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Joggyesa Temple Chrysanthemum Festival 2017

Move over cosmos, chrysanthemum is here. This is the time of the year where chrysanthemums bloom and if you love this little colorful flower, Joggyesa temple will be a perfect place.

Last year, I was able to visit this festival but unfortunately the festival was some days over. However, I still was able to witness the beauty of this flower though not on its pinnacle allure. And yet I was hushed by the way it was displayed at the temple.

Gladly thru a post of a friend inviting for a weekend visit, I decided to take a stint yesterday because my weekend will be kind of engaged for a certain activity. And since I’ve got extra time in the morning then there I was.

Walking around, chrysanthemums were displayed in an exquisite work of art. I remembered last year there was a maze of this flower right after the entrance. This fall on its 7th year of the festival was again in another beautiful and colorful array.

The festival started October 13th and will end November 8th.

Located at Anguk Station of subway  line 3 or the orange line. Walk towards exit 6 to Insadong. Walk straight passing the tourist information booth on your left. Cross the pedestrian (after the small plaza), walk on your left and continue walking until you see the main entrance to the temple. It will certainly take only 5minutes on foot.

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Seoul International Fireworks Festival

The most impressive annual fireworks festival in Asia is once again to happen this Saturday, September 30. I suddenly remembered my first time watching this, my experience tested my patience literally.

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The fireworks started at past 7:00 in the evening and we were there in the middle of Mapo bridge at 2:00pm securing a spot. You know when you are with a group of photographers, the best location must be secured not for the sake of watching but for their tripods position, LOL!

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While waiting and letting the time pass we ate and chatted, less drinks as the toilet is far from our location and it is difficult to pass thru the crowd. As a photographer, securing a good spot is a struggle, taking nice photos is like breaking one’s back and after less than an hour show, going to subway is an obstacle. As there were a huge crowd of watchers and photographers, expect that going home won’t be as easy as a pie. The struggle is real here!

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However, for my second time I decided to watch from a distance. I was able to appreciate the beauty and loved those magical lights and that is from Dongjak station, less crowd and less tripod in front of me.

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There were several nice spots to check if you’ll be there to photograph this fascinating fireworks. The most occupied and easily filled up is in the opposite direction of 63 Building. They say it’s the best spot.

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Map from Yongsan

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View from the opposite direction of 63 Building

Nevertheless if you’ll be there as an onlooker, you may head to these directions:

Yeouinaru Station (Seoul Subway Line 5), Exit 4.
Yeouido Station (Seoul Subway Line 5, 9), Exit 5.
* Heavy traffic is expected and Subway Line 5 may not stop at Yeouinaru Station. Please use the nearby Yeouido, Mapo or Daebang Stations… this is most probably to happen after the fireworks display. Be prepared for a long walk to the nearest open subway station.

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All photos here were taken form 2016 Fireworks show and copyrighted to Mario M. Ulant, a Filipino from Isabela and currently working in Korea. An active member of Filipos, and a freelancer photographer. He also offers Tour Guiding with Photo Services package and volunteering in the Filipino community and Philippine embassy’s events.

Hanseong Baekje Culture Festival

I saw the poster of this festival on the way to my work and decided to check it out today, it’s the first day of this festival. Just yesterday, I took a brief walk to the yellow cosmos hill located at Olympic park and here I am again.

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The entrance of the pop up village with real Korean guards on post.

Hanseong Baekje Cultural Festival, this is also being held at Olpark or Olympic Park in front of the Olympic Peace Gate. This festival will run from September 21st until September 24th, 2017. A little of its history is that, this festival commemorates the platinum age of Hanseong Baekje. It carries out the glorious civilization and arts for the first 500 years of Baekje history.

As I walked around, I certainly noticed those children having their field trips. They were dressed on their traditional clothes and trying on the activities inside the pop up village. They seemed enjoying the experiences and programs of the festival.

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Korea’s rich history is truly remarkable that every important event was almost reenacted. The palaces had changing guard rituals and the popular kings and queens wedding reenactment and culture related festivals as examples.

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Food booths on the right side of the Peace Gate…. beside Lotteria.

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The sumo wrestling arena.

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Anyway going back, there are lots of reasons to come and visit this festival. As I’ve read that this is Seoul’s biggest history and culture festival, there will be a grand parade, performances, fireworks and foods to try.  Food booths, art works display, souvenir items and culture related items are surrounding the entire Olympic Peace Gate. I watched a little of the sumo wrestling show and the opening program.

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Lanterns around the park.

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This festival is of free admission and easily reached from exit 1 of Mongchontoseong Station Line 8, the pink line.

 

Boryeong Mud Festival, Daecheon Beach

Beach and mud are what makes Boryeong festival a widely known summer destination in Korea. What makes the mud special? Well, Daecheon’s beach mud has a cosmetic property that said to be good for the skin and honestly, I don’t know know if it’s really true 🙂

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True or not, we did had a good time on the beach and activities at the festival. Covered with mud we are! Mud slides, mud games, face painting and literally mud swimming. Long lines scenario for each and every activities though.

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Hours of enjoyment and laughter. Definitely a must this summer if you haven’t experience it yet. Yearly, this mud festival lasts for two weeks and it will kick off from July 21 to July 30 this year.

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Daecheon beach is always packed with swimmers, hence it is one of the closest beach from Seoul with only two and a half hours travel time and easily accessible by bus or train. Though I can’t consider it as one of the best beaches that I’d been, it was cool enough for us.

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While hotels are the most convenient place at hand, camping site is also available for those who wanted to get closer to the seaside and wanted to stay overnight. Bring along your tent and fit in. Shower rooms are available with a minimal fee and we leave our stuffs in a locker room. Thus, we were not bothered and truly enjoyed the ooze.

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How to get to the festival?

by Bus

Seoul Express Bus Terminal (Central) –> Boryeong (Daecheon) Estimated Time : 2 hours 20 mins. (10,900won-one way)

Dong Seoul Express Bus Terminal –> Daecheon (Boryeong) (3 hours, 8,700 won-one way)

Daecheon Terminal to Daecheon Beach

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by Train

Yongsan Station –> Daecheon Station

(takes about 2 hours and 50minutes)

Travel tip: for a hassle-free summer get away check links, you need not to worry of how to go the festival.

1 Day Shuttle Package from Seoul

1 Day Shuttle Package from Busan

Boryeong Zip Trek

Enjoy summer!

 

 

Seongbuk Global Food Festival

Sharing to you our visit to Seongbuk global food festival in Hansung University, Seoul.

It was a day celebration of culture sharing and unity amongst the local and international visitors.


Programs, foods and different activities for all ages were prepared and well participated.

Different embassies in Korea had their own food booth which gave festival goers the chance to tried out each countries cuisine.

Phillippine Embassy food booth

As we walked along, there were also some goods where people can buy for a cheap price.

A burp day for visitors.

Seoul Rose Festival

Where you able to visit the longest tunnel of roses last Sunday in Seoul? If not, you still have few weeks to visit and see for yourselves the tens of thousands of these kinds in clashing sizes, shapes and vivid colors.

Seoul Rose Festival was over last weekend with tens and thousands of visitors as well. As a frequent festival goer especially in Seoul, this isn’t surprising.

Most of the time you can’t even do a striking pose in camera because of thick crowd.

Locals love their own and support nationalism, it is one of the Korean outlook that I admire adding that when it’s weekend it is really a family time and they tend to stay outdoors.

This festival is the biggest rose festival in Seoul. Covering 5 kilometers of rose tunnel where people walk under.

 Aside from the display of roses, light show were added and a mini concerts too.

  • Direction: Line 7 Taereung station exit 8. Walk back on your left and cross the bridge, you’ll find the entrance on your right.

Bucheon Rose Garden

Roses and ladies with a happy feet. What more could you expect when friends go together in a wonderful garden?

Flowers, happy moments, tons of pictures and giggles… that was our weekend’s little pleasure. 

Million Rose Garden in Bucheon, less than an hour train ride from Seoul, was our weekend destination. Roses are in full bloom from mid-May and it’s the last spring flower festival as summer will soon make its way.

This flower garden has millions of roses in different species. Sea of roses with vibrant colors and sweet scent that bees feasts.

Located in an uphill that adds and creates a surpassing panorama for visitors. So much so that this rose garden is one of the most visited place amongst the other rose gardens in Korea.

This weekend, rose festivals will run around the peninsula from May 19~21. And here are my suggested rose gardens for you to visit. 

Direction: Take Line 7 to Chunui Station…take bus 661 from exit 7 (about 15~20minutes) and get off at Million Rose Garden  bus stop. Walk on your right, turn left on the first corner and walk straight for 5minutes until you see the entrance. 

This rose garden is eventually popular and lots of visitors for sure, so just follow the crowd and you won’t get lost.