Winter In Korea Day 1: Hello Again Seoul! + KBeauty Shopping and Snow in Myeongdong

Saturday, January 20, 2018

I cannot imagine not going to Myeongdong whenever I am in Korea. They have all my favorite Korean beauty stores and street food stalls, and there's something about its vibe.

During my recent trip, although I live a bit far, I spent the night relishing my few hours in Seoul (before flying to Jeju) by visiting this food and shopping district. No crowd or cold stopped me from snaking through the all-too familiar roads that I will never ever get to fully memorize.

I also met up with my friend Deegee who spent his last night in Seoul in Myeongdong to try more street foods and buy pasalubongs (good decision!). The best part is witnessing the nonstop glittering snowfall as we decided to stop all the shopping and food trip to just be there in the middle of it all! 

I flew from Manila to Incheon via AirAsia, I think I just slept during the whole smooth flight:

When I arrived at the Incheon International Airport, I can really feel the excitement for this busy trip that I've already been planning for weeks! My goal is to revisit Jeju and to finally go to Busan, and enjoy South Korea's winter festivities--thus calling it my "Great Korea Trip"!

But before anything else, here are my airport agendas (as noted on my phone's notes app) ~

1) Withdraw some cash in Korean Won (forgot to have my money exchanged while in Manila lol) using my BDO Mastercard. International ATM machines just charge you around Php 180-200ish, regardless of how much you withdraw. I initially withdrew 300,000 KRW or around Php14,000. This wasn't enough for 10 days, but I used my credit card for shopping and then just withdrew around 100,000 KRW or Php 5000 during my last few days.

2) Reload my T-Card (beep card that can be used as payment in buses, trains, and some convenience stores) in the CU airport branch. I kept my old card through all the trips I had in Korea. If you don't have one yet, they sell T-Cards in the airport train station or in CU or convenience stores mismo they have this.

3) Also bought some drinks and snacks while in CU, so I can have lunch while in the bus.

4) Pick-up my Korean 10-day sim card and activate it while in the airport. This kept me online during my whole trip, and connection was great whether I was in Seoul, Jeju, or Busan! I think I will turn to sim cards from now on whenever I travel solo. First, it's CHEAPER than routers. Second, you don't have to charge two gadgets and worry about lowbat moments. And lastly, you don't need that extra weight in your bag. For me, pocket wifis are ideal only during group travels.

Anyway, here's where I booked my Unlimited 4G / LTE Korean sim card online. Aside from 10 days, this data sim (no calls or text, just internet so you can use messaging apps like Viber, Line, or Messenger) is also available for 5 and 30 days. Highly recommended to those who want to stay connected 24/7 while in SoKor!

After settling everything, I looked for the bus that will pass by my friend's place where I will be staying while in Seoul. Bus ticket is just 10,000 KRW which I bought in a ticket booth right in front of the bus stop. I discovered the nearest exit door to my bus stop by asking the information booth which you can easily spot in the middle of the airport. Don't be shy at tanong lang ng tanong to clarify! :)

The 2-hour bus ride is very comfortable and convenient compared to my usual airport train option. For around Php 500, I don't have to carry my heavy luggage and drag it during train transfers. I also had a nice view of the streets and buildings of South Korea from my window, as I chill and munch on my convenience store snacks.

As mentioned earlier, that night I went straight to Myeongdong. Although it's just my first day, I immediately bought the pabili and habilins of family and friends since I know most of this trip will be spent in Jeju and Busan, I might not have enough time when I get back in Seoul.

I've seen Myeongdong from different seasons, when it was too cold to hold the wrappings of your street foods, and when the weather is so fine you can easily try all the snacks and check out what the small street vendors are selling. That night, we're back to having numb hands and heat packs in my pockets.

Whatever the weather, I just love seeing billboards and posters of Kpop and Kdrama actors and actresses all over this shopping district:

New oppa because of The Package:

Saw these authentic Miniso penguin plushies from While You Were Sleeping:

It's still Christmas in some parts of Myeongdong:

First stop and my favorite: Olive Young! This store is like their Watsons or SM Beauty, it has everything that you're looking for from skincare to makeup to even packed snacks.

I am a pimple patch fan! Check out all these brands and variants just in Olive Young:

These are cute cushion foundation packaging that reminds me of Fendi!

CosRX has its own rotating station, showcasing their different cult fave products. I am a fan!

Spotted this limited edition of their One Step Moisture Up Pad:

Naaaliw ako when even Korean men model for their cosmetics brands:

And they have a whole section dedicated to men's grooming!

Complete line of the well-received Peripera Airy Ink Velvet. Even Kris Aquino says that this lip tint lasts for hours!

The cutest Peripera Pearly Night Collection:

Almost bought tubs of these affordable makeup sponges but then remembered my lack of luggage space, huhu!

3CE makeup collection that reminds me so much of Polly Pocket!

Popular K-beauty brand Neogen:

Very Artsy Ava!

Ate asked me to buy her her favorite Korean Wasabi and Honey Butter Almonds:

Went to Innisfree for their 10+10 sheet masks:

And decided to lounge in Innisfree Green Cafe for a hot latte:

I love going to this store! They have the shopping part at the ground floor, the cafe on the second and third floor, and a free locker storage area on the fourth (which I availed on that day). Even their comfort rooms have Innisfree toiletries!

After our own dinners and personal agendas for the night, Deegee and I met up in Forever 21. It's so nice when people make time for friends!

First agenda was to make Deegee try some of my all time favorite street foods in Myeongdong, yung pinaka solid na for me namely the sweet pancake and the strawberry mochi. Napaka saraaaap and right now super miss ko na uli sila!

It was snowing nonstop while we walked and walked around Myeongdong. We can't help but take out our cameras and just snap lots of videos and photos!

I also met some of Deegee's Korea travel buddies who were also taking pictures in the middle of the street like what a true blue tropical kid will do! Hehe. :) Fun night, but had to end it shortly since I was running for the Innisfree locker closing and for the last train!

I will end my Day 1 post by sharing some of my Korea Kbeauty purchases from my first and last day in Seoul. Some are mine, and around half were pabili by friends! Next time, I am seriously considering working as a Kbeauty buyer / reseller hahaha! 

As mentioned earlier, I am a fan of pimple patches particularly the ones from Cosrx. Super effective in overnight zit control!

I also bought a tub of my favorite Cosrx One Step Pimple Clear Pads, and this limited edition comes with a smaller container you can use during travels! You can even design it with stickers!

Arnie recommended that I try this Innisfree Green Tea Mineral Mist:

A 3CE black hand mirror to replace the corporate freebie mirror that I use at home:

I didn't realize I bought two face mists already, this one is 3CE Stylenanda's Fresh Aqua Mist:

Sarah's request: Innisfree Jeju Lava Seawater Eye Serum:

Bought this for the packaging: 3CE Heart Lip Pot in Woody Rose:

Miko's Neogen Real Fresh Foam Green Tea Facial Wash:

Ava's Peripera Airy Velvet and Lip Balm:

Jackie's Iope Ideal Cleansing Foam Creamy Moisturizer:

Pax's Mistian Facial Mist:

Some of the Kbeauty freebies I got from buying in Olive Young and Innisfree! Yey!

It was still snowing as I walked home from the train station to my friend's condo. There's snow buildup everywhere, and roads were a bit slippery. Cars moved slooowly but surely, while people (including me) walked like penguins to prevent from slipping. Some couples held hands, and when you look up, the street lamps were sparkling as snow flakes danced in front of them.

It was such a mundane but nice sight to behold on my first night in Seoul. It was cold, but there's that warm and fuzzy feeling inside again. That vibe I was saying earlier, it most prob came from the fact that Seoul is the only city in this world I feel most at-home that's outside of my birth place. It's all too familiar, but will never get old!

To be continued....

Watch my Winter in Korea Day 1 IG Stories:


  1. Wahhhh Ana! Been waiting for your Korea travel blog kahit updated ako sa IG stories, twitter and IG post mo! Ib parin talaga pag blog no? Looking forward to the next one! ✨☺️

    1. Awww thank you for appreciating Koo Koo thanks for still reading!!! ♥️

  2. yung nakangiti ka habang ngbabasa:-)

  3. Thank you, beb for making time for my request! :) Good idea yung maging business to! haha!

    1. Yey! :) I enjoyed buying for you guys, I really hope it can be a business for me hahaha!

  4. Hi Miss Ana! Ask ko lang po magkano LTE Sim nila?and saan sya pwede mabibili? Thank you.

    1. Hello! :) I linked it above or you can click here: :)


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