Sunday, November 20, 2011

Seoul Lantern Festival

Yes, we had another busy weekend! Saturday morning I went to Baking Alley, got home in time to feed the kids an early dinner, and then we took them to the twins' house to hang out for the evening. We almost decided it wasn't worth it because Cade hasn't been feeling well, and I knew that just the walk to their house would be tough on him, but when I mentioned staying home (or doing anything other than going to their house), the kids let their unhappiness be known. Since I had an agenda as well, we bundled up and headed out.

We dropped the kids off and headed out knowing where we were headed but not entirely sure of how to get there. I knew that if we headed northeast from their house, we would run into the Hyatt Hotel, and that if we got on the 405 blue bus heading north toward Seoul Tower, we would run into the Cheonggyecheon in Myeongdong eventually. We managed to walk to the bus stop pretty easily considering you never know when you're going to run into a dead-end alley, and we decided to get off the bus when we saw all of the people--that tends to be a safe bet if you're heading to an event of some kind. I knew there would be a lot of people, but I'm always surprised by just how many people there are!

Cheonggyecheon (click the link for more information about it) is a stream that runs through downtown Seoul and is beautiful both day and night. For about a week each year the Lantern Festival is held right in the stream. You wait in long lines to walk down alongside the stream itself, but it's worth it when you get up close to the amazing lanterns.

 the stream starts at the "Candle Fountain"

 this looks just like the gateways we saw on our trip last weekend

 the detail in these is astonishing

each one had a sign explaining what it was and it's significance, but in an effort to keep things moving, we did not stop to read many!

 it was beautiful, though!

There were many more...the stream is 11K long...but we were hungry and didn't want it to be too late when we went to get the kids. So, we had some Thai food for dinner and then began the adventure of getting home. You just never know when you get off a bus if this is going to the time when it does not come back in the other direction! Thankfully, we have our phones and some experience, so we were able to hop on one that took us back where we needed to go, but it's always a little stressful! Now that we know what to expect, we'll have to take the kids with us next year. You are welcome to come along, as well!

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