I’ve always wanted to visit Seoul; at least living in Asia for about 16 months now. Back in the states, I’d see the SEOUL GOT SOUL videos and get hyped, thinking it’d be cool to check out the city one day…not really expecting to actually get the chance to. Well, about two weeks ago I decided to join my buddy Alex as he was planning a trip to Seoul to renew his Chinese visa (in China, if you don’t have a work visa, you’re required to leave the country every 90 days).
While the crux of the trip was getting Alex out of China for a few days, I’d say our secondary focal points included skating, bombing hills, drinking coffee and getting lost. I’m happy to say we did all of those.
Photos & explanations below.
Here’s a snap on the train from the Icheon airport to downtown Seoul. I noticed this lady staring into her phone, wearing a full-face visor and face mask. I was confused, so I took a photo.
After getting off the train from the airport, we headed in the direction of our hostel…however, we got lost; checked that off the list pretty early. Luckily, while looking for our hostel, we came across the Timber Shop – Seoul’s local skateshop. We stopped in and asked for directions. After finding out our hostel was right next door, we immediately dumped out bags and headed back to Timber for some tips on where to skate. The Cult Skatepark seemed to be the best and easiest option.
The cool thing about this park is that it was built as a public park. Lots of skaters started meeting there and the government ended up getting involved, but in this case, things worked out in favor of the skateboarders. The outcome was a city-sanctioned and funded skatepark, built around the already present ledges, stairs and etc.
Here’s Alex, popping a quick one into the handicap bank.
It was awesome seeing some girls out there ripping too! These two were getting pretty serious on the box and were also very welcoming. In fact, everyone we skated with in Seoul was super friendly. Shoutout to Quentin from Unsung Magazine and Jin of The Quiet Leaf.
The second day, we got pretty lost (again) in search of good coffee and bulgogi. Since I only eat seafood and bulgogi usually includes beef, it took us some shopping around to find a spot…but that made for some serious exploration time.
After following a random staircase into the woods, we happened upon a hiking trail and decided to follow it. About 10 minutes into the woods, we found this little drainage ditch and thought it’d make a good skate photo. Thanks to our buddies at The Worble for the inspiration.
Alex with another ollie.
Here’s me right before I waxed my entire body, doing a Tarzan-inspired boneless.
This was the hill we got to shred every morning.
Bulgogi search mission lead us to the bustling shopping district.
The trip was short and sweet…but just the right amount of sweet. This taste of Seoul was sorta like when your friend offers you just one or two M&M’s; you always want a few more, and in this case I wish I’d taken at least a week to see the city. I’ll be back soon, that’s for sure.