What do you want to do most after COVID-19 is over? According to a survey by the Korea Culture and Tourism Institute, 69.6% of Koreans, or 7 out of 10 people, answered 'travel.' If you’re on this website, chances are you also want to travel to Korea as soon as the pandemic dies down. In this article, we recommend some of the most popular places to visit in Korea and what to enjoy at each destination.
Shopping options are endless at Jamsil. Lotte World Tower, the tallest building in Korea and the sixth tallest building in the world, is home to Lotte Duty Free, the largest shopping mall and mart in Korea. There are also many shopping malls lined up inside Jamsil Subway Station, where you can purchase a variety of products at a reasonable price. In addition, there are plenty of recreational facilities, including Seoul Sky, where you can get a great nighttime view of Seoul, Seokchon Lake, where you can enjoy a walk, and Lotte World, a large amusement park.
Gyeongbokgung is one of the “Five Grand Palaces” of the Joseon Dynasty and is one of Korea’s most iconic cultural heritage sites. If you rent hanbok, you can enter for free. The palace grounds are good for taking pretty pictures in the gardens and by the artificial lakes. If you walk along the Gyeongbokgung Dulle-gil of Gwanghwamun Station on Line 5 and Gyeongbokgung Station on Line 3, you can further immerse yourself in the beauty of Korean tradition by visiting such attractions as the National Museum of Contemporary Art and the National Folk Museum.
Songdo, in the city of Incheon, is also a popular destination for foreigners. Thanks to the new planned city built around Central Park, it has a clean, sophisticated, and futuristic look. You can enjoy a variety of photo spots and cafe streets, and it's close to Incheon Airport, so it's a good hangout spot either at the beginning or at the end of your trip.
Busan, often called Korea's 'second capital,' is also rich in things to see and eat. In Haeundae and Gwangalli, you can enjoy the beautiful sea and natural scenery. You can enjoy Busan's unique foods such as pork and rice soup, sashimi, and wheat noodles at the Gukje Market and Jagalchi Market in Nampo-dong. If you’re looking for pretty cafes, we recommend the area of Jeonpo-dong, Seomyeon, in the center of Busan.
Jeju Island, the most popular destination for domestic travel, is also a popular destination for foreigners. Seogwipo, in particular, is an area where the environment is beautifully preserved. You can enjoy the natural scenery at various spots like Seongsan Ilchulbong Peak, the Seopjikoji coastline, and Udo Island. It has a tourist complex with famous hotels, making it a convenient area to travel.
The cities of Gangneung and Sokcho in Gangwon-do are very popular tourist destinations. From the clear blue East Sea to Gyeongpo Lake, Yeongryang Lake, and Seoraksan Mountain, these are beautiful places where the mountains meet the sea. They’re also famous for delicious food such as snow crab, cold raw fish soup, and sweet and sour chicken, so give it a try!
The Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) is a unique tourist destination you can only find in Korea, the world’s sole remaining divided country. About 90% of the tourists who visit the DMZ are foreigners. From the Dora Observatory, you can see North Korea through a telescope. You can also visit Panmunjeom or the Joint Security Area (JSA), the only place where North and South Korean soldiers stand face-to-face, by making a reservation. As this is a military facility, though, there are strict rules to follow.
Gyeongju is a tourist destination known for its various historical and cultural heritage sites. Numerous royal tombs and hanok (traditional houses) allow you to get a feel of Korea's unique culture. You can enjoy various restaurants and cafes on Hwangridan-gil, and you can catch beautiful nighttime views at Donggung, Wolji, and Woljeonggyo Bridge.
Sources: Visit Korea