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Time8 hours 30 minutes (Approx.)
TransportHotel pickup offered
TicketMobile ticket

Overview

Discover the history and cultural traditions of Korea on this full-day tour of Seoul’s palaces and markets. Visit Gyeongbokgung Palace including its National Folklore Museum, and see Jogyesa Buddhist Temple and Changdeokgung Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Your informative guide accompanies you to Insadong and Namdaemun to explore these bustling local markets on foot. Enjoy a Korean lunch and convenient round-trip coach transport from your hotel.
  • Seoul palace and market tour with a friendly and knowledgeable guide
  • Marvel at the pavilions and gardens of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Changdeokgung Palace, Gyeongbokgung Palace and Jogyesa Buddhist Temple
  • Peruse antique artifacts and local artwork at the Insadong Antique Market and Namdaemun Market
  • Enjoy an authentic Korean lunch at a local restaurant
Start your palaces and markets tour of Seoul with hotel pickup by coach. Listen to your guide’s interesting commentary as you drive past the stately Blue House — the executive office and official residence of the South Korean head of state and the President of the Republic of Korea.

Your first stop is Gyeongbokgung Palace, the largest of the Five Grand Palaces and the first royal palace, built in 1395 by the Joseon Dynasty. Admire the original or restored gates, pavilions and royal halls as you meander the grounds on a guided tour. At the on-site National Folklore Museum, browse extensive artifacts and learn about Korean life from ancient times to the 20th century via exhibitions and illustrative replicas.

Re-board the coach for Jogyesa Buddhist Temple, the chief temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism. Gaze at the statue of an enlightened Buddha inside its main hall, which dates back five centuries.

After seeing the famous Buddhist temple, you will stop by a Ginseng Center around midday before sitting down for a Korean lunch at a local restaurant before driving to the World Heritage–listed Changdeokgung Palace. Explore the beautifully preserved grand pavilions, massive gate and several halls. Walk around the landscaped grounds featuring Geumcheongyo Bridge along with lotus ponds, lawns, trees and flowers at the Huwon (Rear Garden).

After you’ve been steeped in Korean heritage, you’l head to two famous markets in Seoul: Insadong and Namdaemun Market. Stroll the craft galleries and quaint teahouses along the Antique Alley of Insadong before finishing up at the Duty Free Shops then Namdaemun — Korea’s largest traditional market. Browse a multitude of goods for bargains and search for the perfect souvenir to take home.

Your full-day tour concludes with drop-off at your hotel in Seoul.

Please note: Gyeongbokgung Palace is closed on Tuesdays, in which case you’ll visit Deoksugung Palace; this walled palace compound is home to the Seoul Museum of History, which you’ll also tour with your guide. Changdeokgung Palace is closed on Mondays, in which case you’ll visit Changgyeonggung Palace — another one of the Five Grand Palaces of the Joseon Dynasty, featuring incredible ancient structures.

Reviews

Viator Traveller's Reviews

4.0
137 reviews
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O
, Sep 2018

THe tour was really informative and well paced, no rushing at all, the food was ok, the guide was amazing and energetic

c
, Jun 2018

Our tour guide Yoanni, or whatever her name was, was very overwhelming and always got upset if anyone stayed behind taking pictures. I personally felt rushed and didnt get as much from from the tour as I would have liked. Also, we visited TWO stores that were a HUGE waste of time! I didnt pay to go on this tour so I could have sellers trying to get more of my money, it was ridiculous. So much time wasted doing this! Ive done tours with viator all over the world and this one has to be the worst one. Waste of money!

J
, May 2018

A good tour, well paced and covers a nice diversity of sites. Enough time to see things without being rushed but not so much that it feels like you are lingering when you could be moving on. The chance to wander the street markets was good too. Our guide spoke well and was informative.

H
, Mar 2018

Average experience only ...

C
, Dec 2017

My husband and I are not fans of museums and places so we chose this tour for the obligatory been-there-done-that experience. It was surprisingly fun and interesting. Tour guide Sonia from Holiday Tours and Travel was fantastic.

Highly recommend this tour - a great all-in-one!

T
, Dec 2017

good basic overview but the afternoon markets are a waste so I would find a different tour

a
, Dec 2017

Great tour. Value for money. Excellent guides.

j
, Sep 2017

This was a very pleasant tour with a friendly and knowledgeable guide... most appreciated!

E
, Aug 2017

loved it :

S
, Jun 2017

This was an excellent experience and our tour guide Leslie was fantastic. This is a tour that moves along quickly so prepare to look and move on. I think the best thing about this tour was that it was a small group so we all go to know each other. This was one of the highlights of our trip to Seoul.


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