Explore Seoul with the subway – good things to know

After spending a lot of time got stuck in traffic jam in Seoul, I felt it really not funny, sometimes even frustrating, to drive in Seoul 😤. For me, the best way to travel in the city is to take the subway (지하철 metro) and walk. There are a lot of information online for tourists how to use the subway, e.g. from the Seoul Metro site. But here are my additional 5 tipps for you after using the subway multiple times.

Seoul station, traffic, seoul square panorama
Seoul Station – always busy

1. How to plan your route?

You can easily get a subway map everywhere: from your guide book, from a tourist map, google maps, etc. However, the subway network in Seoul is incredibly huge, that’s why you may need a magnifier to read all station names on those maps.

What you would need is “Naver map” – an smartphone app that is available in itunes and google play. Comparing it to other navigation apps such as Google or Apple maps, there are a lot of advantages:

  • Route calculation possible for driving with car, taking subway or busses, riding bicycle or walk
  • You can enter destinations in English or set it via map
  • You can easily share a Naver map link to the destination with your family and friends
  • Routes can be calculated in most case. That sounds strange, but with Google or Apple maps, you may face the problem that the route cannot be calculated
  • Alternative routes are available for you to pick the best
  • While traveling with subway, this map will show you also which entrance and exit should be taken to reach the destination fastest.
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A 24-hour relaxing trip in Busan – 부산

The summer is coming. Any plan how to spend this hot season of the year in Korea? If not, how about having a short trip to Busan? It is not only the 2nd biggest city in Korea, but also a wonderful city. Despite the long distance from Seoul to Busan, you can reach it within less than 2,5h thanks to the good KTX connection.

Here is my suggestion for a 24-hour-trip in Busan to have a relaxing but interesting tour. It’s also easy to go and suitable for family with kids.

Busan, wochenende trip nach busan, busan tour, 24h busan, gwangalli beach
Gwangalli Beach

The itinerary for 24 hours

Day 1: Arrival and relax on the beach

Day 2: Taejongdae Park – Fish market – Gamcheon culture village and departure

Busan, wochenende trip nach busan, busan tour, 24h busan
Overview – your destinations in Busan

More details as well as Naver map links to the destinations will follow …

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Good things to know upon your arrival in South-Korea

Traveling to foreign countries you can see a lot of new interesting things, check in in many awesome locations, meet new great people, enjoy new kind of food and gain a lot of new experiences. That‘s why I really love traveling. But before you get to the destination of your trip, you need to organise many other things, too, e.g. apply for a visa, think about how to get cash, purchasing a sim card, take a cab, etc.

In this post, I’m gonna share with you some good things to know upon your arrival, that might be helpful for you first visit to South-Korea.

1. Visa for Korea

You may need a visa, maybe not to enter South-Korea depending on your nationality, purpose and length of stay. The best information about that is available on the official page of Visa Korea Portal .

Please check it before you plan to come.

2. Immigration and Customs 👮🏼‍

2.1 Filling the forms

So, now everything is booked and you’re on the airplane ✈️ to Korea. Before landing, you may receive an Arrival card as well as a Traveler declaration form (one per group) from the flight attendants. They both need to be filled out and handed to officers when you pass the immigration.

Korea, Immigration, Incheon International Airport
Forms

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Explore Korea with the high-speed train KTX

When travel in South Korea, you may have seen the high-speed train KTX – Korean Train eXpress. This is a very convenient, safe and super fast way to travel on long distance that you would love.

KTX is operated by the Korean Railroad Corporation, designed and working based on the French technology that is applied for the TGV and can drive up to 350km/h. So for such a long route as from Seoul to Busan, which is around 400km with car, it only need about 2 hours and 15 minutes. Additionally, for this connection, you can choose any of the 60 (!) different trains that go per day. Super convenient!

The ticket price depends on the departure time, but is quite affordable. The price for a economy class is some what between 50.000~60.000₩ (~40-50€) from Seoul to Busan incl. Seat reservation. Children under 13 years old will have discount.

Foreign tourists, who want to travel a lot through the country, can purchase a Korail Pass to save more money.

The train cabinet is clean, equipped with Air Conditioner and is despite the high speed, relatively quiet.

KTX, Train to Busan

Here are some more tips for you before traveling with KTX.
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Must-have smart phone apps for Korea

After spending 8 weeks living in Korea without really knowing Korean, I still survive 😉. Actually, you can get along quite well with English, but sometimes, I just wished I have learned more and harder Korean. However, now a day your smart phone can help you out in difficult situations, if you have the right apps.

Following you’ll find my app recommendation for all Korean newcomers or first time travelers. This recommendation is based on my own experience and I’m writing this post only for you, who are new in Korea or planning to visit Korea soon. I’m not get paid for it…

All apps are available for iOS and Android System.

1. Naver Map – as GPS app – online only

I’ve mentioned this app in my earlier post about the Seoul subway system. Until today, I still use this app almost everyday to find the best way to my destinations. Here are again pros and cons in my opinion:

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