Experiential Travel Guide of South Korea for Indian Travelers

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Nestled in the southern portion of the Korean peninsula, the nation of South Korea is an underrated treasure that is gaining more international recognition than ever in the current tourism landscape. The country is home to some of the world’s most exquisite and demanding topography. There are numerous awe-inspiring spots to explore in South Korea.

From secluded wilderness areas to bustling urban centers, travelers can encounter diverse cultures and experiences at different intervals throughout the year.

The ultimate guide to South Korea from India

Here’s an extensive guide to what you’ll need to know prior to planning your journey to this thrilling destination, beginning with some of the finest places to visit.

1. Gangwon-do

Gangwon-do, the northeasternmost province in South Korea, is home to a variety of spectacular destinations, including mountainous landscapes, pristine beaches, ski resorts, cable cars, and so forth. Pyeongchang, where the 2018 Winter Olympics were hosted, has made accessing the province easier. The eastern part is home to Seoraksan National Park, which features mountainside temples and hot springs. On the other hand, Chiaksan National Park presents steep cliffs that require more challenging exploration. The region caters to everyone, offering a multitude of sights to behold.

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2. Daegu

Daegu boasts an estimated population of 2.5 million, making it the third most populous city in South Korea. In 757, it was given the name Dalgubeol, and in 1957 it was renamed Daegu. It served as an electronics trade hub during the 1960s and 1970s. It is affectionately known as the Apple City in Korea due to its climate, which is conducive to cultivating top-notch apples. Daegu is now renowned for its technological achievements, but it also stands out in the realms of textiles and fashion. You can commence your exploration with a visit to the Daegu Aquarium, and proceed to Dongseong-ro Spark Land and Spa Valley & Nature Park, which are among the city’s popular attractions.

3. Incheon

Incheon, a marvelous city in South Korea, is steeped in history. It is home to a vibrant Chinatown that showcases the country’s diverse past. There are numerous activities to engage in Incheon, including sightseeing at Grand Park, Eurwangni Beach, Wolmido Island, and the Sinpo International Market, as well as unwinding at the Spasis spa and sauna center and savoring a meal at Buam Galbi Korean barbecue restaurant.

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Best Place in Busan

4. Busan

Busan is the residence to both conventional villages and stunning beaches and international events such as the Busan International Film Festival, so there are numerous unforgettable experiences available here. As South Korea’s harbor city, Busan possesses a distinct allure that compels every tourist to want to come back. Regardless of the weather conditions, you will relish the abundance of places to explore, dine at, and lodge in Busan, as you will never grow weary of discovering this destination. If you are organizing a journey to South Korea from India, this is an essential addition to your travel schedule.

5. Gyeongsangnam-do

Gyeongsangnam-do, situated on the southernmost part of the Korean peninsula, is favored by the warmest wintry gusts. The coldest zone on the Korean peninsula, where high mountains are present in the northwest, effectively blocks the northwest winter winds. The coastal region in the south is a ria coastal area with deep sea water and an array of islands along with large and small harbors, bays, and headlands. This area is home to the Haeinsa Temple, which houses the Tripitaka Koreana (Eighty-Thousand Tripitaka, a part of UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register), as well as the Tongdosa Temple, which possesses Buddha relics.

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Activities to Engage in While in South Korea

1. Explore the Samnak Ecological Park

Samnak Ecological Park is a park situated alongside a river in Samnak-dong, Sasang-gu. It provides a diverse range of opportunities to immerse oneself in nature, including the Lawn Plaza, Wildflower Garden, Nature Learning Center, Four Seasons Flower Park, a natural meadow, and a wetland. The Four Seasons Flower Park showcases various types of flowers all year round, such as canola flowers in the spring, sunflowers in the summer, and cosmos in the autumn. The Wildflower Garden is home to a multitude of wildflower species. Additionally, the Samnak Wetland Park within the premises features a lotus colony, a reed experience center, a rice paddy experience center, a small wildflower garden, and a common reed colony.

2. Embark on a tour of the Unification Observatory in Gangwon-do

Positioned 70 meters above sea level, the Unification Observatory can be found on the border between North and South Korea. From this vantage point, you can catch sight of the Goseonbong Peak of Geumgangsan and the nearby Haegeumgang Mountains. On clear days, Ongnyeobong, Chaehabong, and Ilchulbong Peaks are distinctly visible. The checkpoint, situated right up against the barbed-wire fence on the ceasefire line, serves as a vivid testament to the tension between North and South Korea.

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3. Submerge yourself in the Blossoming season

Best Places to visit

Amidst the cherry blossom season in South Korea, the nation casts off the winter cold and resurfaces in picturesque hues and fragrances, creating a truly enchanting time. The blooming typically reaches its peak for one or two weeks, so be sure to note the dates and plan your visit to the country when it transforms into a delightful shade of pink.

Where to dine in South Korea

1. Sinpo Dakgangjeong

Sinpo Dakgangjeong is a dish renowned for its availability at the Sinpo Market in Incheon. It serves as a popular take-out spot, even on weekdays, often resulting in long queues. This dish features deep-fried chicken that is then simmered in a delectably sweet and spicy sauce. It remains delicious whether served hot or once it has cooled down.

sweet and spicy sauce

Cuisines: Asian, KoreanLocation: 3, Uhyeon-ro 49beon-gil, Jung-gu, Incheon

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2. Vegenarang

Vegenarang is an eatery dedicated to vegan cuisine, offering dishes that blend traditional temple food with a contemporary twist. They provide an array of vegan options in Western, Korean, and Chinese styles. Additionally, they organize diverse menus and events that cater to customers who relish delectable and satisfying vegetarian fare.

Cuisines: Asian, Korean, VeganLocation: 9-32, Gwanganhaebyeon-ro 370beon-gil, Suyeong-gu, Busan

3. Wonjo Andong Jjimdak

Andong Jjimdak is a dish originating from the city of Andong. It involves braising chicken pieces and vegetables in a savory sauce. The dish is prepared at high temperatures, resulting in a clean and non-greasy flavor profile. The diverse ingredients employed in the dish contribute to its complex taste, making it a top choice for all.

vegetables in a sauce

Cuisines: Asian, KoreanLocation: 47, Beonyeong 1-gil, Andong-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do

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Where to lodge in South Korea

1. Gyeong Won Jae

Gyeong Won Jae Ambassador Incheon is a top-notch hanok hotel providing sophisticated old-world hotel services at a prestigious five-star hanok hotel in Songdo, Korea’s state-of-the-art international city with contemporary skyscrapers. The hotel boasts 30 guestrooms furnished with mini-bars and complimentary Wi-Fi connections; a Korean eatery offering the finest Korean gastronomic experiences; meeting rooms and event spaces with the aesthetics of majestic hanoks; and a vast outdoor garden with diverse traditional activities, such as hanbok dress-ups and traditional games.

Site: 200, Techno park-ro, Yeonsu-gu, Incheon

2. PARK ROCHE Resort & Wellness

immerse themselves in blissful seclusion

Photo Courtesy: Booking.com

At PARK ROCHE Resort & Wellness, guests can indulge in peaceful seclusion and rejuvenation. Wood and stone materials are utilized to fashion this rustic getaway, which is conveniently located near Gariwangsan Mountain, Dutasan Mountain, and Odeacheon Stream. Yoga, meditation, and fitness classes are provided.

Site: 9-12, Jungbong-gil Bukpyeong-myeon, Jeongseon-gun, Gangwon-do

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3. Old Guamseowon Confucian Academy

The Daegu Modern Cultural Street Tour course selected the Old Guamseowon Confucian Academy as one of the highlights for the 2012 Korea Tourism Award. This tranquil seowon (Confucian academy) offers traditional cultural encounters and holds a KTO Hanokstay Certification.

Site: 492-58, Gukchaebosang-ro, Jung-gu, Daegu

stunning natural beauty

Finest period to visit South Korea

The best months to visit South Korea are March to May and September to November, when the temperature is moderate (between the mid-70s and mid-80s) and the cost of travel is affordable. This is the recommended time to plan your flights to South Korea from India.

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Important Information

Language: Korean is the official language, and English is widely spoken and understood.

South Korean won

Currency: South Korean won (KRW).

Getting Around: Moving around a large city like Seoul or Busan is most convenient and efficient if you utilize the subway system. Seoul, Busan, Daegu, Gwangju, and Daejeon each have their own subway systems. The taxis in South Korea are safe, clean, and reasonably priced.

Travel Tip: To minimize their impact on the environment, travelers may choose to travel in groups, carpool, or use public transportation. With an excellent public transportation network in South Korea, it is worth considering this eco-friendly way of exploring the country.

Flight Duration: India to South Korea travel time can vary from 6~7 hours for direct flights.

South Korea is an underappreciated treasure that is gaining more international recognition than ever in the current tourism landscape. With its breathtaking natural beauty, vibrant lifestyle, and culturally rich heritage, there are endless opportunities for exploration in South Korea. With numerous unique experiences, discover these ESG packages to find the perfect itinerary for you.

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Planning Your Next Vacation In South Korea?

Frequently Asked Questions About South Korea Travel Guide

How many days do you need to explore South Korea?

A 7 to 10-day schedule is often the most recommended duration for a South Korea trip, especially if it is your first visit.

Do they speak English in South Korea?

Although English is not widely spoken by the locals in most parts of South Korea, you can easily find individuals who can assist with translation in major tourist cities like Seoul or Busan.

What is a typical breakfast in Korea?

In South Korea, a typical home breakfast usually consists of soup, side dishes, and rice. Most hotels offer a combination of continental breakfast items along with Korean cuisine.

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