Tapgol Park (탑골 공원)

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Street next to Tapgol Park, full of pojang machas (street food vendors)

   Across the street from the language school I’m attending is Tapgol Park, a famous area for it’s history as the starting point for the Independence Movement against the Japanese Rule. I first came here years ago but since then I’ve visited often. I’m usually one of the few younger people there as the park is a popular hang out spot for ajooshi’s and halabeoji’s (korean middle aged men and grandfathers). Why it’s so appealing to that group I don’t know. My guess is just that it’s a quiet, peaceful spot with a history honoring the break from Japanese rule, a time that hits closer to heart for the older generation. I, too, find it to be a really nice break from the busy streets outside. Having a predilection for quiet spaces, I often like to visit here to take a pause from study and relax my mind. Despite being in the midst of one of the busiest area’s of the city, due to it’s size, inside is a preserved quietness. What makes Seoul a great city to live in, for me, is these little outlets of calm spread across the city. Being someone easily fatigued by crowds, these spots are my frequent getaways to recharge and re-enter the hustle and bustle.

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