Last updated: November 2018
This is a country where I would like to live, when I stop being a nomad, maybe I’ll try to settle down here. It did not immediately impress me, but as I discovered more about South Korea, I appreciated it more and more.
A super modern and fascinating country, with a culture that is constantly changing and evolves.
What I like most about the country is the lack of Westerners (although the culture is highly influenced by the American) and the serenity of the place. Koreans despite spending a lot of hours in the office always have energies available to have fun and laughs forgetting stress.
Some of the activities I suggest you plan during a trip to South Korea:
- Visit the ancient royal palaces of the Joseon dynasty.
- Book a guided tour of the “secret garden” in Changgyeonggung Palace.
- Wear an hanbok, the traditional Korean dress and take a selfie around the streets of Seoul or in front of some historic building in the Bukchon or Seochon district.
- Eat something from the delicious Korean cuisine, one of my favorites!
- Try somek, a mixture of beer and soju, a local alcoholic drink.
- If you are not vegetarian, do not miss a Samgyeopsal, the Korean barbecue with pork.
- Visit the bustling university area of Hongdae in Seoul and witness some street performances by some local artist, especially many k-pop bands who are trying to become famous.
- Visit the beautiful national museum, it’s free and it’s a good way to learn something more about South Korea!
- One of my favorite markets is the Noryangjin one. Visit the fish market and take some nice pictures in the old part, in the modern one you can go to eat the delicious sashimi or other food that you can buy there.
- Another famous market to visit is that of Gwangjang, even here you can try some local specialties and take good pictures.
- Climb some beautiful mountains around Seoul or around the country.
- Visit the folk villages with the hanok (the typical Korean houses) of Jeonju or the Hahoe in Andong.
- Take a cheap plane and fly to the volcanic island of Jeju, a beautiful place to explore!
- Visit South Korea when it’s spring with the cherry trees in bloom!
- Try a jjimjilbang, the public bath with a typical Korean sauna.
- Visit the temple on the coast of Yonggungsa, near Busan.
- If you are a cinema enthusiast, take part at the BIFF, the Busan international film festival.
- The temples, like that of Bulguksa, are an unmissable destination for a trip to South Korea!
- Lose yourself in a magical night among the various bars and restaurants scattered throughout the country!
Some info about South Korea:
Capital of South Korea: Seoul.
Population: 50,5 millions
Official language: Korean
Currency: Korean Won
Calling Code for South Korea: +82
South Korea Visa: it depends on your passport, but most of the countries can get it easily on arrival, it’s 90 days in duration and it’s free. The passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of entry into the country.
N.B. Always check before leaving that the rules for obtaining the visa have not changed recently!
Phone and Internet: It is easy to buy a sim card, you can use the wifi service in many hotels and some restaurants. The line is really fast, in the main cities it’s super!
The main tourist destinations of South Korea:
Busan is the second most important city in the country. Similar to Seoul but a little quieter and positioned on the South coast. It is important for its international film festival and has some interesting attractions, such as the fish market, some beautiful temples, mountains and surrounding beaches but above all good food!
Jeju, also known as the “island of the gods”, is the third most famous destination in the country. A beautiful volcanic island rich in natural beauties, such as mountains and waterfalls.
Jeounju, a beautiful city in the central South of the country, rich in history and Korean culture.
Gyeongju, the ancient capital of the Silla dynasty here in South Korea, famous above all for the Bulguksa temple and the Buddhist destination of Seokguram Grotto.
Andong, another peaceful town famous for its picturesque Hahoe folk village.
South Korea, when to go?
South Korea is very hot in summer and very cold in winter.
It is a country that can be visited all year round, if it does not bother you hot nor cold.
The best time is spring from April to June and autumn from September to November. Really good temperatures and fantastic nature colors.
N.B. Lately the weather conditions are changing a lot, so sometimes the seasons are not always as expected!