Seoul, South Korea Travel Itineraries
page gives information on Seoul Travel Itineraries
and South Korea travel.
It started one day in Oct 1994 when my manager called me to
ask whether I had a passport. I had one. Next question was do
I have any problem in going abroad for a month. I thought..going
on someone’s expense and getting paid.. NO Problem! What
more does a 23 year old want?
My first visit abroad was to South Korea was quite interesting.
1. Because there was no one else from my company working there,
so all new
2. I did not speak a word of Korean and my colleagues at client’s
did not speak a word of English. Great Fun.
On day one: I turn the PC ON, click on windows icon and great
– it’s a Korean version. That’s when I appreciated
Windows, by the time I got an English version, I could open
word, type documents and save it successfully without me understanding
a word where I was clicking. It was just so intuitive –
Same place, same links to click for open, save etc.
Day one noon(lunch time): Luckily the company I was working
for had a continental canteen for international guests. Being
a veggie, choosing the menu was a big
Day one noon(after back from lunch): I entered my office room,
which was dark now. All the lights were switched off and I could
see many of the colleagues happily sleeping – some with
legs on the table. At 1:30 pm, someone switched the lights on.
Later on I got accustomed and must admit – did doze of
couple of times in a month.
I stayed at a place called Hotel Yoido at a central location
in Seoul - Yoido-dong, Yungdeungpo-ku. It was very close to
National Assembly Building and KBS, MBC, SBS broadcasting stations
and the highest building in Oriental 63 Floors Daehan Life Insurance
Co., Ltd's building, Haengju Sansung, Jeondeung temple, Panmun
Jeom, Unification Observation Tower and other famous tour-sightseeing
Here is what I suggest you visit in Seoul:
Yook-Sam (63) Building: 63 storied Building:
The highest building in Korea is 63 Building. The observation
floor is actually the 60th floor but there are a coupld floors
of air conditioning and elevator stuff on top and 3 basement
floors--either way it lives up to its name. You have 2 options
to see the view: (i) pay about 7,000 won (6USD) to go up in
the glass outside elevator in the daytime or (ii) pay nothing
to go up the inside elevator at night and have a beer at the
bar (cost: about 7,000 won for the beer). During the day the
entire floor is viewing, but at night half of it is converted
to a bar.
There is also an IMAX theatre, a food court, shopping, 2 Japanese
restaurants, a massive buffet, Chinese and Korean restaurants...and
close to the Hangang (Han River) Park.
While I was at the observation tower – I saw my first
snowfall, was great coming from India. Firstly I did not realise
it was snow- until I came down. Memorable experience.
Gyeongbok Palace was built as the primary palace of the Chosun
Kingdom by its founder, King Taejo in 1395, the fourth year
of his reign.
Lotte World is like a small city with an amusement park, folk
museum, sports center, skating rink, water slide park, shopping
center and the hotel.
Most facilities are indoors, so they can be enjoyed throughout
the year. The central area is open, so that people can watch
the other people ice skating, enjoying the rides, eating and
Namdaemun (Great South Gate) Market:
Nandaemun, the Great South Gate of Seoul fortress, was built
in 1398 and rebuilt in 1447. The fact that most of the stones
in this massive edifice are original is one reason why it has
been designated Korea's National Treasure No. 1. It now stands
isolated in the middle of a modern highway, on one side of which
is the 600-year-old Nandaemun Market. It is one of Korea's largest
wholesale markets. There are over 1,000 shops, stalls, retailers,
street vendors, and has several department stores nearby. Here
you can find clothes, shoes, fabrics, tableware, flowers, vegetables,
ginseng products, toys, and watches.
I bought a watch there in 1995 for about 12 USD and its still
This palace was built in the 1400s, destroyed by the Japanese
in the invasion of 1595, and rebuilt in 1611. The Secret Garden
-- or Biwon -- is the main attraction and makes Changdeokgung
unique from the other palaces. This is a magnificent Korean
garden that was closed to the public in Royal times. All visitors
to Changdeokgung must be on a guided tour. English tours are
conducted 3 or 4 times a day, the best time being around 1530.
DMZ - DeMilitarized Zone:
The demilitarized zone is a 2.5 mile wide, 175 mile long strip
of land that divides the two Koreas. At the signing of the Armistice
in 1953, it was agreed that both sides would pull their troops
back 2,000 meters in order to maintain a peaceful border.
When you visit, and the weather is nice, you can see the North
Korean Soldiers on their guard – I could see few farmers
from the binoculars.
This visit is fairly unique. My Korean counterpart took me there
by his car and then a tourist bus uphill.
I went to South Korea / Seoul again in 1995 for two months
in summer. This time it was slightly better as I could read
Although I like the country, it’s not really a ‘touristy’
place of my kind. It’s very modern with new buildings,
shopping etc. but if I have to choose between Korea and other
places in Asia – like Japan, Thailand, India – I
think I would prefer these.