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SeoulSouth Korea

This South Korean metropolitan capital city is a mix of busy markets and thumping nightlife, sitting happily alongside palaces and peaceful teahouses.

An intoxicating blend of the past and the present, vibrant Seoul has plenty to see and do. Independent fashion boutiques, contemporary art galleries and modern restaurants rub shoulders with historic palaces, impressive gardens and traditional teahouses.

The people of Seoul are warm, friendly and welcoming to visitors. Many of the older population don’t speak English, but the younger Seoulites will be more than happy to help you out and practice their language skills at the same time!

Korea has had its fair share of hardships, and physical evidence of its turbulent history can be seen throughout the capital. Nowhere more so than in the Five Grand Palaces, all of which have been destroyed or damaged through the centuries. The Grand Palaces have now all been restored, and are home to many of the country’s most treasured artefacts.

Seoul has a fun and eclectic nightlife, with a varied selection of good bars, music venues and clubs dotted throughout the city. Start your evening at Hongdae Young Street and see where the night takes you! Seoul is a shopaholic’s dream, with traditional craft shops at Insadong, designer shopping at Myeongdong and the enormous Dongdaemun Market, ideal for bargain hunters.

If history and culture is more your thing, then head to Chongdong Theatre, which hosts traditional music, dance and performance. Dive into Seoul’s excellent food scene by starting with the cheap road-side stalls and eateries that serve up everything from pork donkas to kalguksu noodles and the Korean national dish kimchi. Kimchi is a spiced fermented vegetable (usually cabbage), and even has an entire museum dedicated to it in the form of the Pulmuone Kimchi Museum! After you’ve had your fill, head to a classic teahouse to relax.

But Seoul is not all bright lights and inner-city madness. The serene Cheonggyecheon Stream is a winning combination of a natural park, local art exhibition and wildlife display, situated in the very heart of the city.

The best times to visit are between March and May or from September to November, when the climate is at its mildest. The summers can be incredibly hot and the winters very cold. The city has a fast and efficient subway system, which is considered to be one of the best in the world.

Seoul Travel Guide Video

Where to stay in Seoul

Top hotels in Seoul

5 out of 5
Lotte World Tower 76F-101F, 300 Olympic-ro, Songpa-gu, Seoul
The price is NZ$522 per night from 15 Feb. to 16 Feb.

Located in Songpa, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Lotte World Tower and Lotte World Mall. Lotte World and Olympic Park are also within 2 mi ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (1,065 reviews)

"Well - organized, good location, friendly staffs,"…"

Reviewed on 17 Jan. 2021

The Shilla Seoul
The Shilla Seoul
5 out of 5
249, Dongho-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is NZ$378 per night from 25 Jan. to 26 Jan.

Located in Jung-gu, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Namsan Park, Korea House and Dongdaemun Design Plaza. Dongdaemun History and Culture Park ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (1,072 reviews)

"Luxury 5 star hotel with great city view. I was happy with the stay."…"

Reviewed on 9 Jan. 2021

The Shilla Seoul
InterContinental Seoul COEX
InterContinental Seoul COEX
5 out of 5
524, Bongeunsa-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is NZ$193 per night from 24 Jan. to 25 Jan.

Located in Gangnam, this luxury hotel is steps away from Starfield COEX Mall and COEX Convention and Exhibition Center. SMTOWN coexartium and Seonjeongneung ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (958 reviews)
Positive, but does not warrant 5-star rating

"Cleanliness: Tidy enough albeit being an old establishment. If you do look closely though there were quite a bit of dust hovering around. Service: generally friendly and helpful. However, one of the employees at the check in desk did not seem to know her stuff. I wanted to know the approximate time ..."…"

Reviewed on 26 Sep. 2020

InterContinental Seoul COEX
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Holiday Rentals in Seoul

Oakwood Premier Coex Center
Oakwood Premier Coex Center
5 out of 5
46, Teheran-ro 87-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is NZ$263 per night from 21 Feb. to 22 Feb.

Located in Gangnam, this family-friendly Seoul aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Seven Luck Casino Seoul Gangnam Branch, COEX Convention and Exhibition ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (819 reviews)

"Large room. Lots of closet space. Fully stocked kitchen. Comfortable mattress."…"

Reviewed on 28 Jun. 2020

Oakwood Premier Coex Center
Somerset Palace Seoul
Somerset Palace Seoul
4 out of 5
7, Yulgok-ro 2-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is NZ$134 per night from 24 Jan. to 25 Jan.

Located in Jongno, this family-friendly Seoul aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Jogyesa Temple, Gyeongbok Palace and Gwanghwamun. Bukchon Hanok Village ...

4.4/5Excellent! (1,109 reviews)

"Excellent location, clean property, great stuff! They also provided a crib"…"

Reviewed on 17 Oct. 2020

Somerset Palace Seoul
Vabien Suites II Serviced Residence
Vabien Suites II Serviced Residence
3 out of 5
114, Tongil-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is NZ$94 per night from 3 Feb. to 4 Feb.

Located in Jung-gu, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Agriculture Museum, Nanta Theatre and Korean National Police Heritage Museum. Appenzeller Noble ...

3.9/5Good! (1,195 reviews)
Best Residence Hotel in Downtown Seoul Area

"The Residency is located only 1 minute away from subway station no.5, and only a stop away from the famous KyungBokGung Palace. The apartment was clean and spacious with lots of dining & cafe options around. I really recommend this place!"…"

Reviewed on 26 Aug. 2020

Vabien Suites II Serviced Residence
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Seoul

Top activities in Seoul

Reviews of Seoul


Top Destination

5 - Excellent
5 - Excellent 61.92468619246862%
4 - Good
4 - Good 31.380753138075313%
3 - Okay
3 - Okay 5.439330543933054%
2 - Disappointing
2 - Disappointing 1.2552301255230125%
1 - Terrible
1 - Terrible 0%

3/5 - Okay


13 Feb. 2020

High expectation usually leads to disappointment. Not everyone, but most of the people wasn’t friendly at all. Does not make you feel welcome at all.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

7 Feb. 2020

Loved Seoul. The people, food and experiences you can have.

5/5 - Excellent


22 Jan. 2020

Wide streets, friendly people, excellent subway system.

5/5 - Excellent


21 Jan. 2020

Loved the city and people. Will be back soon

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

18 Jan. 2020

People in Korea is respectful.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

7 Jan. 2020

Definitely use the subway but if unsure taxis are really cheap , 5000KWN for 10 min trip.

Cities near Seoul