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Ultimate South Korea and Japan Trip - Local Food, traditional Accommodation and More!

Hosted by

Katharina

Guided trip
What's special?
special Packed itinerary
special A mix of modern and traditional
special Authentic experience
Get ready for an unforgettable adventure in South Korea and Japan! SOUTH KOREA Together we will be exploring Seoul together, having a temple stay to experience the life of a monk and visit Busan for some relaxation and beach time. The perfect mix! One big reason to visit South Korea is its delicious food. You can try delicious dishes like bulgogi (grilled meat), kimchi (spicy fermented vegetables), and bibimbap (a tasty rice dish). Korean food is known for its flavors and variety. JAPAN Together we will be exploring Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo for a week! I will be traveling in South Korea before, feel free to join me as well. To make this an unforgettable experience, I have chosen some unique activities for us to do, such as a tea ceremony, meeting a Geisha, checking out theme cafés and trying lots of local food! We will visit a lot of places in a short time. Also, do not miss the opportunity to savor the exquisite flavors of sushi or a steaming bowl of authentic ramen!

About me: I’m Kathi, 27 years old and born in Austria. I already organized many JoinMyTrip group trips and it was always a lot of fun! Traveling is my passion and I truly enjoy planning trips. You can find all my trips when you click on my profile. Or read more about me here: https://www.joinmytrip.com/en/t/tripleader/kathichristalon

Where will we stay? Temple stay: We will spend one night at the temple and get to chance to meet a monk! Temple stay is a cultural program in several South Korean Buddhist temples. It allows participants to experience the life of Buddhist practitioners and learn the various aspects of Korean Buddhist culture and history through stories told by monks. Hanok Accommodation: In Seoul, we will be spending the nights inside a real hanok! A hanok is a traditional Korean house. These houses are typically made of wood and have a unique architectural style with a curved roof and a courtyard in the center. Hanoks are designed to harmonize with nature and often have sliding doors and heated floors to keep warm in the winter. Staying in a hanok can give you a taste of Korea's rich cultural heritage and a glimpse into traditional Korean living. Hotel in Busan: For two nights in Busan, we will be staying at a regular hotel and rooms will be shared, like in all our accommodations during the trip. If you prefer a private room, please let me know beforehand and I will try to arrange it. Futon and Tatami We will be staying in a guesthouse or Airbnb with shared rooms in Kyoto and/or Osaka. A futon is a traditional Japanese mattress and bedding set. It typically consists of a mattress pad, a duvet, and a pillow. Unlike Western-style beds, futons are designed to be placed directly on the tatami mat or a wooden floor. Futons and tatami create a distinct Japanese sleeping and living experience, emphasizing simplicity, comfort, and a connection to nature and tradition. Tokyo Accommodation Our accommodation in Tokyo will be a capsule hostel, you will have your own cabin and bathrooms are shared. The accommodation is modern and breakfast is included in our stay. You will also receive your own sleep analysis afterwards. The capsule unit will scientifically measure your sleeping condition. Important: The train pass is not included in the cost. We will discuss together which one to get, depending on how long you stay in Japan, as there are several options available. Do you have a question? Ask in the Q&A! I'm happy to hop on a call with you after booking, to see if we get along and if this trip matches your expectations. Can’t wait to hear from you! 🙌🏻

What's included?
Accommodation (shared room)
Temple stay with monks
Train to Busan and Temple Stay
Mentioned entrance fees
DMZ Guided Tour
Hanbok and Kimono rental
Travel insurance (German and Austrians)
Night walk in Gion and Tea Ceremony
6 Breakfasts, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Trip planning and packing list
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More Info about me: https://www.joinmytrip.com/en/t/tripleader/kathichristalon ❤️

4.86 based on 108 reviews

Lisa

5/5
Traveling with Kathi is always great. You don't have to worry about anything. Always a pleasure ❤️
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You can chat with Katharina once you reserve your spot.
Trip Itinerary
1

Seoul

Day 1-2
We will meet in the afternoon in our accommodation in Seoul and get to know each other by a nice dinner together. We will be staying in a traditional Hanok for four nights, for an authentic experience. Take a rest after your long flight, because tomorrow we start exploring!
2

Seoul

Day 2-3
Let's explore Seoul together! We will start our day at Gyeongbokgung, the largest and most grandiose palace in Seoul. Here we will rent our Hanbok for about two hours, as we walk through the palace grounds we can take some amazing photos to remember our trip by. What is a Hanbok? Hanbok is a traditional Korean clothing, It's been worn for centuries by Koreans for important events and ceremonies. Hanbok has colorful and beautiful designs. Women's hanbok usually consists of a jeogori (a top) and a chima (a skirt). Men wear a jeogori and baji (pants). The colors and patterns often symbolize things like social status, age, and more. Hanbok is loved for its elegance and cultural significance. Afterwards, we explore the famous Bukchon Hanok Village, a preserved traditional Korean village with narrow alleys and well-preserved hanok (traditional Korean houses). Here we can visit a tea house for a break and try deserts such as green tea waffles. We will also visit Changdeokgung Palace and its beautiful Secret Garden. It's a UNESCO World Heritage Site and offers a serene escape in the city.
3

DMZ zone

Day 3-4
We will join a DMZ half day tour from Seoul, it will be a unique and unforgettable experience for sure! We will get a glimpse into North Korea from across the most heavily fortified border in the world! While the Cold War happened a long time ago, Korea is the only country that still remains divided as a consequence. In the evening, we will have a well-deserved dinner in Seoul. You might want to try some Korean barbecue or a local specialty.
4

Seoul

Day 4-5
We will start our day at Gwangjang Market, known for its street food and traditional Korean textiles. Here we can try some local breakfast dishes like bindaetteok (mung bean pancakes). I'm so excited! Of course, we can't miss out on seeing the Seoul Tower! Perched atop Namsan Mountain, this iconic landmark offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city, showcasing its stunning skyline and scenic landscapes. The observatory deck allows you to witness the city's beauty. Additionally, the tower features various attractions, including restaurants, love locks, and cultural exhibitions.
5

Seoul

Day 5-6
Monk Templestay! Experience tranquility and spiritual reflection with a South Korea Templestay. Immerse yourself in the serene atmosphere of ancient temples and gain insight into Korean Buddhist traditions. It's a unique opportunity to find inner peace while exploring the cultural richness of South Korea. This experience based program offers a variety of activities including a temple tour, a first-hand experience of the Buddhist Ceremony, a 108 prayer beads making, a hiking and a special tea session with a monk. Accommodation is simple, and uniforms are provided. *The schedule may be subject to change depending on the circumstances.
6

Busan

Day 6-7
Today, we will wake up early for our second part of the temple stay. There will be breakfast very early and a meditation before checking out. In the afternoon, we will explore Busan! We visit Haeundae Beach, to enjoy a relaxing stroll along the beautiful coastline. Later, we head to Haeundae Traditional Market nearby for some local snacks and souvenirs. On one of the days, we can have dinner or drinks in a sky restaurant, to have a great view of Busan!
7

Busan

Day 7-8
Today, we will be visiting Gamcheon Culture Village. It is a vibrant and colorful hillside neighborhood known for its artistic and cultural atmosphere. The village is filled with narrow alleyways with colorful murals, sculptures, and unique art installations, making it a popular destination for tourists and art enthusiasts. In the afternoon, we will enjoy some time at the beach and relax a bit. We will have a last group dinner together and pack our bags for leaving the next day.
8

Hiroshima

Day 8-9
The next morning, we will have breakfast together and check out of our accommodation. We will take a ferry to Fukuoka to continue our adventure in Japan! On the same day, we will take a fast train to Hiroshima to spend the night there.
9

Osaka

Day 9-10
Hiroshima is known for the tragic atomic bombing on August 6, 1945, during World War II, resulting in devastating destruction and loss of life. The event had a profound impact on the world and marked a turning point in the use and understanding of nuclear weapons. We will explore Hiroshima in the morning for a short time and take a train to Osaka. We will meet our new TripMates in the afternoon and get to know each other by a nice dinner together. We will be staying here for two nights.
10

Osaka

Day 10-11
We will start the day with breakfast together! Afterwards, we head to Osaka Castle, an iconic symbol of the city. Explore the castle grounds and visit the museum inside to learn about its history. In the afternoon, we stroll along Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Street, a bustling area filled with shops, boutiques, and department stores. It's a great place for shopping and people-watching. Later, we visit the Kuromon Ichiba Market, also known as "Osaka's Kitchen." It's a lively market where we can sample street food and buy local ingredients and snacks.
11

Kyoto

Day 11-12
We will take the train to Kyoto! It is only half an hour away from Osaka, which means, we will have a lot of time to explore today! We will drop our luggage at the reception and head out to explore the area. For example, we will visit the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove. It is one of Kyoto’s top sights and for good reason: standing amid these soaring stalks of bamboo is like being in another world. Tea Ceremony Experience the true art of tea drinking by taking part in this tea ceremony. We will learn about the ancient ritual of tea drinking and its social significance in Japanese culture. First, we will have a traditional purification ritual. The Tea Master will guide us throughout, showing and explaining every step of making the tea. Throughout the ceremony, we will be taught the fine art of drinking matcha tea.
12

Kyoto

Day 12-13
We will get dressed in a beautiful kimono and explore Kyoto! We will head to a rental shop, the basic package is already included in the price. If you want your hair to be done or additional accessories, you have to pay an extra fee. Let's take some beautiful photos in a traditional Japanese kimono! Our first stop will be the famous Kiyomizu-dera temple, that is close by! Kiyomizudera is best known for its wooden stage that juts out from its main hall, 13 meters above the hillside. The stage affords nice views of the numerous cherry and maple trees below that erupt in a sea of color in spring and fall, as well as of the city of Kyoto in the distance. We will head back to the Sannenzaka and Ninenzaka area, famous for its traditional buildings. We will have lunch there, walk around the area to take some pictures and check out some shops. Next we head to a cute café to have a short break, get some matcha or other drinks along with a cute cloud-shaped snack. Afterwards, we will bring back our Kimonos and take public transport or walk to the district of Gion. Gion Geisha walking tour At 18:00 we will have a 1,5h long tour around the hidden street of the geisha district. We will be walking over the classic cobblestone next to the Shirakawa river, the scenery of which was featured in the novel / movie, "Memoirs of a Geisha," and while walking alongside the beautiful stream, the guide will tell us the story about what the geisha really is with a detailed explanation about their kimono, hairstyle, traditional rules, and how their daily life is, and more. If we are lucky, we will see a Geisha there.
13

Tokyo

Day 13-14
Today we are taking the bullet train "Shinkansen" from Kyoto to Tokyo for a bit over two hours. We will drop our luggage at the hotel and head out to explore! We will experience the famous Shibuya Crossing, one of the busiest pedestrian crossings in the world. Enjoy the view from a café or take part in the crossing itself. Wrap up your day with dinner in Shibuya, where you'll find a wide range of dining options, from izakayas to international cuisine.
14

Tokyo

Day 14-15
Modern Tokyo! We will start your day at Tsukiji Outer Market, where you can sample fresh sushi and explore the bustling stalls selling seafood and Japanese snacks. We will continue to Ginza, Tokyo's high-end shopping district, and explore luxury boutiques, department stores, and the famous Wako Building. Of course, we also have to head to Tokyo Station and visit "Ramen Street" in the basement, where you can choose from several renowned ramen shops for lunch.
15

Tokyo

Day 15-16
Since Tokio is huge and there is a lot to see, we will have one more day to explore based on our interests! There is no fixed program yet, we can discuss what to do together or split the group. Nevertheless, the evening will end with a last group dinner or drinks together. Make sure to also try Sake! It is an integral part of Japanese culture and cuisine, and it's a must-try beverage for visitors.
16

Tokyo

Day 16
The next morning, we will have breakfast together and check out of our accommodation. You can continue your own journey or take your flight back home. Hopefully we will see each other on another trip!
Trip Summary
Accommodation
Hotel & Apartments & Other
16 days trip
Seoul, Seoul & 14 more
Transportation
Train, Trekking, Boat, Car
Questions and Answers

Hi Katharina :) Is there still a possibility to join the group? Lg Zeynep

Hello, we still have one place available due to a cancellation.

What's excluded?
Flights
Meals
Transport within the city
Personal expenses
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