Blogger Hangout: Holland

Blogger Hangout: Holland

I’ve been busy the last week or so! I finally got to meet another blogger friend. This time it was Holland! She and her boyfriend came here for a week, and I spent my time showing them around Seoul. I was able to take a few days of leave. It was fun meeting another blogger friend, especially when they come over to my neck of the woods. I ended up visiting places I hadn’t before, so that was also a plus for me.

Day 1 & 2: The Beginning

On their first night in Seoul, I picked them up at Grand Hyatt Seoul and took them to their guesthouse. The next day we explored Itaewon and headed to Garosu-gil in Sinsa-dong. We had lunch at School Food, which is a chain that sells upscaled version of Korean diner food. We then visited Myeong-dong for a Korean skincare shopping spree, haha! Afterwards, we had dinner at Cali Kitchen and Wrap Centre and we had a drink at Noxa Oriental. We ended the night on the rooftop of their guesthouse, doing what I call “ghetto drinking” XD;

Day 3: Museum Adventure

Painting at the National Museum of Korea

Day 3, we visited the National Museum of Korea. This was my first time visiting the museum. Holland and I explored all of the first floor, but we were museumed out just by that one floor. It was interesting, though, to see the history of Korea. The above photo was a painting we saw in one of the last sections on that floor. I’m not sure what it was supposed to represent, but the homoerotic undertones really caught my attention!

Day 4 & 5: Food & Farewell

Arrabbiata at Al Matto

I had to work on day 4, but I met them for late lunch that day. We went to Al Matto, a restaurant that sells Italian-style pizza and pasta. I had the arrabbiata. It was pretty good, and I loved how the sauce had a spicy kick to it! Day 5, I didn’t meet them at all. I had work again. After work I met my counsellor for the second session, which turned out to be good. My next errand took me to Bundang. I said farewell to Chantelle, who was flying out the next day.

Day 6: Ye Olde Seoul

Changdeokgung's Secret Garden Changdeokgung's Secret Garden

Holland, her boyfriend, and I went to Changdeokgung Palace. I’d never visited this palace until that day. I’d also arranged us to visit the Secret Garden in that palace, which is only accessible through the palace tours. I’m glad I finally visited the Secret Garden. The two photos above were taken there. I loved seeing the landscape of the place. I just wished the pond wasn’t so dirty . . . oh, and I wished we hadn’t walked up those hills and stairs, haha! It was so muggy and miserable, too X_X;;

Tea at Sinyetchatjib Korean Traditional Snacks at Sinyetchatjib

After the palace, we went to Insa-dong and stopped by Sinyetchatjib for some Korean tea. We ordered the pear punch (for me), ssanghwa aka double harmony tea (for Holland’s boyfriend), and iced green tea latte (for Holland). This place also gave us some Korean snacks and rice cake treats. It was a nice place to unwind and cool off from the palace tour.

Day 7: The Finale

I met Holland and her boyfriend for the last time. We met up for a late dinner. We went to Donga Naengmyeon in Itaewon, and then Holland and I had a drink at a bar called The Library. They are flying out the next day. It was great hanging out with them the last week. I’m glad I met Holland in person, and this is an experience I will not forget!


  1. It’s always great to meet and make friends from different sides of the world! I definitely get the feeling of finding new interests and new places in your own city through them.

    • Yeah! I’m glad when I get to try something new in my own home :) But I also like the sense of familiarity, so I tend to repeat things a lot!

  2. It’s so cool that you got to meet Holland in person! It’s funny how she lives closer to me, yet she met you first XD. All of you are probably super stuffed from all of the foodie places you went to!

    That portrait is true art! I love how there can be many meanings to what the artist is trying to convey.

    Ooooh! Changdeokgung Palace looks beautiful! Make sure to bring me there too when I drop by ;). Glad to hear that you all had a great time!~

    PS. Where’s the authentic bibimbap? :O o:!!

    • It is ironic that I met her before you XD

      And yus! Stop on by Seoul, and we’ll go to Changdeokgung! And we’ll definitely go get you some bibimbap XD

  3. Sounds like you guys had a lot of fun! I always like hearing about your adventures – makes me want to visit Korea even more (yum rice cake treats)!

    I LOLed when I saw that painting, haha.

    • Come visit! I’d be stoked to meet up with you :D

      And yes, that painting is very much LOL worthy XD

  4. It was so nice of you to show her around. What better tour guide than a local. Those gardens look amazing. I wish I will visit Seoul one. I dreamed about it since I was a kid. Also I love Korean food. Every time I get the chance I order Korean food and it’s delicious. Of course, probably the authentic one tastes way better.

    • I hope you’ll get to visit Seoul one day :) It’s a great city, and I can’t ever imagine leaving it!

  5. Adrianne on

    What an awesome experience, especially when you’re hanging out with a fellow blogger! I fell in love with (South) Korea’s landscape years ago when my father and brother visited Seoul as a stopover on their flight to the Philippines (they stayed there for 3 days), took photos, and everything. I’m more interested in the historic side of Korea though rather than their pop culture LOL. (maybe except for their MMORPGs and other video games)

    The only time I had my own exposure towards Korean food is during our local Asian American Festival every year when there’s always booths and booths of Asian food. I remember eating a lot of Korean BBQ/Kalbi, Kimchi (although my local ramen restaurants are serving Kimchi as a side dish now), noodles (I think it’s called yapchae? japchae? I can’t remember the name anymore), and a few others I can’t remember the names of. Delish! :)

    • Yes, it’s called japchae :) Korean food are good, aren’t they? In particular, I’m a big fan of tteokbokki, gimbap, and naengmyeon!

      South Korea does have some gorgeous landscape. All the mountains are breathtakingly beautiful, and the east coast is also lovely. However, I will always be partial to Seoul, haha!

  6. How fun! More blogger meet ups! You’re so popular Tara! XD

    Hehe, I recognize the snacks at Sinyetchatjib. That was definitely my favorite food experience in Seoul. They sure were tasty. But omg, Changdeokgung Palace looks awesome! I wish I had time to visit it.

    • Yes! I’m glad we discovered Sinyetchatjib when you were here! Thanks for introducing that place to me!

      Honestly, I have to say I kind of liked that back area of Gyeongbokgung better than Changdeokgung, but maybe I’d like the Secret Garden better when it’s not so hot and humid!

  7. That is so wonderful you got to meet another friend, and also visit places that you had not seen before! :D They look so interesting. :D

    • Yes! I’m glad I got to experience some new things with new friends :)

  8. I love the sound of “ghetto drinking”, haha. That’s so cool that you got to meet Holland – totes wish I could have met her in LA, but there’s always next time šŸ˜ƒ

    I’m a massive museum can, so you will definitely have to take me to be National Museum when I come, too! The gardens look beautiful – it’s a shame about the pond šŸ˜”

    All your blogger hangouts are making me pumped to come visit!

    • Yeah. Ghetto drinking is a concept my friends and I did a lot back when I was younger :D

      And yes! I’ll definitely take you to the museum :) Do get your butt over here! I want to meet you, too!

  9. Sounds like two had a lot of fun. Ugh. All of that food. Me want. :9

  10. We were just in Seoul for a layover, and 24 hours definitely wasn’t enough time to explore the city. We did get to visit one of the palaces though, so that was nice. Hopefully we’ll get a chance to visit all these other places in Seoul next time!

    • Aw, I wish we could have met! But 24 hours is definitely too short :) Glad you visited one of the palaces, though! Hope you’ll visit Seoul again soon ^^

  11. I am always so jealous when I see blog posts of a blogger meeting another blogger! This time is no excuse :P That’s awesome you got to meet Holland and showed her around, it sounds like you made it a fun trip for her especially after the nightmare she encountered! ^_^

    It’s great that you got to see new places too :D I always love that part of showing new friends around my city too, I’m always like, “Oh well WOW didn’t know that was there!!” :P

    I hope to meet you sometime in the future when I execute my plan to go to Seoul! :D

    • I hope we can meet in the future, too! Come to Seoul, and we’ll have a ball! :D

  12. OK, I seriously can’t wait for you to meet Shayne in person! I bet she’s cooler in person! :)

  13. Such a shame that the pond was dirty ā€“ it always makes me upset seeing waterways being a dirty brown or green. I love lush, clean waterways.

    Iā€™m glad you got to meet and catch up with Holland. And so good that you got to catch up on multiple days. :D

    I am a big fan of arrabbiata, so thumbs up! Spicy pasta is great.

    • Clean water would be nice! Definitely more photogenic.

      Spicy pasta is yum, definitely. And I’m glad I got to meet Holland in person!

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