For somebody who has grown up having gigantic crushes on the cast of Boys Over Flowers and using K Beauty brands like Etude House, Innisfree and Tony Moly, travelling to Korea to soak up its culture as well as take in its contemporary way of life is a dream come true. Did you know that Korea has a beautiful concept called Glocal which showcases all the travel destinations of this country? I must say I was very impressed with it and after reading about it I decided to say Yeoboseyo (Hello) to Korea by visiting the Korea Festival 2017.
I began my trip by getting a lovely passport from the officials. Once you visit the travel zones, you can get it stamped. Lucky winners will win souvenirs and one person can even win tickets to Korea! I am keeping my fingers crossed!
Held at the Ambience Mall, Gurgaon this festival had a wide range of activities like calligraphy sessions, mask painting, a gallery full of stunning photographs of Korea’s heritage, hanbok photo-ops, meeting the tourist partners of Korea as well as enjoy Nanta and B-boying!
My favourite was the K beauty show as well as the K Pop Cover Dance. As I met tour operators from Korea, I managed to glean some important information and using that I have put together a handy guide of must have experiences at Korea. Hope you enjoy the post 🙂
Trying on the Hanbok
Hanbok is a traditional clothing of Korea which is worn on special festivals. In fact, Korea has a special experiential tour for travelers like me who would love to own a piece of Korea’ tradition.
At the K-Style Hub a tourist can not only get all the information on this beautiful country but can also participate in their unique hanbok fitting experience. You can try a few outfits, from the elegant traditional style to an edgy contemporary fusion and walk to the Cheonggyecheon Stream for a great photo-op for free! All you have to do is submit a few documents and they will allow you to browse through their marvellous collection.
Dubbed as a one of its kind living museum showcasing Korea’s culture as well as their modern history, the Insa-dong PR centre allows visitors to have a deeper understanding of its diverse culture through its tour guides. You can also have a look at the marvellous hanboks which were worn by the royalty as well as celebrities to support social causes.
Music lovers rejoice! Nanta, a cooking performance featuring samulnori (a kind of percussion quartet) uses knives, pots, spoons and other kitchen utensils to showcase their talent.
If you want to experience tranquility and peace as you practice mindfulness to relieve the stresses of modern life, I definitely recommend you to opt for a Temple Stay in Korea. It is an opportunity to experience Korean Buddhism by engaging in daily activities of a monastery like a Buddhist service, meditation and communal work. You are fed simple monastic meals and are invited to be a part of the traditional tea ceremony. The temples also offer a lotus lantern making program, too, especially during the Lotus Lantern Festival to celebrate Buddha’s birthday.
Royal Palace Tour
Changdeokgung Palace welcomes tourists to its Moonlight Tour to experience its true magnificence. The tour begins at the Donhwamun Gate and ends with a visit to the secret garden. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage site and often has traditional performances to revel its guests.
Another option is to visit the Gyeongbokgung Palace, that has a mixture of contemporary art and historical artefacts. Don’t forget to visit the National Folk Museum which is nearby.
Hot springs and spa
One of the biggest attractions of Korea are the oncheons also known as hot springs where you can relax and rejuvenate your senses surrounded by serene nature. The oncheons are famed to treat dermatitis, assuaging symptoms related to sleep deprivation, high blood pressure, and more.
Jijimjil-bang, a Korean spa treatment featuring saunas is another must have experience. Some of them feature private hot pools as well as hot rooms which are made of hwangtoe or yellow mud which helps soften your skin.
You cannot experience true Korea without trying out Bulgogi with a side of Kimchi and ending it with a dessert of Tteok, the Korean rice cake.
Do have a look at the complete event guide here: http://koreafestival2017.com/# and I hope you will visit the Korea Festival 2017, too! 🙂