Hello! I’m Charlotte. I’m currently living as an expat abroad in South Korea, where I have spent the last two years.Coming from a humble upbringing in England, UK, to South East Asia was quite a leap – but in doing so, I gained access to a diverse array of cultures within arm’s reach.

At present, I work as a Native English teacher in the Gyeongsangnam-do province teaching both Middle and High school students. When I first arrived in South Korea, I found the culture fascinating and this feeling has continued, if not grown, since then. The town I live in is quite rural, and so I live further away from places frequented by tourists such as Seoul, Busan, and Daegu. Living abroad forces me to continually push through my percieved boundaries and comfort zone. I am constantly being challenged by what I THINK I know, what I THINK I can do. It has made me appreciate the gift that is travel, and the wonders it can do for our self-esteem, our confidence, our empathy, our wordly views – travel makes me a better person.

Wearing the traditional Korean clothing Hanbok (한복), Jeonju (전주), South Korea
Walking along Seoullo 7017 (서울로 7017), Seoul (서울), South Korea

When I consider a average day in England to an average day in Korea, the two are in stark contrast to each other – as if I’m living in a completely different world. It is this sensation, felt through small inconsequential experiences daily, that furthers my passion for travelling.

“Culture is the widening of the mind and of the spirit” – Jawaharlal Nehru.

Samgwangsa Temple (삼광사), Busan (부산), South Korea
Samgwangsa Temple (삼광사), Busan (부산), South Korea
Gamcheon Culture Village (감천문화마을), Busan (부산), South Korea

As Nehru says, being immersed in culture is a reward in and of itself. It opens up new ways of thinking and of visualising the world. My mind is filled with new customs, enticing smells, awe-inspiring views, and wonderfully-confusing sounds!

As well as being a traveller, I am an enthusiastic foodie! I love to follow my stomach when choosing a place to visit – the more new foods to try, the better!

Beef udon noodles (소고기우동), Lee Udon (이우동), Geochang (거창), South Korea
Charlotte & Morgan (샬롯 & 몰간) – leaving our mark, Lee Udon (이우동), Geochang (거창), South Korea

During my travels, I tend to research places of interest beforehand, creating a check-list compiled of essential visits and additional activities. Once I’ve completed my list, I begin searching for recommended eateries and delicacies nearby those locations.

I enjoy visiting the local food markets, letting my eyes and nose choose which morsel to try next. You get a good idea of what’s popular and unique for that area by the size of the queues. I get a childish joy from joining the line, being the bearer of curious gazes overlooking the queue makes me feel like I’m in on a secret privy only to locals and those adventurous of heart and stomach.

Gwangjang Market (광장시장), Seoul (서울), South Korea
Gwangjang Market (광장시장), Seoul (서울), South Korea
Eating tteokbokki or rice cakes (떡볶이), Gwangjang Market (광장시장), Seoul (서울), South Korea

There’s a certain level of satisfaction and ease wandering through labyrinthine streets in the hopes of uncovering cultural sites, hidden restaurants, or hip cafes. Upon discovering a location, taking the first few steps feels like Alice entering Wonderland, or stepping into Narnia – it’s overwhelming yet exciting. It’s entirely new.

Another joy of mine is finding quirky themed cafes: animal cafes, anime cafes, character cafes, monster cafes, poop (yes, you read it correctly) cafes…the list is endless and diverse!

Poop cafe (또옹카페), Seoul (서울), South Korea
Poop cafe (또옹카페), Seoul (서울), South Korea
Sheep at Thanks Nature Cafe (땡스 네이쳐 카페), Seoul (서울), South Korea
Berry waffle at Thanks Nature Cafe (땡스 네이쳐 카페), Seoul (서울), South Korea

The more I travel, the more I realise I don’t want to stop. Ever. I have no time limit or end goal other than this: explore as many countries as I can, for however long I can!

See you on the other side ~