After I went to PyeongChang for a pre-Olympics tour (which I will write a post on soon…) our family decided to go to Gwangjang market (광장시장) and Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP).
Gwangjang market is a traditional Korean market located in Jongno-gu. It is one of the oldest and biggest markets in Korea.
What makes Gwangjang market such popular destination not only for tourists but also for local Koreans is that apart from the scrumptious traditional Korean street foods, the atmosphere itself is so different from the rest of Seoul.
Our family decided to come to Gwangjang market because it is known to have one of the best beef sashimi in Seoul. I think beef sashimi is only popular in Korea, and people tend to cringe when they hear that I eat raw beef. But it is one of the most amazing raw foods available out there and people should really give it a go. Hey, if you eat sushi, why not give beef sashimi a try? After all we eat our steak medium rare right?
We decided to eat bibimbap that has raw beef in it (육회비빔밥).
Here’s some soju (Korean alcohol) to go along with the bibimbap. It was actually my first time drinking soju with my parents. We tried 순하리 (soonhari) which is citrus-flavored soju that tastes a whole lot better than normal soju (Like honestly. Personally I am not a huge fan of soju because of the aftertaste but soonhari does not taste anything like soju… Which is probably why so many people I know get totally wasted by drinking too much of it).
Afterwards, we decided to go to Dongdaemun Design Plaza.
Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP) is a major fashion hub in Seoul. The building has a very futuristic look to it, which contrasts deeply from Gwangjang market we visited 10 minutes before. Usually, there are quite a few exhibitions held within the building, and even Seoul Fashion Week is hosted in DDP. Our family decided to go because we (more like I) wanted to see the LED Rose Garden, which is one of the most well-known outdoor exhibitions in DDP. It consists of over 25 thousand LED roses and is absolutely breathtaking.
I think it’s interesting that our family decided to visit these two locations on the same day. While Gwangjang market represents the traditional atmosphere that still permeates within Seoul, DDP definitely symbolizes growing urbanism. It was my first time going to DDP and seeing the 25 thousand roses with my family was certainly a night to remember.