A Weekend in Busan

It’s been well over a year since I’ve written a post, but I felt it was time to start doing so again. Matt and I have been living in Korea since December 2017 (time flies!) and it has been a much better experience for me this time around.

I was inspired to start writing again after an amazing weekend I had in Busan with my friend Krysta. We experienced some next-level hospitality, had a lot of fun, and I really wanted to share.

Saturday morning, Krysta and I headed from Ulsan to Haeundae. I had an appointment for a Korean magic perm, which is a popular permanent straightening process here. The heat and humidity have been quite unbearable lately, and my hair has been an absolute frizz fest. We went to Two Two Salon, which had wonderful reviews from other foreigners on Facebook.

We met with Sophia, the owner, who was extremely welcoming as soon as we walked in the door. She was an older woman, with blue hair and a bubbly personality. Her English was minimal, but we communicated just fine. The entire process took about 2.5 hours and cost 200,000 won ($177). While Krysta and I waited, Sophia and her staff made sure we were fed and hydrated (they even bought us ice cream). As we were leaving, she even gave me two small bottles of argan oil to take care of my hair at home. I was so happy with the results.

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After, we walked down the main street in Haeundae towards the beach. It was around 2 o’clock, but our hotel check-in wasn’t until 4. We decided to go to the hotel anyway and see if we could check in early. The man at the front desk informed us the room wasn’t ready, but offered to take our bags and said we could come back at 3. That was good enough for us, and we headed to lunch.

Krysta and I decided to eat at the Haeundae branch of Galmegi Brewing Co. They’ve been around since 2014 and are Busan’s first American-style microbrewery. I am a huge fan of their yuja gose! For food, I got chicken tacos and Krysta got a pulled pork sandwich with fries. Their food is super authentic and delicious.

After lunch, we continued on our “treat yo’self” adventure. We took the subway closer to Jangsan to get our nails done at Lana Nail Busan. Her shop was a little difficult to find. As we were walking around the complex, Lana called my phone to tell me she saw me and directed us to the shop. When I booked the appointment with her, she had told me that she would be the only one working. However, when we got there, she had asked another employee to come in (on her day off!) so we could both get our manicures done at the same time. Lana’s English was excellent, and she was so fun to talk to. I decided to go for a fun, brightly colored design (I usually do darker colors) and I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out.

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We relaxed at SpaLand and had dinner near the beach before heading back to our room for the night. The next morning, we went back to Two Two so Krysta could get her hair dyed. This time, Sophia not only made lunch for us, but shared freshly picked peaches from her rooftop garden as well as rice cakes (they were still warm) made by another local shopkeeper. Lunch consisted of purple rice, radish soup, water kimchi, and an assortment of side dishes. I have never, ever, ever experienced such hospitality in my life.

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I had a great weekend, but wish it was just a tiny bit longer. Next weekend, though, Matt and I head to Osaka for one week for summer vacation and I am so looking forward to it.

What are your plans for next weekend?

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