South Korea is one of Asia's four tigers, with a well-developed economy and a rapidly growing rate of industrialization. The land of kimchi is also popularly known for being home to the mainstream K-Pop and K-Drama craze; South Korea is deservedly on many travelers’ bucket lists. South Korea will always be worth a visit, whether it's for its dynamic cities and technological shopping hubs, or its gastronomy, natural wonders, and pleasant environment. As a result, this article serves as a guide to the world-famous home of pop culture. Listed below is the 12-day itinerary for South Korea.
UPDATE: 2022/07/02 12:11 EST BY GABRIEL KIRELLOS
More Places To Visit In South Korea
While 10 days are enough to explore many attractions and top sights in South Korea, this list was updated to expand the itinerary to 12 days, which allows travelers to visit more iconic towns and cities in the beautiful country. The additional places worth seeing in South Korea include Daegu and Gyeongju.
12 Day 1: Changdeokgung Palace, Seoul
South Korea's capital, Seoul, is a great place to start a vacation in Korea. Changdeokgung's gorgeous palace is a must-see for everyone visiting the city on a short stay. It was built between 1405 and 1412 and is considered one of the city's five palaces. The palace, which boasts a magnificent landscape and well-preserved architectural masterpieces, has been featured in several Korean dramas. At night, tourists can visit the popular N Seoul Tower to view the city’s beautiful skyscrapers.
11 Day 2: Seoul City Day Tour
A day tour will be worthwhile if tourists just have a short period to see more of Seoul. Many tour companies offer guided tours of Seoul's most popular attractions, such as the Jogyesa Buddhist Temple, the Gyeongbok Palace, the Presidential Blue House, the Korean Folk Village, and many others. The majority of guided tour packages include hotel pick-up and drop-off within the city, as well as transportation, lunch, and entrance fees. Besides being educational, the local tour guides will be sharing their knowledge of Seoul's culture and history with the tourists.
10 Day 3: Seoul Street Food Walking Tour
How Seoul has a Street Food Walking Tour suggests that their gastronomy is also a major draw for travelers, with everything from BBQ ribs to sandwiches and pancakes. Some companies offer guided street food tours with local guides. The primary street food area of Seoul is located in Myeongdong near the Namdaemun Market, so if tourists desire a more challenging excursion, they can do it on their own. Tourists may also discover tasty kalguksu and galchi jorim in Namdaemun Market, which is also the greatest place to grab a bite.
9 Day 4: Jeonju City – First Day
Jeonju is the origin of the Joseon Dynasty and the popularly known Korean bibimbap, a staple cuisine of a variety of vegetables, eggs, and rice. Tourists can get to Jeonju through a bus which takes almost 3 hours, the same as the train ride. Jeonju boasts its more authentic Hanok Maeul featuring narrow alleys and classic wooden cottages lining the historic center of the city. Additionally, Jeonju has the added benefit of being the country's gastronomic center, formerly designated a UNESCO city of cuisine with rice wine and soju museum.
8 Day 5: Jeonju City – Second Day
Tourists can visit the Gyeonggijeon Shrine, which is rich in history and contains royal portraits and displays, to see more of Jeonju's attractions. Tourists can also dress up and get a chance to snap a photo with the traditional Hanbok in the shrine. The Omada Viewpoint, which offers a beautiful view of Jeonju Hanok Village, is also a popular place. Additionally, the Jaman mural village, which has a little town feel to it and features local street art, is also a must-see.
7 Day 6: Busan – First Day
The cheapest bus travel from Jeonju to Busan would take three hours, whereas the train ride would take two hours. Because it is remote from the bustling cities, Busan is known as South Korea's second city and offers travelers a more leisurely tour. Beaches, temples near the cliffs, hot springs, and a variety of markets give the city a more traditional feel. The weather in Busan is often pleasant for day trips to the beach, and Haeundae, along with Gwangan Beach, is one of the most popular destinations for seafood eateries.
6 Day 7: Busan – Second Day
The world-famous Haedong Yonggung Temple nestled along the steep cliffs of Busan’s south coast is a perfect attraction to complete a Busan trip. It is a Buddhist temple that was built in 1376 and a great place to spend especially during early mornings. Jimjilbang is also a must-visit to feel more relaxed, it is a traditional and affordable spa that features a sauna and hot spring with a napping room. A spa treatment is a perfect way to start a Jeju Island Trip.
5 Day 8: Jeju Island – First Day
Tourists can arrange a direct flight from Busan to Jeju Island, which takes about three hours. Taking a bus to other airports is another alternative, and the ferry voyage takes 9 to 10 hours. Jeju is the ideal place to end a visit to South Korea because it is a peaceful island paradise for travelers. The island is well-known for its clean air and natural charms, making it a popular destination for both tourists and locals alike. Tourists can start their day in Jeju by renting an electric car to conveniently stroll around the island. After that, head to Hello Kitty Island which features a café, exhibit hall, gift store, and theatre.
4 Day 9: Jeju Island – Second Day
Because Jeju is home to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites, travelers will have a wide range of options for the second-day excursion. Mt. Hallasan, the country's highest peak, may be reached on a full-day excursion from the Island. After the trek, tourists can explore the lava tunnels and caves that lay beneath the peak's crest. The Jeju Olle Trail, which takes five to six hours to complete and brings hikers past rock formations, tea fields, and waterfalls, is one of the most popular trails in Jeju.
3 Day 10: Jeju Island – Last Day
Tourists can enjoy and rest in the top spa hotels on the island, one of which is the Jeju Sauna & Spa Home of Wellbeing, to complete their island getaway in Jeju. Volcanic therapies and locally produced Innisfree cosmetics are available as part of a variety of spa treatments. Aside from it, visitors can visit the Chocolate Museum and the Jeju National Museum, as well as other museums on the island. Visitors can also end their journey in Jeju by shopping for souvenirs and eating street food at Dongmun Market.
2 Day 11: Daegu
On day 11, visitors to South Korea can head to Daegu, where they can kick off their day with unlimited free pastries and coffee at Schumann and Clara. People can have fun and spend the day in the city or hike up to Apsan Park. This is where they can admire, from the deck at the top, the panoramic sunset views over Daegu and the countryside.
1 Day 12: Gyeongju
The Silla Dynasty can be found in this iconic South Korean city. History buffs will appreciate visiting Gyeongju, as well as foodies. This is where they can explore the ancient manmade hill tombs, Daereungwon Tumuli Park, filled with gold and jewels. It's also worth checking out Cheomaeongdae Tower and Wolji Pond. Visitors to Gyeongju must also try the delicious ssambap meal and the Hwangnam dessert. Other places to explore in Gyeongju include the Gyeongju National Museum and the Golgulsa Temple.