There’s no escaping it, South Korea is becoming an increasingly popular destination for travelers.
South Korean culture has captivated the world, with more and more Americans considering a trip to this Asian nation to experience it for themselves.
With a thriving music and arts scene, a unique cuisine, and a friendly and safe way of life, it’s no wonder that visitor numbers to the country are at their highest levels for a decade.
Here are seven reasons why South Korea is becoming so popular:
It’s The King Of Cool Right Now
South Korean culture has taken the world by storm in recent years, with its unique blend of cool and quirky attracting many admirers.
Successful acts from the K-Pop scene, such as BTS and popular cult TV shows like Squid Game, have captured the imaginations of many.
Many people compare the country to nearby Japan, but South Korea has its own unique culture and a distinct vibe that make it an amazing place to visit.
It’s not all modern trends either; there is plenty of history to soak up, such as the five grand palaces in the capital city of Seoul or the Haeinsa Temple in Gayasan National Park.
A Unique Food Scene
Another of Korea’s successful exports is its cuisine, but the best way to sample the authentic taste is by visiting yourself.
One of the most famous foods is kimchi, which is usually fermented cabbage or other vegetables in a spicy sauce.
It’s very popular and eaten with almost everything and is often served as part of banchan, which is a selection of small side dishes designed to be shared – kind of like Korean tapas.
Other favorites include bibimbap, which is a mixed rice and meat dish with many variations, and bulgogi, which is a grilled beef dish.
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Planning Your Trip Is Easier Than Ever
A huge effort has been made by the South Korean Tourism Organization to make things super easy for travelers.
It recently relaunched its Visit Korea website in English and several other languages to make planning a trip a smooth process.
The website features an interactive itinerary planner, inspirational blogs, news about events, and a live chat facility.
Traveling Around The Country Is Smooth
Once you have arrived in South Korea, you can take advantage of its excellent internal transport links, including high-speed trains, which you can get great deals on as a tourist via the Korail Pass.
While trains may be the quickest method of transport, the network of express buses can help you reach different parts of the country at a slower pace to take in the sights.
Many of the buses benefit from exclusive bus lanes to help speed up journey times.
Major cities like Seoul, Busan, and Daegu all have efficient subway systems, often with the option to buy an unlimited one or seven-day pass.
It’s Generally A Safe Country
South Korea is widely regarded as a safe country to visit for Americans.
It is ranked among the top 45 safest countries according to the Global Peace Index, and the U.S. Department of State has it ranked as a 1 on its Travel Advisory Levels scale.
The people are known for being generally friendly and helpful.
You Can Always Stay Connected
As the home to many global technology brands, it shouldn’t surprise you that South Korea is well-connected.
It claims to have one of the most expansive Wi-Fi networks in the world, with internet readily available in many public places such as subway stations, malls, and other tourist areas.
This is a great money-saving aspect and useful for digital nomads who work while traveling.
You can also pay for almost everything with a credit card in South Korea, with just a small amount of shops that only accept cash.
It’s A Year-Round Destination
Spring and autumn are generally regarded as the best times to visit South Korea, with mild weather and clear skies.
The summer can be hot and humid but is the perfect time to check out some of Korea’s beaches, such as Haeundae Beach near Busan. Be aware that from the end of June to the end of July is the rainy season, though.
It gets cold in the winter, but it’s still a great time to travel if you head over to the Gangwon-Do region in the east.
Here you’ll find impressive mountain ranges, national parks, and many ski resorts, including Pyeongchang.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com