05 March 2011

Things to Love about Korea #2: Seasons

This post could just as easily be about public spaces, because Seoul does indeed have some really wonderful (and well utilised) public spaces - Cheonggyecheon (below) is just one example.  But instead my second thing to love about Korea is something you might also hear me complain about a little bit, and that's seasons.

Despite the odd complaint about my ears freezing off or being baked by the hot hot sun, it is on the whole really lovely living in a place that has four (very) distinct seasons.  At a basic level it's a constant feast for the senses.  Just think of the unique smells and colours of each season - muted greys and browns in Winter; bright bursts of green and sweet blossom scents in Spring; glorious, fiery Autumn foliage.  And the way the light changes - I love the glare of Summer, the crisp, blue sky in Winter and the softness of Autumn light.  

On another level, there's something about the constant cycle of the seasons - the death and renewal, the hibernating and celebrating - that helps puts things in perspective.  It's a reminder that I'm just a tiny cog in the machinations of the world, and that's okay.  I also find the ongoing change inspiring, invigorating.  It's like waking up in a new world every few months, and what could be more enlivening than that?

[Same view of Cheonggyecheon - in Autumn, and in Spring]


  1. How clear is that water Emily!?!
    I love how Cheonggyecheon is decorated for the changing seasons, not only with the plants changing their colours but the lamps and water craft.

    Thank you for sharing this little pocket of the world with us - truly special.

    Felicity x

    PS I've started a new series which I'm opening up to Guest Posters who follow my blog. It's called 'Six Senses Tours' and I'd love for you to write a guest post from Seoul. My email details are on my blog, drop me a line if you're interested www.giftsofserendipity.com

    To see the first post in this series go to


    xx Felicity

  2. Experiencing proper seasons is something I very much miss in Brisbane, where we don't see much change at all throughout the year.

    There's especially something magical about autumn where the leaves turn and those warm colours spread beneath our feet.

  3. Lovely lovely! I agree, there is something about the colours of korea especially in winter..the streets, the buildings and foliage..they are a bit muted (and most of the men dress in blacks and greys anyway). Which just makes korea all the more charming and a little old school.


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