10 unique experiences in Korea, written by Damian Koh. 

I found an article about Korea on the Korea Blog by Daminan Koh.

Living abroad is an extended adventure. Below are 10 experiences that struck me as most impressionable. What are yours?

1. Driving etiquette Much can be said about driving habits in Korea. Aggressive and where size matters. But it’s not without redemption. Driving in Korea, you’d notice that drivers frequently use the hazard lights to thank the driver behind for letting them cut into a busy lane, or to warn drivers on a highway that traffic is slow ahead.

Bukchon Hanok Village

2. Taking a taxi home late hours Out drinking late into the night? When female friends are traveling back, either as a group or alone, in a taxi, it’s customary for friends to take a picture of the taxi license plate. Why? It helps to track down the driver if you’ve left something behind in the taxi while in a drunken stupor, or heaven forbid, if something criminal happens.

3. N bang At a dinner where there is someone noticeably more senior, either by age or hierarchy, he/she will often offer to foot the bill. But when dining with a group of friends, there are two ways to do it: paying individually or someone calls for N bang, where one would pay for all first, then split the cost later. It’s also not uncommon for people to draw up a spreadsheet detailing the breakdown.

4. Korean drinking games Drinking games typically move very fast, and by that, I mean people switch between games as fast as they start it, hardly ever dwelling on one for too long. Anyone can start a game they want to play and everyone joins in. It can be anything from a silent “shooting” game to people counting off numbers and standing up. For the latter, if there more than one people counting the same number, game stops and forfeit starts.

5. Age matters Simply because that would determine how you should address someone, and what level of language is appropriate.

6. Signing when paying for purchases Or the lack of. People sign drawing circles and hearts.

7. Brushing teeth After-meal times are the worst times to visit the washroom where everyone congregates to brush their teeth. Mouth hygiene is so engrained in the Korean culture that sometimes you wonder why they don’t practice washing the hands after going about their “business” in the washroom.

8. Garbage disposal In Korea, you pay for garbage bags designated for your district, and you dutifully separate the metals from plastics and perishables. To save space, people flatten plastic bottles before discarding.

9. Receiving a “service” Nothing sleazy. Receiving a service in Korea simply means you’re getting something free, from offerings of food to small gifts. Accept it graciously.

10. Charging phones in Korea From cafes to restaurants, power outlets can be found everywhere. In cafes, these are usually found under the bench seats. In restaurants, sometimes you simply hand it over to the staff and they will charge it for you, along with others, somewhere near the counter.

Source: http://blog.korea.net/?p=21688

Public Swimmingpool in Seoul


In response to the early arrival of summer, when temperatures rise over 30℃ during the day, outdoor swimming pools in Seoul are gearing up for their opening. In fact, high-end swimming pools at some of the major hotels like the Imperial Palace, Sheraton Walkerhill, Shilla and Hamilton are already open to the public. Meanwhile, the opening of six outdoor swimming pools by Hangang River is impending. The more affordable riverside pools in Jamsil, Gwangnaru, Jamwon, Yeouido, Ttukseom and Mangwon are expected to open in early July.


[Opening Dates of Seoul’s Major Outdoor Swimming Pools]

Outdoor swimming Pool
Opening Date Homepage/ Locations Inquiries
IMPERIAL PALACE June 1st www.imperialpalace.co.kr
(Korean, English, Japanese)
Sheraton Walkerhill June 19th www.sheratonwalkerhill.co.kr 
(Korean, English, Japanese)
Hotel Shilla June 1st www.shilla.net
(Korean, English, Japanese)
Hamilton Hotel May 1st www.hamilton.co.kr
(Korean, English, Japanese)
Hangang River Ttukseom Swimming Pool

July 2nd

Ttukseom Park Station (Subway Line 7), Exit 2 or 3.

Mangwon Swimming Pool

July 2nd

Hapjeong Station (Subway Line 2 or 6), Exit 1.
Take Bus 16 or a taxi. (Taxi fare: Approximately ₩3,000)
Yeouido Swimming Pool

June 25th

Yeouinaru Station (Subway Line 5), Exit 2 or 3.

Jamwon Swimming Pool

Early July

Apgujeong Station (Subway Line 3), Exit 1.
Walk for 10min towards Hangang River Jamwon Swimming Pool\
Jamsil Swimming Pool

July 2nd

Sincheon Station (Subway Line 2), Exit 7.
Walk for 10min towards Hangang River Jamsil Swimming Pool.
Gwangnaru Swimming Pool

July 2nd

Cheonho Station (Subway Line 5), Exit 1.
Walk for 10min towards Hangang River Gwangnaru Swimming Pool.


* Schedules are subject to change.

Great re-design of the Seoul Metro Map by Jug Cerovic

Serbia-born, Paris-based architect Jug Cerovic moonlights as a map designer and worked to create a guideline called INAT that unifies transit paths around the world.
He redesigned 12 international metro maps using this standard, including the Seoul Metro-Map
I love his design, it improves the usability of the maps a lot.

The official map.
See all 12 maps here: