With Korean influencers flooding our social media feeds in all the awe-inspiring city and country beauty in the backdrop, the absolute rage that is K-pop and K-dramas and the killer (pun intended) popularity of Squid Game, we hardly need more reasons to put South Korea on the very top of our bucket list. And yet, the Ambiguous Dance Company is giving us a bunch of more reasons to ditch everything else and make South Korea our next travel destination.
Although we hardly think it’s possible, just in case you aren’t familiar with them, the Ambiguous Dance Company is a dance troupe that almost broke the internet a while ago with its funky twist to the Korean folk music genre, Pansori. And they brought the same level of funk and awesomeness to Feel the Rhythm of Korea, a series of about 2-min YouTube videos. FTROK is an initiative by the Korea Tourism Organization to capture the modern-meets-traditional vibe of the country along with its many versions of beauty. By the looks of it, they’ve succeeded!
The videos bring different cities under the spotlight giving us a new reason each time to head eastward right away. Inspired by these delightful glimpses, we’ve teamed up with the Korea Tourism Organization to give you eight of the many reasons (or cities, if you will) why South Korea should be on every Canadian’s travel bucket list.
#1 – SEOUL
Blame it on our lack of knowledge or on K-dramas, we’ve always known of Seoul as this ultra-tech, modern city with a vibrant urbanscape. Of course, that serves as temptation enough to visit but the city also has a historic side. With 5 beautiful palaces throughout the city restored to their former glory and all of the culturally rich museums, there’s plenty to explore on quieter days in Seoul.
#2 – BUSAN
This one’s for the adventure seekers who want to experience it all in one day. Pretty much like the country itself, Busan is a harmonious mix of modern life and ancient heritage with plenty of beaches, mountains, temples, and nearby bars to unwind at after your fun-filled days. The aptly named Diamond Bridge is one of its many sparkly gems and very well worth checking out yourself.
#3 – JEONJU
This is the spot for every art and culture-enthusiast. From the Hanok Heritage Village with traditional houses, boutique shops and food stalls, to Gyeonggijeon Shrine to that of the Jaman Mural Village, everything about this place inspires creativity. All this with never-ending scenic views that are to die for. Plus, they’ve got the Jeonju World Cup Stadium, so there’s even an adventure the sports-enthusiasts out there!
#4 – ANDONG
This is yet another gem set amidst the bountiful Korean beauty with mountains and woods and rivers. This culture-rich city is your go-to if you want to experience the very roots of Korean heritage. The historic sites galore, the open-air museums, the enactment of ancient ceremonies at the Andong Folk Museum, the traditional houses and the mind-blowingly amazing food make this relatively small city unmissable.
#5 – MOKPO
This one is for the ocean-lovers and maritime enthusiasts with many beaches and maritime museums. And when you’ve had your fill of all things ocean-y, walk up the paved and staired trail of Yudal Mountain. While the hike up itself is a mesmerising one, the view atop is straight-up breath-taking.
#6 – GANGNEUNG
The 2018 Winter Olympics might have put this Korean beauty on the world map but what made it a traveller-fave is its mix of historic, cultural and natural offerings. While the many beaches, trails, museums and heritage sites are a delight, what needs to be checked out most is the Jeongdongjin Beach which famously gives the most beautiful sunrise views in all of South Korea.
#7 – INCHEON
This metropolitan city has more to boast than just its ultra-advanced International Airport that we all know of. The city is dotted with some of the most gorg parks and topping the list is Songdo, South Korea’s first-ever Seawater Park. Definitely a must-visit! And of course, the iconic Chinatown, Songwol-dong Fairytale Village and Jeondeungsa Temple will make it worth your while.
#8 – DAEGU
Unlike its counterparts, Daegu is not what you’d call a scenic city but if you really want to witness Korean culture and lifestyle, this is the place to be. From museums and amusement parks to ancient Buddhist sites to that of a slew of contemporary cafes and stores, this is the real South Korea in all of its urbanized yet rugged beauty.
If you’ve already started planning your trip, we suggest you keep your eyes on the Korea Tourism Organization to get all the info you need to plan your perfect vacay. And if you’re looking to keep the rhythm of Korea going, make sure you check out Ambiguous Dance Company’s 2nd season!
See ya in South Korea!