Welcome to our Licensing Blog, which takes a light hearted look at our mysterious world.
Seoul hosts Korea's Character & Licensing Fair(Posted: 30-07-2009)
Seoul – not the sort of place that would be top of your holiday destination list. But given the opportunity to go there, take it.
Our adventure to the Seoul Character and Licensing Fair had a hectic start with the frenetic pace of Heathrow airport. But the moment we set foot on the Korean Airlines plane, a strange calm descended that hardly went away throughout the whole trip. The flight and service was excellent; Incheon airport a pleasure; the bus ride to the hotel relaxing; and the hotel itself rewardingly plush.
We took advantage of nearly a whole free day to take a guided tour of the DMZ – the DeMilitarised Zone – separating North and South Korea. It was a spooky feeling driving through check-points and having the soldiers scrutinising passports, and then being able to see North Korea. As my knowledge of the conflict between the two sides only extended to watching MASH (which most people seem to think is set during the Vietnam war) it was interesting to learn more at the actual front line. To walk inside one of the 4 discovered tunnels dug by the North under the DMZ in preparation for a possible invasion was a thought-provoking experience.
The DeMilitarised Zone A bombed train – a symbol of the war
The graceful white cranes standing in the paddy fields restored the feeling of calm – at least until the visits to the Ginseng Museum and Amethyst Factory, where we were made to feel it would be rude not to spend at least US $200 on something. Needless to say I managed to keep my wallet in my pocket and maintain my record of never having bought anything on impulse in my whole life (a fact that my wife will be able to confirm if necessary). At least I now know that 6 year old Korean ginseng is the best in the world, and is much better for you than Pro-Plus tablets when you need a boost.
Already being a fan of eastern cuisine, the local food was fantastic, although we’d had enough of the nation’s favourite dish kimchi (cabbage done in many different ways!) by the end. The people were extremely friendly, and the whole city safe and welcoming. It’s been a while since I went a whole trade show without getting in a taxi, but the underground was so cheap and easy it would have been a shame not the use it.
A typical Korean meal goes down well The calm of the Temple
The show was well organised and all the exhibitors had made a great effort to make it look a real spectacle. Quite how we would cope over here with the invasion of kids on the public days doesn’t bear thinking about, but they were ready for it. You can read a more detailed review of the show in the Articles section on our homepage. Thanks to the 11 year old Korean girl who finished practising her English on me with the words “you are a very handsome man”. What wisdom for one so young!
A stroll round the Buddhist temple on the last evening made one feel that something spiritual was present, as serenity mixed with a strange feeling that we were intruding on those praying.
It’s been a long 10 days, so time to pop a ginseng tablet. I’ll report back after my imminent 2 weeks of baguettes and brie.
Previous Blog entries
A month of trade shows!
Happy New Year!
Viva Las Vegas!!
Moscow, Bologna, Easter
Where did February go?
Hong Kong and the merry-go-round begins
Welcome to 2012
The Seoul Character & Licensing Fair comes to town
Vegas is hot, hot, hot!
Welcome to 2011. The treadmill starts!
Around the world in licensing events
Brand Licensing Europe delivers for us again
Summer's over so bring on the Licensing Awards
Seoul, kids at the show and kimchi
Las Vegas and all its (licensed) temptations
Easter eggs and volcanic ash
We're Northern Light Fund Quiz winners!
New Hungary show makes it's debut in cold Budapest
March heralds another month of madness
2010 finally arrives, and the new Guide is here!
Brand Licensing Europe delivers again
The Licensing Awards in London
Seoul hosts Korea's Character & Licensing Fair
Las Vegas welcomes Licensing International 2009
Vegas here we come!
Brits on tour in Prague!
STOP PRESS: England closes because of snow!
A Special Delivery before Burns Night
Dubai and Christmas drinks
The joys of Brand Licensing
Exhibiting at the National Incentive Show
Greetings from Mexico!
French motorways, sun, sea and sand
Action Man and the good old days
Hot and sticky Hong Kong
Brits on tour in New York