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48 Hours in Seoul – The place to Go, What to Do

With films, music, meals choices and extra, South Korea continues to develop more and more fashionable with travellers heading to Asia, with many choosing the mega-city of Seoul to expertise a style of what this fascinating nation has to supply. 

Seoul is an interesting metropolis to enterprise by way of, with the choices of its huge metropolis sprawl catering to all; from buying, to eating places, and even mountains throughout the metropolis to traverse. It might probably all get a bit overwhelming if you happen to haven’t deliberate forward! With that thoughts, we requested our Korea Regional Specialist, Matt, to inform us one of the best ways to spend 48 hours in Seoul, together with the the stuff you merely should strive whilst you’re within the capital. 

48 hours in Seoul

Day 1

When beginning with any capital metropolis, it’s necessary to get a flavour of the historical past – and Seoul actually has that on provide! 

Begin by heading to Gwanghwamun, an extended well-known stretch of street and residential to 2 iconic statues of King Sejong the Nice and Admiral Yi Solar-shin. King Sejong, a reputation that you could be hear ceaselessly all through the length of your keep, is taken into account one of the necessary figures in Korean historical past for his invention of Hangeul, the Korean writing system.  

Proceed progressing additional down Gwanghwamun till you attain Gyeongbok Palace. For those who’ve timed it proper, you ought to be there to see the altering of the palace guards that happens each day at 10 am. After that, you may enterprise into the palace, however why not do it in type? Within the areas on both facet of Gyeongbok Palace are quite a lot of hanbok rental outlets, the standard Korean formal put on. Not solely will you look beautiful as you wander the grounds, however you may then additionally enterprise into all of Seoul’s palaces freed from cost! Simply keep in mind to not get too snug, as you’ll have to discover time take it again earlier than the agreed deadline. 

48 hours in Seoul

When you end perusing the palace, head to the east exit and to Bukchon Hanok Village, an space of winding streets crammed with tea homes, treats and conventional buildings (hanoks), ultimate for getting these scenic photographs that seamlessly mix the outdated with the brand new.  

Meandering southwards ought to see you stroll in the direction of Insadong and the numerous outlets on provide there. For those who’re on the lookout for your normal souvenirs, this might be the place to search out them. Nonetheless, there are many Ssamziegil, a collection of shops spiralling upwards providing crafts, items and small cafes. This contains one close to the summit that’ll have you ever reaching for the bathroom bowl… No significantly, it’s a poop-inspired cafe known as Ddong Café! 

After spending your financial savings on souvenirs for these again dwelling, it’s time to proceed your journey, heading eastwards barely in the direction of Jogyesa Temple. Sometimes, that is the place New 12 months is rung in on December thirty first however, for a considerably hotter and crowd pleasing show, time your go to for Might and it’s possible you’ll get to witness a whole bunch of dazzling lanterns to rejoice the birthday of Buddha. 

Heading additional south will ultimately carry you again to Myeongdong, the place you could find a ton of outlets, malls, road distributors and eating places. One explicit institution price investigating is Myeongdong Kyoja Kalguksu, an inexpensive, Michelin-star restaurant specialising in knife noodles (kalguksu) in a rooster broth, with dumplings and grilled floor pork. No reservations can be found right here, so it’s a case of getting there early and ready in line. 

48 hours in Seoul

After filling up on meals, head south of Myeongdong in the direction of the cable automobile station. Right here, you may journey as much as the summit of Namsan mountain to the enduring Seoul N Tower for round 16,000 Gained return. Upon arriving on the base of the tower, there are a selection of choices forward of you. Be at liberty to soak up the Seoul metropolis skyline from there, or head as much as the observatory deck for an extra price to get a fair clearer view.  

For those who’re unsure on the visibility from up there, merely verify the color of the tower at evening, as a result of it displays the air high quality and thus ought to provide you with a great indicator. Inexperienced is sweet, yellow ought to nonetheless be okay, and crimson signifies that it’s greatest to remain on the backside. For those who can’t see it, then both the visibility may be very unhealthy or it’s closed!

You’ll have additionally seen the ‘padlocks of affection’ across the foot of the tower, and you can also place your individual if you happen to so select. Padlocks can be found within the Namsan reward store however, for these considering forward, cheaper ones can be found in Myeongdong. After you end trying over it’s time to go again down, both through cable automobile once more or one of many buses that head into town. 

Day 2

Whereas 48 hours will not be lengthy sufficient to squeeze in a go to to the DMZ, there are actually strong choices relating to understanding a troublesome interval in Korea’s historical past. The Nationwide Struggle Museum close to Samgakji station Exit 12 is an interesting and sombre exploration of Korea’s previous, with flooring devoted to early historical past, their interval of occupation and the Korean Struggle that brutally divided the nation into the north and south it’s now referred to. 

48 hours in Seoul

After a few hours within the museum, head north on Line 4 to Dongdaemun – or, if you happen to completed sooner than anticipated, Dongdaemun Historical past and Tradition Park on the station earlier than. On the Historical past and Tradition Park you will see that the Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP). Previously a baseball stadium, it was transformed within the early noughties right into a hub of artwork, design and vogue. Whilst you might not have time for all of that, it’s actually price having a peruse inside. In right here, you’ll discover small craft outlets from native artists and retailers – a singular memento of your time right here.  

Barely north is Dongdaemun, and it’s right here you could find indoor markets, good for garments buying on a price range. Enterprise eastwards by way of the choices that Dongdaemun offers and onto Gwangjang Meals Market. Right here you’ll discover an abundance of road distributors lined below one roof serving up a number of the most scrumptious snacks Seoul has to supply.  

Take a while right here to pattern just a few choices, particularly a number of the extra well-known snacks resembling mung bean pancakes (bindaetteok), fish cake soup (eomukguk) and dumplings (mandu). Do carry money, nonetheless. Whereas there are lots of distributors that do take card, most deal solely in money or financial institution switch.  

After filling up, head south of the river on line 3 from close by Euljiro 3-ga station, to the Specific Bus Terminal. Whilst you will not be leaving town but, from right here it’s quickest to stroll to Han River Park subsequent to Banpo Bridge. Merely depart the station at exit 8-1 and head straight till you attain the nook with the overpass. Flip proper right here and preserve strolling till you attain the park space. As soon as on the park, be happy to have a look round. There are bike rental shops simply as you enter the park to your proper or just a few cafes and eating places on SEBITSEOM Floating Islands. No matter you select, although, ensure to be inside view of the bridge as nightfall attracts close to. 

Banpo Bridge is a two-tiered bridge crossing the River Han, with the decrease tier usually turning into submerged throughout Korea’s wet season. Nonetheless, you might be right here for greater than the structure as this bridge can be dwelling to the Moonlight Rainbow Fountain, a fountain and light-weight present that takes place each evening between April and October. The fountains begin each half hour from 7:30 pm and run till 9:30 pm. 

Venturing again northwards on line 3, spherical your evening off in Seoul with a go to to Ikseondong Hanok Village. Whereas this assortment of transformed hanoks, tightly knitted collectively by way of sprawling alleys is crammed stuffed with vacationers through the day, a go to at evening ought to make for a much less nerve-racking and extra distinctive expertise. Depart at Jogno 3-ga station exit 6, flip proper again in the direction of the crossroads after which left into the village. You’ll first be greeted by a big collection of Korean BBQ eating places grilling lengthy into the evening. If you’re starting to rediscover your urge for food, why not take this as your alternative to strive considered one of Korea’s hottest dishes? Many of those locations are of excellent high quality, so discover a restaurant with a desk and get caught in! 

Cocktail bar in Seoul

Lastly, end your 48 hours in Seoul at one of many few trendy hanok bars or cafes Ikseon-dong has to supply. Aledang is a private favorite, with its relaxed indoor courtyard and inexpensive collection of craft beers. Nonetheless, if this isn’t your factor, then just a few doorways down is the well-known Nakwon Station Cafe, an aesthetic hanok cafe with rail tracks operating by way of the center of it, providing a collection of high quality espresso and desserts to assist spherical off your keep in Korea’s capital. 

If Seoul sounds just like the place for you, then you definately’re in luck! The Dragon Journey visits Seoul on all of our Korea excursions. Go to our web page right here to search out out extra!


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