South Korea: Cultural & Temple Stay Tour of South Korea NW01

8 Days From £0 (2,637 USD)

Explore the land of South Korea with its ancient temples, vibrant cities, beautiful scenery and great food. This tour concentrates on the cultural highlights of this historic island including an overnight stay at a temple.

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Key Information

Travel Style: Private Tour
Start Location: Seoul, S Korea
End Location: Seoul, S Korea
Accommodation: Hotels
Period: All Year Round
Difficulty: Suitable for Most Travellers

About The Operator

Accreditations: ASTA, PATA, KATA
Years In Business: 20


A full day by day itinerary will be provided by the tour operator when you make an enquiry about this holiday.

- 7 Nights’ accommodations on double or twin-share basis.
- Daily buffet or American breakfast at the hotels (6).
- Breakfast at Samhwasa Temple (1). Lunch at Samhwasa Temple (1). Dinner at Samhwasa Temple (1).
- Round trip transfers between airport and hotel, and all transfers and sightseeing tours as per itinerary by private appropriate vehicle.
- English speaking local guide throughout from meeting at airport until seeing off at airport.
- All admission fees of tour sites, toll & parking fees, and hotel/other all taxes & service charge.

- Int'l airfares to / from Korea.
- All lunches except lunch at Samhwasa Temple (1) and all dinners except dinner at Samhwasa Temple (1).
- Expenses of a personal nature.
- The insurance.

Prices per person - please submit an enquiry to receive a personalized itinerary and costs.

Day 01. Arrive in Seoul. Arrive at Incheon International Airport, where you will be met by English speaking local guide and transferred to your downtown hotel. After check-in the balance of the day is at leisure. Overnight in Seoul.
Day 02. Seoul. A full day tour of Metropolitan city of Seoul, where old meets new in modern Korea. Established by the founder of Joseon Dynasty in 1392, the capital of the Republic of Korea has a population of more than 12,000,000 people. Seoul is a city of incredible contrasts which, despite its immense size, make it one of the most fascinating cities in the world. It is the heart of Korea’s culture and education as well as politics and economics. The tour includes: National Museum of Korea which displays rich and priceless artifacts from prehistoric Korea to the end of the Joseon Dynasty. Changdeokgung Palace (Palace of illustrious Virtue), constructed in 1405, is now the best preserved of Seoul's five palaces of the Joseon Dynasty. Biwon (Secret Garden), behind Changdeokgung Palace (illustrious Virtue), is tranquil gardens of unequalled beauty and woodland originally constructed for the recreational area for the royal family and palace women. Insadong Antique District, called
Day 03. Seoul - Naksansa Temple - Mt. Seoraksan. Today we journey to Mt. Seoraksan National Park, this northern stretch of Korea's eastern coast, which is rugged and mountainous with breathtaking scenery making it the
Day 04. Mt. Seoraksan - Unification Observatory - Daejin Harbor - Mt. Seoraksan. This morning explore Mt. Seoraksan National Park. The exploration includes: Sinheungsa Temple, established in 653 A.D., claims to be the country's oldest Zen Buddhist temple and it would be the oldest existing Zen temple in the world. Cheonbuldong Valley, the most visually stimulating valley in the park. Biseondae (Flying Fairy Rock), a wide, flat rock surface where the river rapids drain into a crystal clear pool and a peak rises majestically above the valley, one hears many legends of the heavenly nymphs who come to laugh and play while they bathes in the placid pools of the many glens hidden from human eyes. Drive this afternoon to the Korean Peninsula Unification Prayer Observatory set at the edge of the demarcation line which is a symbol of the Korean people's long-cherished desire for the unification of the two Korea. Afterwards, visit Daejin Harbor, where you will have your own independent tour to explore this small exotic harbor, located near the demarcation line and in the northeastern tip of Korea. Overnight at a hotel at the foot of Mt. Seoraksan. Includes: (B).
Day 05. Mt. Seoraksan - Samhwasa Temple-Temple Stay. Travel to Samhwasa Temple situated at the valley of Mt. Dutasan. Take a tour of Samhwasa Temple where lies on top of the huge rocks of the Mureung Valley. It was founded by the Venerable Monk Jajang during the reign of Queen Seondeok in the Silla Dynasty. While going to the East Sea after having established a holy site on Mt. Odaesan, Jajang happened to visit Mt. Dutasan and fell in love with its geographical features. He founded a temple here in 643, and originally named it Heukryeondae (Black Lotus Temple). According to a legend, Jajang inspired three wicked female spirits, who had suffered great sorrow, to help him build this temple. Since the three spirits helped him in harmony out of their awakening of faith, the name was changed into Samhwasa (Three Harmonies Temple), and the village was called Samhwadong. You will have Special Program for Temple Stay at Samhwasa Temple to experience Temple life and Buddhism as follows: Take procedures for the Temple Stay Program and orientation of the Temple Stay Program and allotment of the room. Take temple stay uniform. Arrange your baggage and personal effects to equip your rooms. Lunch at a restaurant in the Temple to experience Temple food. You are beating “BeomJong” the Temple Bell with a Buddhist Priest. The graceful sound of the Temple bell is spreading in all directions with long echoes. It gets rid of the desires in life and it is the sound that wakes up the mind in a dream. It is the sound of Buddha asking for spiritual awakening. You are vowing 108 times as “YeBul” the Evening Worship. It will be your own choice, not to be obligated. The evening worship pronounces the vow that we thank Buddha for giving us the peaceful day and repenting our sins of that day. You are having “ChamSeon” the Meditation. Meditation is a work for enlightening yourself. You sit cross-legged on the floor. You embrace spirits and take away earthly thoughts and worldly desires. Take a rest at each room of lodging quarters. Dinner at a restaurant in the Temple to experience Temple food. Overnight at lodging quarters in the Temple. Accommodations will be done by one room two persons or four persons sharing on Korean style bedding on Ondol floored room which is Korean traditional unique heating system for chilly days. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 06. Samhwasa Temple - Andong - Hahoe Village - Haeinsa Temple. Wake up and participate in morning ceremony and clean yard and room. You are taking “GongYang” the morning meal. You come to eat in the “HuWon” where food is prepared at the same time. The planting food grown in the Temple on the menu. The food doesn’t have spices and is neither hot nor salty. It is another mysterious experience for the general people. You are taking “DaDo” Tea. The tea makes our mind, eyes and ears clearer. It helps our stomach accelerate digestion and can cure a hangover. It also reduces the need for sleep and gets rid of thirst and fatigue. You can increase the ability to resist heat and cold. These disturbances are a big issue for self-discipline. This is the reason why monks take teas in the Temple. Afterwards, this morning travel to Andong, one of the last living vestiges of old Korea, where still is very conservative and traditional, a stronghold of Confucianism, which has deeply influenced all aspects of the lives of its people. En route visit Dosanseowon Confucian Academy, founded by Korea's foremost Confucian scholar Yi Toe-gye during the Joseon Dynasty, was the hub of Korea Confucianism which ruled all Koreans in their ethical-moral way and still conduct the ethical behavior in Korean society. Andong tour includes: Andong Folk Museum which displays rich folk artifacts collected in variety in Andong and its surrounding county. Traditional Korean Paper (Hanji) Making Factory where produces traditional Korean paper (Hanji) which has many great uses. Historically, in addition to its use in books and notebooks, it was used to cover windows and doors to keep rooms warm and protect them from the wind. Koreans were able to use Hanji as door and window screen paper because it is durable and can last over 1,000 years thanks to the unique process by which it is made. Proceed to Hahoe Village, the best preserved traditional village of the Joseon Dynasty, where residents still live in traditional thatched and tile-roofed houses and one of the few remaining examples of a classical Joseon Dynasty Confucian village layout. Hahoe Village was added to UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage List in 2010. Hahoe Village was added to UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage List in 2010. Continue to Haeinsa Temple which is one of three greatest temples of Korea, established in 803 A.D., chiefly known today as the repository of the Tripitaka Koreana, set of over 80,000 wooden printing blocks engraved with one of the most comprehensive compilations of the Buddhist scriptures in all of Asia, and the Depositories and the Tripitaka Koreana Wooden Printing Blocks were added to UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage List in 1995. Overnight at a hotel in the temple village. Includes: (B).
Day 07. Haeinsa Temple - Seoul. This morning visit Haeinsa Temple, and then drive back to Seoul, passing the rolling, green countryside and clusters of unique tiled houses. Enjoy the balance of the day at leisure or for shopping at Itaewon Shopping District or Namdaemun Market. Overnight in Seoul. Includes: (B).
Day 08. Departure. Transfer to Incheon International Airport for departure. Includes: (B).