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This is a great historical reminder of our involvement in Korea. It is a little pricey but, I really liked the tour. It was amazing to see the tunnel and imagine that an enemy would dig these. The bus ride up to the DMZ was just as good. Seeing how the South Koreans have fortified themselves against the North was a culture shock. Seoul is such a short distance to the border of the two countries.Related to:
- Family Travel
- Historical Travel
Three Great Buddhist temples in Korea
There are part of the Buddha's robes, Also known is called temple of Buddhism relics.
Habuk-Myeon, Yangsan-si, Gyeongsangnam-do.
UNESCO World Heritage Temple, and Also known is called temple of Buddhism Laws.
Gaya-Myeon, Hapcheon-gun, Gyeongsangnam-do
Also known is called temple of Buddhism Monk, therefrom 16 great Grand Monks.
Songgwang-Myeon, Suncheon-si, Jeollanam-do
- Historical Travel
The Seoul tower is highly worth a visit. The views and the photos I took were great. I didn't visit the cafes or restaurants; just the observation deck on the top. Listed on each of the windows were names of different cities around the world, and the distance to them. Toronto, for example, was 10,607 km away!
I found the cable car a little expensive, but it might be better for those travelling with small kids. Otherwise, the walk to the top (and then the elevator) is just fine, and you get a lot of great photos on the way up.
The website I've linked below tells you pretty much everything you need to know; it even includes photos of the subway exit and where to go after that.Related to:
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The Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) is probably one of the most popular tourist attractions in Korea and the most heavily militarized borders in the world.
There are several exhibits and viewing areas. One is a room which is located half in South Korea, and half in North Korea. There's a large balcony where you can look through telescopes at land on the North Korean side of the border. There is a clear line that marks where cameras cannot be brought past, however. Take any rules about cameras seriously, because it is serious that they confiscate them if they see them in a no-camera zone. They may not ever give them back.
There are several tours that you can book to go with that leave out of Seoul. This is a day trip and you should definitely reserve a full day to see everything there is to see at the DMZ.Related to:
- Historical Travel
Skating at shinsegae
Shinsegae (Centum city) is one of the largest shopping centres in Asia and aside from a jimjilbang (bath house called Spaland) and a cinema, it also has a pretty decent skating rink that makes for a nice aftertoon activity if you're in Busan in the winter time. I went ice skating here a few times, and had a lot of fun. You can also make a nice day trip out of it; shopping, skating, followed by Spaland or in whichever order. Bringing your own skates is permitted, but as I had none with me, I borrowed their skates which are plastic and don't offer as much support as a real skate. If you're just going to do doing circles around the rink, they're fine. Food can be bought at the rink at a higher than usual price. There are lockers to store your belongings and plenty of seating area around the rink.
Haedong Yonggung temple
Gorgeous, breathtaking Buddhist temple located in Busan. Nicknamed, 'the water temple' in English, it is right on the sea and offers a very pretty view! It is extremely worth a visit. Make sure to have your camera handy, and bringing a water bottle and snack foods would be a good idea as there is not much nearby.
Busan is full of temples, and this is the first one I ever went to. It was a beautiful place and a really great experience to visit here. Its located in a rural area, just outside Busan but is easily accessible, even from the subway line. The temple itself is beautifully painted and decorated and the surrounding scenery of mountains makes it even more pretty. There is a small gift shop selling traditional Korean souvenirs, and they were giving out free cups of tea as well.
There is also options of doing 'temple stays' at this temple; which is sleeping over night and living as monks for about 24 hours. All food and linen and other materials needed are included. Living as a monk is tough - you go to bed at 9pm and wake up at 3am. You do 180 bows and other traditional monk things, but its a very interesting and eye opening experience. All the food is vegan as well, which might be hard for some people but it is extremely healthy and nutrient rich as monks live on only this to get through their day.
Their phone number and website is below. Click 'English' in top right hand corner of their website.Related to:
- Arts and Culture
- Historical Travel
Jimjibong - Korean Bathhouse
There are Korean bathhouses almost everywhere you will go, and they're not hard to find. Look for the symbol of a half circle with flames coming out of it like in this photo. I believe that all bathhouses are open to men and women, but they have seperate sections for both of them since almost everything is done in the nude. Usually you are given a key to open a small drawer to put your shoes in when you enter, and you're given a towel. You then enter a seperate locker room area where you take all your clothes off and then you can go into the bathhouse area. There will be hot tub style baths, cold baths (almost like a swimming pool) and other interesting flavour baths like oriental herb, champagne or berry. It's really quite relaxing, and you can also get a scrub - where you fly down (naked of course) and someone of the same gender will scrub all the dead skin off your body. You feel very soft and fresh afterwards. Sometimes a mask and massage is also included, or it'll be extra.
Other things to know about jimjibong:
You also need to shower before going into the baths, so its good to bring shampoo with you. Afterwards, you'll want to dry off and get ready to leave, so bring a comb, make-up or whatever you normally would prepare with after taking a shower.
There's also options of going into unisex saunas or "dry rooms" afterwards with clothing on, and sometimes you can sleep over in a jimjibong.
It can cost anywhere from 5,000 - 9,000 won just to get in, and the scrub/massage is always extra if you want to get one. About 15,000- 20,000 won.
Many Korean familes go to jimjibong about once a week.
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We visited this area in the evening. It is filled with lots of shops and restaurants, Roads are lined with bright neon signs. We enjoyed having a look at the many food carts. Had a very good, very cheap meal in one of the restaurants near the food carts. The restaurant had an English menu and clearly marked prices. Unfortunately the name of the restaurant was only written in Korean, so don't know what it was called! Also visited the Lotte Department Store in this area. Loved the food hall. The sales assistants are into hard sell and call out to the passing customers making it more like a market than a food hall.Related to:
- Food and Dining
Breakfast in Seoul
If you are looking for a yummy Korean breakfast - try Namdaemun markets if you are in Seoul. Some of the best local foods can be found here and it is cheap cheap cheap!! Great rice and noodle dishes - dumplings - we even had chicken soup one morning. An entire small chicken in a pot - steaming with vegetables. There were a lot of locals eatring here too.Related to:
- Gay and Lesbian
This is the largest aquarium in South Korea, and located on Haeundae beach in Busan.
Besides thousands of species and a 3 million litre water tank, the aquarium also does periodic shark feeding and shark diving for guests (diving is an extra fee.)
Admission was about 17,000 won (roughly $15) for an adult in 2009. A nice place to stroll through during a day at the beach.
Quite interesting. But take note:
The infiltration tunnel tour can be physically demanding if you are holding a child in your arms.
The helmet serves its purpose - you are well advised to keep it on.
Go for the Ride (Yellow Submarine)
The Yellow Submarine in Jeju is all about the unique experience of going 60 feet underwater in a submarine.
Other than that, don't expect much. Underwater visibility is poor and there is scant marine life - a few corals, two species of fish (black at that) numbering less than 20, who have to be induced by a scuba diver doling out bread to come near the submarine's portholes.
You can see much more marine life (colorful, varied and exotic) snorkelling at 10 feet underwater in Indonesia, Philippines or Thailand.
United Nations Memorial Cemetery in Korea (UNMCK)
This is an interesting place to visit in Buasn if you're interested in history or politics.
The UNMCK is large piece of land preserved for the perpetul use of commemorating and remembering the support given by nations around the world to Korea during the Korean war in the 1950s. It is unique to Korea, there is no other UN memorial park like this in the world.
There are is a sculpture park, UN forces monuments, monuments for each country as a symbol of graditude and appreciation for their help, flag honouring ceremonies (every day at 5pm from June - Sept, and at 4pm from Oct - May.) There is a nice park and graveyard to walk through, as well as the small "Memorial Service Hall" where you can watch a short film that teaches a brief background on the Korean War and how the UNMCK came to be.
Entrance is free.
Nations that assisted Korea during war:
Nations that offered Medical support:
- Historical Travel
- Budget Travel
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gyeongju -. cultural center of south korea
Gyeongju (Korean pronunciation: [gjəː,ŋtɕu]) is a city located in the far southeastern corner of North Gyeongsang Province, South Korea. By area it is the second largest city in North Gyeongsang province, after Andong, with an area of 1,324.39 km² and a population of 269,343 people (by 2007 census). Gyeongju is 370 km southeast of Seoul and 55 km east of the provincial capital, Daegu. The city is on the coast of the Sea of Japan (East Sea) to the east, and borders Cheongdo and Yeongcheon to the west, Ulsan to the south and Pohang to the north. Numerous low mountains, outliers of the Taebaek range, are scattered around the city.
Gyeongju was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Silla (57 BC–935 AD). The Silla kingdom arose at the turn of the first millennium and ruled most of the Korean Peninsula from the 7th century until the 9th century. A vast number of archaeological sites and cultural properties from this period remain in the city, so Gyeongju is often referred to as "the museum without walls". Among such historical treasures, Seokguram grotto, Bulguksa temple and Gyeongju Historic Areas are designated as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. The abundance of major historical sites have helped Gyeongju become one of the most popular tourist destinations in South Korea.
Today Gyeongju is a typical medium-sized city sharing the economic, demographic, and social trends that have shaped modern South Korean culture. While tourism remains the major economic driver, some manufacturing activities have developed due to its proximity to major industrial centers such as Ulsan and Pohang. Gyeongju is connected to nationwide rail and highways, which facilitate both industrial and tourist traffic.
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