The Cheonggyecheon urban renewal project revived an old canal, turning it into a place where people come to cycle and walk
The US vice-president, Mike Pence, was staying at my hotel, I discovered, as I arrived in Seoul the week the world feared the Korean Peninsula would turn into a ball of fire. Secret service officials in black talked into concealed microphones on their lapels and nodded to advice from the visible earphones. The plush hotel was a picture of calm, as if it was business as usual, but there were metal detectors everywhere and humourless American officials who avoided eye contact in elevators. The staff smiled politely to make up for the coldness that had descended on the hotel.