Senior Citizens Travel to South Korea

Feb 15th, 2011 | By James E Becker | Category: Senior Travel

A few years back in 2007, 6.4 million foreign tourists visited South Korea (SK), making it the 36th most visited country in the world. This number is expected to exceed 8.5 million in 2010. So what’s the attraction seniors? SK’s historical tourist attractions include the ancient capitals of Seoul, Gyeongju and Buyeo. Some natural landmarks include the peaks of the Baekdudaegan, particularly Seorak-san and Jiri-san, the caves of Danyang and Hwanseongul, and beaches such as Haeundae and Mallipo.

Tourism in SK is one of the emerging features of the nation. The popularity of the various tourist spots in SK is growing higher day by day. Both domestic and international aspects of SK tourism have been given a boost of late with the growing popularity of Korean culture abroad. Although most of South Korean tourist industry is supported by domestic tourism, international tourism in SK has also taken off in the past few years.

I have grown to love YouTube as it provides good information for senior travel and what to see and do prior to departure.  SK boasts of extensive network of trains and buses, which has actually helped SK tourism to grow over the years. Besides SK also has international airports in most of its major cities, which makes it easier for the SK tourism to speed along the length and breadth of the country. There are several tourist attractions in SK, most of which has a distinct feature of clubbing the old world with the new.

Some of the major cities in SK which upholds SK tourism are Seoul, Busan, Daegu, Ulsan, Jeju, Sokcho, Suwon and Andong. Sightseeing in SK involves the best of nature, cuisine, sports and culture in the nation. Ten popular sites to visit via video can help you plan your vacation here.

The majority of the SK tourist industry is supported by domestic tourism. Thanks to the country’s extensive network of trains and buses, most of the country lies within a day’s round trip of any major city. International tourists come primarily from nearby countries in Asia. As usual I go to Trip Advisor for aid and they come up with this and lots of suggestions for American tourists. 

So what to do in Seoul? Try these first. Lonely Planet finds that few senior international travelers to check out explore the countryside in Korea, which is a tragedy and a blessing. Serene temples, picturesque mountains, lush rice paddies, unspoiled fishing villages and endless hiking opportunities are so far off the beaten track, it’s unlikely you’ll meet any Westerners (or even English speakers) on the road less traveled.
The Official Korean Tourism Organization has a site loaded with information for senior tourists.

So why Korea. The South is not the North, and virtually everyone living on this lumpy, potato-shaped peninsula below the 38th parallel is grateful for that fact.

• Myth has it that Korea was founded by the god-king Dangun, in 2333 B.C.

• Roughly half its people call themselves Christians, the other half Buddhists.

• Its culture is imbued with traditional Confucian values and beliefs.

• The peninsula’s division at the 38th parallel dates to 1945.

• The war that ensued left more than three million Koreans dead or wounded.

• SK today boasts a thriving democracy and surging economy. Korea has a population of 50 million. There are dozens of sites to see and you can visit them here prior to your arrival in SK. 

Seoul, officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest city of South Korea. A megacity with a population of 48,508,972 (July 2009 est.), it is one of the largest cities in the world. Seoul has been a major settlement for over 2,000 years, with its foundation dating back to 18 B.C. The Seoul National Capital Area is the world’s second largest metropolitan population with over 24.5 million inhabitants. world. It forms the cultural, commercial, financial, industrial, and residential center of SK.  

Time Magazine provides Ten Things to Do in 24 Hours in Seoulwith additional information on those sites. It states…”Seoul is the seat of government and it’s as crowded and competitive, if more homogeneous, as any other developed megacity. Skyscrapers dwarf shanty towns, throngs of delivery men on motorcycles jockey with black Mercedes Benzes on the roads, and behind the straight major boulevards where multitudes of well-attired Seoulites shop at fancy boutiques and posh department stores, lies a maze of narrow alleyways filled with innumerable itty-bitty shops selling everything from dried squid to cell-phone paraphernalia. This bustling city has a lot to offer the first-time visitor, so when you visit the South Korean peninsula (which is technically an island because of the closed border with North Korea) make sure to hit some of the top tourist sites as well as places that are a bit more unorthodox.” Enjoy SK. jeb



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