Yeah, just got back from Korea and it seemed there are so many people interested about Airbnb. All my friends are asking my about it. In fact, it was one of my friend who introduced me to this site. And so I thought "Hey, let's do a post about my accommodation in South Korea (3 out of 4 stays in South Korea)!
I went to South Korea for 8D7N. Will share with you all the itinerary in the next post so as to help you all when planning. My BF is a pain when it comes to accommodation. His top requirements are a private toilet and air-con! For me, I am more for the photo-worthy view! :P
#1 Night - Lavina
Good location though not easy to find. It was definitely not as clean as what you see in the pictures and more like a guesthouse than a homestay. My BF was really mad with the stay and doubted the whole trip's accommodation. No Bedsheets, No air-con control (Had to bark at them before they found a way to produce the missing control) and the shower could not maintain its temperate. It was either steaming hot or freezing cold. I had to sleep with my jacket for blankets.
We were also locked inside the room, maybe cos the staff felt we were too irritating. It came to a point I had to keep going to the reception to demand stuff. I was tired, stressed and afraid of my steaming BF who was rattling on "forget it, forget it" It ruined his trip. In the end, we even missed the free breakfast. :( And my BF was happy he saved himself from more disappointment. Guess the answer is obvious, avoid this stay and don't be fooled by the reviews like I did.
#2/#3 Night - Awesome Jeju BnB with in an Orchard
This is the really homely house we stayed in Jeju. It is pretty much in the rural areas, like in a middle of nowhere. It could be a little bit hard to find if you are driving youself, but we hired a driver :P
Apart from that, the view was fantastic and there is air-condition and floor heating! You even have your own private bathroom :) Just because you are my reader, let me tell you a cost-saving tip. Take the one with 2 single beds instead of 1 double bed cos it is a lot cheaper. The only thing is that your toilet is not in your room but you still get your private toilet!
And to add more credibility, these are my photos I took them. Was kinda of bummed that I missed the harvesting of the Tangerine (Oct-Feb). But still the view was fantastic. The whole layout of the house is a little bit westernized because the owner, Young used to study in the U.S. Even the breakfast was Ang-Moh. Haha! But Young speaks really good English, so there is no fear of miscommunication. Her sister, Jun doesn't really speak English but is very helpful and is always greeting you with a cheery smile.
The best thing about staying in a rural area is the food. Young and Jun would kindly drive us out in the evening for our meals at a nearby restaurant which serves the most delicious and super cheap food! Yup each meal was like less than SGD20 and one of them I had the yummy BBQ Black pork! *drools*
For those who are looking for a real hanok stay, this is the one! It is a lot cheaper than the commercialised hanok though if you compare to the other type of homestay, this is still on the steep side considering they do not provide breakfast! Their rate has increased from like USD20 to USD60 and I can understand why. Their location is really good, right smack in the Bukchon Hanok Village and Ji Hyun is really helpful.
There are like literally no reviews on Hanoks and is so dang difficult to find a decent one. So do thank me for sharing with you this good one. Please note that it is extremely tiny. Me and my BF are sleeping literally on top of each other with our luggages at the side. And if you really wanna make out, you will be upset to know there are no locks. Haha, so close can touch yet cannot do anything beyond :P Anyway, BF just snored at me half the time :(
**This is the only 1 we booked under BnBHero instead because their selection was wider. Airbnb is like sleep on the floor means hanok already *roll eyes* Like this, I in Singapore also sleep hanok style liao la~!~
#7/#8 Soony Homestay
We chanced upon this on Airbnb and I was a bit hesitant cos they didn't have much reviews. For those who yearn interaction with their host and would like a glimpse into a traditional korean home, this is the perfect place for you. But please beware, it is so cosy, you don't really want to move around too much. Save this for your last pit stop.It is not as near to the city, in fact it is on the side of the Han river. But Soony and his wife are so hospitable, you ain't really that affected by the slightly longer distance.
Soony is very helpful so if you are not much of an independent traveler, you would really appreciate this homestay. (**Update: they are part of the KTO homestay programme.) Soony really wants to remember each and every one of his guests. BF and I took a lot of photos for him. And he even gave us a photo to take home. :P
Oh, and did I missed out, Mrs Soony is a super super cook! I love all her Korean Breakfast. All her meals were really hearty and delicious. Their dinner cost 5000 Won per pax but trust me S$5 is too cheap. They even treated us to Japanese shrimps, which I thought was some Korean side-dish. Was kinda of sad I couldn't buy them. And on the first morning cos she wasn't at home, she made us lunch boxes to bring out. So sweet <3
At their home, I made kimchi. Super regretted not learning her pumpkin coated in egg dish. Really heavenly. The only bit that I find could be improved was that they don't give the guests their own keys, so we came home late one day and Mrs Soony stayed up waiting for us *guilty* Also, the room has no air-conditioned (but very breezy) no locks and very exposed (NO making out for couples!!! They can evade you via the balcony) But overall, I enjoyed my stay so much, I sort of nominated them for exceptional homestay. Let's hope they win it. :)
For those who are keen to try up Airbnb, please use my code :) I used someone else's code too and got a discount. Just click on code and you will get S$33. This will offset the admin charges you have to pay to Airbnb. Help me accumulate more cash for my next trip!
Till next time I travel before I review more homestay. Sian, back to reality again. Haix