Places To Visit In Incheon (Part III) – Sorae Ecological Park (소래습지생태공원)

Back to place to visit in Incheon series! Let me introduce you to Sorae Ecological Park~

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Sorae Ecological Park

Sorae Ecological Park was once Korea’s largest salt field. It was created during Japan colonial period and used until 1996. In May 2009, it was reopened as ecological park. This park has salt field, mud flat, and wetland as the bed of various living creatures and habitat for migratory birds. It enables observation of various marine creatures in marsh. It also has an exhibition hall that presents the information on the facility where salt was produced in the past.

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Free K-Pop Concert September 2016

Ohh, it’s starting~! During fall until beginning of winter, there’s usually a lot of free k-pop concerts. Well, at least once a month… xD

So here I’ll share 2 free concerts for September 2016

– 2018 Pyeongchang K-Pop Festival

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As the name suggests, the concert aims to promote 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.

Date/Time: September 8th, 2016/7pm-9:30pm
Place: Seoul Gocheok Sky Dome (Seoul Metro Line 1, Guil Station, Exit 2)
Line Up: BEAST, Shinee, Wonder Girls, Boys Republic, BAP, Monsta X, WJSN, Gummy, Jingoo
Website: http://pyeongchangkpopfestival.com
Apply the ticket here until Sep. 2 (Tues) 12:00!

– Incheon K-Pop Concert 2016

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Date/Time: September 24th, 2016/7pm-10pm
Place: Incheon Munhak Stadium
Line Up: AOA , BAP, EXID, GFriend, GOT7, IOI, Monsta X, Red Velvet, Shinee, Twice
Website: http://inkconcert.com

The ticket application for the first term is currently closed, but you can register again from August 30th, 9am here.

Actually, there’s another one called 2016 Incheon Airport Sky Festival but the registration for the k-pop concert is already closed. *well, i grabbed my ticket though xD* Sorry, should post about this sooner. But if you’re interested in classical music, you probably want to attend the classical concert hosted by the same festival on September 4th. Click here to book your ticket (it’s free, don’t worry!).

[UPDATE]
Korea Sale Festa Opening Ceremony
Date/Time: September 30th, 2016 / 18:00-20:00
Place: Yeongdeongdaero (Bongeun-intersection-Samseong station intersection)
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Line up: Wonder Girls, SHINEE, 2PM, CNBLUE, Sistar, Infinite, Girl’s Day, Dalshabet, APink, BAP, Ailee, VIXX, AOA,GOT7, Mamamoo, Red Velvet, Laboum, Lovelyz, Sonamoo, GFriend, WJSN, I.O.I, Gugudan
Website: http://www.koreasalefesta.kr/ (Check website for updated information)
Free admission in order of arrival.

Places To Visit In Incheon (Part II) – Songdo International Business District

It’s been a long time since I posted the part 1. Sorry  for neglecting this series. ^^;; So here I come with part 2!

Songdo International Business District is a new smart city built from scratch in Incheon area. It’s also a part of Incheon Free Economic Zone (IFEZ), along with Cheongna & Yeongjong. The construction started in 2005. Its goal is a city in perfect balance, combining the ideal mix of residential, cultural, business, retail, and recreational environments.

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A Tropical Girl’s Spring

After long winter, the spring finally sprung! Because of the global weirding, half of the spring still felt quite cold. It’s only last week I started to left my coat at home, after several days of rain and strong wind.

When waiting for spring to come, I learned this phrase “꽃샘추위”. It literally means “Winter is Jealous of The Blooming Flowers”. It usually happens in March when the weather start getting warmer but then it’s back to freezing cold for several days. Cute, eh?

Some pictures from flower hunting~

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Biking across 3 Islands: Sindo, Sido, and Modo in Incheon

I love biking. I also love quietness. So, when I read about this, I was tempted to do the same. The idea of enjoying quiet islands by riding bike sold me in. It’s also a chance for me to explore Incheon more. Because even though I live in Incheon it seems like I know about Seoul much more than Incheon. Haha.

Sindo, Sido, and Modo are 3 small islands in Incheon that connected by bridge. They’re also known as Three Brother Islands (삼형제 섬). To go to these islands, I need to take a ferry from Sammok Wharf (삼목선착장) in Yeongjeongdo, the island where Incheon Airport is. To go there, I took airport line subway (AREX) to Unseo Station, went to Exit 1 and took Bus #307.

This is Sammok Wharf.

Sammok Wharf

Sammok Wharf

Map of the islands

map

map

The schedule to Sindo and Jangbongdo. There are 12 times a day.

schedule

schedule

– From Sammok Wharf to Sindo or Jangbongdo, every hour between 07.10 and 18.10
– To Sammok Wharf from Sindo, every hour between 07.30 and 18.30
– To Sammok Wharf from Jangbongdo, every hour between 07.00 and 18.00

You can see the ticket price at the left side. The one way ticket to Sindo is 2000 KRW for adults and 1300 KRW for kids. If you go as a group > 12 people, you can get cheaper price. And there’s additional fee if you bring your own bike or car.

To buy the ticket, write passenger list on this form and then go to the queue. Give the form and your ID card to the staff. And after that you can just pay for the ticket. They usually ask if you bring car or not. That’s all.

 After that go to the queue for the ferry, or just directly go to the ferry if it has arrived. There are 2 different ferries to Jangbongdo and Sindo, so you need to make sure that you take the right ferry.
The trip from Sammok Wharf to Sindo is less than 15 minutes. But it was very interesting because there were so many seagulls behind our ferry. The passengers kept feeding shrimp snack (새우깡) to the seagulls by throwing it. It’s cute. Some passengers also tried to feed it directly. It was awesome but kinda scary. lol.

The gate of Sindo.

sindo gate

sindo gate

I asked for the guide book in Sindo Wharf. And then rent a bike in bike rent nearby for 1 day price (10000 KRW). It’s also available for hourly rent (3500 KRW/hour). I chose the one with a basket and put my bag there. I need to left my ID card there.

bike rent

bike rent

I was nervous when I just started my bike trip for 10 minutes but I already found an uphill road. I failed to reach the end of the road by bicycle. lol. When people saw me, I acted like I was lost. An ahjussi asked me where I wanted to go and then told me to follow him and 2 other ahjummas. Haha. So I followed him. The road in Sindo was very quiet. I can count the number of car I saw with my own fingers. Some times I stopped by to take picture. And then I realized, I couldn’t see ahjussi anymore. I arrived in an intersection, and because one of the road seemed easier and more interesting, I went to that side. I saw a park with pavillion there. I followed the road, but the road was heading to smaller road. I couldn’t identify the place in the map. You know, I’m not good in map reading. I was really getting lost this time. Haha. After trying to figure out by myself, I ended up asking an ahjussi nearby. But I still couldn’t figure it out and finally opened the map from my phone. I followed the map, and found the right road. Yeayyy. I saw some bikers too, so I was sure it’s the right one.

And finally I saw the bridge connecting Sindo & Sido. It was pretty cool.

My destination in Sido is Sugi Beach. It’s difficult to park the bike on beach sand. The sand kept eating the bike upstand. lol. Fortunately, i found a board so i can park the bike easily. The beach is different from the beach I usually found in my hometown. A lot of big stones at the beach. What interesting is I saw sea birds there! The long-legs sea birds, i don’t know the bird name. And I can see Manisan Mt. in Ganghwado from the beach. I want to go there too next time, hehe.

There are some groups of ahjumma and ahjussi in this beach. Some of them even built the tent for camping. When I walked back to the main road, I can hear some of them talking about me. They’re wondering if I felt hot, maybe because they saw me using scarf. lol. I just acted like I didn’t understand. Different reaction from before when an ahjussi looking and smiling at me for coming there, I was happily greeting him. Just ask me directly ahjumma. 😉

After that I continued my trip to Modo Island. There are interesting statues near the bridge connecting Sido and Modo. Again, I met another ahjussi asking me if I go there by myself and planned to go to all the islands. He told me to enjoy the trip. Hehe, thanks ahjussi! Well, I guess I looked very striking there. I’m a foreigner but not from the western countries. I only wore casual clothes, not special clothes for bike riding. So I understand if people looking at me strangely. Just imagine a bule riding a bike in some quiet village in Indonesia. How will people there looking at her? Kkkk.

My destination in Modo is Baemikkumi Sculpture Art. The entrance fee is 2000 KRW. The sculptures here are kinda …. erotic. lol. I’ve seen the pictures from the internet before so I wasn’t shocked. I was more shocked by parents that bring their kids to this park. Hahaha. It’s awkward for me. The park is in seaside. It’s nice to see beach again. I can see airplanes flying really close to the island for several times. (Airport is just across the island)

After that, I rode my bike back to Sindo Wharf and returned the bike. I bought ticket to Sammok Wharf for 2000 KRW. When I queued for ferry, an ahjussi asking where’s my bike. I think he’s the ahjussi I met in Sugi Beach. I told him I returned the bike. And he complimented me for coming there by myself even though I’m a foreigner and woman. He even said baksu (applause). 아저시, 오버하지 마세요 #digetokahjussi. On the ferry, I opened my shrimp snack that I coincidentally bought before coming to the islands without knowing about the seagulls. I fed it to the seagulls and … myself. Well, it’s tasty. Haha.

shrimp snack

shrimp snack

When I check it, I rode the bike for around 20 km. That’s the longest distance I’ve ever had. But because I never rarely exercise, my whole body was aching after that. xD In short, it was a nice getaway.

Places To Visit In Incheon (Part I) – Chinatown

When people heard that I’m currently living in Korea they usually just assume that I live in the capital city, Seoul. But no, actually I live in Incheon (인천) or officially Incheon Metropolitan City. It is the 3rd most populous city in South Korea after Seoul and Busan. It’s located in northwestern South Korea, bordering Seoul and Gyeonggi Province to the east. That’s why I went to Seoul a lot. It’s just 1-2 hour by bus or subway, depends on which part of Seoul.

You must’ve ever heard of Incheon International Airport. Yup, the world’s 2nd best airport is located in this city. It’s built on artificially created land between Yengjongdo (Yeongjong Island) and Yongyudo (Yongyu Islands). It’s connected to the mainland by Yeongjong Bridge and Incheon Bridge. But even though the airport is in Incheon, it’s not that close to the district where I live. Incheon is quite big!

Because Indonesian pronounce all letters, I’ve heard a lot of Indonesian pronounce “Incheon” incorrectly. Even on the international airport information announcement. The right way to pronounce Incheon is in-chon, not in-che-on. Seoul also should be pronounced more like so-ul than se-o-ul.

I’ve been only posting about interesting places in Seoul, but Incheon also has so many interesting places. So, I’ll post some places that I’ve visited or still on my bucket list! This first part covers chinatown area.

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2014 Incheon K-Pop Concert

On my first week at school, there was orientation for foreign student. One of the speakers is from Incheon International Relation for Foreigner (IIRF). This organization provides tailored programs for international students in Incheon like homestay, making traditional food, learning k-pop dance, and watching k-pop concert. This is the application form. Guess what did i choose? 😉

application form

application form

Yup, you’re correct. One of them is watching k-pop concert. Hahaha. And fortunately, i didn’t wait too long to make it happens. There was 2014 Incheon K-Pop Concert which is part of Incheon Asian Games on September 17th and IIRF gave us free tickets. Yeayy!

The concert was held in Songdo International Business District. There are cool buildings around there. I wanted to go earlier and look around but I had to do my assignment. Hiks. I arrived at the venue around 4 PM then went to the ticket booth to collect my ticket. International students’ area is F1, which is the nearest to the stage.

The concert started at 7PM with performances from K-Pop Dance Cover finalists. Finalists from Thailand, India, and Indonesia impressed me. Finalist from Thailand is kinda cute, one of them slightly resembles L. India’s performance had cool concept. Actually I’m quite surprised that k-pop is well-known in India. And there was loud cheering when Indonesian team performed. Why? Because they’re males but they covered AOA’s mini skirt. Hahaha. It was fun but embarassing at the same time.

After short break, performance from the k-pop idols started. BTS was the first performer. They performed Danger and Boy In Luv. I don’t know much about several next performers. There was BESTIE with their cutesy concept, ZEST, Boys Republic, HIGH4, JJCC, and Red Velvet. I only know that HIGH4 did a collaboration with IU and JJCC is a group created by Jackie Chan. JJCC impressed me with their acrobatic moves. Red Velvet is the newest group from SM Entertainment. I don’t remember the members’ names except Joy because she looks like Kim Yoojung. They performed their debut single, Happiness.

After Red Velvet, there was 100%. They are one of my favorite group. Since leader Minwoo leaving for the military service, i set my eyes on jonghwan. And yup, he’s kinda charming. My focus that night was on him. 😛 Next performer was G.Na! BEAST’s labelmate. I love her. She performed G.Na’s Secret and Black & White. Next, member of first generation idol H.O.T Jang Woohyuk. His performances were enjoyable. I like them. Funny when he was talking, there was “oppa! oppa!” screaming from the audience and he said “geumanhae!” which means “enough!”. lol

After that, SECRET performed. Sunhwa was very energetic. And her fan service was good. She was throwing love sign everywhere. Next, Jay Park performed So Good and Joah. Loveee it!

Next one, T-Ara. I thought their popularity is decreasing because that bullying scandal. But people sitting next to me were their fansite masters. Those people brought their expensive cameras with very long lenses to capture the performance. And they kept cheering “hwaaa hwaaa”. Hahaha. My ears hurt. It was nice experience tho. Btw, Soyeon’s face changed so much. o_O T-Ara performed Sugar Free and Roly Poly. I think I will enjoy it more if it was before the scandal. I liked Roly Poly.

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T-Ara

Next, 4Minute. I don’t really like their songs. But I like Sohyun and Jihyun. They performed Come In and What’s Your Name. And after that Teen Top! Ohh, I like them. I watched their live performance for the first time on Music Bank in Jakarta last year. And I can say that I like their live performances. They always have stable and enjoyable performances.

4Minute

4Minute

After that, KARA  performed Mamamia. They’re pretty, but I think they need to interact more with the audience. And the last, EXO-K performed Overdose & Growl. The audiences who sat obediently before, now stood on their chair. I did it too because i couldn’t see anything if i just sat there. lol

It was a nice concert, although my top favorite groups like BEAST and B1A4 weren’t there. I wish I can watch more free concert here. #nggakmodal xD

Btw, is there any organization like IIRF in Indonesia?