My husband had off today for July 4th and we decided to do something fun with the girls. It has been very humid lately and we thought an indoor activity would be refreshing. We took the bus from our apartment complex to the train station in Yangju. From there we took the train to the COEX Mall. It took a few transfers to get there, but all in all it was quite simple.
The COEX is located south of the Han River in Seoul. It is the largest underground shopping mall in all of Asia. It not only has lots of shopping, restaurants and entertainment but a 16 screen multiplex cinema, Kimchi museum and aquarium. Our main goal of the day was to go to the aquarium but we did some window shopping along the way and even grabbed some lunch too. We were contemplating eating at one of the "american" restaurants that were in the mall but changed our mind when we saw the prices. Along with Bennigans, there was also a TGIF's, UNO's Pizzera and On the Border. We opted for another restaurant also found in the USA but more of a carryout, not sit down...Sabbaro's. So instead of paying 17,000 - 24,000 won per meal, we paid 22,000 for all 6 of us.
After lunch we headed for the aquarium. If you make your way to the COEX, be ready to walk! The admission prices weren't too bad (17,000 won for adults and 11,000 for children 5-12). At home in the states our favorite aquarium is located in Baltimore, Maryland at the Inner Harbor, so we were excited about today's trip. I must warn you, the COEX aquarium is not the National Baltimore Aquarium. At first I was very disappointed. It was just a lot of smaller fish in different types of tanks. BUT, the tanks were very creative (I won't say anymore cuz I don't want to spoil the treat). As we walked further into the aquarium the fish got a bit bigger and we even saw some sharks, stingrays, manatee and seals...oh yeh, and penguin too!
The girls had a good time and didn't even realize that they were missing the dolphin show or feeding of the sharks like they have in Baltimore. BUT, I double checked the prices in Baltimore and for our family of six we would have paid $105.-- and that would not include the dolphin show. We had only paid 67,000 won (or about $54.00USD) for the COEX aquarium, so not a bad deal for what you got. Not a place that I would purchase a membership to but all in all we had a fun day!