Tea First

Adventures in South Korea

Traveling to Seoul with Children: Travel Tips

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Where to begin? Earlier this year our family took a two week trip to South Korea. Our time was concentrated in Seoul where we found plenty to keep us occupied. Ours is a large family, most certainly by South Korean standards, and we weren’t sure what to expect regarding our reception. We certainly received a […]

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Hello Kitty Cafe

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When we traveled to Seoul, South Korea last year there was one particular place we noted on the map that we thought would be kinda cool to check out. That was? The Hello Kitty Cafe. Our daughter loves all things pink and Hello Kitty and no, she was not traveling with us. When you are […]

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Exploring Namdaemun shopping district in Seoul, South Korea

Busy day at Namdaemun market in Seoul

Seoul, Korea, has been one of the world’s fastest-growing cities (now topping 10 million residents) and is populated by people of every background and class. From the early Korean caste system has emerged a society teeming with everyone from the low-income to the super-wealthy. The Namdaemun shopping district reflects this huge variety in a broad […]

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Bukchon Hanok Village in Seoul, South Korea

Bukchon village architecture

Bukchon is a working village of historic homes, called “Hanok”, near the center of Seoul, South Korea. It’s a great place to experience Korean architectural styles and experience their tightly clustered communities, designed around small, twisting alleyways that were designed well before anyone was concerned with making room for automobiles. It’s surprisingly well-insulated from the […]

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Visiting Yeouido Island in Seoul, South Korea

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Yeouido Island has been described as the “Manhattan” district of Seoul, home to many of its largest business, finance, and media centers. But it’s not all work and no play — the busy skyscrapers are complemented by beautiful parks stretching throughout the island. The scenery is so diverse that we found Yeouido quite interesting to explore on […]

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Gyeongbukgung Palace in Seoul, South Korea

Gyeongbukgung Palace Garden

I’ll get the preliminaries out of the way first… here is how to pronounce “Gyeongbokgung”, only you must say it about 300% faster to sound convincing!) Seoul, South Korea, is dotted with royal palaces that have been built (and rebuilt) throughout the country’s turbulent history. The Joseon Dynasty left five grand palaces near the heart […]

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“Do”s and “Don’t”s: Tips for Visiting South Korea

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Social Customs Always be ready to greet people with a cheerful “Annyeonghaseyo” and thank them with “Kamsahamnida“ Bow when greeting people; the more important they are, the deeper you should bow. Any kind of service staff, grocery clerks, restaurant staff, etc. should be acknowledged with at least an intentional nod of the head. Avoid blowing your nose […]

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