A quick guide

South Korea, home to breathtakingly beautiful landscapes and pop stars alike, is the destination of choice for millions of visitors and for good reason. Steeped in culture and history, South Korea is a melting pot of cosmopolitan structures juxtaposed against the well-preserved remnants of a glorious era.

Planning a trip soon with no itinerary in plain sight? Look no further than this handy list.
 

Myeong-dong



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Shopaholics, unite! Famous for being known as one of the most expensive shopping streets in the world, Myeong-dong is home to both exclusive and street fashion labels. At night, the entire district is bathed in neon signs—a reflection of its young, urban soul. If you want to go down the typical tourist route of endless shopping and eating, there’s no other place like Myeong-dong.

If you’re obsessed with Korean skin-care and make-up products, you’re in luck. Myeong-dong is home to a huge number of K-beauty brands, so you’ll be spoiled for choice. Once you’ve blown a considerable portion of your money, head over to the food stalls to sample some scrumptious Korean food — namely kalguksu, bibimguksu and bibimbap! For entertainment, look no further than the Myeondong NANTA Theatre, which stages traditional Korean shows.
 

Bukchon Hanok Village



Photo credit: Bo Kim on Unsplash

Home to architectural wonders such as Changdeokgung Palace and Jongmyo Shrine, the Bukchon Hanok Village is another place for history junkies to get their fix. A harmonious blend of worlds both old and new, this well-designed district—complete with winding alleyways and well-preserved shrines—is where history and technology co-exist side by side.

Catering to art connoisseurs, fans of urban structures and food enthusiasts, the Village is home to beautiful guesthouses, art galleries rich with both classical and contemporary works of art and restored hanoks  ( traditional Korean style houses).
 

Korean Folk Village


History lovers can get their fix at the Seoul Metropolitan Area’s Minsok village, a live museum that perfectly preserves a way of life which preceded the advent of urbanization. In the Korean Folk Village, it’s the 14th century and the Joseon Dynasty is at the peak of its glory.

Folk art lovers will delight in the presentation of traditional stories and ancient lore via song and dance and the well-preserved museums and showcases of Joseon culture. Tightrope walkers and equestrian demonstrations are also frequently staged for the amusement of viewers.

The architecture of the Village also harkens back to the Joseon Era, complete with houses, shrines and other recreations buildings.
 

Insa-Dong


If you fancy quaint curiosities, hidden treasures of art, bookstores of yore and cafes reminiscent of a forgotten era, Seoul’s Insa-Dong is where you need to go.

The district is home to nearly half of the country’s art galleries and antique shops. Beautiful Joseon-era buildings have found a fresh lease of life and serve as cafes and shops. Also abundantly found throughout the district are tons of traditional handicraft establishments.
 

The Garden of Morning Calm


Craving a getaway far from the madding crowd? The Garden of Morning is a lush, sprawling plot of land, which spans over 7,000 hectares. The garden’s aesthetically pleasing arrangement, symmetrical cut foliage and variety of flora and fauna make it a top destination for nature lovers and avid Instagrammers alike.

Due to its appearance, the Garden has been the backdrop of choice for several K-movies and TV shows. If you stick around long enough, you might be able to catch the brilliant light display, which occurs at night.


This article first appeared on THREAD, Zalora's fashion, beauty, and lifestyle content portal.