First Impressions Studying abroad In Seoul, South Korea

Programs for this blog post

Arts + Sciences

Authored By:

Nicolas H.

After 5 Movies, hundreds of songs played, several chess games against a computer, and a thirteen-hour-long flight, I made it to Incheon Airport South Korea. Landing felt surreal. I have never been out of the country before so I was eager to explore. After the 3 hour wait for our shuttle, we made our way to Yonsei’s campus. The road was twisty and turny as we kept going up higher and higher to the top of the hill to where my dorm(Woojungwon) was located. After settling in, I went on an adventure and explored the city. Wandering Sinchon was incredible, it was a very vibrant area and I ended up walking in circles once or twice. As I hiked back up the mountain, the campus was beautiful. All the famous buildings you see in photos and K-dramas were stunning in person (even after it got dark) and although that first initial walk up that mountain was brutal, I thought to myself I had made the right decision. 

The orientation CIEE had set up went smoothly and did not take too much time. I met some friends and we decided to get something to eat, and although we didn't speak much Korean it was not much of a struggle to order. As the days went on, traveling got easier but walking started to take a toll and public transport such as buses, the subway, and Kakao T became a popular choice among my group. Every day there was something new to eat or a place to go, it was overwhelming and I was just happy to be here. With that I knew I was in a full-fledged “Honeymoon stage” but I didn't care. As for shopping, most things are cheaper in Seoul than in the US and there are hundreds of stores along the streets where you can buy bags, cleaning supplies, snacks, and almost anything you could want.

I noticed food at the Yonsei cafeteria was cheap compared to surrounding restaurants, and if I wanted to eat out it still would not be too expensive unless it was foreign. The cafes were nice to go to and very aesthetic but could become expensive if you decided to get multiple items. I'm writing this and still getting used to this side of the earth, but as I said before I believe this was the right decision and I can't wait for the journey that awaits!