I lived in South Korea for 16 months and loved every second of it. It’s one of the most fascinating countries I’ve ever traveled to and has a unique blend of delicious cuisine, rich history, and incredible culture.
The capital city, Seoul, should be on every South Korean travel bucket list. As you leave the big city and travel further to Busan and Jeju, you’ll be met with unique experiences.
Best time to visit South Korea
Korea has 4 distinct seasons. The summer (July and August) is excruciatingly hot. You can’t be outside for very long, and outdoor activities such as hiking are not recommended. On the other hand, Winter (December to February) is freezing cold, with snow often falling north of the country.
I suggest visiting in spring (April or May) or fall (October or November). This is a great time to be outdoors and explore Korea.
During the Cherry Blossom season and school holidays, South Korea is very busy, and tourism is at its peak.
What to expect
- Capital city: Seoul
- Language: Korean
- Currency: South Korean Won (KRW)
- Safety: Korea is one of the safest countries in the world
How to travel around South Korea
South Korea isn’t a big country, and you can easily travel between destinations using the incredible public transportation networks. The KTX is a fast train, and it’s often quicker than flying!
How many days to spend in South Korea
2 Weeks in South Korea is enough time to see the highlights and tick off the main attractions on your Korean bucket list. But I recommend at least 3 weeks as there is so much to do and see. If you want to explore the country at a slower pace, you’ll need a month or more.
Seoul is the capital of Korea. It’s a must-see city that has an efficient train network, allowing you to visit all areas with little hassle. Plan to spend at least 7 days here – you won’t want to leave!
Busan and Jeju
After Seoul, Busan and Jeju are the two most popular places to visit in South Korea.
Busan is a coastal town that’s a hit with locals during summer as it has the best beaches in the country. Jeju is an island south of Korea, dubbed the “Hawaii of Korea”. You’ll need to catch a quick flight to get to here.
Going off the beaten track in Korea will allow you to experience the true beauty of the country.
Korea in winter
If you’re visiting South Korea in winter, you should definitely go skiing. There are a number of ski resorts near Seoul which are easily accessible on a day trip.
Skiing in Korea is perfect for beginner and intermediate skiers. This is because the ski parks are relatively small and often comprise of artificial snow. While it does snow in Korea, it’s nothing like that in Europe.
Life in Korea
I taught English in Korea and got to know the country in a way that most people don’t.