가자 Korea Diary 3: First Night In Korea - My Airbnb @ Hapjeong & Dinner @ HongDae

I know I have delayed this for half a year but this time I'm back for real to continue the rest of my Korea trip blog entries.

Before I proceed with Part 3, which is this entry that you are reading. Here are Part 1 and Part 2:
가자 Korea Diary 1: Post Kimchiland Thoughts & Reasons Why I Love Korea
가자 Korea Diary 2: Preparation Tips for Korea



I flew from Melbourne Tullamarine Airport on a Thursday night with a carry-on bag. I was in sweatpants! HAHA sorry not sorry! It's a 8.5 hours flight to Malaysia with 3-4 hours of transit then another 6-7 hours to Seoul, so there's no way I'd have mood for airport fashion. Then again, who am I kidding I NEVER did any sort of airport fashion!


The airport was so quiet I went through the check-in in a blink of eye. 


Boarded the plane. 


Oops, I actually used this selfie in my Part 2 Korea Diary :P 


Got my first ever gel manicure to commemorate my first ever trip to my dream country! Was planning to get it done in Korea instead of Melbourne but the price was pretty much the same and I thought I should just live every second in Korea to its fullest rather than doing things like that :P 


From memory, I arrived at the Melbourne airport on Thursday night 10pm and when I got to Incheon, it was approximately Korea time 4.30pm. 

What a long flight! I was expecting myself to cry tears of joy when I stepped out of the flight cabin but I didn't. Maybe I was too exhausted. All I could think of at that time was: simcard AND shower!



Gotta take a train to the arrival hall. Here's the first taste of all the Hangul (ie. Korean words). 


Couldn't believe this!! Dream came true!! 


Not my hubby YongHwa but it's Kim SooHyun!! 

Upon seeing this, I knew that shit's getting real because it's not about drooling over people's Korea trips' photos anymore but I was there to witness, eat, experience and feel everything MYSELF! 


Mascots of PyeongChang Olympics 2018


As mentioned in my Part 2 blogpost, I headed to pick up my simcard which I ordered online from Evergreen Sim (EG) at the Arex Desk between Gate 8 and 9. If you want to know how to order and why did I opt for this, I wrote everything in that post.  

My Airbnb host prepped me with the directions to his house. Following his instructions, I headed to purchase my airport bus ticket. The booth for airport bus ticket was just a few booths towards the right of the Arex Desk where I picked up my simcard. 


I was staying at Hapjeong 합정역 which is just 1 subway stop away from the famous Hongdae 홍대 (Hongik University). 

For anyone who's staying near that area, you can use these instructions as reference too.









Arrived at Hapjeong bus stop and I followed the map that my Airbnb host sent me. Arrived at the apartment after walking for 5 minutes.


The apartment looked a little rundown from the outside but the inside's so cute. I love the white and minimal interior of it. 

This was my first time staying at an Airbnb outside of Australia thus I was pretty relieved that the host prepared bedroom slippers because as Asians, we don't wear shoes into the house. My personal preference is to wear bedroom slippers everywhere :P


This shot looks like something that we'd see on Pinterest isn't it?


The kitchen


The living room from another angle


Spotted some little decorative items on the kitchen table. Really tempted to bring them home. Just joking~


The only things that I didn't like about this apartment are the toilets and there's no laundry facilities. 

Personally, I can't really deal with wet toilet floors. It made me cringed but the good thing was that the host prepared a few pairs of "toilet sandals" so I could switch them around. I'd shower in one pair and then after shower, if I needed to wash my hands or something, I'd wear the other dry one.

There's a broken washing machine that the host left in the washroom and he said that there's a coin laundry machine just around the corner of the apartment. I couldn't be bothered so I ended up just washing my clothes by hand and lined them outside on a clothes hanging line. I also ended up buying more new clothes to change.



Here's my room which I stayed for approximately 3 or 4 days before I moved to another area.

I only rented 1 room instead of the entire apartment because I was travelling solo. This room costed me around $39AUD per night. It's small but it did its job since I was out most of the time anyway. 

At first the thought of sharing the apartment with strangers made me cringe a little BUT it turned out that I had the whole house to myself because the owner didn't get to rent out the other room for some reasons, so YAY!!!!! 

Here's the listing for this apartment if you are interested. There are 2 rooms in the apartment. Mine was the smaller one with just one bed for 2 people. The other room has 2 big beds which can fit 4 people. You can contact the host for further arrangements because he's friendly and responsive. Ask him anything and he'll help you out.

Get $50 of travel credit off your first Airbnb trip with my link here :D Good things are meant to be shared, aren't they?

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After I went around taking photos of the place, I went to take a shower to freshen up before heading out for dinner with my pretty Korean friend Eunjee. It felt so good after not being able to shower for 16 hours. 

Then I did something incredibly retarded:
After I dried my hair and applied moisturiser, I applied makeup because it's a general consensus that most Koreans don't go out without makeup. Throughout the process of putting on my makeup, I felt that my foundation wasn't gliding onto my skin as smoothly as it should be. Without giving much thought, I managed to work my way through everything. Right before I headed out, I had a look in the mirror and I really hated the texture of my makeup. So, I thought maybe I could pad a little bit of moisturiser onto my skin and I was blaming the dry AC in the flight cabin for this shit skin condition. It was then I realised my so called moisturiser was actually a facial cleanser! WTF! The reason behind this stupid mistake was because my friend who works in a pharmacy gave me sample products of this french brand. Everything was written in French and I thought I could distinguish them myself through "Fion's logic", well, apparently not! I really wanted to smack myself and I had to remove all of my makeup and washed my face once again. By the time I finished washing, I couldn't be bothered to apply my makeup for the 2nd time. Screw the always-looking-perfect-Korean-culture for my first night and I went out with my naked face! 


Went to Hongdae for dinner. I knew I was going to come to Hongdae again so I didn't bother to take many pictures at night. I was actualy too exhausted and hungry to bother about anything else. Plus, I hadn't seen Eunjee for a really long time so I just wanted to live in the present moment with her. 

Eunjee brought me to this restaurant called "부월식탁 Muwol Table" that's located in the bustling Hongdae. They do have another one in Gangnam too. 

This is how it looks like from the outside in broad daylight. 





We ordered steamed pork and steamed prawn dinner set. Prices start from 10,000Won onwards. 

I thought I have quite a fair bit of knowledge about Korean food but these were new to me. To many people, Korean food is all about bibimbap (Korean mixed rice), ramen (Korean instant noodles), tteokbukki (Korean rice cakes), fried chicken and beer, grilled beef, pork, chicken, army stew and Korean BBQ. There's actually more to that.

This type of cuisine is called 집밥, pronounced as "Jip-Bap" which means "house rice" = the usual dishese that the Koreans have at home. Alternatively, this is also called 가정식 한식, pronounced as "Ga-Jeong-Sik Han-Sik" which means "family-styled Korean cuisine". It's simple and healthy and complete with soup, source of protein, carbs (rice is 99% present in most Korean/Asian dishes), soup and some appetizers like Kimchi or radish. Of course you can't expect a normal Korean household to be grilling BBQ in their house right? ㅎㅎㅎㅎㅎ

MUWOL TABLE 부월식탁
Address: 
서울시 마포구 서교동 408-29번지 408-29
Contact number: 
02-322-8648

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One tip that I really want to share is that if you are in an area and not knowing what to eat, you can always just search "맛집 + name of the place", for example HongDae 홍대 in Google. 
"맛집" is pronounced as "Mat-Jip" meaning "taste house". 

맛집 홍대 "Mat-Jip HongDae" will give you search results of the famous, trending / must- try eating spots in HongDae or whichever area that you are in. Usually you will find several Korean blogs on the top of the list. Click on them, mostly they will be written in full Korean but you can just scroll through the photos, if it suits you, then copy and paste the Korean address to Google Maps or Naver Maps and use the GPS to lead you there. Worst case scenario, just show the Korean address to anyone and they should be able to tell you the exact directions. 

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After dinner, we went around HongDae for a bit. It was so insanely crowded and everyone was in Halloween mood, which was fun but we wanted to sit down for a girls' talk so we headed to find a dessert place. 


Stumbled upon this really cool club. 

Should've gone clubbing in Seoul when I was there :/ 


My pretty babe <3 


For those who are coming to Seoul, you have to try out Billy Angel Cake Company. It's a very famous franchise bakery that can be easily found throughout Seoul.

First night in Korea and Eunjee already threw me in the deep end by making me order these cakes in Korean. I was acting like an idiot because I hadn't spoken Korean in a 100 years! 

Here's our carrot cake. 


Billy Angel's famous milk crepe cake. 

Swear this was 10 times better than all those greatly raved crepe cakes in Melbourne!

Billy Angel 빌릴엔젤 Cake Company in HongDae
Address: 338-16 Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Kr.
Tel: +82 23230020
Facebook: www.facebook.com/billyangelcakecompany 

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We wrapped up the night relatively early because we were going to meet up the next day with another friend as well.  

I am disappointed with myself with the amount of photos that I took on my first night but I really needed to charge up myself with some sleep! I give 200% of respect to those professional travel vlogger/blogger, I really find it too hard to manage.

I promise I'll try my best to make the following blog posts more interesting! 

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