Photography by Jeanette Kramer

Posts Tagged korea

Travel Brain: Where in the world?

Travel Map
I’ve been to 29 cities in 14 countries
Hong Kong (SAR): Hong Kong Island
Japan: Tokyo
South Korea: Pusan
South Korea: Seoul
Taiwan: Kao-hsiung
Taiwan: T’ai-chung
Taiwan: T’ai-pei
Turkey: Istanbul
Belgium: Brussels
France: Paris
Germany: Berlin
Netherlands: Amsterdam
United Kingdom: London
North America
Canada: Calgary
Canada: Edmonton
Canada: Toronto
Canada: Vancouver
Mexico: Cancun
Mexico: Mexico City
United States: Great Falls
United States: Las Vegas
United States: Los Angeles
United States: Phoenix
United States: San Diego
United States: San Francisco
United States: Seattle
South America
Brazil: Sao Paulo

Cider in Seoul: Thank you, Big Rock.

As I spend so much time away from home, it always gives me a warm & fuzzy feeling to find something heartily Canadian while abroad. This doesn’t happen often but it did when I stumbled upon (and eventually out of) the Big Rock Brewery pub in Seoul. In Gangnam, to be exact. Being a big, big fan of cider in general, I was ridiculously happy to put back a few pints of Rock Creek when on a long business trip last fall.

The Big Rock brand of beer originates in Calgary and the brewery is super proud of it’s carefully crafted premium Alberta beers (and cider!) and cool company culture. So why Seoul? The Big Rock blog tells that a few Koreans had a successful trade mission a while back when they toured the brewery and later opened the Big Rock pub in Seoul.

So if you’re in Seoul and craving something Canadian or just want a stellar craft beer, you’ll find the Big Rock pub by following these directions (as posted on the pub’s facebook fan page).

Gangnam Station (line 2), Exit #7. Turn right immediately (down a small alleyway leading to a backstreet). Continue going straight up the hill. If you look back, VIPS and Starbucks should be at your back. Big Rock will be on your left. If you see a park on the left, you’ve gone too far.

I’m sure the Canadian teachers in Seoul looooove this place! ♥ Big Rock.

Honey Orange Latte, I ♥ you.

I was secretly hoping I would find this Starbucks special somewhere in Taiwan, where I’ve been working the last week, but I guess not. The Honey Orange Latte was released by Starbucks Korea in January as part of a “year of the Tiger” promotion. Sadly, It’s appearance was too brief. Until next time, Honey Orange Latte, I ♥ you.

Hurshimchung: scrubbed, salted, scalded and steamed

~photography not permitted beyond this point~

Having been to Korea dozens of times for business, I was beginning to get bored with the country when a friend of mine encouraged me to see Korea with different eyes and to do something that I hadn’t done before.

A day after arriving in Busan, jet-lagged and tired from a full day’s work I was craving a massage. I googled around and came across Hurshimchung (허심청), Asia’s largest natural hot spring spa at the Nongshim Hotel. Wow. I couldn’t believe I hadn’t heard about this sooner. I instantly knew that this is what I needed to relieve my fatigue and give me that chance to check out something new in Korea.

I promptly headed to the spaland and prepared to bare it all for the other women of Korea. Hurshimchung is a gender-segregated water park with indoor and outdoor tubs as hot as 56 degree celsius, some scented with herbs and fruit, including waterfalls, caves, saunas and swimming pools. Over the course of a couple of hours, I was scrubbed, salted, scalded and steamed. Clothing not permitted, I definitely saw Korea with new eyes and Korea definitely saw me like never before.

Hurshimchung can accommodate up to 3000 bathers in it’s 4300 square metre complex and is renowned in Asia as the largest natural hot spring spa and a top tourist attraction. That being said, I was very obviously the only tourist there. Nevermind. It was a fabulous, cost-conscious experience at only 8000 (or approximately $8.00 CAD) for entry and another ₩40,000 (or $40 CAD) for the facial, full-body exfoliation and massage. Not exactly for the prudish but certainly a therapeutic and relaxing experience, it is one of my new top recommendations for Korea.

I’ll be back.

Feel-good photos from Seoul & Tokyo

Welcome to 2010!

For the first post of the year, I thought I would share just a couple of feel-good photos I found on my phone recently.

Love your life

Love your dream
I see this building each time I go to Incheon Airport.
It’s a good reminder.

The days sparkle during sakura season at
Inokashira Park,
Kichijoji, Tokyo.

Photo of the Day!

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