Explore Seoul and end the day with Soju
If you want to get 'under the skin' of Seoul, you need to follow the locals. First off, you should visit Han River that runs through many parts of Seoul. At Han River the locals like to relax and have a break from the busy citylife. Sit down with the locals, take off your shoes and dip your toes in the chilled water while you observe, smile, and absorb the cool ambiance.
Once you feel at ease head off to the Namdaemun Market that has sports gear, clothes, typical Korean souvenirs, electronics and loads more. In the streets you will find smoking BBQ restaurants, fascinating tea houses, saunas, street markets and welcoming Koreans.
When the night comes, Seoul opens up and invites the traveller into another world, in other words, the nightlife in Seoul is pretty fun. Be careful with the Soju - a clear, slightly sweet distilled spirit and the most popular Korean liquor. Soju is made from grain or sweet potatoes and a bottle of Soju is almost too cheap.
Highlights in Seoul and around
One of the highlights on your trip to Seoul will be the grand Gyeongbokgung Palace, also called Gyeongbak Palace. This palace was built in 1394 and was reconstructed in 1867. The name means 'Palace Greatly Blessed By Heaven' and that is understandable. Enjoy this fascinating place and make sure you have time to sit and enjoy the wonderful gardens.
Visit the DMZ - The border of South Korea and North Korea
If you want to go on an adventure, it is possible to visit the border between North and South Korea called DMZ - the Demilitarized Zone. A bus can take you from the centre of Seoul and you have to bring your passport. You get to see the 'bridge of no return' where former South Koreans took the walk to North Korea, and opposite, and never came back. Also, you get to visit the building where you can stand on North Korean ground and take a picture with a South Korean soldier guarding the door to North Korea.
A tour to the DMZ is highly recommended and we suggest that you book in advance as they check your citizenship and purpose of visiting. Make sure you don't point at any North Korean soldiers, and notice the height of the flagpole on the North Korean side compared to the South Korean flagpole, as well as the fake village Kim Il Sung's regime has built. It has no habitants, it was built only to show off.
Shopping in Seoul
If you love shopping, Seoul is paradise. The fashion district Myeongdong has it all - from mainstream to unique and individual design. Insadong also deserves a visit as well as the cheap Dongdaemun Market where there is something for everybody, and it is even open at nighttime. One of the great things about Seoul is that each area has its own shopping area, so you won't miss out whereever you decide to go.
Seasons in Seoul
Fall is the most convenient season to visit Seoul. In summer it can get very hot and humid and in winter it can get very cold. The monsoon season is in June and July, and snow will fall in January and February.