CLASSIC BLEND IN KOREA OVERVIEW
Taste the best of this fascinating country with our luxury Classic Blend In Korea itinerary. Enjoy nine experience-packed days while you explore Gyeongju, Busan, Jeju and even a touch of Gangnam style in Seoul! Go on a shopping spree in Seoul, explore the lush countryside and marvel at the panorama of brand new skyscrapers built alongside ancient herbal medicine shops.
Arrive in Korea’s bustling capital, Seoul, and check in to one of our two recommended luxury hotels, either the Conrad Seoul or the Four Seasons Hotel Seoul. Visit the Gyeongbok palace, the largest and grandest of the city’s famous Five Grand Palaces. Gyeongbok palace translates to “greatly blessed by heaven,” and when you set eyes on its splendor, it’s easy to see why. Built in 1394 and restored after a war with Japan, this palace is in its original style. A beautiful collection of both modern and ancient art is housed at the Leeum Samsung Museum. New and old are positioned to create a sense of harmony in the museum. The trip won’t be complete without a perusal of the traditional Korean Gwangjang Market. The First permanent market with 100 years of tradition in Korea. In the evening, people are always bustling in the korean pancakes shop, which is cheap and friendly also, goes after a lively until late.
The DMZ has been the most popular tourist destination in Korea for foreigners since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. This morning, set off to see the DMZ, or Korea’s Demilitarized Zone, which functions as a buffer between North Korea and South Korea. The line is drawn at the 38th parallel north and runs for 250 km. This border barrier has kept the peace since the end of the Korean War in 1953. During your visit to the site, you’ll also get the opportunity to see Korea’s Freedom Bridge, which runs next to, but not over, the Imjingak River. Explore the underground tunnels and learn how each side has developed strategies to defend their territory as well as prepare themselves in the event of the need for offensive force. Your tour will take you through a number of security check points, including the Joint-Security Area, or JSA, where you will be able to view North Korean soldiers protecting their border. Return to Seoul this evening.
Today, go on a curated culinary tour of Seoul. Food is intrinsic to the Korean identity and, contrary to popular opinion, many of the dishes are very accessible to foreigners. An expert epicurean will escort you through your culinary adventure, as you masticate your way through exciting locales, ranging from traditional fish markets to upscale Korean dining destinations. Cap the night off with a private boat cruise along the Han River.
For Koreans, alcohol is a lifelong companion in times of sorrow and joy. Korean people have enjoyed making their own liquor from healthy ingredients since ancient times. Traditional liquor is often called yakju (약주), literally meaning “medicinal alcohol,” as light to moderate alcohol use is believed to have health benefits and is offered from one person to another as a way to cherish friendships.
Explore the Boseong Green Tea fields on your way to Jeonju. These almost alien-green fields are famous for the tealeaves they produce. Spend the morning hiking, biking, or simply cruising past these stellar vistas (especially in the springtime). Cap-off your experience with a visit to the green tea sauna, a rare experience for foreigners and a revitalizing experience for your skin. The night will conclude in Yeosu, the southern city featuring a breathtaking coastline.
This morning, head to Busan, the country’s second-largest metropolis, and check into your room at the Paradise Hotel Busan. Once settled in, take some time to get acquainted with the city. Start by reveling in architectural wonder at the Beomeo-sa Temple. Located at the bottom of the iconic Geumjeong-gu Mountain, this temple was created by a monk in the 7th century. Relax at the Dongnae Hot Spring Spa and continue the peaceful pampering whilst lying on Haeundae Beach.
Tucked away on the northeastern side of Busan Mountain, the Yonggungsa Temple is one of the few Buddhist temples located on the coast. Savor freshly-caught fish from the Jagalchi Fish Market. The market is Korea’s largest fish market and offers an astounding selection of seafood. Look for exotic birds along the Nakdong River, South Korea’s longest river.
After breakfast, you’ll be on your way to Jeju today finally. Jeju is an island province situated in Korea Strait and is blessed with a temperate climate. Break out into the mountain air and stretch your legs as you climb Mount Halla. The ancient shield volcano provides incredible panoramas of the surrounding national park. Put on your hard hat as you discover the Manjanggul Lava Tube Caves. The tube is just under 25,000 feet long, one of the longest in the world. See ancient island living at it’s finest as you visit the traditional village before calling it a full day. Return to your luxury hotel, we recommend the Podo Hotel.
For your final day of your Classic Blend In Korea itinerary, you’ll visit a 590-foot-high volcanic crater. The Ilchulbong volcanic crater presents an incredible view and isn’t a difficult hike to the top. End your trip with one final glance of Korean culture at the Jeju Haenyeo Museum. Say goodbye to South Korea as your check out of your hotel and check in for your international flight to your onwards destination.