Shopping in Myeongdong Seoul, Korea with Nanta Performance Life in Korea

Backpacking.Travel.TV's picture

Aug. 22, 2013

After visiting the traditional Namdaemun market we quickly turned our attention to nearby Myeongdong which is one of the most popular shopping districts on the North side of Seoul. Only just a short walk from one another it's quite fascinating going from such a traditional Korean market to one that is very modern and trendy. Typically, the area is frequented mostly by young Korean adults but it is also very popular with tourists and expat foreigners. It's the kind of place trendy young Koreans go for people watching, street food and fine dining. One of the main draws, aside from shopping are the various cultural performances that often take place. We were treated to a Nanta theater performance that showcased a talented group performing culinary theatrics. With expert precision the performers wielded their knives in a very skillful manner dicing, slicing and chopping anything that was on the table. I loved how animated all them looked performing their routines with such charisma and smiles plastered on their faces. After being mesmerized by the free performance we then wandered around looking for shoes and boots. I was lucky enough to find a pair of red running shoes that were literally the nicest pair I've ever owned thanks to Audrey for buying me such a nice early birthday present. Feeling tired from our activities for the day, one of the highlights was sharing a giant ice cream soft serve cone. It was the biggest one either of us had ever tried. Other highlights included sampling more street food and jostling with the crowds. This video is from our Life in Korea series. Myeongdong (Hangul, Hanja, literally 'bright town') is a dong in Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea between Chungmu-ro, Eulji-ro, and Namdaemun-ro. It covers 0.99 km with a population of 3,529 and is mostly a commercial area, being one of Seoul's main shopping and tourism districts.
Myeongdong is one of Seoul's main shopping districts featuring mid-to-high priced retail stores and international brand outlets, including Lacoste, Polo Ralph Lauren, Forever 21, Bulgari and Louis Vuitton, as well as Korean cosmetics brands such as Nature Republic. Nanta (Korean) is a popular South Korean musical. In English the show is also known as "Cookin'". It premiered in October 1997 in Hoam Art Hall in Seoul. The musical has a simple back story of three cooks attempting to finish preparing a wedding banquet within a strict time limit while the manager installs his incompetent nephew among the kitchen staff. The show involves acrobatics, magic tricks, comedy, pantomime and audience participation. The unifying element throughout the musical is the use of traditional Korean samul nori music, which in this case in performed with improvised instruments, such as cutting boards, water canisters and kitchen knives. The performance is almost completely non-verbal. The very few words which are spoken are mostly in English.