In February 2017, we found ourselves bound for South Korea! I never really thought about traveling there until I was offered a job that required me to travel there for two weeks. This trip was a little different than my previous trips because this time my 11-month-old son would be joining us. I wasn’t really sure what Seoul had to offer, but what we found was an amazing country with a lot of heart and soul!
First, if you ever have the opportunity to fly Korean Airlines, do it! Although it was a red-eye flight, the service was amazing. The flight attendants were so kind and attended to our every need. They even set my son up with a bunch of blankets so he could sleep. They also stuffed us with so much good food. It was a great flight!
When we arrived in Seoul, we took a bus to the Dragon Hill Lodge on Yongsan. It is a very nice hotel with a lot of great amenities for military families. They have several restaurants and a few shops. The best part about the hotel is the location. It is within walking distance of the subway and some great local restaurants.
One of the most interesting places we saw was only a 15-minute walk from our hotel. The War Museum of Korea was amazing. So many wonderful statues and sculptures depicting the military history of Korea. It was such a neat experience, and I definitely recommend it if you like history and enjoy visiting museums.
Our next stop was the Royal Gyeonbok Palace, which was such a beautiful sight. It is the largest of Korea’s grand palaces. We signed up for the tour through our hotel and I am glad we did. Our guide showed us everything. One of the coolest parts of the tour was being able to watch the changing of the guards’ ceremony. It was such a colorful and interesting ceremony. If you visit this palace, make sure you check the time of the changing of the guards because you won’t want to miss it.
If you have kids, I recommend going to Lotte World and its aquarium. My son was at the age where he likes to look at bright, colorful objects, so the aquarium was a no brainer. We saw penguins, sharks, colorful fish and even a whale. My son really enjoyed the large tanks of colorful fish. We even got to see a little robot fish swimming with the other fish. Overall, it was a great experience and a lot of family fun.
South Korea is a beautiful country. I feel lucky that I was able to experience its culture and meet some great people. I would definitely recommend visiting there if you are stationed in the Pacific. I am already planning on heading back there soon.! Until next time, South Korea, Annyeong (bye)!