Take a 20 minute ride on the 31 or the 34 bus from Yonsei University and you will end up in the mini downtown, Lotte Cinema area. There are actually quite a few things to eat and shop for there, if it is threatening to be a boring day. Lauren and I went today and took lots of pictures to share!
The first stop on our lotte cinima excursion was The Bread House. It is the only bakery in Mini Downtown that offers samples throughout the store. You can go in and get full of the samples! They also offer complimentary coffee :) We split the cost of a sweet potato bread, which we took brought with us to Cafe Bene.
There are Cafe Bene’s all over South Korea but I always love to make a stop in there and get gelato when I go to mini downtown. Yum, a scoop of dark chocolate and a scoop of espresso! They also have bing su cocktails, which is Jillian and Cassie’s desert of choice. The wine and cheese big su is apparently the one to beat.
After our sweet and delicious lunch we started shopping. First, we headed over to Daiso and Art Box, located right across from the bread house. Daiso is a great place for cheap necessities, kind like a Dollar Tree/ Family Dollar. Art Box has more cutesy school supplies, gift sets, and nick knacks. We went looking for souvenirs but these are also great stops for GV international students in the future, cheaper then E-Mart! Continue going up the street and there is a cute little book store in Mini Downtown as well. Most things are in Korean but it is a fun stop for shits and giggles. There are a million cosmetic stores (E.G. Etude House, Missha, and Tony Moly) in the area as well and there are samples for all of the products; another fun activity to do for giggles! There are great cosmetics sold in South Korea so it is an experience. In the same area, there are some clothing stores that have sale items outside for 7000W. This is not a cheap as downtown but sometimes the stuff is just so cute that it is hard to resist. We ended up looking around in the indoor storied plaza as well because there is a store that sells cell phone accessories of all sorts, another idea for a souvenir. There are even bunny ears that can go into an I-Pod headphone jack. Hyun Ju had one all semester and I definitely contemplated it.
We ended up stopping and getting more food after shopping. First, we walked past a place called Irish Potato. Lauren had vowed to try it before leaving Korea so we went in and it was really good; the first french fries I have had in Korea. They are a thicker fry and they are made upon order. Then, you have a choice of appx. 10 sauces. We choose Apple/Garlic. Afterwards, we headed over to Coco Bubble Tea which is a MUST try! for 2000-3000W you can order from many different kinds of this tapioca milk drink. This is the number: <(330) 764 9921>. We grabbed some street vendor bananas and some roasted chicken from a truck before heading home. Come to downtown with an empty stomach is the moral of this story.
There is so much more to do in the area as well:
Movie Theater in the plaza! 8000W, discounted for the morning showings.
Sticker photos 6000W, take your friends and get crazy booth pictures with props! You can digitally add to the photos as well and then send a copy via Bluetooth!
pizza cones Lauren swears by them and the restaurant is right across from Art Box. They have all kinds, desert and savory.
Jim Jil Bang 10000W entry fee,if you are feeling a spa day, there is one in the area! Spend the day relaxing in the saunas and hot tubes or get a message and/or body scrub for an extra fee.
Mondu and other traditional korean foods
…And more…These were just a few ways I liked to spend my time in the area. Possibilities are vast.