Episode 7

Episode 7

Travel To Korea

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For a different day, this time Jihyun and I decided to go to Paju, which takes about an hour and 15 minutes by bus from Seoul. Since there are many places to visit in Paju, we decided to leave early in the morning. Paju is located at the northernmost tip of South Korea, on the border with North Korea. For those who want to see North Korea while they're here, tours are organized to the DMZ (Korean Demilitarized Zone), that is, the border area, which is the neutral zone between the two Koreas. This border area can only be visited with tours. You can't visit by yourself outside of the tour. Pre-booking is required for these tours. Since we did not reserve a place in advance, we were content to see other parts of Paju this time; but I learned that on these tours, it is not possible to set foot on the border between the two countries in the area protected by the soldiers and have photos taken.
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Our first stop in Paju was Hyeri Art Village. This was the heart of the arts, filled with a variety of museums, art galleries and beautifully designed cafes. All buildings had their own unique, elegant architecture. Even looking at these buildings from the outside was beautiful, but the inside was even more impressive with their unique interior designs. Various workshops were also held in cafes and art galleries here. At the same time, the stylish spaces here were used as the sets of most Korean dramas. At Hyeri Art Village, we first wanted to visit the Museum of Modern History of Korea.
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You were practically teleported to the past with the old songs playing in this museum, where the streets, houses and schools of the old times are revived. In this museum, it was possible to get a lot of information about Korean history and to take nostalgic photos in carefully animated rooms. My favorite in this museum was the room in which an old classroom was revived with typewriters. In this room, I put on one of the old student uniforms and had a photo taken as if I were a student from that period. We were very interested in the museum, after visiting the museum for almost an hour and a half, we felt a little tired and rested in a nice cafe nearby.

Our next stop was Gyeonggi English Village. This place was built for people to learn English better, it was intended to speak only English inside.

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Streets and buildings were built in English style, in order to better create the atmosphere of abroad. English Camps were held here for students in various periods, and students were studying English here during the camp. There were also several cafes and restaurants inside. This is also where the popular Korean game show Produce 101 was filmed. In fact, when we entered some of the buildings, we were able to see the rooms where the contestants in the program practiced their dances.

After English Village, this time we visited Provence Village, which was built in European style. Provence Village started here in 1996 with the opening of a French restaurant. It later developed with the opening of more European-style restaurants, cafes and bakeries in the area.

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The streets of Provence Village felt like you were walking around in France. French streets full of Koreans J Full of colorful tiny buildings and cute little gardens, every spot of this area is ideal for taking pictures. When we learned that the garlic bread here is very famous, we wanted to try it with Jihyun. Unlike ours, the breads here were sweet! Already in Korea, most food was sweet. There was even a sweet pizza. The garlic bread was incredibly tasty, although very greasy. It had a very pleasant sweet taste and smell. Afterwards, we went up to a slightly higher area and looked at the mountains ahead and the distant North Korean territory and watched the sun go down. Afterwards, we did not want to stay too late, so we returned to Seoul.

The eighth part is coming soon...

Author: Pelin Özer

Illustrations: Merve Uygan