[Travelogue] Korea Joa Day 9 – Yonhap News, SISTAR, M!Countdown and Hongdae

October 8th, Thursday – It was our 9th day of the trip, meaning our Korea Joa trip was nearing the end. Despite it being the last day of the official schedule and everyone feeling heavy-hearted, it was also the most packed day.

Day 9 Korea Joa

Early morning after having our breakfast at the hotel, we headed to a café called Terarosa Coffee. There, we were introduced to two Korean journalists, Ms. Yoon Go Eun and Ms. Lee Eun Jung. Both Ms. Yoon as well as Ms. Lee are the well known journalists from Yonhap News, the largest news agency in Korea. Ms Lee Eun Jung is the head reporter for Korean music at Yonhap and she specialises in K-Pop while Ms Yoon Go Eun is the head reporter for Drama and Film.

Yonhap journalist
Ms Yoon Go Eun (left) and Ms.Lee Eun Jung (right)

We had a chance to talk to them about their experiences working as a journalist in Korea, their feeling meeting huge celebrities all the time and many more. According to Ms. Lee, the celebrity that leave her memorable experience is PSY and BIGBANG, because of their impressive performance on stage. I haven’t watched PSY‘s live performance yet, but I have to agree with her on BIGBANG! While talking about the article that gave the most views, most impact and uproar to readers was during the issue of JYJ leaving DBSK and filed a lawsuit against their company, SM Entertainment. Well, that was definitely one of the most shocking news in K-pop industry! Check out our full interview here.

Yonhap News
During our interview session with Ms. Yoon and Ms. Lee and our translators, Kali and Jen

After spending an hour with Ms. Lee and Ms. Yoon, we were then moved to another café called Les Philosophies to meet the famous girl group, SISTAR. Due to very bad traffic, we arrived 15 minutes later than the scheduled time. The girls were already waiting for us there. (Sorry SISTAR T_T) Well, that experience was definitely once in a lifetime! The tables were setup like a small press conference with only Korea Joa members as attendees.


This was my second time meeting SISTAR, the first time being back in 2013 during the Golden Disk Awards. But this time we were at a small event like this, and seeing them up close like this, the first thing come to my mind is Hyorin, Bora, Soyou and Dasom looks gorgeous, sexy and healthy! Yes, no joke! They were different from the typical skinny-girl-groups that I met before. Each of us took turns to ask questions but due to limited time 🙂 🙂 and SISTAR’s busy schedule, each of us can only ask two questions. Even with two questions, the interview went quite long, for almost an hour. They even gave us their autographed album at the end of the interview session. Thank you SISTAR and Starship Entertainment! And of course to KOFICE for the arrangement, Thank you!^^ Check out our full video interview here.

sistar autographed album
Autographed album from SISTAR

After the interview with SISTAR, we headed back to the hotel for a short rest and also to share videos and photos taken during the interview earlier. Around 4pm, we headed to our next destination, CJ E&M building to watch the ‘Mnet M!Countdown‘ live recording. But before that, we had our late lunch a.k.a early dinner at Bibigo Restaurant in the building.

Bibigo bibimbap
Bibimbap at Bibigo! I think something is missing..erm..carrot?
Mcountdown goodies
We even received goodies from M! Countdown.^^

M! Countdown is a music show program broadcasted by Mnet and it airs live every Thursday at 6:00PM to 7:30PM KST. You can go into M!Countdown recording either by through fan staff or buy the tickets but it is limited. The performers of that night were Red Velvet, GOT7, Seventeen, Monsta X, CNBLUE, Taeyeon and many more. As for the winner, iKON and GOT7 were the nominees and iKON won with ‘Rhythm Ta’. Congratulations to iKON! After the show, we got a chance to say hello to Starship’s rookie group Monsta X. They performed ‘Rush’ during M!Countdown, even though it was my first time listening to them, the song was already stuck in my head. You guys should check them out^^

MCountdown (3)
SNSD’s Taeyeon debuted as a solo artist. Her song ‘I’ is so nice^^
MCountdown (1)
CNBLUE did a pre-recording, so during the live show they just played on stage. It was nice to see them again!
MCountdown (2)
Full performers and the MC at the end of the show. We had fun!

After M!Countdown ended, we went to Hongdae to hangout together, since it was our last night in Korea 🙁 Hongdae is a famous neighborhood for youngsters because it is well known for the indie music culture, unique cafes, cozy galleries, accessories stores, fashion shops, live cafés, clubs and more. People busking everywhere made Hongdae a lively place to walk around. We spent the night chatting, eating, drinking and of course taking selfies. Lol

The ultimate selfie in Hongdae

We went back to the hotel at midnight. What a long fun day…phewww~~ Stay tuned for our last travelogue soon!

Also check out our Korea Joa travelogue series :

1) Day 1 : Flying to Kimchi Land and Welcome Dinner
2) Day 2 : Journey to Busan and BIFF
3) Day 3 : Fresh Market, BIFF Film, Haedong Yonggungsa and Gwangan Bridge
4) Day 4 : Back to Seoul and iKON Debut Concert
5) Day 5 : Sinsadong Garosu-gil, SMTOWN and Gangnam K-Pop Festival
6) Day 6 : Gyeongbokgung Palace, Cooking Class with Director Kim Soo Jin and N Seoul Tower
7) Day 7 : Korean Folk Village, Naver Green Factory and MU:CON Showcase
8) Day 8 : Namdaemun, Lotte World Mall and exclusive interview with DABIT

Our Korea Joa series :

1) The 20th Busan International Film Festival Opening Ceremony
2) Haedong Yonggungsa Temple
3) Highlights at iKON Debut Concert Showtime
4) EXO, Super Junior and Red Velvet at Gangnam K-pop Festival
5) SMTOWN at COEX Artium
6) N Seoul Tower
7) Gyeongbokgung Palace
8) Food & Culture Academy and Cooking Class with Director Kim Soo Jin
9) Korean Folk Village
10) Naver Green Factory
11) V App From Naver
12) Exclusive interview with Dabit 다빗
13) Exclusive interview with SISTAR
14) Exclusive interview with Korean Journalists from Yonhap News

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