Countries where I have visited:

  • Belgium
  • China
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • France
  • Germany
  • Holland
  • Hungary
  • Indonesia
  • Luxembourg
  • Malaysia
  • Myanmar
  • Norway
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Thailand
  • UAE
  • Vietnam

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Belgium - My second home

Belgium is the country that I love the most in the world, apart from my fatherland. Belgium is part of my life where I have stayed for 02 times, with a lot of friends, unforgettable memories, my table tennis club in Brussels Arc-en-Ciel, my Uncle Dang Vu Toan, my Cousins, university, beers and amazing cities.

Brussels, Belgium 2012

brussels 2012

I was first in Belgium in 2008 when I worked for a Belgium NGO - Vredeseilanden. Despite only staying less than 01 month there, I had travelled to Antwerp, Brugge, Brussels, Leuven and De Barkentijn, Neewport. The first visit was so fascinating. It imprinted on my mind with so sweet memories, people, life, cuisine and beers. This filled me with a sense of democracy and a vibrating motive to return.

03 years later, in 2011, I returned to Belgium. Everything was still wonderful and remained exotic. I had more time experiencing a real life there, making friends, trying nearly 130 different Belgian beers and wandering about the streets of almost all cities in Belgium, from the Flanders region to the Walloon region, from Aalst, Antwerp to Mechelen, Brugge, Brussels, Ghent, Leuven, Liege, Dinant, Kortrijk, Namur, etc...

Whenever I visited another country in Europe, landing in Belgium made me feel at home. I love this country so much. Absolutely, I will return in a near future to reunite with my Uncle and friends.

Bruges, Belgium 2012

brugge 2012

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Luxembourg – A paradise on earth!

Luxembourg is such an exotic destination that I have been there for 02 times. The country of only about 500,000 people is on top of happy countries to live in the world. It possesses the highest GDP and a perfect living environment. It is surprised that they also have their own language – Luxembourgish, beside German, French and English.

Luxembourg, 2012

Luxembourg_2012_183

The Capital, Luxembourg city is located in the mountain where used to be a fortress. Luxembourg city is now a hustling and bustling modern city, home of approximately 150 different nationalities. I could sense a multilingual, multicultural, integrated and eclectic life in this city where city dwellers mostly drove luxurious cars and dressed in a swell and stylish way.

For me, the most attractive place of this city would be the ancient fortress looking down a green valley. I beheld the scenery from dawn to dusk without boredom. I stepped down and discovered the valley where I met local people running, practicing martial art or hanging out with the kids. The air was so fresh and pure, the wind breezing, birds chirping and I could feel all my five senses being touched. I was so sublimate!

After a leisure walk through the valley, I took a lift and wandered to the center of disturbance. There seemed to be an endless festival there. The streets were full of people, featuring fascinating restaurants, bars and souvenir shops. Luxembourg is also a paradise for shopaholics as it possesses various global fashion brands, together with local boutiques of state-of-the-art designers.

Apart from tourism, Luxembourg is also headquarters of many multi-national enterprises, global firms. The financial and banking system is even valued more than the whole GDP of the country. Known as one of the tax heavens, Luxembourg boasts an innovative and attractive fiscal measures and taxation that could benefit finance-intensive firms.

What a paradise on earth! Luxembourg is the very country that I always want to return.

Luxembourg, 2012

Luxembourg_2012_88

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

France - European quintessence

I have been in France for several times, Paris and Metz. This is regarded as a quintessential country of Europe, featuring a fascinating history, gorgeous architecture, cuisine, fashion and swell people. It is also home of world-famous constructions such as Eiffel Tower, Louvre Museum, Notre Dame Cathedral, Champs-Elysees, Pantheon or Montmartre. In 2008, I spent 01 week wandering about the streets and discovering different corners of Paris. Despite my passion for some fashion and luxurious brands of France, I always have a bad impression on its past colonialism and invasion over Vietnam.

Paris, France 2008

paris-eiffen tower

I have spent several months studying French and find it quite interesting sometimes, especially in a French-speaking bar or resto.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Germany - Country of innovators, of democracy and of my friends

Which is the most innovative country? The most disciplined race? The power-house of Europe? The country still developing while others immerged in the financial crisis? The country where my good friends and classmates are living? Germany is the answer to all.

Christmas Fair in Cologne, Germany 2011

cologne 2011

I have a Belgian Uncle who always praises Germany into the sky whenever he talks about quintessence of human beings. Germany is indeed his most admirable country where one can develop himself regardless of his race. Philips Rosler, a Vietnam-born politician, Minister of Economics and Vice Chanceller of Germany is a living example.

I was so inspired to discover this mysterious and amazing country that I left my cozy room in a super cold morning of winter 2012, taking a school bus with other mates to Cologne. A Christmas Fair was waiting for us. It was quite well-known, not only for local people but also for tourists worldwide.

It took us more than 4 hours to reach Cologne, a paradise for cannabis-addicts and gay. The first landmark caught my eyes was the central cathedral. I took imposingly right in a large square, surrounded by a variety of bars, restaurants, coffee shops and shopping malls. It was used as a point for orientation and also a pride of the people in Cologne. It looked grey, mossy and very old outside. However, the interior was amazing, in Gothic style with wooden chapels. I could feel the trace of many generations and regimes during the history of Germany.

In the afternoon, the sky darkened and rained. I wandered about in the shopping malls before taking the bus back to Belgium. I must return to Germany many times in the future.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Prague - The Hub of Central Europe

When I was a young guy, I watched a documentary film about Prague, the Capital of Czech Republic. The city appeared so splendid and gorgeous that might be the main motive for me to fly there. Tramping the streets of Prague has been one of my dreams in life.

Now that dream has come true:)

Prague, Czech Republic 2012

Prague_2012

However, the impetus to visit Prague was not only its beauty but I also wanted to discover the life of Vietnamese people that amounted to 80,000 approximately and experienced the change from a communist country to a democratic one.

I landed in Prague on a summer day, having dinner with some Vietnamese mates working and living there as guest workers, or immigrants or illegal residents whatsoever. I don’t care. I spent 05 days discovering different corners of the city, wandering about the streets, beholding historical buildings and sites of attraction. I walked through the main street with a historical museum and a horse monument, sitting down the Old Town Square, looking at the tower with a Astrological Clock and the chapel. It was so impressive with an architecture featuring Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance styles. The square was full of tourists from dawn to dusk.

Then, I crammed in narrow streets and crossed Charles Bridge, which was a very famous place of Prague. Vietnamese community gave it another name “Love Bridge” which they created themselves. The bridge was decorated with 30 sculptures and sculptural groups of the saints with an entrance gate regarded as a quintessence of Gothic Europe, a real masterpiece. I met a number of street artists performing hilariously, attracting many curious people.

On the other side of Charles Bridge, there situated Prague Castle which was the biggest one I had seen in my life. In fact, Prague Castle is a monumental complex of ecclesiastical, fortification, residential and office buildings featuring all architectural styles and periods. It used to be the residence of Bohemian Royal Family. Nowadays, it is the seat of the President who often gets drunk in official and solemn events.

Charles Bridge & Prague Castle, Prague 2012

prague 2012

Following some Vietnamese mates, I took a bus to a giant flea market named Sapa. It turned out to be the headquarters of Vietnamese community in Prague. It looked like Dong Xuan market, full of Chinese products but much larger. I felt as if I had been in Vietnam when I popped in a Vietnamese restaurant, eating roasted duck. The other guys even ate blood soup which was so terrible for me. Not only this area, but I also met many Vietnamese people in the streets or in restaurants, mini-markets by accident. Rumor said that they were advocating the Government to acknowledge them to be one of ethnic minorities of Czech Republic.

I also took this opportunity to taste local beers and food. However, I made some wrong decisions when ordering smoked pork. Local beers could serve your thirst but not so special, mostly pils. Compared to Belgian beers, Czech beers were an apprenticeship indeed.

In general, Prague is a must-go in our lives. It is one of the cities that I want to return @^.^@

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Bratislava - Communist heritage?

Bratislava, Slovakia 2012

Bratislava_2012

They used to be one state. They used to be invaded by Communism. Now, they are both members of the EU. But, they are using different currencies and they are so different. They are Czech Republic and Slovakia.

While Czech Republic is using the koruna, Slovakia is using the Euro. After 4 days wandering about Prague streets, I took a bus back to Bratislava. The highway connecting the 02 capitals was so terrible. It was rugged, making me very tired on the bus. I really wondered why there was still that kind of road in Europe. Eventually, I arrived in Bratislava after 05 hours on the damned bus.

The city looked quite old, very quiet and peaceful. There were not many people walking in the streets. They waddled like those in Vietnam. Maybe, it was the communist walking style. I checked in a hostel. They receptionist gave me a form to fill out, with a lot of information like my occupation, income, number of countries to visit, etc. The hotel and its surroundings appeared to be similar to an old street in Hanoi, the ruins of communism.

Then, I took a walk out to discover the city. It was quite small. The number of residents was possibly less than 1 million. I met a group of youngsters holding a banner to protest the corruption of governmental officers. I sauntered down the centre of disturbance. Everything remained the same, an old outlook, a procrastinated atmosphere and local residents did not look very friendly. I popped in a Vietnamese restaurant for lunch. It was like any small restaurant in Hanoi, with a waiter speaking Vietnamese in Northern accent.

In the afternoon, I climbed up a castle located in a mountain next to the city. I could behold a panorama of the Bratislava. Maybe, it was the best view there. I could also Vienna, Austria in the far distance. The two cities were separated by just a river. The short time staying there was enough for me to experience the aftermath of communism in Eastern European countries. I don’t think that I would return to this city in the future.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

With Greek and Spanish mates in Brussels, 2012

Belgium_SMI_1

With Belgian & German mates in Grote Markt, Brussels 2012

Belgium_SMI_2

With Russian mate at HUBrussel, 2012

Belgium_SMI_4

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Oslo - City of the Vikings

In a curiosity to discover life in Scandinavian countries, the HUB’s gang including a Greek, a Turkish, a Slovak and I took a shuttle bus to Charleroi Airport and the best low-cost airline RyanAir carried us to Oslo.

Oslo, Norway 2012

Norway_SMI

Upon arrival, the Capital of Norway did not look gorgeous and modern as we expected. The public transport system seemed to be less comfortable than that in Brussels. We sauntered about the streets and popped in a Subway restaurant for lunch. Only there did we understand why Oslo was the most expensive city in the world. One normal sandwich cost us EUR13 while a coke EUR2.5. Incredible!

Then, we experienced from one surprise to another after putting our baggage in our hotel and hanging out. We could not buy brandy in supermarkets. Minimarkets even did not sell beers. Only specialized shops were allowed to sell alcoholic drinks and they are close at weekend. Thus, to serve our thirst, we needed to drop in a bar. Hardrock Café was the first one. We were checked carefully by some big guys who pored over our IDs for nearly one minute. The receptionist asked for entrance fee and stamped on our arms after we paid. Inside the bar, everything was very polished, modern. The high-end loudspeakers played loud music but did not hurt our ears like those in Vietnam. Swell guys and gals flocked in the bar. We met some chicks from Thailand drinking with local guys. Norwegian people were really identical with blond hair and eyebrow. There were 02 gals dancing like crazy on the floor. However, when my Turkish friend approached the nice one, she turned out to be a lesbian. Her sex partner was a Thai. She became envious with my friend. We also popped in other bars and talked to local people. It was so cold and tired for me that I left them there and returned to the hotel.

During our stay there, we wandered about the streets to discover different corners of the city. Many parts were very clean and beautiful, especially a harbor crowded with a lot of people. I gazed at the sea and beheld some islands in the far distance. We could not image there used to be a serial killers murdered nearly 50 people in one of those islands. Oslo was the headquarters of Nobel Peace Prize ironically.

I wish I had been there in a warmer weather as it was quite cold, especially in the evening. At least, I could understand why Scandinavian countries were so rich. They possessed a lot of natural resources, biggest logistics companies in the world. The fishery and forestry industries of Norway were so developed. That might be the reason why Norwegians did not want to join the troubled EU.

Karl Johans gate, the most famous street in Oslo

oslo 135

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Budapest – Pearl of the Danube

budapest

Budapest was one of the three destinations of mine on my way to discover Eastern Europe. The two others were Prague and Bratislava. The city really surprised me with its gorgeous architecture, historical buildings and an exotic life. It was a combination of the modern and the exotic as I felt.

The city traced its history from the Old Stone Age when people lived on both sides of Danube river. During my stay there, I saw that history left its traces everywhere in the city. I could see them on grand buildings, in the cobbled streets of Buda castle and on the faces of local residents.

Budapest used to be 02 cities, Buda and Pest, divided by Danube river flowing gracefully. I discovered a huge castle on one side and the centre of disturbance of the other side. There were almost everything characterized an European life in Budapest, a diversified culture, fine cuisine, Romanesque, Baroque and Renaissance architecture, music, café, theatre, etc. The master plan of the city was really good. A public transport system harmonized with walking streets. I sauntered about the city, popped in some restaurants, bars and fashion stores.

I really liked the streets there where I could walk easily and landed my ass down on a public chair everywhere. The city was neither too large nor too small, just the right size that made it a pleasant place to live and to discover. I did not have to use public transport as I could walk to any corner, even to the Fishermen’s Bastion or to the Parliament.

Budapest had brought a lot of good impressions to me indeed. I would return there with my girlfriend in a near future.

Fishmen's Bastion, Budapest 2012

Hungary_2012

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Barcelona – An exotic city

Barcelona, Spain 2012

spain 2012

There is a city in Spain where people do not speak Spanish. There is a city where football is regarded as religion, a city where parties never end. It is Barcelona, one of the most attractive destinations of mine in Latin countries.

After finishing the first-semester examination, I awarded myself a trip to Barcelona. I landed in this city on a sunny day. The weather was perfect for a discovery. I was a bit surprised as Barcelona appeared quite different from other cities in Western Europe. The streets were large with gorgeous buildings lined up by two sides. I met many people looking like Asian in the streets. Later, I knew that they were from Latin America. Local people were very hilarious but less disciplined than those in countries of Germanic or Anglo-Saxon culture. Motorbikes were very popular and people crossed the streets although traffic lights were still red.

The city is bounded by sea on one side and mountain on the other side, featuring a unique architecture of Gaudi. Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain, ranked after Madrid, with a population of one and half million people. It is the Capital of Catalonia.

I rummaged around the city, discovering all sites of interest like La Rambla, Barri Gotic, El Raval, La Sagrada Familia, Nou Camp, La Pedrera, the fortress and the beach. Then, I dropped in a bar in La Rambla, ordered a Guinness and Tapas. Tapas is a common name referring to a wide variety of appetizers, or snacks in Spanish cuisine.

Of those attractions, La Rambla outstands with many street artists, souvenir shops, bars and restaurants. It is located by a shopping area, composing of different fashion stores lining up next to each other. It runs through the centre of disturbance to a harbor. It is said that parties never end in La Rambla. I regretted that I had not popped in a bar with Flamenco performance.

I stayed in a very nice hostel, named Hostel One. It was perfect for any person travelling on a budget. I could make friends and talk to other guys and gals there. The receptionist was so friendly and helpful. She is from Canada as I still remember. Now, I am dreaming of a holiday in Barcelona with my girlfriend…

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I-Amsterdam

Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2008

amsterdam 24

Capital of the Netherlands is not only famous for its red-light district and the football club Ajax Amsterdam but also for its ship-building industry and the dam system.

A Thalys train brought me from Brussel Central Station to Amsterdam on a drizzy day. I tramped through narrow streets and stepped in a main square. Regardless of bad weather, the city was flocked with people. Many of them were tourists and travellers from all corners of the world. I dropped in a KFC for lunch, where I was charge EUR2 for a piss. Then, I sauntered about the centre of disturbance and discovered the red-light district, located near the central station. It was quite a large area, composing of sex-toy stores, bars and pubs and needless to say, arrays of red-light windows with some hot chicks inside. The district was built on a canal system. Along the canal, there were a lot of small lanes just enough for one person to walk through. They were full of whores: black, blond, white, Asian, etc. The average price for a shot was EUR50 and the duration was limited to less than 30 minutes. Many bars with live sex-shows were located in front of the canal but the entrance fee was tough for my budget.

During my stay there, tulip was not in season. I could not find those symbolized flowers in any shop. I bought some souvenirs and returned to Belgium right in the evening. Absolutely, I did not spend enough time getting to know more about Amsterdam and Dutch people.

In general, the life, culture, cuisine and architecture in Amsterdam were rather similar to those in the Flanders region of Belgium. During my second time in Europe last year, I also missed an exotic event in Holland – Keukenhof. I saw some photos of this flowers festival but they did not look natural. I prefer cycling along tulip fields.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

An amazing Thailand

It has been almost 07 months since I finished my adventure in Europe and returned to Vietnam. It is also that long time that I haven’t flied abroad although I am always in a mood of discovery. Absolutely, I made up my mind as fast as a wink, packed my luggage and fled away from the regime of dictatorship.

This was my first visit to another country in Southeast Asia. I wanted to experience the life there, getting to know their people, history, economy, politics, culture, cuisine and whatever of interest. Most of all, I was not on board alone, but with my girlfriend. It was our first trip abroad together.

It took us only 1:30’ to land in Don Mueang airport, even faster than flying to Sai Gon. We jumped on a bus to a BTS station and travelled to a hotel. Bangkok appeared to be a gorgeous city, featuring a wonderful transport system, exotic night life, highly-integrated people, rich culture, splendid shopping malls, delectable cuisine and massage. It was quite a modern and well-organized city. We met a lot of foreigners from all corners of the world during our stay there.

Bangkok – the most integrated, globalized and culture-intensive city in Southeast Asia.

We could realize this by the way local people behaved. In general, they were very polite, helpful and well-organized. Taking queue was absolutely part of their practices. They did not stare at others like in Vietnam. English was also widely spoken amongst local people. Particularly, I was indeed impressed by local gals. I was sure that their sense of fashion was much better than those in Vietnam. I saw many beautiful and stylish gals walking in the streets of Bangkok like in the catwalk, not waddling slowly like a duck.

img_1433

Bangkok – a city of cultural richness, traditions intertwined with modernity, a city of religion and the King.

Despite being a highly integrated city, a hub of SEA, Bangkok was seen to possess a fascinating history and a unique culture. We felt so welcome in a Thailand way where social norms and traditions were maintained and developed. We found many many pagodas and temples of Hinayana Buddhism scattered in Bangkok. Monks and Buddhists were part of this country that we met a lot in the streets. We saw photos of the King in eye-catching corners of Bangkok while Queen Sikirit was likely to be a symbol of culture, fashion and the most beloved woman in Thailand.

We wandered about the city, from Grand Palace to Khao San road. We popped in almost all shopping malls, including Central World, Siam Paragon, Platinum, Prathu Nam, Palladium, Central Store, MBK, etc. We experienced the night life in Soi Cow Boy, with an array of bars, pubs and whores. We tasted local cuisine, food and street BBQ.

We also discovered Pattaya, with a super-crowded and hilarious walking street, sex shows, magicians before concluding the trip in pleasure and satisfaction. Thailand is quite a good destination for shopaholics, leisure, discovery, finding a nice gal or whatever purpose.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - A shopping paradise?

kl1

Known as a favourite destination in Southeast Asia, Malaysia is still a mystery to us. The four-day trip to KL was mostly for shopping. We wandered in shopping malls more than anywhere else. With an area similar to Vietnam, Malaysia’s population is only one third, composing of about 50% Malay, 22% Chines, 12% indigenous, 7% Indian and others the rest. Despite complexity in ethnic groups and religion, Malaysia has the 3rd highest GDP in Southeast Asia, only after Singapore and Brunei. Particularly, all ethnic groups live in harmony with each other.

The capital city of Malaysia, KL, has a well-developed infrastructure compared to its neighbours. I rate it better than Bangkok, the capital of Thailand. The transportation system in KL is well-organized, right from the airport. We were required to buy taxi ticket in a booth inside the airport and take queue for a taxi. The KL International Airport is also very comfortable with a five-star waiting lounge for business class and a lot of stores selling different stuff: cosmetics, clothes and brandy, etc.

We stayed in a themed hotel, of which each room is decorated by a theme: “007”, “Titanic”, fairy tale, etc. It was a bit difficult for the cabby to find the hotel but it was located quite downtown in fact. We started our daily walk by a buffet breakfast, which is full but mediocre.

There were not many things about our trip except the fact that KL is really the 4th most attractive shopping destination as rated by a reputable website. VAT in Malaysia is only 6%, instead of 7% in Thailand, Singapore or 10% in Vietnam. We discovered most of the shopping centers in KL like KLCC, Suria, Twin Towers, Pavilion, Berjaya Times Square, Lot 10, Fahrenheit. There is a full range of international brands in KL, from middle, low-end fashion to icons. Except brands which are worldwide priced, others offer very attractive prices compared to other cities in Southeast Asia or Europe. I bought some clothes from my favourite brands like Zara or H&M. I tried to find accessories for my Tissot watch and Carrera sunglasses but of no avail. I was asked to make an order. Beside shopping malls, the only destination that we visited is the Aquarium, which I highly appreciated. We took a lot of photos there.

Regarding local cuisine, it was not bad at all as  per my colleages’ comments. There were a lot of options for us from local Chinese and Indian cuisine to international dishes. Especially, we found the price was extremely reasonable.

Dislike

Gals, absolutely. I don’t want to see young girls wearing a vail. Malaysian people are of the second sub-race in Southeast Asia, which is a bit brown. Most of the girls I met in KL are fat and not sexy at all, a contradiction to those in Bangkok, where you can see a lot of beautiful gals who look like supermodels catwalking in the streets. However, it’s a huge disappointment in the KL. The life in Bangkok is much more exotic than in KL.

We ended the trip with a lot of achievements from shopping but no experience in terms of history, architecture and culture. We have no idea about Malaysian heritage and architecture. The Twin Towers is no other than two skyscrapers built close to each other. We started the trip by a visit to a shopping mall and ended by shopping in the airport. At least, the waiting lounge of Malaysian Airlines is fantastic.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Yangon, Burma - An intact country


 

My first time in Myanmar was full of surprises, possibly because I am only used to visiting more developed countries.

My flight landed in Yangon in the late evening. I got out of the plan and walked into immigration room. The airport appeared to be small and boring. After immigration, I saw hotel staff and taxi drivers waiting for the passengers. All the guys wore a longyi which looked like a piece of cloth covering the two legs. The ladies wore traditional dress along the way we headed for the hotel. I noticed that the driving wheel of a car is either installed on the left or on the right and it is not binding by the local laws.

I went from surprise to surprise. The hotel I checked in, which was actually an Inn, looked like a wooden house of a mogul in the mountainous areas of Vietnam. There was only one receptionist in charge of everything in the Inn. I guessed that he worked 12 hours per day and 7 days per week. Then, he took me to a small room in the 3rd floor without elevators, which I was charged USD 70 per night.

The most interesting thing in Yangon was the Shwedagon pagoda, which was 2,600 years old and hosted 8 hairs of Buddha. The pagoda was located right in the downtown and covered with more than 70 tons of gold, a lot of gems and diamonds. I could see it sparkling at night. For me this pagoda was much more gorgeous and admirable in terms of historical values, architecture, culture, and religion than the Eiffel Tower of Paris, which was no other than a product of marketing. I was local people and Hinayana monks doing local rituals and praying around the pagoda. Sandals, high-heels, and skirts were absolutely prohibited in this place of pilgrimage.

When I wandered about the streets at my last night, looking for local food in the China Town, I was a bit scared because the streets were very dark. The street lights were so dim while there were not many skyscraper or advertising boards shedding light down the streets. I believed that the Old Quarter of Hanoi was much more attractive and alive.

Myanmar is such an intact country with full of surprises and attractions. I highly recommend it for travelers looking for local stuff and striving to experience a local life.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Seoul, South Korea - The Contradiction of Communism

 


 

My first visit to South Korea was driven by two reasons: (i) purchase of a high-end apartment developed by Hyundai, and (ii) curiosity to see how a nation divided between capitalism and communism. I have never been in North Korea before but I am living in a communist paradise with all features as such.


Though I am not a fan of K-pop or Korean movies, the six-day trip in Seoul has left me with great impressions. Tradition and modernity are intertwined in this city. It is exotic enough to keep young travellers alive yet tranquil enough to help a mid-thirty like me clean my mind. Before the flight, I was informed by my neighbours of difficulties when travelling about in Seoul and especially communicating in English. This did not scare me as I did a thorough search about such stuffs and had been in nearly 20 countries.


Seoul is such a well-organized capital of a highly-developed country. As for modernity, it is likely second to none. However, I could find the tradition features sprawling over the city, from villages to palaces, from restaurants to souvenir shops. With my toddler, we paid a visit to iconic places such as Namsanggol village and Gyeongbokgung palace. We wandered about the hustling and bustling district of Myeongdong for shopping and street foods. We also had a lot of fun in the Everland theme park. We ate where the locals ate and really loved the ginseng chicken soup, which we had tried two times in a traditional restaurant opposite to our hotel.


The first visit to Seoul was over my expectations. What impressed me the most? A cool girl speaking something like a rapper at Amazon Express in Everland and a group of old ladies and gentlemen queuing up orderly in two lines, waiting for us stepping out from the lift.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
We are social
  • Facebook: dangvuhoainam
  • Hi5: dangvuhoainam
  • MySpace: dangvuhoainam
  • Twitter: dangvuhoainam
  • YouTube: dangvuhoainam