Enjoy a cultural holiday in Seoul
Jun 15, 2012
Appropriately named, the Seoul Special City is a place no world traveler can afford to miss. With both its magnificent royal heritage and urban landscape, it is sure to give you your money's worth.
The largest metropolis of South Korea, Seoul is known as the “miracle on the Han” for a reason. From lush green city parks to towering skyscrapers and royal shrines, this 600-year old capital can leave you pleasantly surprised.
The best time to visit this city is between September and November, when it is ablaze with beautiful autumn. If you are looking for a holiday full of skiing, ice-skating or snowboarding, the months between December and February will be ideal. Even though bitterly cold, Seoul is vivid at this time. Avoid visiting from late June to late July as heavy rains usually leave the weather hot and humid.
There are around 75 flights to Seoul (many of them offering cheap tickets) which arrive at the Inchon International Airport, one of the most beautiful airports in the world. Korean Airlines provides cheap flights to Seoul. Etihad Airways, Lufthansa and Qatar Airways also offer cheap tickets to Seoul. March is typically the best month to plan your travel as you can easily get cheap airline tickets.
Tourists have marked this city on top of their lists, owing to its vibrant cultural events and festivals. The Lotus Lantern Festival is one such attraction which you must witness. This famous event celebrates Lord Buddha’s birthday and starts with different people from different cultures lighting lotus-shaped lanterns as a promise to perform good deeds. Other famed events include the seasonal Seoul Festival. These festivals are Seoul International Cartoon and Animation Festival and the Prehistoric Culture Festival. All these festivals are an absolute delight.
Formerly a royal city, there are many tempting places in the city which you don’t want to miss. One of the most impressive is the MyeongDong NANTA Theater. Not far behind is the Gyeongbok –gung, an exciting place where television dramas are filmed. The Changdeokgung Palace and Samcheong-dong Bukchon are historic sites worth visiting. Seoul Metro and Korea Train Express (KTX) are the modes of transportation in the city.
When it comes to shopping, Seoul is unrivaled. Namdaemun Market, named after the Namdaemun Gat, is the biggest and oldest open air market. Here you can get plenty of clothing, electronics and food. Paintings, sculptures and calligraphy can be found at Insadong, a cultural and traditional market. If you are looking for a fun place for the younger crowd, Sinchon is the shopping are for you. Janganpyeong Antique Market is for those looking for some fabulous antiques.