Sunday, 3 April 2016

Seoul Springs To Life!

Finally! Everyone is enjoying the outdoors! Cooler temperatures, no more freezing days, and I can now wear shorts again!

Some flower festivals in the Korean countryside will spring to life (pun intended!) this weekend, but in Seoul, the forsythias have just started to paint the hills with their Cory yellow petals.

But the most popular flower festival in Seoul will start tomorrow. The cherry blossoms along the Yeouiseo road and in the Yeouido Park are just busy getting their flower buds out in time for the festival.

The Yeouido Spring Flower Festival is the most popular flower festival in Seoul, where millions walk through the three-kilometer stretch behind the National Assembly compound. This is one of the two events during the year where Yeouido roads are closed to traffic and only open to pedestrians. The other time is during the Yeouido fireworks festival during autumn.

But over the years, instead of going to the crowded Yeouido area, I visited the Namsan cherry blossom lane and the less crowded Seoul National Cemetery

I guess, for couples, they prefer walking under the cherry blossom trees on Namsan (Mt. Nam) where it's more quiet and less crowded than Yeouido. They'd still be able to whisper sweet romantic poems on each other's ears. Ha-ha-ha!

But if you want an even quieter surroundings, where nobody is allowed to bring in picnic tables or food carts, the Seoul National Cemetery is it.

The Yeouido cherry blossom festival is the most crowded because this is well-known, not only to Seoulites, but to people from cities and provinces nearby. It's very accessible through the subway, although it's still a long walk to the festival grounds. And over the years, international tourists have joined the hordes that are a mix of families, classmates, gangs of friends, couples (including mistresses, of course! Ha-ha-ha!), neighbors, and everyone else who may just want to have a nice spring-day stroll (and selfies!) under those enchanting 1,400 cherry blossom trees this spring.

And since the five-kilometer cherry blossom stretch in Yeouido is flat, walking for the elderly is easy and bringing baby strollers is very convenient, compared to the hilly Namsan. Plus, nearby, there's a park by the river where everyone can relax after.

So, where will you go for the cherry blossoms this spring? For me, it all depends on my sleeping patterns this weekend. Ha-ha-ha! Who knows? In case I wake up late, I may just visit Yeouido at night! And stumble upon the street performance of Mr. Ham, the magician, again!

Aside from Yeouido, Namsan and the Seoul National Cemetery, you can always visit some universities in Seoul to catch some cherry blossoms. 
But for sweet couple, Marlu and Joey, above, they already enjoyed these unique and amazing flower arrangements long before any cherry blossom tree in Seoul enamored anyone with its pink and white petals. These photographs were taken at the Jogyesa Temple's flower festival.

Enjoy your spring days, everyone! 

But do watch out for the yellow dust warnings!

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