.

    Back home for an early night after a long day.
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    Trish Forrester

    Sounds like you actually wanted that flight to be longer! Your brother informed me that he made bibimbap the other day