The first steps out of the airplane, the gush of the humid air. The rustle of people, as they carry their belongings, the greetings of the stewardesses and pilots, the atmosphere encompassing me. I quickly follow the steps of my mother, as she leads the way into the airport. The cool rush of the air-conditioned building hits my face. The familiar sound of my native language floats in my ears. With this, I know that I have arrived in the correct country. South Korea, The Land of the Morning Calm, the birthplace of my parents and ancestors.
Although, born and raised in America, I cannot help but fall in love with my heritage. Korea is full of spirit and energy. The whole environment is breathtaking and a feeling of security surrounds me. When I am in Korea, I feel safer then I would in America. I believe this comes from the different cultures and morals. There are many ways of transportation around Korea; buses, taxis, cars and subways. Of course, many people choose to walk as well. The subway system is very efficient, with stations located at every district, it is also a very easy to follow. Bus stops have signs that indicate which bus goes where. Each bus has a number to make it easy to locate. Korea also has a stop for taxis, where it makes it easier to catch a ride. Out of the public transportation options, buses and the subway are the most common.
Seoul is the capital of the South Korea. In Seoul, there are many districts and little towns. Whenever I visit Seoul, the places I have to visit are the shopping districts, Myeong-dong, Dongdaemun, and Namdaemun. These places are full of people all day; students, workers, families, and tourists crowd the streets. Myeong-dong and Dongdaemun, although open during the day, are more alive at night. In Dongdaemun, there are many shops lined up against the sidewalks as well a huge buildings selling clothes and accessories. A favorite of mine is called Doota (http://www.doota.com/en/index.do?_method=main), which opens at 10 A.M and closes at 5 A.M the next day. Inside, there are numerous stalls where owners try to sell their clothes. All the latest fashion and clothes are sold for cheap, resulting in the Korean female population to all have similar clothing. Floor after floor, from clothes to accessories, from shoes to a food court, there is nothing missing.
South Korea also offers many other delights, such as tours of palaces (english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/SI/SI_EN_3_4_8_12.jsp), a walk along the Han River (english.tour2korea.com/enu/SI/SI_EN_3_4_4_2.jsp ), visiting museums and parks (english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/SI/SI_EN_3_4_10.jsp), having fun at the famous theme park, Lotte World (english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/SI/SI_EN_3_4_4_1.jsp), in addition to attending baseball and/or soccer games (www.fcseoul.com/eng/index_eng.jsp). Most years, I visit Korea during the summer. The summers are very hot and humid as well as rainy. I advise to bring shorts, t-shirts and comfortable shoes. Jeans are optional, depending how well one can tolerate the humidity. Overall, South Korea is a very exciting country to visit. If you want to experience a whole new culture and way of life, if you like change and adventure, I suggest you pay South Korea a visit!
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