Auschwitz Museum, Poland

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You will need to be mentally be prepared to visit this place. You may have heard or read online about this place but it physically visiting the place and understand its existence that makes you feel sad. You will need a guided tour to have better understanding of the place and its history.

The Auschwitz concentration camp is a place of horror, inhumanity and destruction of a race of people. The camp was constructed by the German Nazis in 1940 and in 1942, it became the camp for mass extermination of European Jews. Most of the people were gassed and burnt leaving many personal belongings still being displayed today at the camp. Between 1940-1945, estimated about 1.1 – 1.5 million people were murdered, young and old.

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The Auschwitz Museum has 2 location, Auschwitz 1 and Auschwitz 2 Birkenau. Auchwitz Birkenau is the place where remains of ruined gas chambers, kilometres of barbed wire, barracks and train platform still stands.

 

Location:
20, Wiezniow Oswiecimia Street.

Tel: +48 33 844 8099

Website: www.auschwitz.org

Operating hours: May 8.00am – 6.00pm; June 8.00am – 7.00pm

Ticket prices with guide: Adult 40 Zloty; Children 30 Zloty

Information source: The Visitor guide book

Wieliczka Salt Mine, Poland

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One of the main attraction in Krakow is Salt mine. It is a beautiful underground city on 9 levels at 64 – 327 metres below ground surface. It houses about 2,400 chambers connected by corridors of 245 km long. This magnificent place entered onto UNESCO’s first list of Cultural and Natural Heritage.

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For tourist route, it is a 3 hours route through 23 chambers through 2.5 km of corridors. We would only walk pass 3 levels from 64 – 135m below ground surface. You will see the development of mining technology with a small chance to give it a try yourself. There are also many displays of religious and historic sculptures and chapels for prayers and wedding ceremonies.

The temperature in the mine is stable whole year at about 14 degree celcius. You may need a jacket.

Location:
ul. Danilowicza 10, 32-020 Wieliczka, Poland.

Tel: +48 12 278 7302

Email: turystyka@kopalnia.pl

Website:
www.kopalnia.pl
www.wieliczka-saltmine.com

Opening hours: April to October 7.30am – 7.30pm; November to March 8.00am – 5.oopm.

Ticket prices: Adult 75 Zloty, Reduced 60 Zloty, Family 210 Zloty (Prices may change)

 

For foreign language guided tours, they are available at different timings:

English – From October to May from 9.00am to 5.00pm every hour, from 10.00am to 1.00pm every 30 minutes

German – All year round at 10.45am and 4.10pm, June to September additionally at 2.15pm

French – All year round at 12.05pm, July and August additionally at 10.15am and 3.15pm

Italian – All year round at 1.10pm, July and August additionally at 9.45am and 3.45pm

Russian – All year round at 11.10am, July and August additionally at 4.15pm

Spanish – June to September at 11.20am and 4.20pm

Information source: The Visitor guide book and Wieliczka Salt Mine brochure

Outlet malls in Seoul

Other than going to Dongdaemun for shopping, another place that you may want to check out is Gasan Digital Complex Station. Near this Metro station has many outlet malls for many well known brands. It’s range is similar to a departmental store, from fashion to bedding, but mostly fashion for men, women and young ones.

Head to Metro Line 1 or 7, Gasan Digital Complex Station, Exit 4.

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Once you exit, you will Mario Outlet Mall from afar. You are on the right track. Walk towards that direction.

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You will first come to Fashion Island Mall before reaching Mario Outlet Mall. It is also an outlet mall but with only 2 floors and less choices. You can check it out and the entrance would already have some stalls on the sale items that they sell. I would think that most people would head straight for Mario Outlet Mall.

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(Source: www.visitseoul.net)

Mario Outlet Mall has 3 buildings. After Fashion Island Mall, you will first come to Mario 3, which is then linked to Mario 2 then 1. It houses a wide range of fashions but at the same item there are some brands that are repeated. Yet, you will still want to take a look at them. There are also a wide range of restaurants to fill your tummy and rest your legs.

Mario 3 : Sports, women wear, casual wear, kids, bedding, furnitures, toys and men wear, premium restaurants.

Mario 2 : Outdoor, golf zone, childcare facilities, fastfood.

Mario 1 : Inner wear, young casual, men wear, women wear, food court, korean restaurants.

Operating hours : 10.30am – 9.00pm (Extended hours Friday – Sunday to 9.30pm)

Website : http://www.mariooutlet.co.kr/

After you exit from Mario 1, you will come to an inter-junction. At the corner of each junction has also an outlet mall.

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W Mall (Outlet Mall)

Range : Cosmetics, women and men wear, sports, casual, kids, and restaurants.

Operating hours : 10.30am – 9pm

Website : http://www.w-mall.co.kr/

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Hyundai Outlet Mall

Range : Street casual, young casual, men and women wear, sports wear, cinema and restaurants.

Operating hours : 10.30am – 9.00pm

For other outlet shopping in South Korea, please visit this link.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mijeong Gugsu 0410, Seoul 미정국수0410

20140531-110432-39872259.jpgFirst time trying this shop. It’s a rather famous shop for its anchovy soup noodle.

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You will first order from the electronic vending machine. Lucky for us, it has english names and pictures. Then, get your plain water, either hot or cold, from the prepared dispenser. Then grab a seat, either at the bar or at the small tables by the wall.

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Remember to keep your receipt. They will call the number on the top of the receipt. You will need to learn a little how the number is called so that you can raise your hand to receive your orders.

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There’s free flow kimchi before you have your main meal. This is a common sight at any restaurants you go in Korea. Side dishes are served and refillable.

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Anchovy Noodle (Myeolchi Gugsu) (KRW3,000)

Thin noodles served in hot and clear anchovy soup. It’s anchovy soup is rather appetising which is light but at the same time has the anchovy taste. Simple yet delicious. You can have it spicy or non spicy.

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Warm noodles with soy sauce (Ganbi Gugsu) (KRW4,000)

Warm thin noodles mixed with minced pork and cooked vegetables in soy sauce. It’s a little like bibimbab but with noodle and not rice. It’s soy sauce is not very salty with sesame oil taste. It’s a delicious dry noodle. You can also have it spicy.

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Dumpling with red chili sauce (Gochugileummul Mandu) (KRW4,000)

Tender pork dumpling in a little chili oil. It’s a little spicy but you will want to dip the chili oil to get a better taste of the dumpling. Otherwise, it’s a little plain to eat on its own, especially after you have the dry noodles. The sesame soy sauce taste will cover the dumpling taste.

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Pork Rice Ball (Gogijumeogbab) (KRW1,500)

Seasoned rice wrapped with some green chili, fried crisp and minced pork, then coated with seaweed slices. It’s a tasty onigiri. However, the minced pork are very few. You could not really bite into them.

They have many outlets but the once we went was at Hongdae area.

Overall rating : 8/10

Location:
486, Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul
(Near to Metro Line 2, Hongik University Station)

Operating hours : 11.30am – 10.00pm (Preparation time 3-4pm)

Bukchon Hanok Village, Seoul

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Bukchon, also called “the street museum in the urban core”, located between Gyeongbokgung Palace and Changdeokgung Palace, have many Hanok residentials, historical and cultural heritage sites. Hanok is Korea traditional houses.

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(Source: Hanok Homestay)

 

You can see this map once you exit Anguk Metro Station, Exit 2, or you can also get a copy from the Jaedong Tourist Information Center, on your way to Bukchon. On the map, it has a highlighted route that you can follow to see the most of Hanok residential area. Just follow the sign to the Tourist Information Centre.

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You can also check out Hanok homestay Information Centre (or website), if you wish for more Hanok experience, or engage an alley tour.

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Where it’s an living residential area, many of the houses are not allowed to enter. We are to also try to keep out voices down to avoid disturbing the residents there. However, there are some art museums, craft centres and also a open house to visit with limited visitors per visit.

Simsimheon

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Halfway through Bukchon-ro 11-gil, you can see this house named Simsimheon, which is an actual living Hanok that you can see at KRW10,000 with a cup of tea.

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There will be a lady to introduce you to the house. The top level of the house is for public viewing while the owner lives at the lower level.

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This house has been refurbished to a certain extent where certain area of the house is suited to a modern lifestyle (especially the kitchen and bathroom) but at the same time its structure, living and resting room are still at it’s traditional ambience. It’s wooden structure has since lasted many years without any nails and still standing strong.

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Its resting room has a window with serene and beautiful view. From afar, it can look like a picture of the window frame. This window is at the same time big enough to be a door for us to step out to the view of the garden below.

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After the tour, you can take a seat to relax and is served with homemade cold plum tea. It’s refreshing and cooling while enjoying the view of the garden of the last time.

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Location:
About 930m walk from Metro Line 3, Anguk Station, Exit 2.