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Saturday, May 02, 2009

Day 16: Seoul (National Museum of Korea, War Memorial Museum, Traditional Wedding Procession, Itaewon, Hi Seoul Festival)

It had been raining since morning, so we decided to find some activities that could let us stay indoor.

National Museum of Korea
When we reached there, we saw a lot of people visiting the museum too. Yeah, everyone had the same plan on how to pass time in a rainy day. :)

This museum has 3 different sections, permanent exhibition, special exhibition and children museum. It was free admission for permanent exhibition and children museum, and KRW 10,000 for special exhibition. The current special exhibition is on Egypt civilisation but we had been to Egypt so that's out. Not interested in children museum, so in the end we only visited the permanent exhibition.

The permanent exhibition area is pretty big, you need at least 3 hours to browse all the areas.

Gloomy day

Pond in the museum compound

Little girl was posing for her dad and us. :)

Flowers with raindrops

A fully packed museum

On top of pyramid

Ten-storey pagoda located at the end of 1st floor exhibition hall.

Archaelogical Gallery

Gold crown

Gold necklace

Horse rider

Wax figurine


Is this Chinese or Korean?

A porcelain plate with "longevity" character

Ornament belt

The permanent exhibition also displayed many arts from all over the world, donated by the individuals from their private collections.

Sutra chest carving from Myanmar

Vishnu sculpture

Greece bronze helmet

Not sure where this is from.

I like this Japanese painting very much.

Black lacqured Buddha head

Angry Buddha look?

Buddha sculpture

Pensive Boddhisatva, one of museum famous collection.

Personally I felt this museum worth a visit, not as huge as Louvre in Paris but still pretty entertaining in a manageable size.

Classical music performance
After finished browsing the exhibitions, we went down to see the classical music performance at the lobby, these kids were very young and could play really well.

Next, we went to food court for lunch. The queues were long and the eating hall was fully packed, waited 20 minutes for our food to come.

Spicy soybean paste soup (doenjang jjigae) was quite nice.

But my Japanese curry rice was the best.

On our way to War Memorial museum, saw the birds flying in V formation.

War Memorial Museum
Only visited the outdoor exhibition, which was hubby's favourite. Tanks, missiles, jet fighters, airplanes, they are all parked outside the museum.

War Memorial Museum

Bomb look alike

Statue of Brothers

Is Bruce Lee a Korean? :P

That's the jacket I bought for him days earlier, looks good with all these vehicles. :)

Trying to be Incredible Hulk :P



A helicopter

I was wondering why there's a temple in the War Memorial Museum complex. Before I got my answers, I saw a group of people hurriedly took their position in a traditional wedding march. I thought it was a cultural performance, anyway this was a museum. After watching for very long, I just realized it was a real wedding, hahaha...

A small temple where the wedding ceremony took place.

Wedding props

But to think about it, this was like a royal wedding, did the couple spend a bomb in hiring all these people dressing up like these?

Dance before the couple marched in

The wedding couple

A foreigners enclave with many international restaurants. It's the only place where you could find more English words than Korean. :)

I didn't feel at home here, not the place that I would like to hang around.

Hamilton Hotel, center of Itaewon.

Hard Rock Cafe

Bling bling gowns

International restaurant, bar and pubs

It means "how are you?"

Hi Seoul Festival
After Itaewon, we went to City Hall just in time for the parade. Don't you think Seoul is so happening, last week was the Lantern Festival, and this week we had Hi Seoul Festival.

Cosplay team

Cars with pink balloons

I was in the center of all these. Yay!!

With the pink balloons

The parade was marred by the demonstrators, they went out to the street and burst all the pink balloons and shouting some words in Korean which we didn't understand. It was quite scary, I thought they would break into the cars too. Luckily it didn't turn out that ugly.

I think that's the reason we saw so many policemen waiting at every corner of the road. At first, I thought they also took part in the parade hehehe... Never see so many policemen together in my life.

Police in action

After the parade, we went back and had BBQ pork ribs for dinner. No pictures this time because our batteries were flat taking those videos. But believe me they were yummy. :D

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