Visit Korea on a Shoestring Budget

As the K-pop and dramas massively spreading worldwide channels, South Korea has become one of the most wanted destinations in Asia. You may expect to work like a horse and saving for your Korea trip as the myth has it, Korea is not for the budget travellers, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Korea is doable on shoe string budget with the two key spells: right timing and well-planning. Let’s take a closer look together:

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When should I go
There isn’t a right time for everyone at this four-season country, where each season exposes its unique charms. There is cherry blossom Spring, hopeless romantic Falls, sweating Summer and snow land fairy-like Winter. On top of all, there is shopping season at Asia’s cosmetic and fashion hub.

Tips:
1. For the shopaholic, good news, the national grand sales are held yearly during Feb and Oct. So even if you are on a shoestring budget, you still can enjoy the shopping pleasure during this time.
2. Summer in Korea is scorching and humid, this is usually the peak time, so best to avoid this period.

Hunt for the cheapest tickets using relevant travel apps for your selected period or check with us!

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Where should I stay
Budget traveller’s best option are apparently hostels or dormitories, where you trade in your privacy for the add-on: free breakfast, WiFi, laundry at extremely low cost. The rate starts from $10 / night. Do make sure you check all the add-ons for the best deals.

Alternatively, there are many options with slightly higher rate, starting from $17/ night for a private single room on Airbnb. Shop around; you will surely find the best accommodation deal, that will not break your wallet while meeting your comfort level needs. As usual, pick the place not so far from tourist spots otherwise, you will end up paying for transportation.

Moving around
The main cities in Korea are well connected by public transports, bus or train. Upon arrival, get yourself a pre-loaded T-money cards, which can be used to pay for bus, metro, taxi and train fares at a discounted rate.

Tips:
Download the app called Ji Ha Cheol to navigate the complex subway system while you are in Seoul.

Extra tip: if you plan to walk around or navigate your route, try the app NaverMap, the Korean version of Google map, which is localised and more accurately updated.

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What to eat
While in Korea, do as the Koreans do, another way to avoid being overcharged. Obviously, if you are going to the tourist districts, be prepared to pay extra for the same delicious street food you would find elsewhere. Watch the locals and follow them; this will save you a significant amount.

What to do
Korea has everything that pleases your taste, from the rich and exciting cultural activities such as Jjimjilbang, visiting King Palace, war museum to the modern theme parks and massive shopping malls.
For natural savvy, the national parks, sighting, islands, snow mountains, there are so many options for you. Korea has much more wonderful places to offer than just Seoul, pick a theme on what you want to experience in this beautiful country, explore and get amazed.
While most places require entrance tickets, there are many places you can go for free if combining with certain offers. Make sure to check out the promotion coupons before arriving at Korea and make the best use of the discounts.

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Tip, tips, and more tips:
– Buy the local specialities at the tax-free malls like Dong Hwa and Lotte; you get the best deals here. Buying at the popular night markets is another good option only if you know how to bargain and distinguish the qualities.
– Check out the site http://www.visitkorea.com.my/node/events-promotions/promotions/ if you want to hunt for discount vouchers on some shops or events

So the myth has been debunked. Korea is possible on shoestring budget. Don’t put your Kim Chi dream up any longer, let’s us help you to cross out another destination from your bucket list. Reach out to us at askus@ladyredot.com.


juneHello, I am June! I love to explore different roles to find out what is my passion. I used to be a travel consultant, a Kindergarden English teacher, an Expedia’s Lodging Partner Support agent, and the latest is being a freelancer. Eventually, I figure that my passion is to express the hospitality spirit from my heart and inspire others from my work. Being a writer for LadyRedot, where I get inspired and inspire others, and running my own bed and breakfast in Vietnam. I view life as a colorful and adventurous journey, join me as I share my passion with you! You can reach out to me @ LinkedIn.

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Places to see (Sakura) cherry blossom in 2017

 

If you have not seen Cherry Blossom at least once in your life, you are actually missing out on its beauty. I’m going to show you that Japan isn’t the only choice though that is obviously the most popular choice among all.

Japan
The cherry blossom season in Japan starting from late March to early May, depend on the locations. Some of the best spots to watch the show are:

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Takayama city, Gifu
A beautiful spring festival framed in white and pink colour, an enchanting sight that allows your eyes to feast on its beauty.

Kinosaki Onsen town, Hyogo
A romantic movie-like scene when Spring season arrives, where the pink glows along the street, it is an irresistible beauty.

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Fukuoka Castle Ruins at Maizuru Park, Fukuoka
The vintage classic atmosphere of the ruined castle blends perfectly with the fascinating blooming of more than 1000 cherry trees.

Japan Mint, Osaka
Passed down centuries of tradition since the end of the 19th, every year this place held the seasonal festival for the public to enjoy the gorgeous, iconic flowers blossom.

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Mt. Yoshino, Nara
The best among the best. Just vision the whole mountain covered in pink and white, the most romantic picture-perfect setting I believed.

Hirosaki Castle Park, Hirosaki city, Aomori
Another favourite spot where cherry blossom addicts flock to while in Japan.

Korea
Lesser known than Japan doesn’t mean Korea has less to offer in this springtime. Check out the hot spots for your magnificent cherry blossom backdrops:

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Busan
There are many sites in this touristic town, where your craving for cherry blossom is satisfied: Haeundae Dalmaji Road, colour Stream Park, Igidae Coastal Promenade, Mt. Hwangnyeong Ring Road are among the best to enjoy the springtime performance.

Seoul
Book your ticket to come here in early April and participate in festivals like Seokchon Lake Cherry Blossom Festival, Yeouido Spring Flower Festival. The splendid sightings of the pink and white fallen petal carpet ensure plenty picture perfect moments.

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Jeju Island
The idyllic island is famous for their legendary cherry trees, which only blossom for 2 – 3 days each year. A well worthy rare sight that should not be missed.

Europe
After a long cold, snowy winter, Spring time is widely welcomed around Europe. In some countries, this comes with the glorious blooming of cherry trees. Let check them out together:

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Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Yes, not only tulip fields but also Sakura, get yourself to the English park and being rewarded with the romantic walkway here.

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Stockholm, Sweden
The classic fairy tale sightings blend with the silky pink color from million cherry petals entirely a princess dream comes true.

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London, UK
Despite numerous flowers unfold their beauty during spring time, it is undeniable, cherry tree holding the crown.

Other Countries
Vancouver, Canada
The spring celebrations here has always included the beauty of cherry blossom. If you already used to the incredible yellow Falls, try to visit Vancouver during Spring for a change, which is equally impressive.

Washington DC, US
Cheering your US spring with cherry blossoming isn’t a bad idea at all, especially when it has such irresistible natural beauty.

Dalat, Vietnam
If you happen to be in South East Asia yet still love to have a glimpse of Sakura blooming, you are at the right place. Starting from Feb, the little city change to its pink dress to celebrate Tet, the Vietnam New Year.

Chiang Mai, Northen Thailand
Another budget-friendly spot to enjoy the shower of cherry flower or Tiger Queen as how the local like to refer to. Unlike the professional festivals in Japan or Korean, or the entirely different fairy tale look in Europe, cherry blossom here mixes with the rural breath, giving another unique experience.

As one of the most famous iconic flowers signalise Springtime, Cherry Blossom is not only a show of nature beauty but also a remind of how fragile and quick beautiful moments flash. Enjoy the short yet elegant beauty as much as you treasure the little joys in life.

Do not miss out the little treasures in your life, let us help you to take small steps to create memories. Just askus@LadyRedot.com.


june June explores different roles to find out what is her passion. She used to be a travel consultant, a Kindergarden English teacher, an Expedia’s Lodging Partner Support agent, and the latest is being a freelancer. Eventually, she figures that her passion is to express the hospitality spirit from her heart and inspire others from her works. Being a writer for LadyRedot, where she get inspired and inspire others, and running her own bed and breakfast in her homeland. She views life as a colorful and adventurous journey, join her as she shares her passion with you! You can reach out to her @ LinkedIn.

Spookiest Places in Asia

Halloween is around the corner, spookiest time of the year for some of us. If you are looking to be spook out while in Asia, we have round up some of the spine-chilling and haunted places to put your guts to the test.

Proceed with care…

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Aokigahara Forest, Japan
Wandering inside the forest and enjoy the natures at its best is one of the enjoyable activity one would do, but not quite so if you are at this famous Japanese forest. You might accidentally stumble upon a skull laid beneath the layer of beautiful leaves. As nicknamed the suicide forest, the forest host about 100 desperate souls yearly. This has gone so severe that several signs and motivating quotes are placed outside the forest, in the hope to help anyone think twice before setting their foot on the mystery forest and never return.

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SMK, Cheras, Malaysia
Legend said has it that this school are not only rumoured to be haunted late at night but bears the myth of a real possessed case that cursed upon a female student. The girl reported to have sudden weird behaviours which were actually recorded; her creepily playing with a scissor, kicking and breaking a window glass with her bare hands. Well, who knows, it could be she just really angry with her school or there was a real powerful soul has taken over her.

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Manila Film Center, Pasay City, Philippines
Ghostly encounters at a cinema, nothing seems so strange right? I mean with all the horror movies we have seen, this could be just another of our mind tricks. Unfortunately, it was not the case at this place, where during its construction, on November 17, 1981, at least 169 workers got killed by the collapsed scaffolding ceiling. Worse, their bodies were believed to be buried under the quick drying cement, some were even buried alive! It has been reported with various bizarre events such as mysterious sounds, voices, and poltergeist activities.

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Jeju Island, Korea
You would think twice to spend the honeymoon at this famous touristic spot unless you want ghost hauntings to add on the spice in your love life. The site was once a torture field where 60,000 people were raped and burned tragically for being accused of involving in political conflict.

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Hanoi ghost house, 300 Kim Ma Street, Vietnam
This 3000 sq meter abandoned building was actually built on a cemetery. Needless to say, that is rather a house of ghosts, spirits, evil, devil, anything but human beings. All scary things you see on TV will certainly appear here: tables and chairs are arranged by nobody, brushes sweeping garbage, crying babies, etc. Nobody is allowed to enter the premises or take photos of the house.

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Shoe Factory at Bangpu Industrial Estate, Bangkok, Thailand
Just another industrial estate, that you may still find some good shoes scrap here and there as no one dares to enter it. When this factory got into a severe accident – the air compressor blew up and dragging several lives with its explosion, the owner still operate the business as per normal. Not long after, ghosts sightings happened so frequently that many employees got chased out and the business had to shut down eventually. In the end, the owner shot himself on the top floor of the factory.

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Ghost Palace Hotel, Bali, Indonesia
The Ghost Palace Hotel (also known as PI Bedugul Taman Rekreasi Hotel & Resort) located on the way up to the iconic Bedugul Lake, built in the 1990s though it has never been commenced since then. Rumours has it that the abandoned resort was cursed by the competitor and haunted by the souls of dead labourers, who were forced to work under unsafe condition. Five stars resort in the jungle, no thanks, for the fainted hearts.

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Bhangarh Fort, Rajasthan, India
The place is believed to cursed as all the houses built with its roof collapses at one time or another. Go explore the story behind this unusual event yet make sure you don’t go there after sunset, as it is strictly prohibited by the government.

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Plain of Jars, Laos
Treasure hunt in this lesser known country may bring you some strange reward: huge collections of ancient jars deeply buried for God knows why. The field was once a battlefield during the Indochina War. Not that scary if the people around did not report to hear strange sounds and often encounter ghostly images of armies and fallen pilots at night.

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Phnom Penh, (City of Ghosts) Cambodia
Ha! Now that the entire city, the capital of Cambodia. After Khmer Rouge took control in the mid-1970s, the city quickly become an assassin field. Thousands were executed or being abandoned till dead as the city emptied.


June.pngJune explores different roles when she was young to find out what is her passion. She used to be a travel consultant, a Kindergarden English teacher, an Expedia’s Lodging Partner Support agent, and the latest is being a freelancer. Eventually, she figures that her passion is to express the hospitality spirit from her heart and inspire others from her works.Being a writer for LadyRedot, where she get inspired and inspire others, and running her own bed and breakfast in her homeland. She views life as a colorful and adventurous journey, join her as she shares her passion with you! You can reach out to her @ LinkedIn.

Health Tourism Hotspots

Medical tourism is on the rise, and dozens of countries around the world – from Asia to South America to eastern Europe – are getting in on the act. Agencies are being set up to promote less expensive health care costs to potential foreign visitors from developed countries where health care costs are through the roof. Reasons other than cost to travel overseas for health care include better treatment, as well as avoiding long waiting lists and dodging questions from colleagues and family.

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Israel

Israel is the leading destination for in vitro fertilisation (IVF) procedures, having the highest number of clinics per capita in the world. Unlike countries where couples can go broke trying to conceive with the assistance of costly medical technology, Israel provides free, unlimited IVF procedures for up to two “take-home babies” until a woman is 45. The booming industry has also provided other advantages to Israeli physicians. The large pool of patients with diverse fertility problems has helped them tailor treatments that end with a successful pregnancy, they say. And because a cost is not an issue, there is less pressure to implant multiple embryos, which can lead to larger than desired multiple births — triplets, quintuplets or even the occasional octuplets.

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South Korea

With a subtropical climate, mountain ranges and extinct volcanoes, South Korea makes for a very appealing healthcare destination. Patients visited from 188 different countries including China, the UK, and Australia in 2012. Many visits for cosmetic surgery, dentistry, cancer treatment, brain surgery, and oriental medicine. The most cosmetically enhanced people on the planet can be found in South Korea, where plastic surgery is regarded as “natural and harmless” and is believed to be the key for better employment prospects and a happier life.

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Singapore

Cancer treatment is a top speciality there. The World Health Organization ranks Singapore the best health care system in Asia, and sixth in the world. And while socialists claim that Singapore’s efficient, rather socialist health care model is a model for the rest of the world, personal responsibility is a key driver that keeps health care costs in here reasonably low. If you’re looking for the most developed country for less expensive surgery, Singapore might be for you.

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India

India is one among the top five medical tourist spots in the world having hosted nearly 166,000 medical tourists from across the globe. The growth of medical tourism in India has led to the enhancement of better and advanced medical facilities in the country. More tourists are coming to India because the cost of treatment here is much less compared to the US and the European countries. Stories of westerners travelling to India and saving 75% over home country costs for large procedures – travel costs included – are not uncommon.

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China

China is fast emerging as a destination for patients seeking treatments that integrate traditional Chinese medicine with Western medical technology and techniques. China is also home to stem cell research and hospitals that offer treatments considered experimental or that have yet to be approved in many Western countries. Other available procedures include cardiology, neurology and orthopedics.

If you are looking for resources for us to prepare a plan like what I have suggested, contact us at askus@ladyredot.comand we will be happy to assist you.


Writer’s Profile

Kally

Kally is a former Sales and Customer Service manager turned Writer and Founder of MiddleMe.net. She came from Singapore; lived in Shanghai and now calls Kuala Lumpur her home. After hanging up her corporate briefcase, she now pursue her passions – Writing, Traveling and of course, hunting for good food

Connect with me @ Kally@ladyredot.com

Guest Post: KOREA IV – CATCHING A BUS TO NORTH KOREA

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(Joint Security Area at North and South Korean border)

My trip to Korea has officially come full circle, a year ago I spontaneously bought tickets to South Korea to visit my friend who was teaching English to young children at a hagwon (private English academy). My adventure to South Korea is one I will never forget, it was an experience that made me grow as a person and I cherish every memory. Had I not gone I would not be able to share with you the story of how I sprinted across Seoul to catch my bus to North Korea. Yes, I sprinted through the morning rush hour from one side of Seoul to the other to catch a bus to North Korea.

After I bought my flight to S. Korea I began looking into visiting one more country while I was in the region. But in the end I decided to spend my whole trip in Seoul with my friend and have the chance to explore as much of the city as I could. While doing research about what to do in Korea I stumbled upon a tour to the DMZ. The DMZ is the demilitarized zone along the border of North and South Korea along the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) which divides the Korean peninsula 155 miles (241km) from East to West. In July 1953 both sides signed the Armistice Agreement to cease fire and pull back 1.24 miles (2km) from the MDL to insure peace. Today the DMZ is a buffer zone ending all military and hostile actions. I was quiet surprised to learn that the DMZ ecosystem has been prospering and is very fertile land for growing rice, soy beans and wine. There are is one village within the DMZ zone, Daesongdong “freedom village”. The people of Daesongdong tend to the rice fields and farming in the area and are exempt from federal taxes and mandatory military draft from either Korea. Many people compare the border of North and South Korea to the border of former East and West Germany. I was born after the fall of the Berlin Wall and Iron Curtain but I grew up hearing many stories about that time from my family in Czech. In some ways I felt like I had an understanding of the sensitive situation in Korea.

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(Demilitarized Zone)

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(Ribbons along the fence in Imjunak Park)

When I came across the tour I hesitated about going. My friend was working most of the days I was visiting her so I wanted to fill the time with touristy things around Seoul. Would a trip to the North Korean border be ok with my parents? My stepdad was more than excited to hear about my trip to Korea and when I mentioned the tour he said he had taken it while he was in South Korea in the late 1980s. My mom happy for me that I was traveling to Korea and visiting my childhood friend but when I shared the news of my adventure to the North Korea border she was less than thrilled. Now, let’s fast forward about ten days after I told my mom I was going to go to the border of one of the most hostile countries in the world – alone.

I was out the door of my friend’s apartment at 8:01 am to catch my tour bus, little did I know that that one minute would cause me such stress. To get to where the bus was picking me up would take 45 minutes. As I walked to catch the bus to the metro, I see it pulling away from the stop but thankfully another one came within 2 minutes. Once at the metro stop I hurry down the steps and just as I land on the last step of the stairs the train doors close. Great, next train is in 3 minutes and I am already running late. Keep in mind that there are only three tours a week and you must be cleared by the United Nations seven days prior to your tour to even be allowed. This wasn’t an easy tour I could reschedule. My train came and I have to make one more metro line change, at this point I begin wondering if this is a sign that I shouldn’t be going. Should I listen to the signs? No, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and there is no refund if I miss the tour.

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(Entrance to Imjingak Park)

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(Liberty Bell in Imjingak in honor bidding the 20th century goodbye and welcoming the 21st century as a time of reunification and peace in the world)

I make the change and as I run down the stairs to catch my last train I see the doors close. I look at my watch, I still have about ten minutes until I get to the stop I need. The Korean metro map looks like one of the most complex transit systems in the world. (See the map here) Thankfully Koreans are tech savvy and created an app that helps passengers navigate through the web of colored metro lines, thankfully I had that app. A day before the tour I did a practice run of where the place was so I would know where to go, I was so grateful to my past self for preparing the day before because the moment my future self climbed out of the metro I orientated in the right direction and started to make a run for it. On my ticket it said to meet at the grand piano of a hotel, I sprinted through lobby doors to find that there wasn’t a group waiting around the piano. I grabbed a concierge and explained to him that I was late for the Panmunjom Tour. As soon as I said this a gentleman came up to me and said he was part of the tour and that our bus was waiting on me outside. When our tour guide saw us she quickly hurried us onto the bus because we were on a tight schedule. I couldn’t believe I had made it.

(View looking over  Imjin River)

(View looking over Imjin River)

(Steam locomotive symbolizing tragic history after it was left in the DMZ after being derailed by bombs during the Korean War; train is in Imjingak Park)

(Steam locomotive symbolizing tragic history after it was left in the DMZ after being derailed by bombs during the Korean War; train is in Imjingak Park)

The border is a 45 minute drive north of Seoul, surprisingly close in distance yet a world away. As we head north I notice what looks like a small village across the river. Our tour guide explains that the North Koreans have set up propaganda villages along the border to make it appear as though people are able to live freely and close to the border. Through modern technology such as heat sensors, it was proven that no one actually lives in the village and that they are just for show. Our first stop is in Imjingak Park where the Bridge of Freedom crosses the Imjin River and is a memorial park for those unable to return to their hometowns or to see family and friends. The bridge was a former railroad bridge used to exchange prisoners after the Korean War, today a train stands on the railroad tracks in memory of those it brought back. There is one place to eat while visiting the memorial, Popeye’s Louisiana Chicken. Yes, if you are hungry and you can grab a snack at the American fast food chain Popeye’s from New Orleans, Louisiana just a few yards from the border of North Korea. Back on the bus we head to the town of Paju located just south of the 38th parallel, the line of latitude that created the border between North and South Korea. Once we cross the border control into Paju we make a stop at the Dora Observatory where we get to see into North Korea and Kaesung City, the second largest city in North Korea. From the observatory you can also see Kijongdong, another propaganda village.

Our second to last stop of the morning tour is the 3rd tunnel. Made by the North Koreans and discovered in 1978 by the South Koreans, the 5364.17ft (1,635m) long by 6.4ft (1.95m) – in some parts even lower- high by 6.9ft (2.1m) wide tunnel which passes into the Military Demarcation Line by 1427.17ft (435 m). Our group was taken to the entrance of the tunnel where we began the long walk down through bedrock and about 239.5ft (73m) underground and equipped with hard helmets. At the end of the tunnel you can see what you hope is a thick concrete wall that separates you from the North Korean end of the tunnel. The morning tour ended at the Dorasan Station, the railway station that is the northernmost stop on South Korea’s railway line and is a symbol of future trading between the two nations. If North Korea allows for the railway to continue through its country you will be able to take a train from Seoul, South Korea to Paris, France.

"Not the last station from the South, but the first station toward the North" - Dorasan station

“Not the last station from the South, but the first station toward the North”
– Dorasan station

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(Korean lunch for one, a little bit of everything)

The bus drops me off in Paju where I am served a Korean style lunch and wait for my next bus to come and take me to Camp Bonifas. As I settle into my seat on my afternoon tour bus our tour guide begins to explain the safety and rules we must follow while in touring and that we may be evacuated from the camp if there is even a small threat to our safety and will received no refund if this happens. The camp is property of the United Nations, hence why the U.N has to clear you before you sign up for the tour. Also there is a dress code: shoulders must not be visible, any offensive clothing cannot be worn, absolutely no oversized clothing, sheer clothing, flip flops/sandals or military clothing are allowed. While we were in Camp Bonifas we were prohibited to take photos unless our guide allowed us. The most exciting part of the tour was our last stop, the Joint Security Area. Little blue huts welcomed us as we emerged from a large gray building and the border line between North and South Korea was just a few steps away from us. These little blue huts are the conference rooms which are used by both sides when meetings and negotiations need to be made. Inside the conference rooms the room is split by an imaginary line that divides the room between the north and south, with no visibily present line the space feels equal and neutral. Inside the rooms there are no flags and the only color is blue, the color of the United Nations. The area is heavily guarded with both North and South Korean soldiers standing watch over us. It was an unimaginable and thrilling experience being in JSA and being able to put one foot on North Korea land and the other on South Korean land.

(Dora observatory)

(Dora observatory)

(View to North Korea from Dora observatory; Kaesung City in the distance)

(View to North Korea from Dora observatory; Kaesung City in the distance)

(Joint Security Area with blue huts used as conference rooms)

(Joint Security Area with blue huts used as conference rooms)

Having been taught so little about the Korean War in school it was truly eye opening to discover Paju, JSA and the DMZ. After having to make my way across Seoul by bus, train and foot to visit the DMZ every second of my morning adventure to get to the bus was worth it.  I will never take what I have for granted and am so grateful that I live in a country where I have the freedom and opportunities. My heart goes out to everyone effected by the war and those who are still separated from their friends and family.

Here is a link to the tour I took Panmunjom Tour

Best Airports for layovers

If you have no choice with a direct flight and need a layover, one tip is to pick an airport of your choice for layovers. The better the airport, the less you will feel the long wait and in fact, you might even wish your layover is even longer! Trust me on this!

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Changi Airport, Singapore

There is a reason why this airport kept winning the top airport in the world award year by year. 365 days, they kept overdoing themselves, topping other countries with ease. With a butterfly garden, free movie theatres, and a 40-foot, swirling slide that’s the tallest in Singapore, Changi feels more like Alice’s modern-day Wonderland than an airport. Passengers can also take a refreshing dip in the airport’s Balinese-themed rooftop swimming pool.

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Heathrow Airport, London

The terminal houses an 11,000-square-foot Harrods and 105 restaurants. It is the only airport in the world that provides passengers with onboard picnics from a host of restaurants that will pack up a meal for you to take on the next leg of your journey. I love that you actually can engage a butler or a personal shopper to help you to navigate around the huge mall in the airport.

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Dubai International Airport, United Arab Emirates

One of my personal favourites, the Dubai International Airport! As much as you can grab a day room at the Dubai International Hotel for a shower, a nap and a trip to the pool, gym, steam, sauna and Jacuzzi. The best part about this airport is that it never closes and the shopping never end. The longest layover I had in this airport is about 8 hours but I can’t get enough of shopping this airport. The best part of shopping here is that they accept all kinds of major currency and their exchange rates are pretty great.

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Haneda Airport, Tokyo

Haneda was rated one of the world’s most punctual airports by CNN. Grab a bowl of ramen or platter of sushi, browse the free Internet in one of the many comfortable seating areas, or take a visit to the high-tech restrooms, which have heated toilet seats.

By Håkan Dahlström - originally posted to Flickr as SFO international terminal, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10615771

By Håkan Dahlström – originally posted to Flickr as SFO international terminal, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10615771

San Francisco International Airport

There is a museum in the airport itself and they host interesting art, science, and cultural exhibits, while a branch of the Steinhart Aquarium has aquatic wildlife from around the world. Now that for me 5 hours will be barely enough for me to cover the museum itself, let alone catching my tea break.

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Incheon International Airport, South Korea

With a day spa, cinema, ice skating ring and a concert hall, it would be hard to say you have nothing to do here. And they also have a 0.0001% baggage mishandling rate. That’s WOW!

Anyone has great airports to share? Come share your find with us at the comments!

Join LadyRedot at Twitter (@LadyRedot), FaceBook (LadyRedot) and Instagram (LadyRedot)! Let us bring you around the world through our eyes!


Writer’s Profile

Kally

Kally is a former Sales and Customer Service manager turned Writer and Founder of MiddleMe.net. She came from Singapore; lived in Shanghai and now calls Kuala Lumpur her home. After hanging up her corporate briefcase, she now pursue her passions – Writing, Traveling and of course, hunting for good food

Connect with me @ Kally@ladyredot.com

Best Dessert Around the Asia

A meal isn’t complete without dessert. That’s true around the world, but desserts differ from country to country. If you are like me, having a separate stomach for sweet stuff, you are in for a special treat today because I am going to show you my favorite sugar treats!

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Mochi, Japan

Lovely and colorful bite-sized treats make any adults, let alone kids in delight. Traditionally, mochi is made with glutinous rice and can be found in varying shapes, but you can also enjoy these delicious desserts as an ice cream treat.

 

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Mango with sticky rice, Thailand

One of my favorite, it is so hard to choose between this and the Thai Red Rubies Dessert because both satisfies my sweet tooth and my thirst for something rich in flavor and creamy. The mango with sticky rice stood out because of the smooth rice texture and the sweet mango. You know it is hard to find a mango that is sweet and oh-so-juicy!

Ice Kacang, Singapore

One of the best thing to have on a hot sweltering day is a bowl of ice. Not just any ice, but shaved ice topped with colorful syrup and corn syrup at the peak. Below the mountain of ice, lies attap chee, red beans, and squishy looking green jelly. In the olden days, the Ice Kacang used to be served in a ball like shaved ice, wrapped around with a plastic bag. Kids like my younger self will suck the sweet syrup with our mouths stuck at the ball of ice. Now for hygiene and convenience purposes, the mountainous bowl of ice replace the ice ball version.

Screen Shot 2016-04-24 at 4.39.31 PMCendol, Malaysia

Very similar to Ice Kacang, in fact, they are almost brothers. The only difference is the special ingredient used. Cendol has coconut milk, makes it sweet and creamy as well. Some restaurant serves it in a bowl but I have found many who serve it as a drink instead of dessert. Either which, it is a must have drink if you are in Malaysia.

Screen Shot 2016-04-24 at 4.43.13 PMDragon Beard Candy, China

Dragon Beard Candy is an Asian dessert with similarities to cotton candy. First introduced in China, it spread in popularity and even became a coveted treat for Korean royalties. Made of sugar and maltose syrup and sometimes stuffed with ingredients such as coconut and peanuts.

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Ice Monster, Taiwan

The “mango avalanche”—shaved ice piled high with cubes of fresh fruit, mango pudding, condensed milk, and mango sorbet. It’s enough for four dainty eaters or two ravenous ones. You can imagine this is super popular among the youths during hot summers. If you do go to Taiwan, do try to have as many fruits as possible because they are the sweetest ones you can find especially mangos, strawberries, and pineapples.

Tteok, Korea

Tteok is arguably Korea’s most famous dessert and there are hundreds of different kinds of tteok eaten year round. In Korea, it is customary to eat tteok guk (tteok soup) on New Year’s Day and sweet tteok at weddings and on birthdays. It is soft sticky rice balls that are drizzled in sugar, honey, and lemon syrup.

Num Ansom Chek, Cambodia

This is one of Cambodia’s most well-known desserts and is commonly eaten and served on holidays and festivals. It is a cylindrical rice cake wrapped in banana leaves and filled with bananas.

Chè Bà Ba, Vietnam

This is a typical Southern Vietnamese dessert, which contains a variety of ingredients. It has a coconut milk soup base and square pieces of taro, cassava, and khoai lang bí, a kind of long sweet potato with red skin and yellow flesh.

Egg Pudding, Hong Kong

If properly steamed, this sweet egg pudding should have a silky texture resembling soft bean curd. Eaten hot, topped with drips of condensed milk to give it a creamy sweet taste.

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Writer’s Profile

Kally

Kally is a former Sales and Customer Service manager turned Writer and Founder of MiddleMe.net. She came from Singapore; lived in Shanghai and now calls Kuala Lumpur her home. After hanging up her corporate briefcase, she now pursue her passions – Writing, Traveling and of course, hunting for good food

Connect with me @ Kally@ladyredot.com