There are several university neighborhoods but I started with Sinchon or Sinchon-dong 신촌동 and Edae 이대 (short for Ewha Woman's University 이화여자대학교). They are very close to each other, just one subway stop away, and Sinchon is also a subway stop away from Hongdae (short for Hongik University 홍익대학교, sort of like how we say So Cal for Southern California; if you don't know, Koreans love to shorten terms to make one word), but I'll talk about Hongdae in another post. Sinchon is also very close to Yonsei University, Sogang University and Myongji University.
Edae is very quaint, cute, trendy and most importantly, affordable! That's to be expected, since it's near a women's university. You don't have to worry about getting ripped off here if you're immediately pinpointed as a tourist. Sales people are also not pushy, and I felt I didn't stand out so much since in this area, since I could easily pass for a student or professor (in other words, foreigner doesn't necessarily equal tourist, as it does in tourist hot spots like Myeongdong). I didn't walk around the campus but I certainly did take a walk down "fashion street."
|see, I told you Dunkin' Donuts is everywhere in Seoul!|
I just really love the vibe here, and tons of shops and restaurants all packed together for my shopping and eating pleasure, hehe.
I went inside a large store called Kosney. It's sort of like a Korean Urban Outfitters, with several floors of clothing, purses, accessories, stationary goods, and goods.
Sweet pink luggage. I love the vintage look. Too bad these are a bit small for me, haha, but it'd be cute to have for a weekend trip.
I got a bit hungry so of course, more street food! Spicy grilled chicken skewer, I told you this was my favorite cheap eat while on the go. (Cheap = 2,000 won.) It's actually not spicy, definitely not as spicy as it may look.
Here are some of the Korean fashion styles I found and liked. I didn't get anything though because they were either too small for me or more than what I wanted to pay. I'd wanted this pink blazer which was only 15,000 won but was told it'd be too small for me. Sad face. (Note to self: must lose 10+ lbs if I really want to be able to shop for clothes in Seoul...)
I'd really liked this outfit but I'm glad I didn't get it. I couldn't try it on and I'm not as thin as the mannequin so it probably would not have looked as good on me. I'd actually found a very similar dress at H&M recently, but unfortunately the only size left was too big for me.
This dress and cardigan outfit looks sweet, innocent and ladylike but on me and my body, I'd probably end up looking like someone's granny. XP
Then I got hungry again and decided to try this mussel spicy ramyun for only 3,900 won. I know it's not a very impressive meal but it was cheap and I'd wanted soup since it was yet another chilly day.
It also had some squid in it too. Oohh so fancy! ;)
Now for Sinchon. It's larger so it doesn't have the quaint feel of Edae but it's a cool university area too. There is a Hello AM PM store (Korean department store) near the subway station, and the subway station itself is also connected to underground arcade and mall. By the way, this (and Hongdae) is where I saw the most cute boys, kekeke. I was told Gangnam had the rich, affluent, good looking people but I saw more good looking and fashionable people near the universities. Maybe it's just a matter of personal taste (or in Gangnam, they're all inside the clubs or office buildings and nice apartments).
You will also find all of the popular beauty shops on these small back streets of Sinchon.
I popped into Paris Baguette in Sinchon for a small snack. I had a caramel macchiato and some yummy macarons, mmmm!
I don't know if I've said this before but coffee shops and bakeries are much more lounge-y in Seoul (than in California). For instance, this location had a second floor of booths and tables for everyone to chill. Of course, we have seating sections in our coffee shops and bakeries but they're much smaller or cramped, and sometimes you have to fight for a spot, especially if you're near a university. The ones I went to Seoul had seating areas that seem more like small restaurant seating sections.
Yummy strawberry macaron...oh how I adore you and want you!
Andddd....that's all for now. ;)