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Seokguram

UNESCO Heritage Tour - 13 Days


Tour Summary


On a city tour of Seoul we get to see historic sites such as Changdeok Palace, Deoksu Palace, the Blue House, Jogyesa Temple, South Gate Open Market, and Insadong Shopping Street.

We also visit Suwon Hwasung Fortress, and the Korean Folk Village.

We spend time at the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ), & see for ourselves the 3rd Infiltration Tunnel. We enjoy expansive views looking out over North Korea from our vantage point on the Dora Observation Platform.

In Gyeongju, places we visit include Royal Tumuli Park, the Cheomseongdae Astronmical Observatory, the National Museum of Gyeongju, the Bulguksa Temple, and the amazing Seokguram Grotto Temple.

Arriving in Busan, our tour takes in the Busan Tower, the Jagalchi Fishery Market, Nampodong Shopping Street, the UN Cemetery, Busan's Municipal Museum, and Haeundae Beach.

At visit to Mount Gayasan National Park follows where we see the Haeinsa Temple and its cultural treasure, “Tripikata Koreana”.

Following a stay overnight in Daegu, our tour continues to Andong, a well preserved village which has traditional style houses and delights us with unique mask dancing performances. Continuing on to Chungju we board a boat for a cruise of Chiungju Lake.

At Mount Seorak, we look around the Shinheungsa Temple, then board a cable car which takes us to Gwonkeumseong Fortress. We then return to Seoul, via Gangneung City, and once in Seoul we board a flight to Jeju Island.

On Jeju island, places to visit include Sangumburi, Seongeup Folklore Village, Sepjikoji, Seongsan Sunrise Peak, Manjanggul Cave, and Mysterious Road.

The tour also takes us to the Halla Aboretum, Samsunghyul Shrine, Dragon Head Rock, and Jeju Hallim Park, after which we fly back to Seoul.


Itinerary



At Incheon, on your arrival, you will be met by our representative and transfered to your hotel in Seoul by limousine bus or mini-bus. The remainder of the day is yours to relax at leisure.

N.B: You may also arrive on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday to start the itinerary. Any days that you miss at the start, are added to the end, so you have a complete itinerary.

If you arrive on any day other than a Monday, the arrival transfer is not provided. In such instance, you should take an airport limousine bus or taxi to your hotel. (Buses run regularly every 20-25 minutes, from 5:00 am to 21:00 pm)


Gyeongbok Palace, Seoul


After breakfast, our tour of Seoul starts with a visit to Deoksu Palace. (Please note that on Wednesday - Mondays, this is replaced by Gyeongbok Palace and National Folk Museum). We also visit Changdeok Palace, and pass by The Blue House. Other places we see and visit include Jogyesa Temple, South Gate Open Market, and Insadong Shopping Street.

Seoul is a city of amazing contrasts which has made it one of the world's most fascinating cities. It was established by the founder of the Joseon Dynasty in 1392, and now has a population of over 12 million. In Seoul, the old and new co-exist side by side.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Namsan Folk Village, Seoul


After Breakfast today we take a tour of the Suwon Hwasung Fortress, after which we drive to the Korean Folk Village, just outside the city, to the south. Here we encounter old traditional style houses dating from the 18th - 19th centuries, with old traditions of the period still being practiced. This Folk Village is a showpiece for the traditional folklore customs and life-styles of Korea.

The village comprises around two hundred and thirty building, each of which represents traditional customs and habits. Exploring these buildings, visitors will experience scenes of inhabitants, dressed in ancient costumes, living and working as they would have done in days gone by.

After the tour we return to Seoul.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Seokguram


After breakfast, today we travel to drive to the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ). Here can be found North Korea’s 3rd Infiltration Tunnel. It is estimated that, in just one hour, 30,000 armed military forces with field artillery would be capable of travelling through this tunnel.

From the Dora Observation Platform, located at the western front line, we have a panoramic view of North Korea, including the Propaganda Village, People's School and Gaeseong City, (the old capital city of the Goryeo Kingdom).

The Freedom Park is situated 40 km northwest of Seoul, and this has been dedicated to the five million people who left their their families behind in North Korea. Its North Hall provides a view of the North Korean lifestyle, and the Exhibition Hall displays old tanks and planes that had been utilised in the Korean War.

Once the tour is complete, we drive onto Gyeongju City, where we stay overnight.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Bulguksa Temple


After breakfast today we take a tour of Gyeongju, visiting the Cheomseongdae Astronmical Observatory, Royal Tumuli Park, the National Museum of Gyeongju, Bulguksa Temple, & fascinating Seokguram Grotto Temple.

Gyeongju City has some of the greatest historical riches and arts in Korea - the city was once the capital of the splendid Shilla Kingdom (B.C. 57 - A.D. 935). In Gyeongju you'll discover the remains of ancient Shilla Kingdom’s temples, palaces and fortresses, royal tombs, monuments, and also one of the earliest astronomical observatories in Asia - Cheomseongdae, dating back to 647 A.D. The National Museum of Gyeongju is a branch of the National Museum of Korea, and has countless items on display.

Gyeongju's two main treasures however are the Bulguksa Temple and the Seokguram Grotto.

Gyeongju has now been designated by UNESCO as one of the world's ten most historic sites, and is nicknamed "The Museum Without Walls". Both the Bulguksa Temple and Seokguram Grotto were added to the World Heritage List in 1995.

After the tour we continue our journey to Busan City.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Busan


Today, after breakfast, we start our tour of Busan. Busan is Korea's main port and is the second largest city in the country, situated on the south-eastern tip of the peninsula. It has a perfect natural harbour and has long been an important centre for fishing and various other trades and industries. During our tour of Busan, we visit the Busan Tower, Jagalchi Fish Market, Nampodong Shopping Street, the UN Cemetery, Busan Municipal Museum, and Haeundae Beach.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Korean Printing Blocks


After breakfast this morning we journey to Mount Gayasan National Park where we visit the Haeinsa Temple. This temple was first built in 802 A.D. during the reign of King Aejang of the Shilla Dynasty, and is sited in an area of stunning mountain scenery. The temple contains a world-famous Korean cultural treasure - the Tripikata Koreana, which was made during the Goryeo Kingdom with the intention of protecting the country from invasion by army troops from Mongolia, with the help of the Buddha’s power. This Tripitaka Koreana has been designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage site.

The temple is also home to over 80,000 wooden printing blocks of Buddhist scriptures, which took its sculptors over fifteen years to create. These wooden blocks were also added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1995.

Departing from the Haeinsa temple, we carry on to Daegu.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Andong Hahoemaeul


After enjoying breakfast in Daegu, we drive to Andong, a remarkably preserved village with traditional style Korean houses. Andong's Hahoe Village is widely known for its traditional mask dancing performances. With our visit to Andong complete, we continue our journey to Chungju Lake.

Accommodation is at Cheongpung Resort or a similar Hotel in Chungju

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Chungju


After breakfast, we board a boat for a cruise of Chungju Lake and an opportunity to enjoy its lakeside scenery. (Please note that in winter, if the lake is frozen, the cruise is replaced by a coach tour of the region.)

 

Today's tour also takes us to the Cheongpung Cultural Properties Complex, situated beside Chungju Lake. This site is a reconstruction of Cheongpung, a village that was submerged after Chungju Dam was built.

Leaving Chungju Lake, we next head on to Mount Seorak.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Mount Seoraksan


After breakfast we take a tour of the Shinheungsa Temple, following which we take a cable car to Gwonkeumseong Fortress.

We then start our return to Seoul, stopping off at Gangneung City, where we visit the Chamsori Gramophone & Audio Museum. This museum is home to a spectacular collection of 19th century gramophones and other audio systems from the past.

At Mount Seorak, on the north east coast of Korea, we witness its stunning mountain scenery. Little wonder that this region is often referred to as "the Alps of Asia"!

Arriving back at Seoul, we travel to Gimpo Airport to board our flight to Jeju Island

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


Jeju Folk Village


Today, after breakfast, we spend the day exploring Jeju Island, visiting places such as Sangumburi, Sepjikoji, Seongsan Sunrise Peak, Seongeup Folklore Village, Manjanggul Cave, and Mysterious Road.

Jeju Island is Korea's sole Island Province, and the region enjoys pleasant mild weather all year round. Its plants and landscape are quite different from mainland Korea. Indeed, some plant species are unique to the island. Jeju Island's highest mountain is Mount Hallasan Volcano, which is also the highest peak in South Korea at 6,397 feet. The volcano has had no activity since 1007 A.D.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch


SeongsanilchulbongJeju Islande


After breakfast, the itinerary for today includes a visit to the Halla Aboretum, Samsunghyul Shrine, Dragon Head Rock, and Jeju Hallim Park.

With our tour of Jeju Island complete, we transfer to Jeju Airport for our flight back to Seoul.

Arriving in Seoul we are transferred to our hotel, and the remainder of the day is free time at leisure.

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch



PriceAfter breakfast, we check-out from our hotel and transfer to Incheon International Airport for our flight home.

Meals: Breakfast


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"I just want to say thank you.  We had a wonderful time on our trip around Eastern Korea.  The accommodation, food, sights we saw, history explained and the whole travel experience was fabulous.  We would never have seen or done so much if we planned it ourselves.  The tour guide was wonderful, he explained so much and was always open to anything we needed from him.  I really feel that the trip gave us a wonderful insight into South Korea and its people."

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