10 Walking Places in Seoul That Will Heal Your Soul
In the middle of the busy city of Seoul with highways full of traffic, there are still peaceful areas that contain many interesting things just for pedestrians. Follow our steps to explore 10 famous walking areas in Seoul! 👣
If you are living/travelling in Seoul and wanna find a space to calm your soul after all your busy schedules, then let’s take a look at these 10 locations!
1. INSA-DONG AREA
Insa-dong stretches from Jongno-2-ga to Anguk-dong intersection and is located in the heart of Seoul. Along this lovely street are shops built in ancient Korean style with wood and ceramics as the main materials and in front of them are charming row of trees. The shops even go inside small alleys, they are close to each other and sell everything from antiques to souvenirs, pictures, books and even snacks.
The Insa-dong area is must-go place to any tourist visiting Seoul because of the bustle and hundreds of attractions here. In addition to the attractive shops, tea houses, café, and restaurants, you can also explore the unique cultural features that combine the tradition and modernity of South Korea.
2. DEOKSUGUNG DOLDAM-GIL
Nothing is more relaxing than strolling around the streets of Seoul when traveling to South Korea, especially when it is autumn time. One of the best walking locations to admire the beautiful scenery of Seoul is the romantic paved path of Deoksugung Doldam- gil. With the length of 900 meters, this road follows the stone wall surrounding Deoksu Palace.
When autumn comes, the vibrant yellow color of the ginkgo tree leaves adorns the romantic atmosphere of the path. Walking on this road, visitors will encounter many buildings with architecture that blends tradition and modernity, creating more interesting highlights for your walk.
3. CHEONGGYECHEON STREAM
Cheonggyecheon Stream is nearly 6km in length, bending itself softly like a silk ribbon in the heart of the capital with a very poetic beauty. The stream is also the place chosen for many special festivals, especially the spring and summer festivals that take place from March to May every year. The most outstanding is the lantern festival, when the stream is filled with countless colorful lanterns shimmering and drifting on the water. The road along the stream is an ideal dating place for many couples and also a favorite strolling and exercising location of Seoul citizens.
4. SEOKCHON LAKE
If you want to find a place to walk under cherry blossoms during spring time in Seoul, Seokchon Lake is a great choice! Visitors not only can see the cherry blossoms blooming in beautiful pinkish color, but also participate in the jubilant atmosphere of the cherry blossom festival held every year here.
If you are tired of the bustling sounds of the city and want to find a peaceful hide-away, then Samcheong-dong is the perfect destination for you! The small neighborhood has a completely different vibe. Samcheong-dong is also famous as a “hipster” neighborhood with many new cafes and restaurants with unique and quirky styles.
6. BUKCHON HANOK VILLAGE
This traditional village gathers many old Hanok houses that have been preserved for more than 600 years. Each road and alley in the village are imprinted with ancient relics over the history. If you want to seek a peaceful space to learn more about the traditional beauty of the Korean culture, then Bukchon village is a great destination. The village is also known as a popular place for taking photos with Hanbok.
Despite being one of the oldest neighborhoods in central Seoul, along with Jonggak, Myeong-dong, Dongdaemun and Gwanghwa-mun, in the past Ikseon-dong was not very well-known to tourists. However recently, Ikseon-dong has suddenly become an attractive location for both visitors and local young people. The reason is that many young artists and entrepreneurs started to come here to open restaurants, cafes, and unique craft shops with unique vintage styles.
After the drama “Mr. Sunshine” became famous, vintage fashion of the 1920s became a trend among youngsters in Korea. Ikseondong has become a hot location with many shops selling, renting and tailoring retro-styled costumes. The area also serves as a perfect background for taking photos with this type of clothing.
8. HAN RIVER
If you want to relax, breathe in the fresh air while admiring the shimmering night views of Seoul at night, then Han River is an ideal place for you. Along the banks of the Han River are green parks and walkways built for people to exercise, walk, and entertain … Some of the famous attractions around the Han River are: Banpo water bridge, Yeouido island, Haneul Park and Lotte 63-storey building. In the summer, the parks along Han River become popular locations for people to go camping, picnic or just enjoying the fresh breeze.
9. GYEONGBOKGUNG PALACE
National Palace Museum of Korea and the National Folk Museum are also located within the premises of the complex. The Palace, with its beautiful architecture and scenery, is also a perfect and popular background for taking photos with Hanbok. Gyeongbokgung Palace attracts tourists not only for its architectural heritage, but also for its beautiful gardens with many beautiful types of plants, especially cherry blossoms.
💡 Join this walking tour that take you to Gyeongbokgung and more! (free snapshots and Hanbok rental included)
10. BONGEUNSA TEMPLE
Bongeunsa Temple is an ideal stop for you to find peace and indulge yourself in harmony with nature. Bongeunsa Temple is a temple with a thousand-year-old history located right in the heart of the bustling Gangnam area of Seoul. Even so, the temple seems to be completely separate from all the noisy and modern surroundings
Do you know any other great locations for a little stroll in Seoul? When do you think is the best season for walking in Seoul?
Share your ideas with us by commenting below! 🥰👣
10 Must-buy Souvenirs That Best Reflect Korean Culture
South Korea attracts tourists not only by its poetic natural landscape, but also by its unique culture with a great variety of art forms and cuisine. So, what are the gifts and specialties that contain the essence of Korean culture that you should definitely buy as souvenirs? 🤔
In the following article, let us recommend 10 specialties that will always remind you about the unique culture of this beautiful country. Let’s explore together!
1. HALLYU RELATED PRODUCTS
If you are a fan of the Korean entertainment industry, including music (Kpop) or television series (K-Drama), then of course Korea is your paradise! There are countless shops in big cities like Seoul selling all kinds of K-Pop related products such as posters, paintings, t-shirts and thousands of other favorite idol items.
In addition to regular shops, there are also exclusive stores of “giants” in the entertainment industry such as SM Entertainment’s COEX SMTOWN. This is a place where fans will get lost in the souvenir world of artists managed by the company.
💡 If you are a hardcore K-pop fan, check out this awesome K-pop Tour for JYP, SM and also BTS fans!
2. GINSENG AND GINSENG PRODUCTS
Did you know that besides Korean high-class cosmetics, the secret to beauty and health of Korean people also comes from ginseng?
Ginseng is an herb and traditional medicine with a very high nutritional value that has been used by Koreans for thousands of years to improve, enhance health and resistance of the body. Ginseng as well as other products made from ginseng (tea, supplements, snacks…) are valuable gifts for your family, especially for the elders.
💡 Make your own Korean Ginseng Beauty Tea at this 1 day class!
3. KOREAN TRADITIONAL LIQUOR
The history of traditional Korean liquor dates back to the Goryeo Dynasty and the Joseon era (1392-1910). To this day, there are an approximately 1,000 or more types of alcoholic drinks in Korea. Most are made from fermented rice but fruits, flowers, herbs and other natural ingredients have also been used manufacture traditional Korean alcoholic beverages. Among those, Soju is definitely the most popular one, with many different brands, flavors and packaging styles that you can choose from. Beside Soju, Makgeolli (milky rice wine) and fruit wines such as Maesilju (plum wine) are also loved by many people due to their sweet, delicious flavor.
(Image courtesy: visitkorea.or.kr)
💡 Learn how to make your own Korean traditional rice wine Makgeolli with us~
4. KOREAN SEAWEED
As one of the indispensable ingredients in every Korean meal, seaweed will be an attractive specialty for your loved ones. Well-processed dried Korean seaweed can be made into many delicious delicacies that can be eaten with rice. Roasted and seasoned dried seaweed can be used as a healthy snack!
5. KOREAN RICE CAKE
Tteok is a traditional Korean rice cake made from glutinous rice flour, associated with the cultural tradition as well as daily the life of the people here. These beautiful little rice cakes will be the perfect gift for your loved ones, especially the children.
💡 Join an interesting class on how to make Korean rice cake!
6. MOTHER-OF-PEARL CRAFTED SOUVENIRS
Najeonchilgi, or Korean mother-of-pearl craft is a method in which colorful pieces of thinly processed seashells are inlaid on an object, often made of black painted wood. This Korean traditional decorative art has a 2,000-year heritage. After being decorated with mother-of-pearl, the products will have sophisticated and dazzling colors that cannot be created artificially.
Najeonchilgi decoration is often found in old-style Korean furniture such as wardrobes, cabinets, and tables. You can also find delicate and small ornaments inlaid with mother-of-pearl like hand mirrors, combs, hair brooches sold as souvenirs.
💡 Even better, how about a mother-of-pearl souvenir handmade by yourself?
7. KOREAN CHOPSTICKS
Similar to China, Japan, and many other Asian countries, Koreans also use chopsticks in their daily meals. The special things are that they always use them at the same time with a spoon. There are many types of chopsticks made from different materials, serving different purposes and dishes. Besides simple, cheap chopsticks that can be purchased anywhere, traditional stores also sell chopsticks sets made from high-quality materials and exquisitely decorated to use as souvenirs or decorations.
💡 Make a luxury personalized chopstick and spoon set by yourself!
8. SOUVENIRS MADE OF HANJI
Hanji is the traditional paper making art in Korea. Hanji is used in many different ways to decorate and create traditional housewares. You can find lamps, fans, calligraphy scrolls, cards, umbrellas and even hanji clothes. A popular hanji gift idea is small storage boxes made from hundreds of layers of Korean thin paper.
9. INGREDIENTS FOR MAKING KIMCHI
If you love the taste of Korean kimchi and intend to make kimchi at home to eat gradually, why not try buying authentic kimchi ingredients? The basic ingredients can be purchased are chili flakes, shrimp powder, fish sauce… You can stop by Namdaemun Market, which sells all the ingredients to make Korean kimchi. Your family meal will be more delicious with kimchi dish that you make by yourself.
💡 But first, you should learn how to make perfect Kimchi from Korean experts!
10. KOREAN TEA
South Korea is famous for its traditional tea-drinking culture, so the teas here are prepared and packed with sophisticated and eye-catching designs, which is the most suitable gift for the elderly and those who like to enjoy tea. Besides the common types of tea such as green tea and black-tea, there are also many other types of “tea” that are made from fruits, flowers and herbs.
Which of these souvenirs that you want to take home? Do you know where to buy them?
If you have any question on where and how to buy these products, feel free to ask us by commenting below! 😁
5 Best Cherry Blossom Festivals in korea
Among many spring festivals with different themes in Korea, Cherry Blossom festivals are always the most expected events, obviously because cherry blossom is considered the queen of spring 🌸 Check out the best 5 Korean cherry blossoms for your Spring bucket list!
P.S. Unfortunately, all the festivals mentioned below have already been canceled this year due to the Coronavirus pandemic situation. 🙁 But you can still put them in your bucket list for the next Spring! 😀
1. JINHAE GUNHANGJE CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
- Period: March 27 ~ April 6 (2020 festival canceled)
- Location: Jinhae-gu, Changwon-si, Gyeongsangnam-do
Jinhae Cherry Blossom Festival is considered to be the biggest and most well-known spring festival in Korea. The festival will be organized during 10 days from the end of March to early April – when more than 350,000 cherry blossoms trees will fully bloom. Two of the top attractions during the festival are the 800-meter long tunnel of cherry blossom lined up on two sides of the railroad by Gyeonghwa Station, and the 1.5-kilometer flower streams which can be perfect backgrounds for your spring photo-shoots.
To get to Jinhae from Seoul or other cities, you can take the public train or bus. However, in order to go to the festival locations, you might need to take some transferring trips and it might be confusing. If you do not want to think too much about transportation, then booking a private shuttle bus tour is a convenient alternative option!
💡 Visiting Jinhae Cherry Blossom Festival conveniently by shuttle bus from Seoul!
2. GYEONGJU CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
- Period: April 5 ~ April 7 (2020 festival canceled)
- Location: Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
Gyeongju was the ancient capital of Korea under the Shilla dynasty, hence it is also one of the biggest historical sites in the country. Therefore, if you visit this city during springtime, you can also visit a lot of Korean historical sites besides Cherry Blossom sightseeing.
Along with the spectacular view of cherry blossoms in full bloom near Bomun Lake and Gyeongju Historic UNESCO area, there will be many interesting community events and activities such as orchestra, busking performances, and sports competitions. Among these, the most important and popular event is the Gyeongju Cherry Blossom Marathon, which attracted more than 1500 foreign participants in 2018.
💡 Enjoy the historical sites and cherry blossoms of Gyeongju with this 1 day shuttle bus package from Busan!
3. JEJU CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
- Period: the end of March (2020 festival canceled)
- Location: Seogwipo, Jeju-do
Due to the island’s special climate, the cherry blossoms on Jeju island – which are called King Cherry Blossoms – have larger petals and more vivid color than the normal type of cherry blossoms in the other parts Korea. The King Cherry trees in full bloom across Seogwipo’s downtown area and nearby Jeju Sports Complex create an especially beautiful landscape that attracts thousands of visitors every spring season.
Along with the spectacular scenery, interesting activities such as traditional music and modern dance performances as well as singing contests will also be held. Besides the light pink color of cherry blossoms, visitors can also enjoy the scene of the vibrant yellow canola flower fields that also bloom at the same time!
💡 Visit the best photo spots on Jeju island in Spring with this Jeju Island Spring Flowers 1day Shuttle Bus Package!
4. SEOKCHON LAKE CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
- Period: April 5 ~ April 12 (2020 festival canceled)
- Location: Songpa-gu, Seoul
Seokchon Lake Cherry Blossom Festival will take place inside the areas of Seokchon Lake in Seoul. The unique scenery of Lotte World Tower and Magic Island combined with the color of cherry blossoms creates such a perfect dating spot for couples and friends. The festival also features music performances, singing contests, flea markets, food trucks, and many other interesting experience programs so that visitors can have many things to do besides flower-watching.
💡 Enjoy the magical scenery of Lotte World in Spring with DISCOUNT Lotte World Ticket!
5. GYEONGPO CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
- Period: early to mid-April(2020 festival canceled)
- Location: Gyeongpo-ro, Gangneung-si, Gangwon-do
The Gyeongpo Cherry Blossom Festival is held in the center of the Gyeongpodae Pavilion in Gangneung – one of the host cities for the 2018 Winter Olympic – when the cherry blossoms trees along the 4.3 km trail around Gyeongpo Lake are in full bloom. Various cultural activities and flower displays will be held during the festival along with the backdrop of the stunning cherry blossom flowers.
💡 Let us take you on a romantic Spring tour to Gyeongpo Lake and other famous spots in Gangneung!
Do you also love cherry blossom like we do?
Share your favorite place to watch cherry blossoms by leaving a comment below~🌸
5 Korean Spring Festivals 2020 – that prove spring is not only about cherry blossom
Surely the most expected thing about spring in Korea is cherry blossoms in full bloom. But don’t you know that beside cherry blossoms festivals, there are many other interesting spring festivals with different themes in Korea that you can enjoy?
For this upcoming spring, we would like to introduce to you some alternative choices of spring events that you can go for, if you are already a little bit bored of the popular cherry blossoms festivals!
P.S. Some of the festivals mentioned below have already been canceled this year due to the Corona virus pandemic situation. 🙁 But you can still put them in your bucket list for the next Spring! 😀
1. GWANGYANG MAEHWA FESTIVAL
- Period: 2020 festival canceled
- Location: Seomjin Village in Jeollanam-do
Gwangyang International Maehwa Festival is held in the middle of March at a village called Seomjin, home to Korea’s largest number of plum blossom trees. During this time of the year, the plum blossoms (maehwa in Korean) cover the mountains and the riverbanks with their pure white color which creates a mesmerizing scenery. Visitors can enjoy a stroll under the plum blossoms as well as sample and buy local organic products made from plum. The festival also includes many interesting programs such as fashion shows, cooking shows, and busking performances.
💡 Catching up the very first Spring Festivals in Korea with the Gwangyang Maehwa and Gurye Sansuyu Festivals 1 Day Tour
2. GURYE SANSUYU FESTIVAL
- Period: 2020 festival canceled
- Location: Gurye-gun, Jeollanam-do
Along with Gwangyang Maehwa Festival, Gurye Sansuyu Festival is another mainspring flower festival that represents Jeollanam Province. The festival takes place in the Jirisan Mountain hot springs area. For Korean people, sansuyu (cornelian cherry flower) is considered as the messenger of spring because it is the first spring flower to bloom in its brilliant yellow color. Main programs of the festival include an exhibition of local products made from sansuyu fruits, experience programs as well as traditional music and dance performances.
💡 Catching up the very first Spring Festivals in Korea with the Gwangyang Maehwa and Gurye Sansuyu Festivals 1 Day Tour
3. TAEAN MAGNOLIA FESTIVAL AND TAEAN TULIP FESTIVAL
- Period: April 13 – April 27 (Magnolia Festival) / April 14 – May 11, 2020 (Tulip festival)
- Location: Taean-gun, Chungcheongnam-do
Taean is a county in Chungcheongnam-do, South Korea which is famous all over the country for its sandy beaches as well as colorful spring flowers festivals. Taean World Tulip Summit is considered to be one of the TOP 5 most beautiful tulip festivals in the world. Every year, the festival presents more than 1.5 million tulips in the shapes of different famous world landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower, Egyptian Pyramid or The Netherlands’ windmill. Besides the famous tulip festival, Taean is also home to a festival dedicated to celebrating the poetic beauty of magnolia: Taean Magnolia Festival. The festival is held annually at Cheollipo Arboretum in Taean – one of Asia’s best botanical institutions with approximately 14,000 different species of plants, including more than 400 types of magnolia species.
💡 Celebrate Spring with Taean Magnolia Festival, Mallipo Beach and sweet taste of strawberries freshly picked from the farm!
💡 Check out the famous Taean Tulip Festival 2020 with this convenient day tour package!
4. JINDO MIRACLE SEA ROAD FESTIVAL
- Period: 2020 festival canceled
- Location: Jindo-gun, Jeollanam-do
Once a year on Jindo Island in Jeollanam Province, the sea water mysteriously splits and people can walk through the sea from the main island to a smaller island nearby. The event is considered the Korean version of Moses’ miracle. The Jindo Miracle Sea Road Festival takes place at the same time as this phenomenon. Visitors will enjoy walking along the sea path, collecting abalone and other enjoyable activities that make up the program of the festival. The sea parting’s stunning sight is widely known by so many Korean people as well as international visitors that every year, about half a million people flock from around the world just to see this amazing event.
💡 Come to Jindo Island and witness the sea miraculously parting in front of your eyes!
5. BOSEONG GREEN TEA FESTIVAL
- Period: May 1-5, 2020
- Location: Boseong-gun, Jeollanam-do
You know Spring is absolutely not all about them flowers! Spring is also the best time to harvest green tea, as well as the perfect time to visit those lush green tea fields with spectacular view around the country.
Boseong is considered the birthplace of Korea tea industry and is also the largest green tea hub in the country. Boseong Green Tea Festival is held every May in Boseong Tea Plantation – which was listed on “31 Beautiful Sights on This Incredible Planet” by CNN, USA. During this Green Tea Festival, you can enjoy various food, hands-on experience programs, performance, events and also a lot of traditional cultural activities.
💡 Spring is the best time to visit Boseong Tea Field in Korea!