Seoul is broken into various markets and districts making it easy but sometimes challenging to purchase specific things. If you are looking for cooking and baking supplies you might want to check out Bangsan Market, or Yongsan Electronics Market for any type of electronics, Namdaemun Market for traditional goodies, etc. Endless marketplaces to explore! I find myself falling back in love over and over with Korea while taking friends and family around to places I’ve been countless times, as well as new places I’m still crossing off on my bucket list.
Early Saturday morning I met Kelsey in Seoul at the Express Bus Terminal where we planned to explore the Gangnam Flower Market. This Place has been on my bucket list since the first year I arrived in Korea. Embarrassingly, I still cannot believe I let it on my list this long. Eh, better late than never, right?
I arrived at the terminal 30 minutes earlier than Kelsey so I sat at Holly’s Coffee, near exit one and sipped on some hot milk tea, my favorite tea served both hot or cold. I read a few chapters in my book and enjoyed the quiet morning hours. Eventually Kelsey caught up and off we went.
At first we weren’t sure quite where to go. We walked towards the location I thought it might be and then started to see a few women and men carrying all sorts of beautiful flowers wrapped neatly in newspaper. From that point it was very easy to locate. We went inside the terminal building for the Youngdong and Honam (bus) lines, headed up the escalators to the second floor and through the glass doors. Once we got through the glass doors we both looked at one another and immediately had a permi-smile on our faces.We didn’t know the prices, or really how it worked in general, I only researched on various blogs and guidebooks so I was purely going off of others experiences.
The hall was endless and massive! I thought to myself I’ve officially found my little slice of Heaven in South Korea. One side of the hall was fake flowers and the other side was fresh. You could purchase vases, ribbons, and baskets. We giggled to ourselves and said that we could start-up event planning and get all of our goodies here secretly. We walked up and down each row smelling, snapping away photos and chatting with various vendors. We were pleasantly surprised how friendly the vendors were. As curious as we were about the flowers, they were just as curious about us and if a certain type of flower grew where we were from. The prices, oh gosh! The prices were amazing! We picked up multiple bouquets for 4,000-5,000 won each ($4.00-$5.00 USD) that seemed to be the standard rate for the most part. If I lived closer our entire place would have fresh flowers! Dangerous because this was truly my happy place.
Sorry for the photo overload… I just couldn’t resist!
Aren’t those flowers just gorgeous? Sorry, moving on from flower chat. Next we head into the Shinsegae Department. A girly day full of flowers and good stuff isn’t complete without macaroons! I heard the famous Ladurée shop was here in Seoul. You can’t get more authentic than that. Even though we were surrounded by delicious macaroons, we weren’t overly excited about the size of the place. We expected more… Nonetheless, the rose macaroon was perfect (even after it got smashed in the bag in my purse. Sad face.)
From Macaroons we needed actual food. With my OCD I pre-searched various places to eat lunch so I could provide Kelsey with lots of options. The food court in Shinsegae was perfect because of the range of foods that can be purchased, offering something for everyone. Japanese, sushi, Korean, baked goods, salad bars, Johnny Rockets, Italian among others. We opted for Dean and Deluca. The fresh homemade ricotta salad and brunch menu spoke to our bellies and that was that.
I loved sitting and chatting with Kelsey. We talked a lot about focusing on the good things in life, traveling, living for the weekends and of course our next adventure. You will have to stay tuned because I’m not spilling the beans.
For our last little treat I wanted to share an ice-cream place with Kelsey that uses chunks of honeycomb with drizzled honey as a topping. Mmmm! It absolutely hit the spot and I think she was pleased.
I got home and immediately put the fresh cut flowers into a vase on our bedroom night stand and kitchen bar.
Express Bus Terminal: Lines 3, 7, 9.
Gangnam Flower Market: Exit 1 of the express bus terminal train station, the building next to the Shinsegae Department Store and the Bus Terminal. Go into the bus terminal, turn right and look for the escalators, go up to second floor.
Shinsegae Department (Gangnam) store B1, 19-3, Banpodong, Seocho-gu, Seoul
Ladurée Shop: There are two Ladurée stores in the mall. Make the hike and head to the second floor because that’s where the actual store is located. The one in the first floor is just a small macaron stand)
Dean and Deluca: Located on the basement food-court in Shinsegae Department.
Website : http://www.deandeluca.co.kr