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Top Ten Things to Do in Korea

Top Ten Things to Do in Korea

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Published by M.G. Edwards
A list of top ten things to do if you're visiting South Korea.
A list of top ten things to do if you're visiting South Korea.

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Published by: M.G. Edwards on Mar 09, 2012
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11/04/2012

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© 2012 Brilliance Press. All rights reserved.
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T
OP
T
EN
T
HINGS TO
D
O IN
K
OREA
 
By M.G. Edwards
Here’s a list of the top ten things you should do if 
you visit South Korea. These suggestions arebased on my experience when I lived in Seoul.The activities will give you a good taste of whatKorea has to offer. My ranking is based on howfun they are and how close they are to Seoul.
1.
 
 Walking tour (Seoul):
Take a walkingtour of  Gyeongbokgung,the royal palace of  Korea's last dynasty, the Joseon.Stop by the Chongwadae,or Blue House, the officialresidence of the South Korean president. Walk along Cheonggyecheon,a canal walk   just two blocks south of Gyeongbokgung off the main thoroughfare downtown, Sejongno.Keep walking a couple blocks south to Seoul'sCity Hall.There aren't many residential orshopping areas in the heart of downtown, but you will feel the pulse of Korea there.2.
 
Shopping (Seoul):
Shop for souvenirs andgood deals at any one of a number of open-airmarkets and shopping districts in Seoul. Themost popular are Namdaemun, Dongdaemun,  Myeongdong,and Insadong.Namdaemun is the most famous and lies near Korea's #1Treasure, Namdaemun Gate.It's your best  bet for Korean souvenirs. For moretraditional arts and crafts, try Insadong.Myeongdong is a trendy shopping area.Dongdaemun is less touristy and a bit off the beaten tourist path.3.
 
Namsan Mountain (Seoul):
Take
 
a cablecar to the top of  Namsan Mountain in the heart of Seoul forsome of the bestpanoramic views of the city. NSeoulTower ismorefunctionalthan
 
© 2012 Brilliance Press. All rights reserved.
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 beautiful but has a great view. Explore the paths inNamsan Park and check out the frequent events heldthere. Then visit nearby  Namsangol Hanok ,a traditional Korean village in Pildong on the north side of the mountain, for a taste of pre-modern Seoul.4.
 
Dining and Entertainment:
The diningand entertainment options in South Koreaare endless. Great Korean food is availablethroughout the country; the bestinternational cuisine is in Seoul and Busan.Try something different than  bulgogi.Have some galbijim (beef ribs),  bibimbap,or spicy  takgogi along with kimchi and other  banchan (side dishes). For vegetarians, dine at a Buddhist restaurant. Wash it down with soju,a Korean rice alcohol that some say tastes like vodka, or  baekseju,a sweet alcohol. Then head out for noraebang(karaoke)and sing  your heart out with friends. Enjoy the nightlife in Hongdae,the bohemian area of Seoul, or trendy  Gangnam.Seoul is a happening place at night. If you're out late and need to refresh yourself, try some haejangguk  (hangover soup) and then head to the chimjilbang  (sauna) to relax.5.
 
Panmunjom / DMZ Tour:
 
Take a tour of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) and the Joint Security Area (JSA) between Northand Seoul Korea. No visit to Korea wouldbe complete without a tour of the
de facto
 border between the two countries. If 
 possible, visit the “Truce Village” of 
Panmunjom and take a bus tour of the NoMan's Land between the two Koreas. Notall foreign nationals are allowed to tourPanmunjom, so check with a tour guideto see if you're allowed to visit.
 6.
 
Korean Folk Village:
Located in Giheung,45 minutes south of Seoul, the Korean Folk  Village  was built for tourists but is arguably the best example of Joseon-era Korean life.The attraction also has a lot of kiddie ridesgreat for children. A fun daytrip from Seoul.7.
 
Seoraksan National Park:
With greathiking and awesome views, Seoraksan is considered by many Koreans to be the most beautiful national park in South Korea. Visita nearby hot springs to relax after a longhike. Seoraksan is not far from other greatdestinations in mountainous GangwonProvince, including Pyeongchang,future site of the 2018 Winter Olympics;  Yongpyong Ski Resort in Pyeongchang, made famous by 
 
© 2012 Brilliance Press. All rights reserved.
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the biggest Korean drama of all time,  WinterSonata;and Odaesan National Park .  8.
 
Busan:
Korea's second largest city and its busiest port, Busan came into its own when it hosted the 2002 Asia Games and 2005  Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit. Stay on the beach in the suburb of Haeundae and try the  bokguk (pufferfish soup) -- if you dare. If not, Busan is famous forits charcoal-grilled bulgogi. The most notableattraction in the area is Beomeosa,a Buddhist temple. It's a daytrip just north of Busan.9.
 
Gyeongju:
Head to Gyeongju,the ancient capital of the Silla Kingdom (57 BC
935 AD).The historic area is full of artifacts, including grassy burial mounds holding the tombs of theSilla kings and the CheomseongdaeObservatory. The area offers beautiful views of the Korean countryside. Numerous Buddhisttemples and statues are hidden in the hills,and the Pacific Ocean is a half hour driveaway.10.
 
Jeju Island:
A large island off the coast of the Korean Peninsula, Jeju Island is beloved  by many Koreans for its beauty, warm weather, interesting rock formations created by  volcanic lava flows, and a local culture unique to Korea. Stay in Jeju City and explore theisland's beaches, parks, and towns in several daytrips.

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