Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Revisit to Namsan

I went to Namsan for the second time this past Saturday. "Nam" means South and "San" is mountain, so literally this place is 'south mountain'. Nowadays it's not that far south, it's sort of in the middle of Seoul. But it is south of downtown/ the original historical center of the city. At the top of Namsan is Seoul Tower (or Namsan Tower). It's basically a space needle of sorts where you can go to get a great view of the city. Its actually not that tall, but it doesn't really need to be, since it's already on top of a hill.

I actually went to Namsan back in February, but I didn't have my camera on me, so I never got around to posting about it. Saturday afternoon I went again for the second time, and this time I made sure to bring my camera (the new spiffy one). The first time we took a cab half way up the hill, then walked the rest of the way up the hill. On the way down, we took a bus (one of the yellow ones) to the bottom of the hill. This time around we decided to take the cable car. We got a round trip ticket, but I don't really think it was worth it. I think maybe it's worth it to go one way, just to say that you have done it, but really, for the minute long ride it's not worth the 7,500 won, when you could take a bus one way for 900 won.

Around the base of the tower the fence is covered in locks. It has become a tradition for lovers to place a lock with a message onto the fence. I think this is actually a really cool idea.

After walking around the base of the tower, we then headed up to the top. I keep finding more and more uses for me to use my combined digital and optical zoom. Here is Chunghwadae (The presidential "Blue House") from atop of Seoul Tower with the 48x zoom. A little fuzzy from the glass, but hey, beggars can't be choosers.

I was even able to locate my house in Sindang-dong from the tower. Pretty incredible actually....

If anyone is interested in visiting Namsan, to take the cable car up the mountain, go to Myeongdong exit 1 and walk straight and up the hill for about 10 minutes. The cable car building will be on the right after some nice looking restaurants. The cable car is 7,500 round trip, but be aware that it's only about a minute long ride. To go up to the top of the tower, the price is 7,000 won for a regular adult admission. There are combination passes that include dinner at the top and the prices actually sounded fairly reasonable considering that you'd be eating on top of Seoul. It'd probably be a nice place to go for an anniversary or something like that. Anyway, if you're visiting Seoul, this is a must see, since it is one of the most well known places in the city.

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