The Korean government has designated 17 days from Sept. 12 to 29 as Autumn Tourism Week, aiming to boost domestic tourism, as well as inbound tourists’ visits to Korea. This Autumn Tourism Week will include Chuseok, a Korean holiday similar to Thanksgiving, which falls in the latter half of next week.
Here are some of the recommended tour programs that would-be travelers during the period should not miss.
Suncheon City has been designated as a cultural city of East Asia for 2020, a decision made during last month’s meeting of the culture and tourism ministers of Korea, China and Japan. The city located in Korea’s southeastern South Jeolla Province was chosen along with China’s Yangju and Japan’s Kitakyushu.
The city boasts the beautiful Suncheon Bay National Garden and Wetland Reserve, which is one of the five biggest coastal wetlands in the world. The reserve also has the largest reed field in the country, making the destination a perfect tourist attraction during the of autumn. Suncheon Bay National Garden covers 1.1 square kilometers and is home to countless different kinds of plants and trees.
The city also will host the Suncheon Bay International Orchestra Festival from Sept. 25 to 30, inviting many world-class classical music artists, including Maestro Chung Myung-whun and pianist Lim Dong-hyek, as well as an ensemble music group from the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. Visitors can enjoy the beauty of classical music against the backdrop of the spacious and scenic Suncheon Bay.
DMZ Peace Trails
Earlier this year, the government opened up three hiking trails inside the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) to the public. The hiking trails will give tourists a rare glimpse into the previously unexposed regions inside the border area and the nearest parts of North Korea. Currently, three tour programs are available at Goseong, Cheorwon, and Paju; each of these programs is composed of both walking and bus riding.
Visit durunubi.kr or dmz.go.kr to sign up. However, the trails are currently only open to Korean nationals, due to security reasons.
For those who are not Korean nationals but still wish to experience eco-trails along the DMZ, they can hike along the Pyeonghwa Nuri trails. The 184-kilometer trails allow visitors to walk near the inter-Korean border area, as well as enjoy nature that has been untouched for the past seven decades. The DMZ Bicycle Tour is also an option this autumn on Oct. 27. Participation will be limited to the first 300 people who register at dmz.ggtour.or.kr from Oct. 1
Korea Art Week Tour
Artsy gallery lovers can enjoy various benefits and discounts provided during Korea Art Week, which runs Sept. 25 to Oct. 9. Under the theme of “Art in Everyday Life,” this annual event marking its fifth anniversary this autumn will allow special offers for biennales, art fairs and hundreds of museums nationwide. Several types of “Art Week One-Pass” discount tickets are available. Visitors can buy a One-Pass ticket that allows visits to Gwangju Design Biennale, Cheongju Craft Biennale and Gyeonggi International Ceramic Biennale. Other types of One-Pass tickets allow purchasers to visit one of the biennales and the 2019 Korean International Art Fair (KIAF). Purchasers of these passes can also buy train passes with special discounts.
Other than this, various galleries and museums nationwide will hold special evening programs and drawing festivals. More details about the art week programs and One-Pass can be found at artweek.kr.
Wellness / Industrial Tours of Korea
If you are looking for more unique trips with special themes, how about travel focusing on wellness or industrial destinations? The culture ministry has each chosen 33 tourist attractions on the theme of health and healing, such as the herb garden of Farm Kamille located in Taean, South Chungcheong Province, and Park Roche Resort & Wellness in Gangwon Province, where diverse meditation programs are available.
The ministry has also unveiled 20 destinations of industrial tours. The 20 recommended spots were chosen out of some 470 industrial facilities and tourist destinations, and these tours will provide a glimpse into the different sectors of a variety of industries and the fun of travel.
All this information and more can be found at kto.visitkorea.or.kr.
Source: The Korea Times, KTO