안녕하세요: Seoul Forest

02:01:00

Alright, we are going into the forest!



A little background about the attraction, the Seoul Forest 서울숲 had supposedly went through a long long history serving as a royal hunting ground for the Kings, a horse pasture, a source of timber, a ground for the military inspection facility before it was transformed into an area for the water-treatment facility, then a golf course, a horse-racing track and a sports park. It was not until 2005 when it finally reopened to the public as the Seoul Forest we are going to visit in this post.

Well, more of a sculpted park than a forest though to be honest albeit a gigantic one that encompasses five major areas and spread over 1.15 million square metre of land, which is about 250 football fields put together! No wonder they provide maps at the entrance. It is almost chicken feet to get yourself lost in this huge a place.



Just a disclaimer, I know the pictures does not really reflect how beautiful the place truly was, but I strongly believe it was purely due to the fact that I only had time to visit during winter when my school term had ended. I have no doubt Seoul Forest will be basking with life and vibrancy when the stark cold winter gives way to the cheerful spring.
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Nevertheless, I did enjoy my time here. It is not everyday you get to revel in what only the nature can provide while living in a fast-paced city. Definitely a nice break from any stress or the otherwise crowded environment without having to travel out of Seoul. Furthermore, they have interesting spots such as the butterfly and the insect gardens, as well as the more popular deer park all under one "roof" too!



These are times you wish you were not travelling alone so there is someone to take an artistic picture of you on the swing in pensive. Then again I am too klutzy and embarrassed to pose for pictures so until I overcome this hang-up, I guess being alone suits me. You might want to bring someone along though if you don't want to miss this great photo opportunity!


Fierce cat spotted. Is that its house behind on the right?


Awesome, we have reached the deer park ^.^



Quite disappointed to realise the deers were within the enclosure though.. I was expecting a place where the deers will be able to roam freely and I'd be able to interact with them like in Nara Park, which I visited when I was in Osaka (gonna blog it real soon!). All you can do here will be to purchase the feeds from the machine at ₩1000 and wait for the deers to notice you by the fence. Oh, do wear covered (but not your favourite) shoes when you visit because the workers sterilise the soil, or rather with an aim for your shoes, outside the enclosure even before you enter the park itself, thus it might be rather muddy.

Photos of the deers are rather blur since I wasn't able to get near and had to zoom as much as possible while not compromising too much on the quality of the pictures. I went atop this bridge instead and took pictures from top-down. Bring along a proper camera if you are intending to capture some great shots.


Should I try this path or stick to the main route?



If you are wondering, yup I did take the unknown path! But I ended up walking distances though since I did not grab a map in the first place. Why else would I emphasise how easy it is for one to lose one's way in this park at the start of the post? Heheh. Still, I feel a deep sense of fulfillment for having located the places I want to go within such a huge park. Spontaneity, getting lost and eventually finding your way back again are all part of the joy of travelling and exploring places, is it not? I feel like Dora, the Explorer! Lolololol.


No need to visit Nami Island just for two straight rows of trees anymore


No need to visit Jeju Island just for the Dol Hareubangs stone statues too


But you'd need to visit Seoul Let's Run Park 렛츠런파크 at Seoul Racecourse Park Station (Seoul Subway Line 4 Exit #3) for some real action..

And that's Seoul Forest for me, quick to reach from Seoul Forest Station on Bundang Line Exit #3 or #4, or from Ttukseom Station on Subway Line 2 Exit #8.

As mentioned, it was truly a pity to only visit in winter when the leaves have all fallen and the plants, withered. The place would surely have been so much livelier during the other seasons considering what a perfect place it is for school or family outings and picnic dates. Nonetheless, I did relish the quiet walk with the cold wind gusting against me.

Thankfully it hadn't started snowing,
Yvette

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