Seoul is the beating heart of South Korea, blending together cutting-edge technology and design with a remarkable history. Here, visitors can get a look at the past and the future all at once. Check out the Dongdaemun Design Plaza for a shining example of forward-thinking architecture, with its brilliant lighting and sleek curves. To get more acquainted with history, take a tour of Changdeokgung Palace or Gyeongbokgung Palace, just two of the “Five Grand Palaces” built by the Joseon Dynasty in the 14th century.

Hike to the top of Bukhansan for a vigorous workout and a the reward of a jaw-dropping view over the city. If you’ve got the time to take a trip away from the city, visit the infamous Demilitarized Zone between North Korea and South Korea for an eerie but fascinating experience you won’t find anywhere else. If that seems a bit scary, make your way instead to the Heyri Art Valley, an entire town built by artists for the preservation of cultural art. Here, visitors get a great look at what makes South Korea so inspiring and unique.

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