I’m skipping ahead a little because I want to keep these pictures in their own post, but after leaving Gyeongbok Palace, we ate lunch and then, GOD FORBID, embarked on another urban hike up into the hills of Samcheongdong where Bukchon Hanok Village is located. “Hanok” is the type of traditional Korean houses that have been around for centuries, and nobles once inhabited these villages. People still live there to this day, as evidenced by the many signs that remind tourists to keep their jerkiness to a low roar so as not to disturb the residents.
And of course we got some beautiful peeks at the surrounding mountains.
If this looks familiar to you, it’s because it’s a pretty well-known area of Seoul and on pretty much every tourist list you’ll see for South Korea as a whole. It’s literally a maze of alleys with some restaurants and boutiques tucked away so you really have to keep your eyes peeled for the gems.
I just found out that Henry didn’t think Bukchon was “that great” and that maybe he’s “missing something.” YEAH, IT’S CALLED CULTURE AND EYESIGHT. I mean, we were quite literally surrounded by quintessential Korean imagery but OK Hank. I guess he didn’t think it was a good enough place to sit back with a can of Faygo, who knows.
Bukchon is located between Changdeok and Gyeongbok Palaces so you’ll see a lot of Hanbok-clad tourists milling about the streets here too.
I loved it because it literally felt like we were ensconced in history.
Chooch thought it was “nice. The ice cream I got there was good. Strawberry something.”
Cool story, bro. Can’t wait to read your travel memoirs.
(Maybe I’m a little salty, but when I was his age, I had A LOT TO SAY about vacations.)
Chooch is smiling here because he was finally fed.
I had to wait patiently for a delivery van to slowly make its way down before I was clear to take this picture.
This street is super iconic and I’ve seen pictures where it’s just straight flooded with people fighting to get their selfies at the top. It wasn’t exactly dead on this Saturday in late March, but the crowds were pleasant and tolerable. That door off to the right held a small museum inside but we weren’t allowed to take photos.
I miss all of Seoul’s steep alleys. :(
In one of them, we stumbled upon Granhand which is a Korean fragrance company. I was really excited because I’ve seen this tiny shop on Joan Kim’s vlogs before and wanted to check it out. Chooch immediately got ejected from the premises because he was eating an ice cream cone, but then was conveniently allowed back in once the salesman realized I was primed and ready to make a purchase. My mom loves candles but I always hesitate to get her one because she literally has like dozens of them in a cabinet, so I was excited to get her a bottle of fragrance spray instead so now she can make her house smell beautiful like Korea (not the sewage-smelling parts of Korea, though).
The face the salesman made at the end of the transaction when he told me to have a nice day looked strikingly similar to the face that Craig Owens has been known to make while particularly possessed by adrenaline on stage, so then I was obsessed with him for awhile.
But yeah, if you’re in the market for a candle alternatives, check out Granhand. And if you’re looking for the scent of an inner man, in particular, you’ll want to go with their Lumberjack scent. Sadly, they did not ask Henry for his input while concocting this blend in the lab.
Anyway, even though Henry wouldn’t include Bukchon on his Must-Sees of Seoul list, I would certainly go back and recommend it to everyone! I mean shit Henry, Psy even filmed one of his MVs there, so you better get with it.