Travel in Seoul; Amazing Places in South Korea
Whether you like to travel for leisure, or simply take a number of business trips, Seoul South Korea is one of the stops along the way that you should take the time to look at properly. It is filled with amazing displays in terms of city landscape and also natural scenery, Seoul is slowly becoming one of the more popular tourist attractions that South Korea has to offer. That's not even considering medical tourism, for which Seoul is one of the leading cities, providing affordable and extremely advanced cosmetic surgery.
Seoul is a bustling city, where skyscrapers dwarf over the nearby towns and yet it still manages to feel clean and spacious. The streets are full of cars, shoppers and tourist, but here you will not feel crowded (unless you are in a party zone or on the underground) as the city has been extremely well thought out. In nearby alleyways, you will find tiny shops and incredible restaurants that sell everything from dried squid to cell phones. The side streets are the best places to explore, as they often throw up the best surprises. What is more, unlike most cities, Seoul is amazingly safe to travel!
If you are looking for things to do while in Seoul South Korea, you might want to visit the Gyeongbok Palace which happens to be South Korea’s most famous palace. As it is located on the Southern end of Seoul’s main boulevard, Sejongro, you could conveniently fly in at any of the numerous South Korea Airports for a quick visit. However, it really is a large place and worth taking a good look at, so you would best give yourself at least an hour or more to explore the grounds and the palace itself. The grounds are truly stunning, especially the area dedicated to the king's mother. You can also pickup guided tours from the nearby subway, as local students that are studying history will be keen to share what they know and to practice their English ... which is actually extremely good. However, even without a guide, it is not a problem to find your way, as this palace has English guides and information. There is also a beautiful coffee shop where you can take a break and recharge, while taking in the views and watching the people go by. When you come out of the Palace entrance, if you turn right, you can head up the street to the main 'art zone'. This area is great, full of Korean paintings, arts and crafts, with galleries, shops and some INCREDIBLE KOREAN RESTAURANTS. The food in this area is some of the best I have tried.
However, it can be quite difficult to carry out your shopping in foreign currency and as such, it is advisable to change any money that you have into South Korean Currency either when you arrive at the airport, or at a nearby bank. There are plenty of exchange bureaus at the South Korea airport - Incheon and all the staff are fluent in English, so getting your cash arranged won't be a challenge.
Major brand name department stores are the places you would want to visit if you want to see the locals drop quite a lot of cash, as it is definitely a 'high image' society here that loves good food and high quality products. For instance 'Shinsegae', a well known department store in the city, has plenty of merchandise for sale, along with many dining options and at the time I was there, even entertainment for the kiddies. In the basement of the department store, you will find local women bustling about purchasing fresh seafood as well as prepared dishes, not to mention that there are huge amounts spent on fashion in this area. South Korea is a place where quality is very high, but thankfully prices are affordable.
While here, there are plenty of native dishes that you should taste. One such dish is the world famous Kimchi. A favored side-dish among Koreans, Kimchi refers to a spicy cabbage dish which is often fermented in large earthen jars that are normally sunk into the ground. Most meals will come with a set of up to 10 side dishes (incredible eh!). Another meal that I personally love is called Cheese Duck Galby ... this is like a spicy chicken curry that is cooked in front of you and has cheese mixed into it, just the thought makes my mouth water.
You could also take your time and relax on the rooftop of the department stores or hotels in the summer, as you can get amazing views while enjoying the weather South Korea has to offer. Be warned though, it can be hot in the summer months. Relaxing on the rooftop of the department store or hotel will normally be amongst a beautiful rooftop garden, and it is a welcome rest from the city’s hubbub on a busy day touring. Combine this with a cold drink and a tasty meal and you have a nice peaceful break for a few hours.
I will look at some other possible nearby destinations in a future hub ....
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