The UOS Times
CultureThe Place
Take a Ride on the Youth Bus
Ji-hye Park  |
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[134호] 승인 2015.06.15  
트위터 페이스북 네이버 구글

To commuting students, a bus is one of the most significant forms of transportation, and the bus number 273 may soon hold a special place in the minds of students. It has been called the “youth bus” because of its unique route. Bus 273 passes by 14 universities in Seoul, including Hongik, Kyung Hee, and Korea University, collecting students along the way. Buses like this one not only help student commuting to university; but it also serves as a library, a place to grow a romance, or a place for napping. For students, a bus can be a place to grow memories, and each experience, spread across years, is different for every student. This month, The UOS Times offers everyone a ride on bus 273. Here are some of the places this bus can take you to.

Along the way passing so many universities, there is a place for people who want to rest among trees. Hongneung Arboretum operated by the Korea Forest Research Institute (KFRI), is the first forestry test zone in Korea. Here, we can see a variety kinds of plants, and each plant community makes for a beautiful walk. There are five walking courses, each with a different theme, and each theme allows visitors to enjoy walking through arboretums or to examine the details of the woods. Before visiting, bear in mind that you can enter Hongneung Arboretum only during the weekend because this is a place where scientists are working, experimenting and testing plants.

▲ The entrance of KFRI
▲ A view of walking course at the Arboretum
After walking through the woods, there is also Yeonghwiwon and Sunginwon next to KFRI. This area is well known as Heongneung because it was originally the tomb of Empress Myeongseong. While visiting this area, one can sense the calamity and solemnity of the country,s tragic history. Compared to the stark bustle of Cheongnyangni and Hoegi, this place provides both freshness and commemoration at the same time - a source of solace.

Gwanghwamun is one of the most harmonious places in Seoul, where historical and cultural values are in balance. Many museums and art galleries are centered around Gwanghwamun and Gyeongbukgung, and a number of people they attract are astonished. Among these, Seoul Museum of History and Toykino Museum are also interesting places to go. Seoul Museum of History was founded in 2002, and it deals with the overall history and culture of Seoul from the Joseon Dynasty to the present. Perhaps the most impressive exhibit is the City Model Image Hall on the third floor, where we can see the whole view of Seoul at a glance.

The hall provides a miniature model of Seoul and shows the future of Seoul on the screen. Its details hold the visitors in wonder. In addition, around the museum, there are some cultural assets that remain part of the history of Seoul. They are placed near the museum so that visitors can look around and contemplate their significance.

▲ The inside of the City Model Image Hall
▲ Posters and figures of Marvel
If you are crazy about toys, Toykino Museum is also the perfect place for you. Compared to other public museums, entry fees are higher - it is privately owned. However, after you enter, it may feel like Neverland. It is divided into two parts: Action Comics and Animation. First, on the right side of the entrance, figures of comic book heroes such as those from Marvel and DC, along with main characters from action movies like the James Bond series or Bruce Lee,s performances are displayed in the room. On the left side of entrance, there are animated heroes from Disney and Pixar. Here, you can feel like a child again and enjoy a wonderful time with the beloved characters of childhood.

As you can see in the name of the museum, this museum deals with love, especially sex. Its theme might make many people blush, but the Love Museum encourages people to open their minds toward sex. Its purpose is to encourage proper and healthy recognition of sex through participatory exhibits. Visitors can take pictures by touching the works of the museum or imitating the poses that they see. The museum is composed of six sections, each section addressing a different topic.

▲ The entrance of the Love Museum
▲ A trick art depicting sex by a famous artwork
Some pieces depict sex through famous art works such as Mona Lisa or paintings from the Joseon Dynasty. Another section deals with the concept of the femme fatale, with works that trick the spectator to draw their attention. Each exhibit provides information about an aspect of sex as well the art works themselves. Thus, visitors can think about the history of lovemaking and contemplate the meaning of sex. Exposing the underlying mechanics and portrayals of sex is preferable to concealing it and regarding it as a something bad. Although the museum is quite small, it is significant as an unconventional place for people who are tired of playing the usual roles.

There are many great places to go in Seoul. Even if you do not have time to find your own space to enjoy, going near other universities and feeling their unique circumstances can also provide refreshment. While taking a bus and looking out the window, you can find more wonderful places than those mentioned here. With beautiful weather and nice people, you can plant and grow your own unforgettable memories. How about taking a trip to some urban Wonderland this week?

Ji-hye Park

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