On this very day, the gods decided to unleash the fury of mother nature.
Ironic isn’t it? The title says Garden of Morning Calm, but what we experienced instead was a total disaster. Let’s begin.
We booked a day tour via Trazy.com, which was one of the best tour operator we’ve ever joined but the worst day tour we’ve ever experienced. We booked a day tour that covers Nami Island, Gangchon Rail Bike and the Garden of Morning Calm. The highlight of this tour was supposed to be Nami Island, which is on Miss M’s must-see list.
It had been raining lately in Seoul and we hoped that the weather tone down a little and at least permit us to enjoy the trip despite the rain. Little did we know there were much bigger plans in store for us. At least we had a good breakfast at Ibis Style Ambassador Hotel before leaving 😀
We went to the meeting point at the Myeongdong Station 20 minutes early and the tour guide was already there! Our tour guide was Hardee. She was very friendly and accommodating; continuously checking up on her guests to make sure they’re okay.
As we made our way to the east of Seoul, the rain started to pour heavily. One hour later, we reached the Garden of Morning Calm. The first thing we did was buying two very durable ponchos. Thank god for that lady who sold them to us! It protected us pretty well.
Our mood was pretty soiled on that day cause of the heavy rain. But we braved through the weather and tried to enjoy ourselves. My Korean friend told me that Seoul is experiencing one of the heaviest storms in a long time. What luck!
It was too bad really, I could really picture this place to be a very beautiful garden if the weather was good.
Miss M and I simply walked around for about 30 mintues with our feet soaked. In the end, we couldn’t take it and we popped by this great cafe that served an amazing cup of coffee.
They had an open view overlooking the garden, accompanied by the heavy rain. Had quite a good chilling session with the rainy atmosphere.
After having a horrible time at the garden, we headed off for lunch. When we arrived at the restaurant, it was closed. So the tour guide made a detour to another random restaurant that serves Korean Barbecue.
Lunch turned out pretty good! One of the best I’ve eaten. We had two large pieces of chicken, one being spicy and one in a non-spicy marination. The waiter also kindly helped us to cook the barbecue. Loved that they had pineapple and an amazing mushroom.
After lunch, our tour guide announced that the ferry service to Nami Island has been halted due to the severe weather. On top of that, the tour guide also told us that there was a landslide on the Gangchon Railway. Gosh. Miss M and I were devastated. The two main highlights were taken away and we pretty much wasted our time going on this tour.
The tour however took us on a detour to Petit France as an alternative sight seeing destination. According to Miss M, Running Man (a Korean Variety show) appeared in this place so it has gained quite a lot of popularity.
Petit France is a small ‘French cultural village’ with themed buildings and architecture. However, the place felt really old, dated and creepy.
We continued to brave the rain and roamed in the vicinity of Petit France.
After exploring Petit France, we headed back to the bus and we started to head back to Seoul. It was only late afternoon but there was nothing else we could do. The tour guide sincerely apologised for the bad experience that we had.
On the night of the tour, Miss M got an e-mail from Trazy. They apologised for the severe weather condition and they offered a full refund. It was a really nice gesture. Trazy offered great customer service and hospitality. Their tour guides were also very friendly and helpful. I can easily recommend their service 🙂
So that’s it! That was the experience of our epic misadventure (okay maybe not so epic) during one of Seoul’s worst storm 😦
But it was definitely a day to remember.