It's my 6th time to South Korea. Well, I didn't hit the record as my mom would be her 10th time to Seoul. And the reason why we keep going back? It's because it's our favorite country to visit- the food, the people, environment and shopping keeps attracting us back all the time.
We started off our first day at Namdaemun Market on our arrival. It was too early to check into our Ekonomy Hotel Myeongdong Premier. The budgeted stay was clean and small though but location was great! It's beside the big LINE Friends flagship store in Myeongdong. Our stomachs were grumbling when we started buying dried products in Namdaemun. We headed towards the food alley to satisfy our hunger with Janchi guksu. Mom started buying dried big red dates, dried squid, vege chips and even some medicated plasters from the pharmacy. However wherever we go, the locals thought we were Chinese tourists and kept speaking Mandarin to us. The cosmetics shops in Myeongdong were practically catered for the bunch of China tourists. They come to sweep in bulk and in luggage especially in duty free as if buying groceries.
At times I wonder to myself how do they get themselves rich- U can say I am bias against them but there were news and stories that most of the Chinese do money laundering in foreign countries especially in real estates and business enterprises. As for dinner, we had our kalguksu and steamed dumplings for dinner at Myeongdong Gyoja
restaurant. Food was great and satisfying. We started to top up our skincare and cosmetic products for the entire year by shopping at The Face Shop and Nature Republic. The sales assistants were standing everywhere luring potential customers to buy more and even giving free face masks.
For the first day I've started purchasing the whole set of Bee Venom series from Nature Republic since I am prone to redness and blemishes all the time due to sensitive skin.
Mom bought Face Shop's Therapy products meant for aging skin. It was a quite tiring day since we had the overnight flight and didn't get enough sleep. For the first day itself, we have spend hundred thousands of won... ha ha! LINE Friends store is super packed with tourists taking photos of the big Brown bear at the very front. We had to crash in the hotel room as we were too sleepy.
Night time was lovely in Myeongdong though it's always packed with tourists, hawker stalls selling different kinds of food. We tried the chicken skewers, pomegranate fresh juice, grilled lobster tail, grilled meat balls, sausages, ice cream, egg bread, potatoes..etc.
Most of the shops are Global Tax Free refund. Cosmetic stores immediately refund the tax to customers when you show them your passport. It so happens October is the month of Korea Grand Festa Sale 2016. We had coupons for the sale so we managed to secure 10-15% discount.
Basically you can see Song Joong Ki and Park Bo Gum are then main leading famous actors in Korea. Meanwhile Miss A's Suzy and AOA's Seolhyun are the famous female celebs. You can see their faces advertising for cosmetics, beer and clothes.
Tune in for the next part when I review on VPROVE Daily Dermatology grand opening stores in Myeongdong. We managed to catch with the rising budding actor- Park Bo Gum! Excited? He heh! I was excited too when I saw the renovation of the two stores knowing he'd turn up to open the stores since he's endorsing the brand.