5 things to do in Jeonju Hanok Village, Korea

We had a good time staying in a traditional Korean house, taking photos, and eating. This article should cover most needs!

Cherry blossoms in Jeonju © 2018 PEARL LEE ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Jeonju Hanok Village was a scenic, beautiful place. I was lucky to see some cherry blossoms while when I was there. Overall, I had a lovely stay and have come away with some recommendations.

1. Stay in a traditional Korean house and rent a fancy hanbok: 전주한옥마을숙박 “더머뭄”

81-8 Pungnamdong 3(sam)-ga, Wansan-gu, Jeonju, Jeollabuk-do, South Korea

Hanok refers to a traditional Korean house. Expect to sleep on a floor in a comfy mattress.

The unique characteristic of Korean hanoks is their heating system. In Korea, heating is through the floor. It’s super nice to come back and plop down on the floor to warm yourself up.

What stood out about Deomeomun, the hanok we stayed in, was how hospitable the owners were. Our lady host came out to greet us in case we got lost (we were, actually!). As we stayed there on a weekday, the owners gave us a free upgrade to a larger room.

Our room looked out to a lovely, serene courtyard. Neighbourhood cats come to visit, but they’re quite fearful.

A. Renting a hanbok

Most people go to Jeonju and want to wear the traditional Korean dress. We did the same! We rented matching hanboks and received a steep discount as guests. For three hours of renting the fancy outfit, we paid about KRW15000 each. What a steal.

The owner’s daughter also pull out all the stops to accessorize my hair!

전주한옥마을숙박
전주한옥마을숙박 “더머뭄”: Hanbok and hair accessories
Cat in Jeonju
Here I’m looking at another cat in Jeonju – there are plenty of them. You can see my hanbok and my hair accessory!

B. Breakfast, yum!

I am not sure if breakfast is complimentary, but the owners were kind enough to deliver a filling meal right up to our room. It was a nutritious meal of fruit and rice cakes and tea, and I ate it facing the courtyard.

C. Prices and more comments

We paid about SGD80 per night in total. It seems that all rooms come with a toilet.

If you’re a light sleeper, bring earplugs – the owners said the rooms are not soundproof.

We booked this property via Airbnb here. Each room comes with their own listing, so do keep a lookout as room sizes differ. The rates are here.

Overall, I was sad to leave the hanok and promised to return. It’s a good deal for a unique experience of staying in a traditional Korean house and taking pictures in traditional Korean dress.

2. Take pretty pictures: Omogdae

68-9 Girin-daero, Gyo-dong, Wansan-gu, Jeonju, Jeollabuk-do, South Korea

My boyfriend and I went to this area and climbed up to an observatory pavilion. The climb is not steep and is only about 5 minutes. The pavilion is surrounded by cherry blossom trees, and we managed to get a few good shots!
Omogdae Cherry Blossoms
A look at trees bursting with blossoms in Omogdae
Omogdae Cherry Blossoms
Snap all the dream shots you want! These are pre-filter so I’m sure you can take many better shots.
You can take pictures with cherry blossoms from any angle: under the tree, in front of low-lying branches, trees in the background. It’s a perfect background to work with.
You can see the pavilion and the surrounding garden in Google Maps, surrounded by sand.
Omogdae-map
The pavilion is in the area under the red indicator.

3. Rest and have coffee: Cafe브리즈

Jeondongseongdang-gil, Pungnam-dong, Wansan-gu, Jeonju, Jeollabuk-do, South Korea

After walking so much and taking photos, we enjoyed a cup of coffee and honey toast at Cafe브리즈. It’s a building with three stories. It overlooked a garden and had a cozy environment both inside the cafe, and on its rooftop.

4. Eat delicious local Korean food: 전주 교동 떡갈비

73-2 Pungnamdong 3(sam)-ga, Wansan-gu, Jeonju, Jeollabuk-do, South Korea

The food here was excellent. If you love Korean food, this is the right place to be. If you don’t like Korean food, maybe this place will change your mind. 🙂

We took the reasonably priced lunch sets, and I added one bibim-naengmyeon. I don’t like bibimbap (mixed rice), but I wanted to sample the spicy sauce that Jeonju’s famous for! It was the right choice.

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전주 교동 떡갈비: The side dishes were great.
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전주 교동 떡갈비: Slightly spicy, but it’s great food.

The star of the show is the tteok-galbi: Korean grilled short rib patties. It’s a Jeonju delicacy. When I put a slab of meat in my mouth, it melted. If you love burgers, the minced meat may remind you of a burger patty.

I highly recommend this restaurant.

Click on the video to see the meat sizzle.

The restaurant had a very elegant look.

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전주 교동 떡갈비: Restaurant interior
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전주 교동 떡갈비

5. For the religious: Jeondong Cathedral

South Korea, Jeollabuk-do, Jeonju, Wansan-gu, Jeon-dong, 태조로 51

According to Google Maps: “Built 1908–1914, this historic Romanesque church features statues of Korean Catholic martyrs.”

I did not have a tour of the cathedral, but it was a nice historical site to visit in Jeonju. Like most places of worship, there’s no photographing allowed in the cathedral. The Western-style architecture is a stark contrast to traditional Korean houses!

Wishing you a good visit to Jeonju Hanok Village!


© 2018 PEARL LEE ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Please write to me here to use my material. Thank you. 

Good food, good prices at Lavender Bistro at Johor Bahru, Malaysia

We had good food for less than USD20 or SGD25 per person.

Recently, I went to Johor Bahru (JB) again for pre-Lunar New Year shopping, eating, and grooming.

For non-Singaporeans/Malaysians, many Singaporeans go to JB for day or weekend trips because of the exchange rate.

Before we went, my friends did some research and found a place that’s well-reviewed online called Lavender Bistro. Here’s how my trip went.

Prices (pre-GST and service charge) will be indicated!

Cozy interior design

The bistro is on the second floor of the building. We went up the stairs and were seated immediately. The staff was really attentive.

The cozy decor here.
In JB, it’s hard to find alcohol. But it’s possible to have alcoholic drinks at Lavender Bistro, which is awesome.
Brunch items available.
As a seafood lover, this selection was great!
There are some pan-Asian dishes here.

Food VS Menu

So here’s how the food measured up against the menu.

To check the price of each item against SGD, divide each price by three. For USD, divide the price by four. The actual conversion at the moment is 1 USD = 3.89 MYR.

First up, we had the baked New Zealand mussels.

The service at Lavender Bistro was top notch. We did not need to ask for additional plates!

Baked New Zealand Mussels: MYR26.42

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Baked New Zealand mussels
Mmmm! The inside of the mussel was juicy.

Soul-warming soups!

The soups were great. I don’t usually have soups, but this was really worth it. If you love truffles and mushroom soups, the bisque is for you.

If there were one thing my friends and I raved about, it would be the baguette they served with the soup. It’s soft in the middle, crispy outside, and absolutely fragrant.

Chicken Chowder: MYR12.26

Truffle Mushroom Bisque: MYR15

Truffle mushroom bisque
Chicken chowder

Main courses: Plates of pasta

The pasta was the main attraction. Overall, the pasta tasted well-made. This was especially obvious with the pappardelle. The seafood tasted fresh.

I had the squid ink pasta. If you’re looking for a serious mouthful of black squid ink, you might be disappointed – it’s just black colored pasta in what tastes like vongole broth.

For me, I’m fine with either, but would have definitely liked to eat squid ink!

Squid Ink Seafood Linguine: MYR33.96

Spicy Aglio Olio Water Scampi: MYR46.23

Squid Ink Seafood Linguine (bottom) and Spicy Aglio Olio Water Scampi (top)
lavender-bistro-johor-bahru-food4.jpg
A closer look at the Spicy Aglio Olio Water Scampi. Look at those huge prawns!

 

The seafood spaghetti is seafood marinara (tomato-based pasta).

Seafood Spaghetti: MYR29.25

Seafood Marinara

 

The duck pasta was a great dish. It tasted sophisticated, like something you could get at a French cafe. For SGD11 or USD8, it’s a real steal!

Pappardelle with Duck Stroganoff: MYR33

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Pappardelle with Duck Stroganoff

 

During my meal, I also indulged in two different drinks.

These two drinks cost about SGD10 in total. In Singapore, you wouldn’t even get a wine at that price!

Cafe Mocha: MYR10.38

White wine: MYR17.92

Two different drinks.

Ending it off with sweets

The best thing is that the bakery is just downstairs. You can get some breads or sweets from the floor below and enjoy them at the bistro upstairs.

The bakery has really pretty cakes going for a reasonable price. If you’re looking for a beautiful budget birthday cake that tastes good, this may be a good place to visit.

Cakes, cakes, cakes!
My favorite cakes. Unicorns are all the rage now!

I had a honey egg roll cake. I do not have a sweet tooth but I thought the cake had a really appealing taste for a Singaporean. It’s not too sweet or oily. I would have bought the roll cake home if this bakery were my last stop!

lavender-bistro-johor-bahru-food12.jpg
Yummy baked goods.

Verdict

10/10 would visit this cafe again!

For MYR366.30 (about USD94 or SGD124), we had:

  • 1 shared appetizer
  • 4 soups
  • 5 main courses
  • 6 drinks

This was good quality food for less than USD20 or SGD25 per person.

The damage for 5 people: MYR366.30. This is about USD94 or SGD124.

Address

Address: 68, Jalan Serampang, Taman Pelangi, 80400 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Hours: 10am – 10pm
Phone: +60 7-335 9966

We left JB only at about 10pm, all feeling great.


Feeling like a million bucks after a day trip to JB.

Dal.Komm Coffee Singapore

This cafe is a throwback to Descendants Of The Sun – a mix of cute and whimsical

Recently, my boyfriend’s friend’s family opened a new cafe in town. To my surprise, it’s Dal.Komm Coffee. This cafe is very popular because of its appearance in a Korean drama called Descendants of the Sun. Dal Kom, spelt 달콤 in Korean, means to have a sweet taste.

The storefront.
The storefront with the Descendants Of The Sun poster.
Part of the menu and prices. I found it rather affordable for coffee in a central location.
Part of the menu and prices. I found it rather affordable for coffee in a central location.

Coffee culture is pretty strong in Korea and many people go to cafes to have “sogetting” (소개팅). This word is basically an abbreviation for “introductory meeting” (소개-미팅), which is a meeting for people to meet the opposite sex and date.

Decor

The first thing I thought of when I entered the premises was, “After a while, many students would come here to study!”

But hmm, maybe not. Well, the place is not dimly lit, but definitely cozy and bright enough if you’re just looking to do light reading, chat, and have coffee. Plus, it’s large so it’s not very noisy at all.

Cozy and large!
Cozy and large! This is just part of the premises.
Korean cafe decor - a mix of cute and whimsical.
Korean cafe decor and a throwback to Descendants Of The Sun – a mix of cute and whimsical.

I like Song Hye Gyo, but I didn’t really enjoy Descendants Of The Sun. My boyfriend is Korean but both of us prefer to watch Western dramas like House of Cards and Westworld. We really recommend those shows. I think the only Korean drama we watched bits and pieces together was Wang’s Family, with his parents after dinner back in Korea. They were really fascinated by the drama.

We had an interesting conversation once. He’s very critical of Kdramas, grabbing his head and lamenting the state of the Korean scriptwriting industry. This happened more often during Westworld, because frankly, the creators are geniuses. I asked him not to be too critical of his country’s dramas – they are very popular despite their formulaic plots and scenes, and that’s really respectable to me.

Kdramas can be very interesting especially when they are dealing with family and class relations. When I used to watch Kdramas on Channel U, dubbed in Mandarin (he finds it terrible because the voices don’t match and sound shrill to him), sometimes, I can feel quite emotional watching them. I remember following Likeable or not quite closely!

Nowadays, I think China is catching on with catchy dramas though. When I see videos trending on Youtube, there are always good looking actors, some click bait title with a video that delivers like 总裁女朋友穿着太朴素,店员竟然瞧不起将其赶走,最后后悔了 (Company president’s girlfriend wore clothes that were too plain. The sales assistants looked down on her and chased her away, only to regret it!!!). Their copywriting skills are formidable.

Drinks

First, we ordered drinks. My boyfriend is a big fan of goguma latte (sweet potato latte) and always drinks it when he’s back in Korea, so he and his friend had that. I’m not a big fan of the milky taste and needed some caffeine so I went with mocha instead.

Our three drinks.
Our three drinks. These were regular sized but it was a good amount.

Overall, the goguma latte taste was authentic. If you need a Korean fix or you want to try something new, this cafe can deliver it.

Food

We ordered a croque monsieur. It was slightly pricey, but tasty nonetheless! The sandwich came with a nice dose of creamy cheese on top, which added to its fragrance. My boyfriend and I finished it pretty fast. I am personally a big fan of ham and cheese sandwiches and would recommend this dish.

Our Croque-monsieur (baked ham and cheese sandwich).
Our Croque-monsieur (baked ham and cheese sandwich). It was SGD9.

Overall, what makes me like this cafe is its huge space and cozy ambience. A nice place to chill and hang out!


Address: The Centrepoint, 176 Orchard Road #01-01/02, #01-03/04, #01-05/06, #01-103 238843, 102 Nanyang Cres, Nanyang Meadows – Block 102, Singapore 637820
Hours: 10AM–10PM