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5 Reasons Your Family Needs to Visit Korea

- Hye Sung

Somebody recently asked me where I’d recommend their family to go on vacation. Immediately, without thinking and with no hesitation, I blurted “KOREA!” That may sound a bit odd to you, but I could go on and on about why this country is so packed with good things the whole family can enjoy. Humor me and listen to me for a minute.

5) South Korea is rich with history. There’s plenty of well-preserved historical sites that are not just interesting but breathtakingly beautiful, such as the Namhansanseong Fortress about 16 miles from Seoul or the 5th and 6th century tombs of South Gyeongsang province, which looks like a field of hobbit homes. The Hwaseong area is pretty packed with historical sites, including the Hwaseong Fortress, which strongly resembles the Great Wall of China and was built in the late 18th century by King Jeongjo of the Joseon Dynasty, and Geolleung, a tomb built for that same king Jeongjo. The Korean peninsula is also filled with hundreds of Buddhist temples, some dating to soon after the arrival of Buddhism into Korea (like Jikjisa).

Screen Shot 2016-01-15 at 3.22.10 PM

South Gyeongsang tombs

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Hwaseong Fortress

4) There is plenty of beautiful nature, such as Sambuyeon falls, which looks unreal, like some kind of fairy sanctuary. Korea has rivers, lakes, mountains, beaches, islands, forests—just about everything you need for a very long, very fun outdoor adventure.

Upo Marsh

Upo Marsh

3) There are so many museums. Hundreds, even. Of course, many of those cover local history, but the fairly recently-built Daejeon Museum of Art, Dokdo Museum, and Museum of Korean Culture are more diverse in their exhibitions. The National Museum of Korea is the major Korean history museum, featuring hundreds of beloved national treasures.

Daejeon Museum of Art

Daejeon Museum of Art

2) All the shopping. I talked about this six years ago on this blog, but I really love shopping in Korea. The shirts with absurd, nonsensical phrases in English, and the cheap knockoff brand shoes, and there’s a certain aesthetic in Korea that I can barely find in the US. I’d say it’s like an edgier J-Crew, or something to that effect.

Shinbudong

1) Most importantly, the food. Korean barbecue (how can somebody not LOVE bulgogi and kalbi?!), kimchi in all its forms, red bean buns, rice cakes, the walnut cookies of Cheonan, japchae, spicy ramyeon, gomguk soup, all the glorious jjigaes, etc. Writing all of those delicacies have made this already-full tummy rumble. The best part of any trip/vacation is the food, and Korea definitely has a lot to offer in this department.

All that foooooood

All that foooooood

Now, do you see why your family needs to make their way over to Korea?

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