Hello, South Korea :Jeonju Hanok Village

It’s  hard to believe thar this week marks my month anniversary in South Korea. Between starting work, finishing up my EPIK orientation, and trying to settle in to a new life I haven’t blogged at all. It’s about time I catch up and what better way to start than with my first official outing in South Korea – Jeonju Hanok Village .

Walking into Jeonju Hanok Village

Walking into Jeonju Hanok Village

Located in the now developed city of Jeonju, Hanok Village is a well-preserved testament to traditional Korean culture.

Along with my orientation group, I  started off with a walk through the village that included a stop at a traditional paper factory and store. We got to see how the women actually make the paper goods from start to finish. And of course we got to view the finished paper craft products in the near-by store.

Making Paper

Making Paper

Paper  Crafts

Paper Crafts

Paper Crafts

Paper Crafts

After a sampling of traditional Korean wine, we headed off to view many of the historical buildings in the village. Among these were the first Christian church built in the area, a  school-house, and numerous religious sites.

These curved roofs are a signature part of Jeonju Hanok Village

These curved roofs are a signature part of Jeonju Hanok Village.



First Christian Church

First Christian Church

The highlight of the day was lunch. It was my first time getting to try bibimbap. The dish is as traditional as Korean food gets and is one of the main reasons people travel to Jeonju. They’re known for making the best bimimbap.



A Typical Korean Lunch

A Typical Korean Lunch

I burned off lunch with a quick walk around the neighborhood. I wondered in and out of more shops, found some intriguing street art, and even more intriguing street food. Worthy mentions were hottek ( a pancake filled with brown sugar and served warm) and it’s even more appetizing counterpart–silk worms.

Silk Worms -Yummy

Silk Worms -Yummy

The day ended with a traditional drumming lesson and a tea ceremony , which for me , was the highlight. A woman dressed in an extravagant Hanbok(a type of Korean dress)  schooled us on the origins of Koreans’ love affair with tea, why green tea is so healthy, and how to properly make and serve a cup.

The Tea Ceremony Begins!

The Tea Ceremony Begins!

Instructer in traditional  Hanbok

Instructer in traditional Hanbok

Attempting to play the drums.

Attempting to play the drums.

Jeonju Hanok Village offers a lot more than I got to experience. If you’re ever in the area you can try making your own paper crafts, learn to do the dragon dance, and even spend the night in their village’s sleeping accommodations. 


Spanish Memories : Finding Cinderella in Segvoia

Segovia Alcazar

Looking through my photos , I realize that there were a lot of outings from Spain I forgot to share.  With assistance from said photographs, my memories, a journal,  and Google, I’m going to attempt to relive those outings with … Continue reading

My Travel Playlist

Inspired by Travellersoul76 (Check out her amazing blog. She’s lived everywhere!) , I decided to make a list of my favorite traveling tunes. These are songs that have calmed me to sleep during flights, entertained me on long bus rides throughout Spain, and , recently, have been reminding of all the places I’ve been and where I want to go.

Click on the titles to hear the song.

1. “Good Life” by OneRepublic

Favorite Line: “Woke up in London yesterday/ found myself in the city near Picadilly.”

I found this song the summer before visiting London and now every time I hear it, I remember my favorite city. And the time that old guy attacked a car in Picadilly Circus

2.”I’ve Been Everywhere” by Johnny Cash

I listened to this over and over again while packing. I haven’t been to most of the places but it’s catchy as heck. And, yes, I was a bit annoyed when no one realized Rihanna sampled it in ‘Where Have You Been”

Favorite Line: “Of travel I had my share, man/I’ve been everywhere.”

3. “Me Gustas Tu” by Manu Chao

This song was used in a grammar course to refresh us on the use of me gusta.  Translate the lyrics if you need to and you’ll find it’s both funny and useful for learning the language.

Favorite Line :“Me gustan los aviones/ me gustas tu.’

4. “Mas” by Nelly Furtado

I listened to the whole Mi Plan album constantly but this song is a bit special. I had been in Spain for a few months and had this playing one day while I was walking home. I noticed that I actually understood the lyrics and wasn’t just enjoying the beat as usual. For me , it signified that I was actually learning Spanish and not wasting time there.

Favorite Line :“No quiero perder mas todo mi tiempo/al lado de alguien quien no quiere entenderlo.”

5. “I was Here” by Beyonce

At every new experience, I keep thinking that no one would ever be able to take my memories of it away from me. Traveling felt like a dream to me, which is why I am working so hard to continue. The video also features clips of her travels around the world.

Favorite Line: “ I did, I’ve done, everything that I wanted/And it was more than I thought it would be.”

6. “Sofa” by Ed Sheeran

One day I will love a man so much that not even the prospect of travel will make me want to leave our sofa.

Favorite Line: “Say the word and I’ll take ya/ But I’d rather stay on the sofa with you.”

7. “So Good” by B.OB

The video for this song is awesome and full of places I’ve been and want to go.

Favorite Line: “ Five hour layovers from Norway to Egypt/I’m to the point like the Pyramids of Giza/ Still leaning left like the tower out in pisa.” 

I would love to know what travel songs I should add to my playlist as well as what songs are on yours.

An Evening With Ed Sheeran in Penn’s Landing

Penn's Landing

Back in Spain, I met and fell in love with the music of Ed Sheeran. After a weekend of Sangria and Tapa-tasting, I was exploring Youtube when I stumbled upon one of his videos and  have been hooked ever since. … Continue reading

That One Halloween in Rome

Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays. So I was excited, to say the least, that my four-day excursion in Rome would span until the 31st. Before leaving to catch my bus to the airport, I stopped at … Continue reading