Moving to Seoul, mate!01:17:00
See what I did there?
Yes, I am moving to Seoul (South Korea). Well, okay, okay... actually not 'Seoul-Seoul' but a city called Suwon, located just 30 km (or 17 miles) South of Korea's capital, home to more than one million people and therefore Korea's 7th biggest city.
Being an international student at Malmö University gives me the opportunity to study abroad for two semesters, so obviously I grabbed the bull by its horns and applied for places as soon as they were published online. I was lucky enough and have been nominated twice, which basically means that I will leave to Seoul in just a little under three weeks and to Melbourne (Australia) at the beginning of July.
Kyung Hee University will be my new home this spring - a private institution that has been founded just after World War II. In 2011 the university counted more than 25,000 students and is therefore a lot bigger than my home university here in Malmö.
Their motto is "Creating a civilized world", it's emblem is inspired by the UN's seal, reflecting its mandates of democracy, peace, and humanitarianism. Other than in Sweden the school even has a mascot - the laughing lion - which stands for courage, however, the laughing image also conveys consideration and generosity for others.
I have been to Seoul before about 1,5 years ago, so I am quite excited to go back. Last time I've visited I only stayed for a week, hence I didn't really have the time to see everything one should see or do. I guess it will be completely different this time around, also because I will have more contact with the locals, so I am really hoping to get the most out of it!
Back then, Seoul was the only city I managed to visit on my trip to Korea, therefore here is my glorious list of
#1) BusanI definitely want to go to Busan, the 2nd biggest Korean city, located in the very southeastern tip of the country, just right by the sea. The city not only has Korea’s largest beach but also its longest river, called Nakdong River. Busan also has Korea's largest port and the 5th busiest worldwide.
Koreans love baseball and Busan is known as 'Baseball Capital of Korea'.
Incheon is conveniently close located to Seoul. In fact, Incheon holds Korea's biggest airport and
pretty much everyone from overseas arrives either here or at Gimpo airport.
Hoewever, most people step right into the metro going to Seoul instead of actually giving Incheon a chance as well. What I find the most interesting about the city, is, that its mayor, Song Young-Gil, wants to make his city a green one. So I am just curious to see in what way, if at all, tourists will be able to feel and see his approach to sustainability.
Ulsan is locate right next to Busan and mainly known for being the corporate base of Hyundai. They also have a very famous and huge whale museum... and because I am a child of the sea I definitely want to see this with my own eyes. They even have a whole 3-day festival dedicated to whales at the end of May so I might go around that time.
This city is only about 50min away by train from Seoul and its skyline just looked cool on Wikipedia if I am completely honest with you. 1,5 million people call this city their home so a day trip seems quite reasonable.
Daegu is known for its delicious apples. Yes, apples. It also has the nickname 'Apple City'. Rumour has it, that the quality of the apples makes the women here especially beautiful. I take a life-supply, thanks. It also hosts the largest US military bases in the country. It's also said to be extraordinary welcoming to underdogs and foreigners - if you were a loser in your hometown, you can still make it big here.
.....................................Well, that's it for now in regard to Korea, people. I will keep you posted about my checklist and daily life on campus. Sharing a room with a stranger for 4 months should be interesting, I suppose. Living on campus in general... Europe doesn't really have a campus culture, so I am really looking forward to all the new experiences ahead of me.
Talk to you soon!