The Seoul City Bus Tour is the way to go when you have guest in Seoul! There are about 30 stops on this tour, and there is NO WAY you can do it in one day. The fee is only 10,000 won for the entire day & you can stop as many places as you would like. We started our tour about 9:30am, and ended up taking the subway home later as we were having too much fun in Insadong to catch the last bus home at 7PM.
The first stop on our tour was the Namsangol Traditional Korean Village. This village was beautiful as you can see by the pictures. We spent about 1.5 hours here just roaming the grounds. This village is free of charge.
In 1994, 600 items that represent Seoul as a city and the life of its residents were sealed inside a time capsule in celebration of Seoul's 600th anniversary as the nation's capital. It will be dug up and opened on November 29th, 2394 to celebrate the 1000th year anniversary. The time capsule is within the village walls. Here are some pictures of the time capsule.
Here is a cool picture I took of some Lily Pads.
Our next stop was in Daehangno where we had lunch. Daehongno is a college area with great shopping, from what they told us on the tour...we did not stay to shop as we were on a mission to tour the Palaces.
Next stop....Changgyeonggung (Palace). Changgyeonggung was originally called Suganggung. It was built in 1418, but in 1592 during the Japanese invasion it was destroyed by fire. In 1616 it was rebuilt. . This tour cost 1,000 won. This palace is closed on Monday for anyone here in Seoul that is thinking about going.
This next picture is of a taeshil, a stone container that holds the placenta of a prince. Yes, you read that correctly. This taeshil contains the placenta of King Seongjong and it was moved here to Seoul from Gyeonggi Province in 1930 for research because it is the best preserved of all the royal taeshil's
I thought these little old men were just too cute to pass up without taking a picture. All the LOM were happy to let me take their picture, except for the one looking down. He didn't want his picture taken. Aren't they cute with their fans & their pants rolled up?
Next we stopped at Changdeokgung Palace. This was my favorite of the 2 palaces and the village we visited. Changdeokgung Palace is the most well preserved palace of the Choseon dynasty. This palace cost 3,000 won and you must go on a guided tour. They have 3 tours a day in English, 11:30, 13:30 & 15:30. They also have tours in Korean, Japanese and Chinese. Here are a few of my favorite pictures from this tour....
This picture has our tour guide in it. She was adorable and spoke great English.
After we realized there was no way we could fit 3 more palaces in today, we made Insadong our last stop on the tour. First we did a little street shopping, and then found a Starbucks......
And lastly we found a cute little tea house. Oh how I LOVE this tea house. I got cinnamon - ginger tea. Wow, it was fabulous, it tasted nothing like tea. Grammy got some sort of apricot tea, which was wonderful as well. She thought it was a little too sweet, but I really don't think there is such a thing as too sweet.
After the tea house we hopped on the subway and headed for home, where we crashed for the evening!