This was me and my brother’s first stop on our 16 day Eurotrip. Zürich was basically what I imagined Europe to be with its beautiful streets and buildings and very expensive cost of living. We spent more here (per day) than in any other city we visited, and that was with a lot of penny-saving strategies already.
It was a beautiful city and I was so tempted to just jump into the river because of how clean it was and how hot the day became. Unfortunately, we arrived on a Sunday which is when the shops of the Banhofstrasse were closed. Just as well, we didn’t have nearly enough on hand to start shopping on that street. We joined one of the free tours around the city starting from the business district (where all the famous Swiss banks are found) and ending up in Grossmünster across the Limmat River. I loved the convenience of being able to get a cool drink of water (or take a dip if you want) from one of the handy water fountains. We then took a ride on the ferry to the lake and also went to the Landesmusem before heading back to our apartment where we felt the heat of European summer before falling asleep. Why don’t they fans at least??
Traveling around Zürich was a breeze. We purchased the Zürich Card to cover travel expenses and a few entrance fees.
Finally, we get to the highlight of my trip! Jeju is so different from Seoul and I loved it. I could have spent my entire week here and not regretted it. If you’re trying to see as much as you can on limited time though, the best way to go around Jeju is to rent a car. Public transportation is available, but not that frequent. You see a lot if you join a tour group but these are quite expensive. Navigation using a rented car is easy as long as you get a GPS from the rental companies (we used KT Kumho). Google maps also work in a pinch.
We spent 2 full days going around the island’s beautiful coastal areas and waterfalls. It’s an amazing place to visit and I highly recommend it.
Cheonjiyeon – this is the waterfalls closest to Seogwipo city. There’s also a beautiful park you pass through before getting to the falls. Continue reading →
In between trips to Nami Island, the DMZ and Jeju Island, we were wandering in the capital city. I try getting a bird’s eye view of the places I visit so of course we went to N Seoul Tower. We also managed to visit the main palaces and temples around Seoul during our visit. Something I appreciate about their palaces and temples was the free guided tours they provide. The stories of the guides give life to the different locations, reducing the feeling of “temple fatigue”.
The two ‘must see’ places I had for the south korea trip was the DMZ and Jeju Island. There are several ways of visiting the DMZ but we took the cheapest one which was via the DMZ train seen below. The train allows you to visit the closest point to North Korea. Here you can see through to the other side over the 38th parallel as well as walk through the 3rd infiltration tunnel discovered by the south Koreans. You aren’t exactly on the border but it’s a pretty good way to see North Korea if you weren’t able to arrange a tour with the USO (the only way you can get to the actual border).
My trip after Osaka in March was to the land of the morning calm. I went to Korea knowing next to nothing about it. My friend on the other hand, was a fan of the “koreanovelas” or Korean dramas popular in the Philippines. So on our first day sightseeing, we visited a few of the locations for these shows.
It’s been almost a year since I last logged into this site. I have new found respect for the regular bloggers. Finding time to select, edit, upload pictures and make a write up on a regular basis is really difficult for me.
I’ll try to start updating this site again starting with posts from my trips after Osaka last March. It’s been quite a busy 2015 for me. Several first time visits to new countries. Hopefully I can start exploring the Philippines again though. Maybe I’ll start including some bits and pieces about things at work too..