South Korea

Seoul, South Korea (Photo: E. Dyan via Flickr)

The Land of Morning Calm is rapidly becoming one of Asia’s most popular destinations. Almost every year South Korea or Seoul features on top ten lists of the best places to visit, and with good reason. South Korea’s rise has been nothing short of meteoric after breaking from military dictatorship in the 80s. Since then an Olympics and a World Cup have kick-started a vibrant modern economy. Parts of Seoul feel like a scene from a sci-fi movie. The peninsula has no open land borders making flight or sea the only routes of ingress. Much of the country is forested with half of the 50 million population located in the Seoul metropolitan area. Beautiful, delicately painted temples dot the landscape, often alongside plate glass high-rises in the cities. Many historic landmarks were destroyed during Japanese occupation but have been faithfully reconstructed. Due to the sweltering summers and deep freeze of winter, spring with its ubiquitous cherry blossoms and autumn with its stunning colours have proven to be the best times to visit. Year-round however travelers are drawn by the delicious Korean cuisine, friendly people and the revered K-Pop and K Dramas which have found a huge audience outside Korea.