South Korea may not be as popular with tourists as other destinations like Japan, but this Asian nation is growing in popularity due to the incredible value it offers for travelers.
After tourism came to a halt for over two years due to restrictions imposed by the government, South Korea’s reopening has seen tourism numbers start to grow again.
Here’s what makes South Korea a great destination to visit in Asia this year:
Amazing Food And Culture
One of the top reasons to visit South Korea is for its food and culture. Korean food is incredibly distinctive, and South Korea is a foodie paradise.
Kimchi, bibimbap, and tteokbokki are just a few of the foods to try in South Korea.
In addition to food, South Korea is also full of culture. From ancient Buddhist temples to modern Korean culture like K-pop music and Korean fashion and beauty products, South Korea is a fascinating cultural destination with something for everyone.
City Life And Nature
South Korea is a relatively small country that combines bustling city life and tranquil natural beauty. On a trip to South Korea, you can experience both aspects of this country.
Vibrant Seoul is one of the most exciting cities in the world, with great dining, shopping, nightlife, and other attractions.
However, you should also make time to visit the ancient coastal city of Gyeongju, about two hours from Seoul by train, and Busan, the beach city that’s three hours from Seoul by train.
For those with a little more time in the country, Jeju Island and Seoraksan National Park are two other remarkable places to visit. Jeju Island was even named one of TIME Magazine’s World’s Greatest Places of 2023.
Accessibility With Frequent Flights
South Korea is growing in popularity thanks to increasing flight service to the capital city, Seoul. A trip to South Korea might be more attainable than you think,
There are nonstop flights from many cities across the United States, Europe, and Asia to Seoul.
Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Atlanta, New York, and Boston are just some of the cities in the United States that offer frequent nonstop flights to Seoul.
Although it’s a long journey from North America, South Korea is the perfect destination in Asia to explore with just one or two weeks of vacation.
Relatively Affordable Prices
South Korea isn’t going to make it to the top of the list for the most budget-friendly travel destinations in Asia, but it is considerably more affordable than some of its neighbors.
Compared to popular destinations like Japan or Singapore, you can save a lot more money on a vacation to South Korea when it comes to everything from accommodations to transportation to food.
According to the website Budget Your Trip, you should expect to spend around $90 per day on travel in South Korea. This is significantly less than Japan ($112 per day) or Singapore ($166 per day.)
Of course, you can easily spend much more, but overall a trip to South Korea doesn’t have to cost as much as you might expect.
No More Travel Restrictions
Asia as a whole was slow to reopen to tourism after heavy restrictions were put in place during Covid, and South Korea was no exception.
However, the country finally dropped all entry requirements in September 2022, including testing and vaccine requirements.
South Korea still had a strict indoor mask mandate in place until January 2023, when it was dropped everywhere except for public transportation. Even the public transportation mask mandate was finally lifted in March 2023.
Although many Koreans still voluntarily wear masks, travelers are not required to do so.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com