Thursday, August 31, 2017

Daegu Vicinity Tour Stamp Trail / Andong Hahoe Folk Village, a UNESCO World Heritage in Korea

Daegu Citizen Press 2017

A Trip to Andong and Hahoe Village
Stop number 51 on the Daegu & Daegu Vicinity Tour Stamp Trail

So, some friends got together with our Stamp Tour Trail books in our bags and began an adventure for the day. We headed off to Hahoe Village in Andong.  This is a beautiful village that has remained the same style as it was when originally began being built 600 years ago.  Many of the original buildings were built in the late 1500’s

To get there we took a very comfortable limousine bus from the new bus terminal at the Shinsaegae Building in Dong Daegu.  The Ride was supposed to take an hour and 20 to 40 minutes.  We arrived in under an hour. We arrived at Andong bus terminal and went outside to the shuttle bus stop and waited for our bus.  Again scheduled travel time was almost half of what was on the schedule.  We met a very nice group of people from many different countries.

Once we arrived it was lunch time and we picked out a restaurant. We noticed almost all places had English menus and pictures, so it would be quite easy if your Korean is not so good.  There were also souvenir shops in the area.  We went for an Andong specialty, chicken stew and grilled mackerel. We were not disappointed.  In our group there were three children and six adults.  We were very satisfied!

Then we got our tickets to the actual Hahoe village.  At 3,000 won and a three minute bus ride we were happy to get going.  The important thing to remember is that this historic village is a living and working village.  Residents occupy their ancestor’s actual homes.  So, please be aware of privacy issues when taking photos while wandering through the village. The photo above is of a modern day address marker affixed to an old building.

Some of the buildings are not occupied.  They are still very much a part of the whole scene.

Scattered around the village are hands-on activities that visitors can try out.  Here were grinding stones used to grind grains into flour.  Not as easy as the grandmas made it look!

I always find it very interesting to see modern things mixed in with the historical surroundings.  Keep an eye out for motorists as the village has very narrow roads and alleys.

Also, in the village there are shops to buy foods and drinks based on historical recipes or craftsmanship handed down. Ther were several souvenir shops as well.  Who is this guy?

Here is the modern and historical mix again. This day was a national holiday and the residents were showing their pride and patriotism.

There are also local farmers working the fields.  They appear to be using modern ways to farm, but, these fields have been used for hundreds of years.

Some of the older residents also wear traditional clothes and show how tasks were done in the past.  These ladies sounded like machines going at a task. 

Here is a brief description of the Daegu & Daegu Vicinity Tour Stamp Trail. The 2017 program runs from March until October.  This year there are 64 different destinations. The vast majority are in or very near Daegu.  Foreigners who want to have a go at it need to visit a tourist information booth and pay 1,000KRW for the book.  Foreigners are only required to get 10 stamps.  Koreans need to get 30 stamps.  Because my wife and daughter have never been to Hahoe Village, we decided to join some friends and check it out.  It was very nice to see the traditional buildings and that the village was an actual site that people still live in.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

10-min Hacks to Gimbap Heaven, the Most Affordable Food Place in Korea (+Complete Menu)

Know Your Gimbap Heaven Better, 
Make the Best out of Experience in Korea

Do you have a friend who orders chamchi Gimbap every time he visits Gimbap Heaven(or is that you) because that’s the only menu he can order? For newbies in Daegu, Gimbap Heaven is a Gimbap place that sells a variety of menu, usually over 50 selections! Sometimes, it is called Gimbap Nara or Naduri Gimbap. Usually, you will be able to recognize these places by their bright orange signs. Food there is not only affordable but also served very quickly. Whether it is a residential area or a busy district, there will always be this type of Gimbap place!
It is a very convenient option for many people who love bunsik and don’t cook every meal. However, expats usually can’t take a full advantage of these shops since this type of stores don’t offer English menu. So, here are a Daegu’s guide to what to order and a few essential tips at Gimbap Heaven!



-Pork Cutlet
-Fried Rice
-Rice & Bibimbap
-Soup & Stew
-Other Noodles
-Seasonal Menu
2. Insider's Tips
-In-house vs. Take-out
-What you can ask more for free
3. Essential Expressions
4 Useful Expressions
Please note that all are available for take-out! :)

· Gimbap 1,500KRW basic gimbap
· Kimchi Gimbap 3,000KRW basic + chopped kimchi
· Cheese Gimbap 3,000KRW basic + cheddar-like cheese
· Chamchi(tuna) Gimbap 3,000KRW basic + canned tuna + mayo
· Soigogi(beef) Gimbap 3,000KRW basic + slightly seasoned grounded beef

[Pork Cutlet]
· Don-ggas 5,000KRW basic pork cutlet
· Cheese-don-ggas 6,000KRW basic + mozzarella cheese between meats
· Goguma-don-ggas 6000KRW basic + mashed sweet potato
· Chicken-ggas 6,000KRW chicken cutlet*

[Fried Rice]
· Kimchi Bokkeumbap: Kimchi fried rice
· Saewoo Bbkkeumbap: Shrimpt fried rice
· 오무라이스 5,000KRW fried rice partly wrapped with thin layer of fried eggs + ketchup on top

[Rice / Bibimbab]
· Ojing-uh(Squid) Dub-bab 5,000KRW: rice with stir-fried squid/vegetable toppings
· Bulgogi Dub-bab 5,000KRW: rice with bulgogi toppings
· Jeyuk(pork) Dub-bab 5,000KRW: rice with stir-fried pork toppings
· Bibimbab 5,000KRW
· Dolsot Bibimbab 5,500KRW: bibimbab served in a hot stone

· Jjin-mandoo 3,000KRW: Steamed dumplings
· Ggun-mandoo 3,500KRW: Fried dumplings
· Mul-mandoo 3,500KRW: Dumplings cooked in boiling water. Usually tiny dumplings. Nab-jjak-· mandoo: flat dumplings. Daegu’s original!
· Bibim-mandoo(w/ fried dumplings 5,000KRW: mandoo eaten with sweet and spicy salad
· Bibim-mandoo(w/ flat dumpling) 4,500KRW
· Mandoo-gook 4,500KRW: Dumpling soup
· Dduk- Mandoo-gook 4,500KRW: Dumpling soup + thinly sliced rice cake
· Dduk-gook 4,000KRW: thinly sliced rice cake soup

[Soup & Stew]
· Kimchi-jjigae 5,000KRW: kimchi stew
· Chamchi-jjigae 5,000KRW: a lot like kimchi-jjigae but with tuna
· Doenjang-jjigae 5,000KRW: Soybean paste stew
· Soondubu-jjigae 5,000KRW: Soft Tofu stew
· Yukgaejang 6,000KRW: Spicy soup with shredded beef and vegetables. Popular hangover soup.
· Galbitang 6,000KRW: Short rib soup. Semi-transparent in look. Popular in winter.
*Note: Each soup or stew is served with a bowl of rice

· Ddeok-bokki 3,500KRW: Spicy rice cakes and fish cakes. Korean’s popular snack.
· Ra-bokki 4,000KRW: basic + ramen noodle
· Special ddeok-bokki 5,000KRW: basic + noodles + dumplings + boiled egg
· Cheese ddeok-bokki 5,000KRW: basic + mozzarella cheese

· Ramyeon 3,000KRW: usually they use shin-ramyeon brand
· Dduk-ramyeon 3,500KRW: basic + sliced rice cakes
· Mandoo-ramyeon 3,500KRW: basic + dumplings
· Cheese-ramyeon 3,500KRW: basic + cheddar-like cheese
· Jjambbong-ramyeon 4,500KRW: basic + little bit of seafood

[Other Noodles]
· Udon 3,500KRW: Soybean sauce-based soup with thick noodles.
· Janchi guksu 4,000KRW: Warm noodle soup with soft noddles and chopped kimchi.
· Bibimguksu 4,500KRW: Soft noodles mixed with spicy sauce and vegetables.
· Jjolmyeon 4,500KRW: A lot like the above but with chewy noodles.    
· Kalguksu 4,000KRW: Knife Cut noodle soup.

[Seasonal Menu]
· Mul-naengmyeon 5,000KRW: Cold noodle soup. Available in Summer.
· Bibim-naemgmyeon 5.500KRW: Cold, spicy mixed noodle. Available in Summer.
· Kong-guksu 5,000KRW: Soy milk noodle soup

 2. Insider's Tips
-"물은 셀프입니다 Water is self-served"
In order to get their competitive prices, they need to hire a fewer worker. The fact that you need to serve your own water helps them to do that.  

-In-house vs. Take-out
When you eat at a restaurant, meals are served with little bit of danmuji(yellow pickled radish) and kimchi. Jang-guk(soy sauce based soup) comes with your food unless you order stew, soup or noodle. Note that this jang-guk does not have any thing in it except the flavor. 

-What you can ask more for free
Especially, when you get a take-out, you can ask for danmuji and Jang-guk

-Types of Gimbap place by Price
Most of times, ingredients used in a restaurant is directly linked with price of a food. For that reason, People who love all the same menu but are more health-conscious go to little higher priced stores like Gobongmin Gimbap and Gobong Gimbap. As you can see from the image below, they differentiates themselves from Gimbap Heaven with exterior. Usually, they incorporate muted colors with unique calligraphy. Prices are usually 500-1,000won higher than Gimbap Heaven.  

 3. Essential Expressions

Learning another language takes time. A great first step would be to learn expressions that you can use in everyday life. Following 4 expressions will savage you not only at a gimbap place but also at any other restaurant!

-Call a server 
Sa-jang-nim means boss. Whether a server is male or female, actual owner of the place or not, this phrase is a safe way to go! 

-How to order food
"(drop a name of food) juseyo 주세요"

-How to order a take-out
"(drop a name of food) pojang-hei-juseyo 포장해주세요"

-Ask to level down spiciness
"dul-mab-gei hei-jeseoyo 덜맵게 해주세요

I hope this helps! How about adding "trying all Gimbab Heaven menu" in your 2017 bucket list? X) If you eat out everyday, this would be a piece of cake! 
You can favorite this page just in case you can't remember how to pronounce a menu or expression. If you find this useful, feel free to share this post with your friends living in Korea! XOXO 

Menu can slightly vary from store to store. 
Dol-sot bibimbap is unavailable for take-out for an obvious reason ;)
They can be not the most healthful choice of meal. 
Food may not look as nice as above. :)

Monday, August 28, 2017

Daegu International Body-painting Festival 2017

Daegu Citizen Press 2017

Daegu International Body-painting Festival 2017

The concept of art, and the medium through which it is expressed, has been around forever. The statue of David, the Sistine Chapel; the Daegu International Body-painting Festival is a place where artist get the chance to combine both concepts. Using the human body as a tapestry, they display, and share their creative outlet. With a diverse group of contestants, travelling from 10 different countries around the world, this event is a must see.

This year’s theme was the concept of fairy tales. Each artist influenced by their cultural background, and stories they might have heard from childhood, made for an interesting display of folklore and fantasy.
The festival spans over two days, in which the contestants are given a set amount of time to work on their masterpiece. The first day acting as a qualifier, where based on judges scoring, nominees will then pass into the finals on the second day of the event.

Before the stage performances, you can walk around the grassy null in front of the main stage, where various tents are setup. Each tent houses contestants form around the globe, where you are able to watch their art materialize, and come to life, as they paint their models.

While the artist put together costumes and apply paint, there are other performances taking place on the main stage. Local bands, drama clubs, and other various dance groups, perform and showcase their unique talents.

Information booths are available, as well as water, and some food booths as well, during the event. If you weren’t able to attend this year, definitely make sure to check it out next year! Maybe even enter in the contest! 

Friday, August 25, 2017

Free Bike Rental in Daegu, Korea

Free Bike Rental in Daegu, Korea

The weather is finally cooling down. One of the best ways to enjoy autumn is going outside! If you are up for biking along Geumho River or Shincheon but doesn’t own a bike, you might be happy to find that DTRO(Daegu Metropolitan Transit Corporation) offers a free bike rental service!

Q. What’s the process like?
1. Go to a station near you and find an officer.
2. The officer will give you an English registration form to fill out.
3. Rent a bike
4. Return the bike
For the list of stations that offer free bike rental, scroll to the bottom.

Q. What do I need?
You need your ID (foreign registration card)
Some stations like Daesil Station where rental is so often, they skip the registration process and rent you one if you have your ID. However, most stations requires you to register.

Q. Do I need to register each time I rent?
No. After you register, you can rent with your ID.

Q. What time can I rent and do I have to return?
Rent between 06:00 to 18:00
Return by 20:00 of the day at the station where you rent

Q. Is there anything else I need to know?
If you are intoxicated or it snows or rains heavily, rental is not possible.
Also, if you are going to bring your bike to train, you are allowed only on weekends and holidays. (foldable bike and bike with wheel whose diameter shorter than 50.8cm are always allowed)

Q. I want to know great places to go biking!
I'd recommend biking along Geumho River(click to see review), Hajungdo(click here to view) and Ganjeongbo area(click here to view). All of them are famous for bike trails. Especially, Hajungdo has cosmos flower field opening this weekend, it will offer you an extra sight to enjoy! 

List of stations that offer bike rental
39 stations have 865 bikes available for rental.
Daegok Station
Jincheon Station
Wolbae Station
Wolchon Station
Seongdangmot Station
Hyunchungro Station
Yeongnam Uni. Hospital Station
Myeongdeok Station
Chilseong Station
Sincheon Station
Dongdaegu Station
Dong-gu Office Station
Ayahggyo Station
Dongchon Station
Haean Station
Yulha Station
Singi Station
Banyawol Station
Gaksan Station
Keungogae Station
Dongchon Station
Yulha Station
Banyawol Station

Munyang Station
Daesil Station
Gangchang Station
Keimyung Univ. Station
Seongseo Industrial Complex Station
Igok Station
Yongsan Station
Gamsam Station
Duryu Station
Banwoldang Station
Keyung-dae Hosp. Station Station
Beomeo Station
Manchon Station
Daegu Grand Park Station
Gosan Station
Sinmae Station
Sawol Station
Jeongpyeong Station
Imdang Station
Yeungnam University Station