Korean Wave continues to spread around the world and engulfing world travelers’ budget for a visit to the country with no mercy. Yep, South Korea‘s tourism has been in a constant trend of increase since more than two decades, and it’s not stopping.
My first time in South Korea was largely materialized at the nudge of a close friend of mine who’s been residing in Seoul for years. But then I left the country with a strong desire to come back to this rising star in Asia.
From the two gratifying vacations I had there, here I have selected my top 3 favorite must visit spots and activities you might want to consider give a whirl.
According to my friend, this island was previously deserted until it was used as a shooting location for a phenomenally famous Korean TV drama called Winter Sonata. There are even statues of the fictional couple of said TV show and people were lining up to take pictures with them (with couples imitating the statues’ pose). At the scenic area where Winter Sonata was filmed, get a glimpse of roaming deer, ostriches, and lanes lined with soaring pine trees and then savor a delicious Korean lunch.
I was there when it was autumn (they say it is indeed the perfect time), and fallen leaves under the towering rows of lofty trees were arranged into heart shapes. My friend and I sauntered and biked along the pathway, stopped every now and then to snap pictures. Cycle past the same towering pine trees that form a beautiful boulevard where Junsang and Yoojin were in Winter Sonata. Enjoy the romantic atmosphere and a chance to see ostriches, rabbits, and deer that roam free. This may sound corny, but I noticed people seemed happy and couples looked all loved-up. Guess the love spell does work in this island.
Those who love photography would certainly love this area. The fact that you are actually in South Korea will only sink in when you are in this village — that’s when you are surrounded by traditional Korean houses (Hanok) that have been there since back in the 14th century. Along the alleys, we can easily find restaurants, cafés, souvenir stores and Hanok galleries. But since it is basically a local residence, some strict rules are applied so as not to disturb the inhabitants, like we can’t use megaphones (or clamoring for that matter), or snapping inside the house when the gate is open.
Travel back in time to the Joseon Dynasty as you pace around Hanok Village. Complete your tour with an educational view of Korean war history at the War Memorial.
One thing you shouldn’t miss while in here though: have a picture wearing Hanbok with your fellow travelers!
The ultimate blue waterfront scenery you’d want to marvel at, with the white sand on which you’d want to lay down relaxing and soaking up the heating sun. Hyeopjae Beach is located in Jeju Island, a top destination for travelers that lies in Korea Strait. At the top of Jeju’s largest volcanic rock cone, you are surrounded by the ocean and almost 100 similar rock peaks
Jeju Island has beaches for summer and snow-capped mountains in the winter and the cherry blossom season rivals Japan’s. I can’t describe how beautiful this beach looks especially at sunset time when shades of tangerine hue collide with darkening blue in the sky. Paradise!
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