10 days

South Korea Explored

South Korea Explored


Seoraksan National Park


Trip rating
  • Go beyond the capital Seoul to explore the countryside and your adventure truly begins. Serene temples, picture-perfect mountains, unspoiled fishing ports and a visit to the demilatarised zone all make up this road less travelled journey.

    Why we love it

    • See South Korea’s history up close, from the 600-year-old Bukchon Hanok village to a piece of more recent history at the Demilitarised Zone
    • Spend a couple of days soaking up the soul of Seoul! This buzzing city has reshaped itself into a culture-filled design-centric capital worth exploring
    • Shop for bargains at the traditional markets in the port town of Busan


    Day 1-3 - Seoul

    • Welcome to South Korea!
    • Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6:00pm on Day 1.
    • Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.
    • You will spend the next two days exploring the capital and its surrounds.
    • One of your first stops will be Gyeongbok Palace, built in 1395, and the most exquisite of all the five palaces in South Korea.
    • South Korea's rich history is explored at the National Folk Museum, and you will also visit the Bukchon Hanok Village to see what daily life was like here 600 years ago.
    • Namdaemun Market is next on your hit list. With everything from food to clothes to flowers, you'll spend your time wandering through the stalls, soaking up the ambience of this bustling market.
    • The following day you'll head out to the DMZ, a 1 hour bus ride from Seoul, this half day tour includes a English speaking local guide. You will see Imjingak Park, the Bridge of Freedom (which you drive across), 3rd Infiltration tunnel, Dora Observatory, Dorasan Station, Unification Village.
    IP Boutique Hotel or similar

    Day 4 - Naksansa

    • After breakfast at the hotel, you'll drive out to Yangyang.
    • En route, you'll stop off at the Osaek Mineral Springs, where you can test the cosmetic benefits and healing powers of the springs.
    • Tonight's accommodation is in the Naksansa Temple. You'll get a tour of the ancient site, as well as a special sunset ceremonial service and meditation insights.
    • You'll stay in the monastery, where you will be broken up into groups (men and women) for sleeping. The temple is in the "Hanok style", sleeping on the floor on mat (like futon). Shower and toilet facilities have recently been renovated, but are communal (please note: no toiletries are provided i.e soap). This is an amazing, spiritual place, and dinner with the monks is a real highlight.
    Nakasana Temple or simialr
    Breakfast | Dinner

    Day 5 - Mount Seorak

    • You will have an early morning start for a dawn service, before taking tea with the monks to learn more about their lives and journeys.
    • You will have lunch at the temple, and then transfer to Mt. Seorak National Park. This is a magnificent area with towering granite peaks, lush green valleys and clear streams.
    • An 1100m cable car will carry you to the Gwongeumseong Fortress. Built around 1213~1259, the ruins speak volumes for the rich history of the area.
    • A short hike from the Fortress, you will find Biseondae Rock Flat, named after a legend about an angel ascending to heaven from the rock flat.
    • The grand scenery of rocks and cliffs here do seem to reach to the heavens, and Biseondae has inspired many poets and scholars through the ages.
    • Tonight you will stay in a hotel near the park.
    Seorak Kensington Hotel or similar
    Breakfast | Lunch

    Day 6 - Suaedang

    • You will depart for Andong this morning, on the way you’ll stop off at Buseoksa Temple.
    • Built in 676 and known as the Temple of the Floating Stone, it is believed that the monk Uisang received help from a lady friend (who had turned into a dragon upon her suicide) when an angry mob tried to stop him building the new temple. Uisang brought down three stones from heaven to stop the crowd that had gathered. One of the stones that floated down from the heavens now stands to the left of the main hall, Muryangsu-jeon. So the temple is named after this “floating rock” story.
    • The myth and magic continues as you visit the Jebiwon Buddha, a giant 12 metre Buddha, carved into a single boulder.
    • Tonight you will stay in a traditional guesthouse, where you’ll sleep in an Ondol room, on a heated floor, rather than in western style beds. A real cultural experience - you'll be surprised at how comfortable the Korean 'yo' (mattress) is.
    Chiamgotaek Guest House

    Day 7 - Gyeongju

    • Korea is full of history, and today you will feel like you're a part of it!
    • You will have a full day tour of Andong Hahoe Village, which has preserved the housing architecture and the village structure of the Joseon dynasty. It was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List under the category of “Historic Villages in Korea” in 2010.
    • Hahoe Village boasts exquisite scenic sights: the elegant Nakdong River flowing around the village, the magnificent Buyongdae Cliff, endlessly unfolding sandy beaches, and lush, ancient pine trees. You can take the boat to Buyongdae Cliff for a panoramic view of the village.
    • At the end of the tour, you'll head to Gyeongju, where you'll spend the night.
    Gyeongju Hyundai Hotel or similar

    Day 8 - Gyeongju

    • Your local guide will provides you with a tour of World Heritage Listed Gyeongju today.
    • The sites include Tumuli Park, a collection of royal tombs from the Shilla period, as well as the Gyeongju National Museum that preserves much of the Silla heritage including magnificent gold crowns, pottery, Buddhist artifacts, stone sculptures and the legendary Emille Bell - one of Asia's largest and most resonant bells, 25 tons of bronze standing 11 feet high.
    • You will also explore Seokguram Grotto, one of Asia's finest Buddha shrines, and Bulguksa Temple, a monument to both the skill of the Silla architects and the depth of Buddhist faith at the time.
    • Tonight you will stay in Gyeongju.
    Gyeongju Hyundai Hotel or similar

    Day 9-10 - Seoul

    • Travel back to Seoul to further explore this fascinating city further with you remaining free time. Your trip will come to an end on the morning of Day 10 after breakfast. Your leader will be on hand to help you arrange your departure back to the Airport or your travel onwards if staying on.
    IP Boutique Hotel or similar
  • What to Know

    What's Included

    • An experienced, English-speaking Peregrine leader and specialist local guides at some sites
    • Authentic Accommodation includes: 7 nights comfortable hotel, 1 night Guesthouse, 1 night Temple stay
    • Gratuities included for the essential services only that you will receive as part of your tour package. Please see our Tipping section of these trip notes for more information.
    • Meals: 9 Breakfasts, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
    • Entrance fees & Sightseeing as per the itinerary

    Not Included

    • International flights
    • Airport departure taxes
    • Arrival & departure transfers
    • Visas
    • Meals unless specified in the itinerary
    • Insurance
    • Excess baggage charges
    • Laundry - may be available at locations where we stay two or more nights
    • Optional tours or activities during free time
    • Tips - this is something to consider, and it might be worthwhile speaking to your group about making a group contribution at the end of the trip

    Safety Information

    Although the crime rate in the Republic of Korea is low, pick pocketing, purse snatching, assault, burglary (in hotel rooms and private residences), and other crime occur, particularly in major towns and cities. Take normal safety precautions and make sure valuables are secure especially in tourist areas, like Itaewon and other large markets.


  • Past Travellers' Ratings & Comments

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Trip at a glance

Trip Code PCSK
Group size 1 - 16
Start City: Seoul, South Korea
End City: Seoul, South Korea
Style: Small Group

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