Korea has a great deal to offer as a destination on its own, but it’s also a great stop-over combined with other countries.
If your clients only have a few hours in Seoul between flights, tell them to hop on the bus. Incheon International Airport operates a tour program that lets stopover passengers enjoy a bit of Korea during their connections. The wide variety of tours includes city tours, spas, casinos, temples and historic sites and lasts from one to eight hours. The DMZ tour, for example, is a five-hour excursion that includes Underground Tunnel No. 3, the Dorasan observatory, Dorasan Station, Imjingak and Freedom Bridge. On a less militant note, the two-hour spa tour offers a relaxing way to soothe away the ravages of jetlag with a steam in therapeutic seawater sauna. Other tours cater to golfers, shoppers and history buffs.
Clients with a bit more time can stay a day or two in Seoul and enjoy the city’s many cultural and cosmopolitan delights. One of the best ways to see the highlights is aboard the Seoul City Tour Bus, a hop-on/hop-off service that stops at all the major attractions. There is a Downtown Tour, a Palace Tour and a Night Tour and tickets can be purchased as single-ride or all-day passes.
Korea also boasts a vibrant calendar of annual festivals that celebrate beliefs, nature and the arts. Highlights include:
• Boryeong Mud Festival (July)
Daecheon Beach is the place to celebrate mud, glorious mud, at this annual mud festival. The black-coloured mud is rich in minerals that contain germanium, which is good for the skin. Highlights include a giant mud bath, facials, massages, mud wrestling and mud sliding.
• Andong International Mask Dance Festival (October)
Clients can enjoy traditional performances, street food and make their own masks at Hahoe Village followed by the Hahoe Seonyujulbulnori, the highlight of Korea’s traditional fireworks. Clients can also spend the night in traditional Korean accommodation and get a true taste of Korean culture.
• Gangjin Celadon Cultural Festival (September)
Works by Korea’s leading artisans are showcased and the Celadon Museum offers clients the opportunity to learn about the history of Celadon and see various artifacts. There are also pop concerts, rope dancing performances, orchestral music and martial arts demonstrations.
• Lotus Lantern Festival (April)
This festival, highlighted by 100,000 lanterns in the Lotus Lantern Parade, commemorates Buddha’s birthday. Clients can experience the Buddhist culture at the Buddhist Street Festival, see traditional Korean games and sample temple food.
For more information, visit www.tour2korea.com.