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{ 07·02·16 } - Snow-kissed branches and Winter Sonata moments on Nami Island.

Floating on Han River, some 60km away from beautiful Seoul, is a little crescent moon-shaped island named Naminara Republic, or, Namiseom Island.

Here, thousands of trees line little lanes, creating a perfectly romantic, seemingly untouched mood that renders it a dreamy hotspot for locals and tourists alike. As a huge K-drama enthusiast, I decided to book a day tour to negate the need to figure out my own transport, which worked out perfectly, although I'd love to visit again for a little longer and with a friend in tow, perhaps.

Arriving to a beautiful snow-kissed scene set the afternoon in motion. I spent a little while bemused at how there was only snow in this one spot and came to no conclusion regarding the authenticity of it. I suppose it was placed there to set the mood of the island in winter, yet the snow did feel real and was happily melting from the branches...

I just adored having a sleepy stroll - albeit in -14°C chill! - around the little forests, admiring the beauty of a frozen pond and watching on as families and couples took joy in discovering nooks around the island.

As Korea also celebrates Lunar New Year, there were plenty of seasonal greetings about the island, including this beautiful caged pathway lined with wishes and hopes for the coming year.

If you've ever visited Korea in the winter, did it also strike you that Christmas simply continues throughout the course of the season? Christmas trees, still decorated, in February? Now that I can get on board with!

Grabbed some chicken galbi to warm up.

Glimpsing the infamous First Kiss Bridge for myself with my very own eyes was enchanting. Well, it was at first, and then I quickly came to see that it was just a bridge and, in fact, there are similar if not prettier ones in my hometown that are also home to first kisses. K-drama moment, ruined ;)

I couldn't help but giggle a little at this tourist sign; in plunging wintry chills, this is the real MVP in terms of reining in the competition, eh?

This little thatched roof hut made me smile - a little tropical paradise submerged in snow and fluttered amongst ice that was, frankly, a safety hazard to walk through!

And look! Icicles! It's the littlest things, when you've lived in a tropical country for 16 months...

And then, the real star of the show. Metasequoia Lane. A dramatic pathway, lined with tall and infinitely elegant metasequoia trees, this is the location of the ever-famous Winter Sonata series. I'm already dreaming of witnessing this spot in its springtime and autumnal glory.

I have a real affinity with woodlands and stretches of water. Back in England, I always make a concerted effort to spend a little time each week on a truly rustic walk, talking in gulps of fresh air, a warm drink in hand and in excellent, easy company.

Naminara Republic? You've captured my heart.

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