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The Ultimate First Timers’ Guide to Seoul 4D3N Itinerary, Expenses, Tips and More

June 2, 2018

First Timers Guide To Seoul 4D3NTraveling to Seoul, South Korea for the first time?

 

Here’s a Seoul travel guide on what to see and where to go, carefully curated as an ultimate first timers’ guide. Learn how I spent 4 days and 3 nights in Seoul complete with itinerary, budget, tips, and more.

 

If you also read my personal blog, you will know that I visited Seoul last week. It was a short trip in the Land of the Morning Calm, the land of the Oppa and the dream escapade for those who, like me, are KDrama, KVariety and KPop obsessed.

 

CLICK HERE FOR MY SEOUL TRAVEL DIARY

 

South Korea is a country in East Asia, constituting the southern part of the Korean Peninsula and lies east to the Asian mainland. The name Korea is derived from Goryeo, a dynasty which ruled in the Middle Ages, or the setting of Moon Lovers – Scarlet Heart Ryeo.

 

The capital and largest city in South Korea is Seoul, with a population of 10 million. Other must visit places are Busan and Jeju, both have direct flights.

 

If you are looking for that perfect destination that is within the budget, Seoul will surely charm you with its beauty.

 

Now let’s move on with the logistics of my Seoul 4D3N Itinerary, Budget, Tips, and More.

 

Related Posts:

The Ultimate Guide to Baguio 4D3N Experience

The Ultimate Guide to Caramoan Island Hopping Adventure

The Ultimate Guide to Mt. Talamitam Day Hike

 
 

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How To Apply Korean Tourist Visa – Requirements and Procedures

 

The very first task you need to do to secure your trip to Seoul is to apply for a Korean Tourist Visa. I consider this as the most terrifying part of our preparation to South Korea.

 

Why?

 

  • I only got my passport last January 19. I got denied twice for lack of valid ID. Thankfully, my Voters Registration worked!

 

  • We applied for Korean Visa on February 21. It was my first time to process such application. I read so many scary posts in social media about the long queue but we were surprised that everything went fast. We arrived around 7am and finished the application by 11am.

 

  • Our Korean Visa got approved on March 5. This was also the month we booked for our flight and hotel accommodation.

Seoul 4days 3nights passport visa application

How did we get approved on our first try for Korean Tourist Visa?

 

Just make sure your requirements are complete! I really believe this is the key.

 

Step 1. Prepare your Korean Visa requirements

 

1.) Duly-accomplished Application Form – You can download the application form in this link http://down.mofa.go.kr/cntntsDown.do?path=ph-en&physic=visa_application_form(15.06.15.).pdf&real=visa_application_form(15.06.15.).pdf

2.) 1 piece of Passport size colored picture (Must be attached on the application form)

3.) Original Philippine Passport valid for more than 6 months

4.) Photocopy of the Passport Bio (Page 2)

5.) Original & Photocopy of valid visa/s and arrival stamps to OECD member countries for the past 5 years (only if you have). If you don’t, skip this part.

6.) Original Certificate of Employment (must include your position, date hired, compensation, office address, HR landline number (cell-phone number is not allowed) and HR e-mail address)

7.) Original Personal Bank Certificate (must include account type, current balance, account opening date, ADB).

8.) Bank Statement (original or certified true copy of bank statements/passbook for the last 3 months)

9.) ITR(Income Tax Return) or Form 2316 Copy and Company Alphalist (Form 1604 CF with BIR received stamp / please highlight your name)

10.) Copy of PRC Card or IBP Card (If applicable only)

 

You can get the Personal Bank Certificate and Bank Statement upon visit to your chosen bank where you already have an bank account. As per how much your money should be to get approved, I can’t really tell.

 

I only have Php 19,000 in my account when I applied for Korean Visa and still got approved. The safest I bet for you to have is Php 25,000.

 

Also no matter how much you have in your bank account if you are missing something from the list of requirements, your chances of getting approved will still be low.

 

What if I am a freelancer?

 

If you don’t have a Certificate of Employment (COE) because you are a freelancer, you can still avail of a Korean Tourist Visa.

 

All you have to do is to have your client sign a certificate indicating you have work and you have income. You can see a sample certificate in this post. You can just replace the info with your name, position, duties, and pay.

 

What if I am a business owner?

 

For business owners you need to present a photocopy of your business registration either from SEC or DTI, photocopy of your business permit or Mayor’s permit, photocopy of ITR (Income Tax Return) or Form 2316 and Copy of PRC Card or IBP Card if applicable.

 

What if I am a student?

 

For students, you need to present valid documents that could support your identity as a student such as original school certificate, photocopy of your school ID, birth certificate and your parent’s marriage certificate.

 

What if I am personally invited by a Korean?

 

For those personally invited by a Korean National you need to present an invitation letter and photocopy of the Passport or Identification Card of the person who invited you.

 

If you’re invited by a company in Korea you need to present an invitation letter and the photocopy of the business permit of the Korean Company.

 

Did I miss any scenario? Check this guide on How To Apply for Korean Tourist Visa for a more extensive list of requirements for different types of applicants.

 

Step 2. Go to Korean Embassy and submit your requirements.

 

Arrive at the Korean Embassy at the earliest time possible. Select a weekday to ensure that there will be no long line when applying.

 

Below is the address and contact details of the Korean Embassy in Manila:

122 Upper McKinley Road, McKinley Town Center, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig city 1634, Philippines

Email Address: ph04@mofa.go.kr

Contact No.: (63-2) 856-9210 visa local no. 270, 500

 

You don’t have to make an appointment. Just proceed to the Korean Embassy as soon as you completed your requirements. You will be asked to register first in the guard’s station and leave a valid ID.

 

Upon entrance there will be a station where your documents will be checked if complete. Dito pa lang pwedeng pauwiin ka na so make sure everything is ready.

 

If your requirements are complete you will be provided with a number. Wait for your number to be flashed on the screen or called before approaching the counter.

 

From our experience, the beautiful ladies at the counter does not talk at all. They just get your documents and give you a confirmation note on when you will come back. If you are applying for two or more visas, pwedeng isa na lang ang bumalik to get them.

 

The Korean Embassy accepts application every Mondays to Fridays, 8:30 A.M-11:00 A.M only.

 

NEWS UPDATE! Just recently it was announced in the news that Korean Visa Application will now be through accredited travel agencies only. For more details please check this report

 

Step 3. Claim your visa

 

Processing may take between  three (3) to five (5) working days.

 

For fees;

59 days (or less) stay in South Korea — Free

60 to 90 days stay in South Korea — PHP2,000.00

 

Releasing of visa schedule: Monday-Friday 1:30pm-4pm.

 

Other notes from our Korean Visa application:

 

  • We answered the form legibly, without erasure at all. Make sure you have multiple copies. Also we used block capital letters for everything.
  • We still haven’t booked our flight and accommodation when we applied. We were so afraid that one of us (or both of us) will get denied. In this case kasi we can either make an appeal (tedious process) or wait for six months are reapply.
  • We didn’t present any written itinerary although I downloaded a sample just in case hanapin.

 

CLICK HERE FOR MY SEOUL TRAVEL DIARY

 




 

How to Book Cheap Flights to Seoul

 

As it was my and Nica’s (my best friend who accompanied me in this trip) first trip abroad we were  not sure how booking international flights should or should not cost.

 

I saw a Php 3500 Manila to Incheon and Php 4000 Incheon to Manila per person AirAsia flight and booked it right away.

 

Nica agreed with the price. I also find it sulit na since the other plane ticket I searched will already cost as Php 13,000 – Php 18,000 one-way.

 

With the fees and add-ons we got  (checked-in baggage and meal) our total was Php 19, 578 or Php 9789 each.

 

Travel time from Manila to Incheon and vice versa is four hours. Also take note that Korean time is advance by one hour compared to Philippines.

Flight to Seoul

Air Asia Thai Curry Meal

 

 

 

Here are some tips when it comes to finding cheap flights to Korea:

 

  • AirAsia all the way. I tried to search for flights after our trip and AirAsia provides the cheapest ticket ever compared to other well-known Philippine airlines.
  • Make an online account with your airline provider and always download the mobile app accompaniment for easier booking process.
  • Check Skyscanner if you want a quick comparison on flights available and price range.
  • Awkward dates are the best. Our trip was May 19 to May 22 and both dates were the cheapest rate already. If we booked our flight to Incheon on May 18 or May 20, our one-way ticket would be Php 6900 already. We really got lucky with our chosen dates.
  • During my Eastern Samar vacation last Holy Week, I  got an AirAsia flight for Php 6500 two-way per person. Ang mahal!!!! Probably because we went on a holiday. Make sure to book your ticket in advance and if it is okay with you travel on the least expected days of the week.
  • Take advantage of sale seats happening almost on a monthly basis. Make sure to follow your chosen airline on social media for easy access to their current promo.

 

How to Get Around Seoul

 

South Korea has a great, great, great transportation system. For those on the budget, you can easily get around the city of Seoul and its famous landmarks by train, subway or bus payable through a T-Money Card.

 

There are also taxis available which you can pay too with the load from your T-Money Card.

 

From Incheon International Airport to our hostel in Sinseol-dong we road the train (ITX/Korail) going to Seoul Station. From Seoul Station we got off at Sinseol-dong Station and walked our way to Monster Guesthouse.

 

All the landmarks we visited were just station/s away from each other.

 

How to Load the T-Money Card for the First Time

 

We spent almost an hour figuring out how to load the T-Money Card, haha.

 

All along we thought we have to insert the card in the slot provide like what we do in ATMs. Then, we saw some foreigners loading their cards and watched carefully.

 

Here’s a step-by-step instruction in using the T-Money Card:

 

1. You can buy T-Money Card (4,000KRW) at the vending machine available or in the counter you will find as soon as you get off the Immigration.

2. To load, use the Ticket Vending Machine at the airport. Find the slot where it says Ticket Vending and Card Reload.

3. Leave your T-Money Card in the slot and choose English as your preferred language.

4. The screen will automatically prompt on the different amounts you can choose from. Our initial load was 20,000 KRW and added 10,000 KRW on our 3rd day to be safe.

5. You can reimburse whatever money you have left on your T-Money Card. Just go back to the counter where you first purchased your T-Money Card.

6. Follow steps 2-4 if you want to reload at any Ticket Vending Machine in the train and subway stations.

 

How Much Should You Prepare

 

Budget for your trip to Seoul depends a lot with the plane ticket you got, places you want to visit and how many days in Seoul you plan to stay. 

 

Excluding our airfare, I spent around $300 or Php 15,000 for the 4Days 3Nights trip we did. This includes our accommodation, meals and street foods, entrance tickets, T-Money Card load and pasalubongs.

 

I did shop for some Korean skincare items at Myeongdong but I used credit card for it.

 

See the end of this post for my detailed Seoul 4D3N Itinerary and Expenses breakdown.

 

Where to Exchange Your Philippine Peso to Korean Won

 

Based on my research, US Dollars to Korean Won is much better compared to exchanging all of your Philippine Peso to Korean Won.

 

Exchanging Philippine Peso to US Dollars is way easier and faster too. Since Korean Won is not that popular, not all local banks or money changers have ready Korean Wons for you to buy.

 

Here’s how I exchanged my Philippine Peso to US Dollars to Korean Won:

 

Days before our trip to Seoul, Nica and I exchanged our Philippine Peso to US Dollars (Local Bank)

 

1. For this you need to make sure that you go to the bank where you already have an account. I went to a Metrobank branch just below my office.

2. Have your passport with you and any valid ID for additional identification.

3. We decided to have at least $200 (Php 10, 400) with us as our initial money and additional Php 5000 cash in case we need to pay something in the airport.

 

As we arrived in Incheon International Airport we exchanged our US Dollars to Korean Won.

 

1. You will see the airport money changer right away after you pass through the Immigration.

2. We decided to exchange our $100 each first since we read in other blog posts that Myeongdong has the best rate when it comes to Korean Won.

3. Our first ever Korean Wons were around 106,000 KRW each. This money was maximized until our third day which was cool. Included with this was our payment to our hostel.

 

Exchanging Philippine Peso to Korean Won

 

Although we read in other posts that it there are money exchange available in Myeongdong for Philippine Peso to Korean Won we didn’t find one.

 

We were only able to exchange our Philippine Peso in the money exchange at Nami Island called KB Bank. We also used the ATM beside the bank to withdraw using a debit card.

 

Nica used her BDO Visa card and it actually worked whereas my Metrobank ATM didn’t. When we withdraw using the ATM, the money that will come out will be Korean Won already!

CLICK HERE FOR MY SEOUL TRAVEL DIARY

 




 

What to do before traveling to South Korea

 

1. Book a 4G WiFi Connection

 

We got our pocket WiFi from Klook. After our transaction at the Money Changer in Incheon Airport we went straight to the collection area.

 

Just show your confirmation receipt or the email Klook sent after paying.

 

You need to present your passport and credit card for identification. The staff will hand you the device together with the charger and case after confirmation of  your identity.

 

Also you don’t have to worry because the staff speaks conversational English.

 

Throughout our stay in Seoul we had fast internet connection. It was such a good investment especially if you enjoy sharing your trip real time.

 

2. Bring a Power Plug Adaptor

 

Make sure to bring with you a power adaptor. The standard voltage in Korea is 220 volts at 60 Hertz, and the outlet has two round holes. I bought mine in Handyman for 29php only.

 

Must Have Apps for Your South Korea Trip

 

Before our actual departure I downloaded some helpful apps to guide us on our journey. These apps really helped us find our way around Seoul.

 

Seoul Subway

 

This app is my favorite especially because we always travel by subway. It is an easy and free app you can download in iTunes plus you can use it even without a data.

Image from App Device

 

How Seoul Subway works?

 

1. Open the app upon download. The who Seoul Subway map will show.

2. At the top you will find a space to type your current location or the nearest subway to your current location.

3. Click “Route” at the bottom of the map so you can type your next destination.

4. Search result will show you a summary and a map already. Perfect!

 

Example: I want to know how to go from Myeongdong Station to Seoul Station.

I just type (or find) Myeongdong Station – Click “Route” at the bottom – Enter “Seoul Station” and Search Results will automatically reflect on the screen.

 

VisitKorea

This is an app from Korean Tourism Organization. Here you can check on basic information about Seoul such as weather, exchange rate and the different tourist spots near you. The app is useful for planning your day-to-day activities and also offers discount coupons for foreigners.

 

You need data to run this app.

 

 

Rome2Rio

 

This app is not just useful for when you are in Seoul but wherever place you might be.

 

It is an easy to use and to understand app that gives you different ways you can go from Point A to Point B with travel time and estimated money to pay.

 

You need data to run this app.

Maps in Iphone

 

Free app that comes in your Iphone device.

 

This saved us so many times especially when we needed to walk just to find a certain location. We used this to find The Goblin Wall, Myeongdong Cathedral, Namsan Cable Car and even our hostel.

 

Where to Stay in Seoul

 

For our accommodation, Nica did the heavy lifting on researching for budget-friendly accommodation.

 

We were both fixed that the only amount we can spare for accommodation will be Php 1000/night each. Fortunately, Nica found a hostel near subway station that cost us both only Php 5656 for the next 4 days and 3 nights. No prepayment and no credit card needed booked at Booking.com.

 

Monster Guesthouse features a bed and breakfast type of accommodation perfect for those who will be on the go during the day but needed a good place to sleep at night.

 

ios maps

 

Other notable hostels and guesthouses we found during the research process were:

 

IU Guesthouse Myeongdong

K Guesthouse Myeongdong 

Kimchi Guesthouse Jongno

Hotel Pop Jongno

Bibimbap Hanok Guesthouse

 

As always try to find a place to stay near subway and in the heart of the places you will visit during your stay.

 

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What to do when in Seoul

 

Here’s a breakdown of what your itinerary should include as you discover Seoul.

 

 

1. Visit N Seoul Tower

 

 

This is just on top of the list. You have never stepped into Seoul if you have not been to the N Seoul Tower.

 

N Seoul Tower is a communication and observation tower located on Namsan Mountain in central Seoul, South Korea. Currently, the tower broadcasts signals for Korean media outlets, such as KBS, MBC and SBS.

 

It attracts thousands of tourists and locals every year, especially during nighttime when the tower lights up. Here are some of the notable attractions at N Seoul Tower:

 

Outside free to go before entering the actual N Seoul Tower:

 

  • Locks of Love. A popular location for people to hang locks that symbolize eternal love, and has been depicted in many Korean television shows, dramas, and movies for this reason.
  • House of Lee Min Ho in Legend of the Blue Sea. To go, look for Sogong-Ro street sign and turn right.

 

Inside the N Seoul Tower, with entrance fee:

 

  • Plaza P0/B1 (Lobby): Entrance to Observatory, Information Desk, Alive Museum, Cafe, Children’s Theater, Nursing room
  • Plaza P1 – Ticket booth, Food Court, Light Garden, Grass Terrace, Souvenir Shop, Characters & Photos
  • Plaza P2 – Restaurant, Roof Terrace, Cafe
  • Tower T1 – Korean Restaurant “Hancook”
  • Tower T2 – Analogue Observatory, The Wishing Pond, Sky Restroom, Sky Coffee, Photo Studio
  • Tower T3 – Digital Observatory, Shocking Edge and Digital High-powered Telescope , Gift shop
  • Tower T5 – A revolving restaurant

 

Entrance fees are as follows:

Adult – 10,000 KRW

Children, Elderly – 8,000 KRW

N Seoul Tower

How to go to N Seoul Tower

 

1. By Cable Car.  From Myeongdong Station (Subway Line 4), Exit 3  and take the road to the right of Pacific Hotel. This is the same hotel at the other side of Uniqlo. Going to the Namsan Cable Car is a 10 minutes walk away. We paid 6000 KRW for one-trip at Namsan Cable. For round trip, 8500 KRW.

2. By Bus. From Myeongdong Station (Subway Line 4), Exit 3  take the Namsan Sunhwan Shuttle Bus No. 5. Use your T-Money Card to pay, get off at N-Seoul Tower.

3. By Walking.We did this to return to Myeongdong Station and boy it is very exhausting route. You will need to get down from A TON of stairway and they find the Namsan Cable car where you can continue to walk going to Myeongdong Station. I recommend getting to N Seoul Tower by bus and then going back to Myeongdong Station by Namsan Cable Car instead.

 

2. Shop and Eat Street Foods at Myeongdong

 

Myeongdong is another famous place in Seoul. It is by far the busiest street you will ever find and one of Seoul’s main shopping and tourism districts.

 

Visit Myeongdong at night and spend  your time eating famous Korean street foods at every corner. The price range for the street food is between 2000 KRW to 10,000 KRW. Amongst the street foods we have tried were:

 

  • Tteokbokki with sausage
  • Odeng or Fish cake
  • Gaeran Bbang or egg bread
  • Dakkochi or grilled chicken with different sauce you can choose from
  • Grilled squid and more

 

Myeongdong is also the best place to be if you want to go shopping for luxury brands and/or famous Korean beauty brands.

 

You will find Nature Republic, Etude House, The Face Shop, Missha everywhere! Credit card works in an effortless manner here, just pick whatever you want and swipe.

 

Another landmark you will find in Myeongdong is the Myeongdong Cathedral, assigned as a historic site by the Korean government.

Myeongdong at Night

 

Myeongdong Cathedral

 

Myeongdong Day

 

How to go to Myeongdong

 

Take  Seoul Subway Line 4 and get off at Myeongdong Station

 

3. Visit Yongdap Bridge where Sunny and Grim Reaper first Met

 

For Goblin fans or those who enjoy would want to visit KDrama shooting locations in general, don’t miss the Yongdap Station Pedestrian Bridge.

 

Aside from being a shooting location for a lot of scenes from Goblin, Yongdap is also a perfect location to shoot stunning photos. Below the bridge is an open park with playground where most Korean ride bicycle, walk, exercise and play in the morning.

Yongdap Bridge Sunny and Grim Reaper

 

 

View at Yongdap Bridge

 

How to go to Yongdap Bridge

 

Take  Seoul Subway Line 4 and get off at Yongdap Station

 

4. Experience the Joseon Era at Bukchon Hanok Village

 

Bukchon Hanok Village is a Korean traditional village in Seoul with a long history located between Gyeongbok Palace, Changdeok Palace and Jongmyo Royal Shrine.

 

A number of tourists and locals explore the narrow streets of Bukchon and found it to be a favorite activity in Seoul. You can roam around the neighborhood wearing hanbok or reserve the hanbok experience when you are in the palace already.

 

Silence when in Bukchon is  a must as it is a neighborhood. A lot of residence have already expressed their hardships because of the flock of tourists in the area.

 

Bukchon is also a home for a number of KDrama shooting locations such as Personal Taste and Heartstrings. My Ex and Whys, a Philippine drama starring Enrique Gil and Liza Soberano also used one of the homes here as shooting location.

Bukchon Hanok Village

Bukchon Hanok Village

 

How to go to Bukchon Hanok Village

Take Seoul Subway Line 3 and get off at Anguk Station Exit 1. Walk straight to arrive at the village.

 

5. Take a photo at The Goblin Wall

 

The Goblin Wall is actually the Deoksugung Stone Wall Road of Duksung Women’s University. You easily find this as you go to Exit 1 of Anguk Station. Walk straight and turn right as soon as you find the Shinhan Bank.

 

If you are not a fan of Goblin you can skip this in your itinerary and go straight to palaces. But, if you are like me who have seen the KDrama, this shooting location will leave you breathless.

 

Plenty of tourists and locals go this area to take photos especially if weekends.

Goblin Wall

 

How to go to the Goblin Wall

 

Go to Exit 1 of Anguk Station. Walk straight and turn right as soon as you find the Shinhan Bank.

 

6. Rent a hanbok and tour Gyeongbokgung Palace

 

Gyeongbokgung Palace  was the main royal palace of the Joseon dynasty. It served as the home of Kings of the Joseon dynasty, the Kings’ households, as well as the government of Joseon.

 

Others go on a palace hopping visiting Gyeongbokgung, Changdeokgung, Changgyeonggung, Deoksugung and Gyeonghuigung but if you want to save time and money just visit Gyeongbokgung which is  the most beautiful and grandest of all five palaces.

 

The palace also houses the National Palace Museum of Korea and the National Folk Museum within the premises of the complex.

 

Entrance Fee:

 

Individual – 3000 KRW

Children – 1500 KRW

 

Hanbok rental near Gyeongbokgung

 

We rented our hanbok at the nearest hanbok rental shop we see around Gyeongbokgung. We actually followed the crowd instead of asking people around.

 

Our hanbok rental cost 10,000 KRW each and we were really happy with the service we got. We were provided with a key to a locker where we could leave our valuables while we were away. Also, hairstyling is already included in the fee.

 

I can’t remember the name of the shop but I will try to narrate to you how we found it.

 

We crossed to the other side adjacent to the palace exit and saw a hanbok rental on our left. The shop is located at the 2nd floor.

 

My tip for you:

 

Go to Gyeongbokgung wearing hanbok so you will get free entrance.

 

As soon as we get off at Gyeongbokgung Station a group of volunteers approached us for a free Gyeongbokgung Tour. We didn’t realize we should have rented hanbok first before proceeding with the tour.

 

What happened was that we carried on with the tour, which was great by the way but we were just wearing normal outfits. After the tour, that was the only time we rented a hanbok and went back again to take photos in the palace.

 

In case you have a chance to be approached by volunteers for a free tour in the palace say yes but explain that you will first rent a hanbok and come back. The tour is really great and beneficial because you will learn a lot about the history of the palace.

 

How to go to Gyeongbokgung Palace

 

Take Seoul Subway Line 3 and get off at Gyeongbokgung Station. If you are coming from Bukchon (Anguk Station) this is one stop away only.

 

7. Eat Korean Cuisine

 

Aside from Korean street foods, we also devour into some local cuisine in Seoul.

 

Of course, samgyupsal is on top of our list. We saw this place as soon as we exit Anguk Station and dined in. Lunch and dinner meals in South Korea are pricier especially if you start converting to Philippine Peso.

 

We spent 26,000 KRW for the samgyupsal. Another 30,000 KRW for our last dinner in a tent bar, 9000 KRW when we ordered a bucket of fried chicken for take out and another 9000 KRW for jajangmyeon.

 

Here’s my tip for you:

 

Choose only one meal where you would spend money on the rest buy from convenience store or go for street foods.

 

8. Go on a quick cruise and explore Nami Island

 

Nami Island is a tiny half-moon shaped island located in Chuncheon, South Korea, formed as it was inundated by the rising water of the North Han River as the result of the construction of Cheongpyeong Dam (청평댐) in 1944.

 

Its name originated from General Nami who died at the age of 28 after being falsely accused of treason during the reign of King Sejo, the seventh king of the Joseon Dynasty of Korea.

 

Although his grave was not discovered, there were a pile of stones where his body was supposed to be buried.

 

It was believed that if someone took even one stone from there, it would bring misfortune to their house. A tour company arranged the grave with soil and then developed Namisum into an amusement park.

 

Over the years Nami Island became a treasured tourist spot in Seoul having been a shooting location for the drama Winter Sonata.

 

Here are the list of Instagrammable places you’ll see in Nami Island:

 

  • The Central Korean Pine Tree Lane is one of the main path where you will find a line of tall  and thick pine trees leading to the center of the island.
  • Ginkgo Tree Lane is a perfect spot specially during autumn where you will find a line of yellow ginko trees and step at the yellow ginko leaves.
  • Riverside Paths is at the edge of Nami Island that guarantees a stunning view of the lake and with the mountains as your background.
  • Gongsaengwon Garden or The Winter Sonata Statue where you will find a statue of the main characters from “Winter Sonata” and take souvenir pictures.

Nami Island

Nami Island Winter Sonata

Nami Island Ostrich Park

How to Go to Nami Island

 

Going to Nami Island from Seoul will take you an hour to two by bus, by train or by subway. Make sure that you allocate enough time for transportation.

 

1. If you will take the train you need to go to Gapyeong Station. From Gapyeong Station, walk or take a cab to the ferry wharf. You will be pointed to the Immigration Gate where you will pay 8000 KRW for the entrance and round-trip ferry ride.

2. If you will take the bus you need to go to the shuttle bus found in Insadong near the West Gate of Tapgol Park or Sungnyemun Square in front of Namdaemun Market.

3. If you will take the subway you need to go to Yongsan Station and get off at Sangbong Station. From Sangbong Station transfer to Gyeongchun Line and ride going to Gapyeong Station.

Again entrance fee and round-trip ferry ride costs 8000 KRW for foreigners.

 

9. Spend the afternoon at Petite France

 

Petite France is a small theme park located in Gapyeong which became well-known thanks to popular Korean drama like Beethoven Virus, My Love from the Stars and Secret Garden who filmed in this location. This is also the filming location of Running Man Episode 60.

 

Inside Petite France you will find 16-French style buildings with multiple stops that houses different French-themed. You can enter one building that displays photos of park, there is a souvenir shop, a room filled with clown objects and other rooms to experience French culture.

 

Petite France Little Prince

How to Go to Petite France

 

If you are coming first from Nami Island you can get on to the Gapyeong Circle Bus Line found in Gapyeong Station to go to Petite France. In case you missed the bus, you can ride a taxi since the bus will most likely take 1 hour before coming back to Gapyeong.

 

Entrance Fee:

 

Adults: 8,000 KRW

Teenagers: 6,000 KRW

Children : 5,000 KRW

 

10. Shop at La La Mart, Myeongdong for pasalubongs

Finally, we found this shop in Myeongdong which houses everything you need for a perfect and on-the-budget pasalubong. This shop is like a regular grocery/hypermarket and sell variety of snacks, food and souvenir items.

 

I highly recommend going to this place and avoiding those that are in the walkway because the price is way better. The only thing we didn’t find here are t-shirts that says Korea. Haha. You will actually find those t-shirts in Myeongdong Underground Shopping Center.

How to Go to La La Mart, Myeongdong

 

Get off at Myeongdong Station and walk straight, then turn. This shop is already famous in the are can be easily spotted.

 
 




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My Seoul 4D3N Itinerary and Expenses

 

Here is my detailed Itinerary and Expenses during the 4 days and 3 nights I stayed in Seoul.

 

Few notes to remember:

 

  • This guide below is for my expenses only or a one-person expense. Also I excluded some expenses that are not as significant like what we bought in 7-11 for snacks.
  • I also excluded the shopping I did in Myeongdong using credit card.
  • We used the T-Money Card in every transportation so we didn’t actually took note how much is the ticket from one station to the other.  
  • Please use below as a guide only.
  • 1 PHP = 20.48 KRW

 

Seoul 4days 3nights itinerary sample

 

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CLICK HERE FOR MY SEOUL TRAVEL DIARY

First Timers Guide To Seoul 4D3N

Final Notes from SavingsPinay

 

South Korea has always been a dream destination for me. It is part of my life’s bucket list and I will always be thankful for the provision.

 

When I said yes to travel, I knew a trip abroad is included. Having South Korea as my first ever “other country” to visit is definitely the highlight of my 2018.

 

 



 

Clariza Glino

Izza of SavingsPinay promotes financial literacy for the young and young at heart by providing insights and tips on budgeting, saving, investing and online entrepreneurship. Aside from this blog she also writes at www.izzaglinofull.com, a beauty and lifestyle blog for frugal Pinays and manages, www.izzagevents.com, a wedding and event business since 2011. For inquiries, topic suggestions or future collaborations email her at izza@savingspinay.ph