Seoul is the cool kid of Asia. It’s a city that’s leading the way with film, TV and music, and a new raft of bookable experiences offer travellers a glimpse of the city’s thrilling dynamism.
Seoul is a city that does things differently, and the rest of the world is starting to take notice. For better or worse, the song ‘Gangnam Style’ has traversed time zones and borders to every country in the world. But there are still plenty of other aspects of K-culture that are yet to be discovered – even in Seoul.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Whether you’re K-Drama obsessed or know next to nothing about Korea, here are six Seoul experiences that’ll give you a feel for what makes this city tick.
Pair an art gallery with a dash of whimsy, and you get the Trick Eye Museum in Seoul. Inspired by the trompe l’oeil visual art technique, the museum features paintings that give each 2D piece a 3D illusion. Step into or beside the art, and snap photos that have you popping out of the portrait or mural. Then, freeze boredom out of your life inside the Ice Museum, part of Trick Eye, and discover rooms made entirely of ice. Post your amusing and bizarre pics on social media and watch the thumbs-up numbers climb.
Go to the same Korean pork barbecue restaurant featured on Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown on this classic Korean night out of barbecue and drinks. Spend a lively evening with a Korean food expert to learn about Korean barbecue and drinking etiquette, and then experience traditional and trendy alcoholic drinks in an energetic classic pub filled with Koreans from all walks of life. You will also explore a market famous for its pigs feet and a colourful market selling savoury pancakes and tempura made from almost anything under the sun. Make sure to bring your camera, but don’t lose it, or they may fry it. This is the most intense way to immerse yourself in Korean food culture.
Take a break from the city on this full-day tour that combines a hike on Mt Bukhan with a rejuvenating Korean spa experience. Your guide will select a two- or three-hour route, depending on the group’s skill level, taking you past granite peaks and crystal-clear streams on Seoul’s highest mountain. At the jjimjilbang, or traditional sauna, you’re rewarded with a soak in a hot bath followed by a full-body scrub, oil massage, face mask and shampoo — all applied by an expert practitioner. Lunch and round-trip hotel transport are included.
Korea’s most popular ghost tour! This is the side of Seoul that you won’t find in the tourism brochures. Take a tour down the dark alleys of Seoul’s forgotten 600-year history of bloody massacres, seedy hideaways and mourning ghosts. Self-proclaimed clairvoyants on the tour have reported a few sightings, including a little girl who has been seen following the group around. This is not only a ghost tour, but a walk unearthing Seoul’s murky and violent past, making the city much more interesting and intimate. Guests also receive an online map of all the haunts, murder sites, and torture chambers mentioned on the tour.
Gastro Tour Seoul takes adults to visit a true artisan Korean brewer’s workshop that has been recognised as Korean Food Master by the Korean government. With food and drinks included, you’ll be introduced to quality Korean alcohol like soju (distilled alcohol), makgeolli and yakju (rice-brewed wine) from this local brewer. You’ll have the opportunity to learn about the entire process of turning rice into soju and makgeolli and you’ll venture deep into the heart of Korean alcohol culture as you explore this hidden brewery known only to the true locals. This three- to three-and-a-half-hour-long tour will introduce you to master artisans who brew and distill according to time-honoured traditions. The tasting sessions are followed by a traditional homemade Korean meal served together with bowls of makgeolli.
This tour is different than other tours! I focus on food and drinks. The main focus is drinking at each spot while we eat some outstanding food. I provide five-hour tours. I will be taking you around the neighbourhood that has the best food in Seoul, hands down! There are tiny alleys that even Koreans don’t know about. I have taken many people around here including my native Korean friends and they will agree that it is the best of the best. I promise you won’t be disappointed in this tour. Just make sure to bring a huge appetite since we will be trying a ton of dishes.I do not take you to places that you will be able to find on google or are commercialised. I take you to places you would typically not be able to go to on your own.
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meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.