Seoul Itinerary 7 Days | What To Do When 7 Days In Seoul
The capital of South Korea is a major city, unlike any other capital city in Asia. Seoul offers a great combination between culture, history, food and activities for foreign travelers. Use this Seoul Itinerary 7 Days on this Seoul trip blog to prepare the perfect trip.
When staying 7 days in Seoul it is recommended to spend 4 days in the city exploring different parts and 3 days going on small day trips away from Seoul. The itinerary is suitable for all seasons and for people of all ages. Depending on your interests, activities in the itinerary can be tweaked as it is made to be used as a guideline. This itinerary assumes you are staying 7 days 6 nights in Seoul (7d6n) and are arriving at Incheon international airport.
Things To Know When Planning A Trip To Seoul, South Korea
- How much to bring to Seoul for 7 days – The seasons in Seoul are extreme, from -20°C in winter to humid 40°C in summer. Make sure you are prepared when visiting. Check what to pack for Seoul here.
- Travel Adapters – Seoul and the whole of Korea uses similar power outlets as mainland Europe. Visitors from USA, UK, Japan, South Asia need to bring travel adapters. Find out more about travel adapters here.
- Seoul Hop-on Hop-off – There are daily city tour buses running through the main touristic sites of Seoul. Tickets for this bus have to be purchased online in advance. Check more info here.
- Transportation Card – The T Money card can be used on all buses and subways in Seoul and across the country. These can be topped up at any convenience store. Buy card here.
- Seoul Pass – The 24/48/72 hours Seoul pass grants access to over 35 different sites and offers discounts on 30 other attractions. Passes need to be purchased online. Check more info here.
- Foreigner Discounts – Seoul attractions offer loads of discounts for foreigners visiting. Discounted entrance tickets or attractions need to be purchased online. The best websites to use are Trazy or Klook.
Seoul Itinerary 7 Days: Day One
Gwanghwamun, Bukchon Hanok village, Myeongdong, Insadong and Jongno are the main central areas in Seoul where most of the touristic sites are located. These are all within walking distance of each other, no need to take public transport or taxi.
This first day is vital to the Seoul 7 days itinerary.
1. Visit One Of The Palaces
There are five major palaces located in central Seoul, all within close proximity of each other. The two main palaces that are most worth visiting are Gyeongbokgung Palace and Changdeokgung Palace. The first one has changing of the guard ceremonies twice a day. The second one has a special Korean garden.
The other three palaces are Deoksugung (which is especially beautiful during autumn in Seoul), Changgyeonggung Palace and Gyeonghuigung Palace. The latter two are free to enter and are far less touristic than the others.
- ★ Gyeongbokgung Palace – The first palace built in Seoul during the Joseon Dynasty. It is over 700 years old and is the biggest of all the palaces. The main entrance of the palace is located at the end of Gwanghwamun, facing the golden statue of the most important king, King Sejeong. He is very well know as he was the king that created Hangul, the Korean alphabet. Open daily 9 AM – 6 PM, except Tuesdays. Changing of the guard ceremony is at 11 AM and 1 PM.
TIP! National Palace Museum and the ★ National Folk Museum(free) are located on the palace grounds.
- ★ Changdeokgung Palace – After the main palace was destroyed during fire, this 2nd palace was constructed. It is located 500 meters to the right of Gyeongbokgung. It is as beautiful and generally less busy. In 1997 the palace was considered as World Cultural Heritage by UNESCO. Open daily 9 AM – 5 PM, except Mondays.
TIP! When wearing a traditional style Korean hanbok the palace is free to enter. Check where to rent a hanbok.
2. Seoul’s Main Temple, Jogyesa
There are two different Buddhist orders in Korea, with as main one the Jogye order. Jogyesa is the leading temple of the temple. Other temples that belong to this order are Bulguksa and Golgulsa Temple. The temple ground are quite small as it is a temple located in the city center, but it is very beautiful. Especially as they keep changing the decoration, depending on the season.
Across from the temple is the Buddhist information center, in here you can join free craft experiences or have a traditional Buddhist vegetarian meal.
Another popular activities at temples across Korea are the temple stays. A unique experience to learn and experience life in a temple. Most programs in different temple are quite similar and include dinner with the monks, a crafting experience, meditation, tea time and other activities. Check more info here.
3. Lunch And Dinner
When in the central area, the best areas to have lunch are Insadong and Myeongdong. These area are filled with restaurants serving all kinds of food, including Korean food. A lot of these restaurant can be booked online, this helps skipping the queues upon arrival. Restaurants can be booked here. Recommended Korean dishes in Seoul to eat are Samgyetang, Gomtang and Kalguksu!
Check the recommended restaurants in Myeongdong here. These include Korean restaurants, halal restaurants, breakfast restaurants and many more.
4. Shopping In Insadong And Myeongdong
The Insadong and Myeongdong area are famous for shopping, food and coffee shops. Insadong is more focused towards souvenir shops, art, craft shops, galleries and restaurants. The area houses over 100 different kind of galleries, the most famous ones are Hakgojae Gallery and Gana Art Gallery. In the local stores you can buy any kind of Korean goods, including Korean hangji paper, traditional tea and supplies and hanboks. One of the best tea houses in this area is Tteuran Teahouse.
Whereas Myeongdong (close to Seoul station) is more focused towards department stores, street food, restaurants, cosmetic shops and coffee shops. The area is a popular evening destination due to the night food market. The Grevin Wax museum is a go to spot for K-Pop lovers! Many wax figures of Korean stars are displayed in the museum.
TIP! Check out the Alive Museum, Kimchi Museum, and Beautiful Tea Museum. These are good alternatives on rainy days.
5. Confusian Shrine And Street Food Market
On the right of the Insadong area, lies the Jongno area which is one of Seoul’s oldest districts. Here you’ll find the Jongmyo shrine, Gwangjang Market and the up-and-coming area Ikseondong.
- Ikseon-dong – This is one of the oldest areas of Seoul and was recently turned into a restaurant and shopping district. The old buildings remain and give the area a hipster touch!
- ★ Gwangjang Market – Gwangjang is the oldest food and textile market in Seoul. It has over 2000 shops and sells lots of traditional Korean street food. The best way to enjoy the market is by taking a food tour.
- Jongmyo Shrine – Korea is a very confusion country, this can still be seen in society today. This shrine was built during the Joseon Dynasty and was used by the kings and their family to worship ancestors.
6. The Bukchon Traditional Hanok Village
Bukchon Village literally translates to the village of the North and lies in the middle of Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung Palace. This area was inhabited by the upper class, related to the royal court. These were some of the wealthiest people of the city and country. Something that can clearly be seen in the architecture and lay out of the hanok houses in this area. Check more info here. It is one of the most beautiful areas of Seoul and a great area to take the best Instagram picture!
Other sites in the area that are worth visiting:
- National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art – This museum is located just next to Gyeongbokgung palace and has constant changing exhibitions from local and international artists.
- Unhyeong Palace – This free to enter palace was home to the last Joseon King when growing up. King Gojong lived here until 18 years old before moving to Gyeongbokgung palace. It is a very simple palace as it isn’t decorated like the other, this makes it rather unique and definitely worth a visit.
- Samcheong-dong – Smacheong-dong is well known for being a stunning area during autumn in Seoul as the streets are filled with trees that turn golden during this season. This area is filled with cute boutique, small guesthouse, art galleries or coffee shops.
Seoul Itinerary 7 Days: Day Two, Three and Four
Use this day for going on day trips outside Seoul. Many beautiful cities or towns are located just outside the capital and are easily accessible by public transport or even on the subway line.
Spend the next three days going on three different day trips. Leave early in the morning and make your way back to Seoul in the evening. No need to change hotels or guesthouse. Looking for something else? Check out this post about the best day trips to spice up you itinerary Seoul 7 days.
TIP! Book your day trips online, as there are many foreigner discount packages available. Check Trazy or Klook for the best day trip deals.
1. All Season Trips
There are all sorts of day trips available from Seoul, which are great doesn’t matter the season. The most popular ones are a trip to the DMZ, Everland or Nami Island.
DMZ And JSA
- ★ DMZ and JSA – The DMZ and JSA is located on the border of North and South Korea around 60 kilometers north of Seoul. The area can be visited by booking a tour. Please be aware that the JSA is sometimes closed for safety reasons. Below is a list of the most popular and impressive sites.
- ★ JSA – The joint security area lies on the border of North and South Korea and is the closest point accessible to North Korea from South Korea is the closest point you can get to North Korea. Here visitors have a chance to set foot into North Korea and take pictures of the South and North Korean soldiers protecting the border. This can only be accessed with the American Army and making a booking online is necessary. Check info here!★ Dora Observatory – This is an observatory deck looking over the North Korean boarder and country side. On clear days, the closest town can be seen through the free binoculars.Other sights – depending the company you’re going with, some of the following sites will be included. Dorasan Station, the Unification Village, Infiltration Tunnels and the Unification Bridge.
Other Day Trips
- ★ Nami Island – This island located in Gapyeong is famous for being featured on the Korean drama, Winter Sonata. It can be reached by Nami Island shuttle bus, subway or ITX from central Seoul or by booking of foreigner discount package. Other places in the area are La Petite France, the Garden of the Morning Calm and Gapyeong rail bike.
Check more info here.
- Everland Theme Park – Everland is the biggest and most popular theme park in Korea and is great for people of all ages. It houses one of the coolest roller coasters, the T Express and an abundance of animals, including fluffy pandas.
Check more info here.
2. Seoul 7 Day Itinerary Winter Trips
Winter is a great time to visit South Korea as the country has lots of winter activities going on. The temperature in Korea can drop to -20°C during December, January and February, so make sure to be well dressed.
- ★ Go Skiing – South Korea has over 20 different ski resorts scattered all around the country. With some resorts being close to Seoul. Vivaldi Park is one of the best resorts to go for beginners and intermediate skiers.
- Ice festivals – Ice sculpture and ice fishing festival are the pride of the country, with the Hwacheon Ice Fishing Festival as one of the best.
3. Seoul 7 Day Itinerary Spring Trips
Spring in Seoul is all about the cherry blossoms, these can be found in some of the parks in Seoul or places outside Seoul. There are many places to go all over the country but the destinations listed below are close to Seoul.
- Namhansanseong fortress – Located 20 kilometers from Seoul, the fortress park turns into a cherry blossom wonderland during spring. 12,5 kilometer trails run in the park, perfect for a spring stroll.
Check more info here.
- Jayu park – Jayu park lies just next to the Incheon China Town and overlooks the Incheon harbour. The mountain park is a beautiful spot to enjoy the cherry blossom season.
Check more info here.
4. Seoul 7 Days Itinerary Summer Trips
Summer in Korea is all about cooling down and there is no better way to do this than going to the beach or one of the many water parks.
- Muuido Island – Muuido Island is one of the most beautiful islands located in the Incheon area. It is absolutely gorgeous and easily accessible from Incheon Airport.
- Caribbean Bay – Going to a water park in Korea is a crazy experience! The water park is located next to the Everland theme park. It is one of the best summer experiences and water parks in Korea.
Check more info here.
5. Seoul Itinerary 7 Days Autumn Trips
Autumn is all about the Korean foliage. All the trees in the country turn golden or red and colour the scenery. In many of the parks in Seoul, the autumn season can be enjoyed, but if you are into hiking then going on a day trip is recommended.
- Seoraksan Mountain – This is one of the most beautiful national parks in the country, especially during spring and autumn. The park is located in Sokcho and has different hiking trails based on their difficulty level.
Check more info here.
Seoul Itinerary 7 Days: Day Five
Use this day to explore one of the many national museums of Seoul. These are mostly free to enter or have a very low entrance fee.
- ★ National Museum Of Korea – The biggest museum of Korea which house art and historic objects from Korean and other Asian countries. The best section to check out is the Buddhist art hall on the 3rd floor.
- Seoul Museum of Art – This museum located behind Deoksu Palaces is similar to the modern art museum. It showcases modern art from local and international artists in form of sculptures, video, paintings, etc.
- ★ War Memorial Museum – The huge war memorial museum exhibits all kinds of props related to the Korean war between the current South and North Korea.
- National Museum of Korean Contemporary History – This museum focuses on the Japanese occupation, the Korean war, and the industrialization of Korea after the war.
- Seodaemun Prison Hall – The museum is located in the old prison hall which was used during the Japanese occupation to lock up Korean patriots and freedom fighters.
- Seoul History Museum – An older museum, that focuses on the history of Seoul only. From its first settlement to current days.
- Samsung Leeum Art Museum – A much smaller art museum, but with beautiful architecture. This museum is owned by Samsung and features traditional Korean art and modern international and Korean art. The entrance fee is 10 000 krw, but free with a Seoul pass.
Seoul Itinerary 7 Days: Day Six And Seven
On the fifth and sixth day visit the newer areas in Seoul, like Dongdaemun, Itaewon, Gangnam and Hongdae. In these areas enjoy shopping, going to museums, the bustling streets, good food, themed coffee shops and performances. Pick the areas you are most interested in or try to fit them all into the best 7d6n Seoul itinerary.
1. The Hongdae Area
This is probably one of the busiest areas in Seoul as it is very popular among Korean students. Street performances by young Korean dancers and singers are very popular during the weekends and evenings. Many cute shops, themed coffee shops and experiences are located in these areas.
Below is a list of the best things to do in Hongdae.
- Nanta Performance – The Nanta cooking performance is one of the most well known Korean shows. This is a unique show about chefs preparing food for a wedding reception. This is a great activity to do at night, very entertaining and hilarious.
Check prices and info here.
- ★ The Trick Eye, Love And Ice Museum – I loved this museum! This is the perfect place to go to take cool pictures with friends. It has 3 sections, the trick eye, love and ice museum. Personally I don’t think the ice museum is worth it but the other two are great!
Check more info here.
- Luxury Su Karaoke – The area is filled with Karaoke rooms, but this one is a premium/luxury version. Bring some friends, order some beer and you’ll make great memories.
Check more info here.
- ★ Hongdae Crafting Workshop – Why not make some souvenirs for the loved ones back home? Hongdae is filled with craft workshops offering all kinds of classes including making leather products, rings, ceramic figurines, neon decoration lights, pottery or Korean cooking.
2. DDP: The Dongdaemun Design Plaza
The Dongdaemun is a rather interesting area as it combines old traditional clothing markets with modern architecture and huge department stores. The DDP building is the pride of the area, designed by the British/Iranian architect Zaha Hadid. It is beautiful from the outside and hosts temporary exhibitions and events.
Other things to do in the area of the DDP are listed below.
- ★ Dongdaemun Traditional Clothing Market – This market houses over 30 000 different vendors all selling their unique product. The area dates back to the early 1900’s when it was a textile market. The market stays open from early in the morning till late at night in Seoul.
- Dongmyo Vintage Clothes Market – If you are looking for something different in Seoul then this market is the place to go. It is the biggest vintage and second hand market in Seoul and sells all kinds of things, but mainly clothes for as low as 1000 krw.
- L’atelier Museum – Go back in time with famous painters and experience their famous paintings in form of musical shows, interactive figures and light shows.
Check more info here.
- Ihwa Art Mural Village – This used to be one of the poorest areas of Seoul until the government the area by inviting over 70 different Korean artists to brighten up the area with their mural art work and art installations.
3. The Itaewon Area
Go to Itaewon for the good foreign food and clubbing scene. It is called, the foreigner area of Seoul as most of the foreign expats are based in this area. Check what to do in Itaewon here including Namsan mountain, Seoul tower and many other activities.
4. The Gangnam Area
The upscale and fancy area of Seoul! Gangnam is an area that became internationally known once the Gangnam style video was released by PSY. The are is most known for the K Pop attractions, fancy department stores, plastic surgery shops and beauty salons.
- Spas & Beauty Salons – The fanciest beauty salons and spas are located in Gangnam. The best ones to check out are Sulwhasoo Spa, 1899 Daechi or Whoo SPA.
- ★ Bongeunsa Temple – One of the biggest temple complexes in Seoul. Located just next to COEX and of the same order as the main temple Yogyesa in Seoul.
- ★ COEX Shopping & Aquarium – COEX is a huge fair and conference center with many shops, Korean supermarkets and restaurants on the base floor. An aquarium and cinema are located in the building and are a great thing to do with kids in Seoul.
Frequently Asked Questions
Seoul has a lot to offer, but some must-visit tourist attractions for a 7-day itinerary include Gyeongbokgung Palace, Namsan Tower, Bukchon Hanok Village, Myeong-dong shopping district, and the traditional Insadong neighborhood.
Some recommended day trips from Seoul include a visit to the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) and JSA (Joint Security Area), a trip to the historical city of Gyeongju, a visit to the seaside town of Sokcho and the nearby Seoraksan National Park, or a day trip to the ski resorts in Pyeongchang.
The best time of year to visit Seoul for a 7-day itinerary depends on personal preference. The spring (April to June) and autumn (September to November) seasons offer pleasant weather with colorful foliage and blooming flowers. The summer (July to August) can be hot and humid, but it’s also festival season. The winter (December to February) can be very cold, but it’s a great time to experience winter activities and festivals.