South Korea (Jun 2016)

For the last stop of our circuit through Asia, we headed to South Korea to visit Kevin’s friends Josh and Erika. A visit here was on our list since day one. Josh and Erika have become a recurring theme in our travels to Asia. Kevin’s first trip was to visit them in China in 2012, and Christine’s first trip was on a group holiday with them in Bangkok in 2014. They have even become a part of this trip, meeting up with us for a week in Saigon in February, and with us visiting them in their current home of South Korea.

Our time in South Korea was a short, pleasant break from being tourists and constantly on the go. We couchsurfed with Josh and Erika over a long holiday weekend, living a semblance of a normal life, doing things that we miss. Like picking up a bottle of our favorite wine at the store and making homemade pasta and bruschetta. Or making Vietnamese egg coffee every morning (in Kevin’s world, that is considered normal). Or doing laundry in a real washing machine. Our clothes haven’t smelled this clean since the day we left!

It was a fairly cold, rainy weekend, but we still got to see a little bit of South Korea. Josh and Erika live in Daegu, a city in the southeast region of the country. We flew into Seoul, but really didn’t get to see the city at all outside of a planned detour to Taco Bell, since it wasn’t our final destination. On our very first night in town, we hit up a local Korean BBQ joint for a special dinner of fresh meat that we grilled at the table, with an impressive array of sides, including some very tasty kimchi. We set aside an entire day to go to the coastal city of Busan, where we spent most of an afternoon in a large fish market, checking out all of the sea creatures, and then eating our fair share of them – including fresh, raw, still moving octopus tentacles! Koreans love their baseball, so we hit up a local baseball game. Christine and Erika got their nails did, and we even tried out an escape room.

On our final day, we did what we all do best – cook! We made a trip to the supermarket to stock up on supplies, then with the knowledge we picked up in cooking classes taken on this trip, we made potstickers, some dipping sauces, and a big batch of steamed dumplings – all from scratch! To finish it off, we even threw together something that resembled a raspberry cheesecake for dessert. It was the ultimate Asian themed dinner party, thrown in Asia.

We wish we could have seen more of South Korea, but the timing just wasn’t there. Regardless, it was the perfect amount of time for a meetup with friends. We also needed the break to catch up on trip planning, because we had fallen way behind with the lack of internet in Palawan.

Here are our favorite pictures from our weekend in South Korea. Enjoy!