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Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace

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Seoul, South Korea
Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace

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Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon8 hours 30 minutes  (Approx.)
Pickup from select hotels
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English

Overview

Discover the history and cultural traditions of Korea on this full-day tour of Seoul’s palaces and markets. Visit Gyeongbokgung Palace including its National Folklore Museum, and see Jogyesa Buddhist Temple and Changdeokgung Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Your informative guide accompanies you to Insadong and Namdaemun to explore these bustling local markets on foot. Enjoy a Korean lunch and convenient round-trip coach transport from your hotel.
  • Seoul palace and market tour with a friendly and knowledgeable guide
  • Marvel at the pavilions and gardens of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Changdeokgung Palace, Gyeongbokgung Palace and Jogyesa Buddhist Temple
  • Peruse antique artifacts and local artwork at the Insadong Antique Market and Namdaemun Market
  • Enjoy an authentic Korean lunch at a local restaurant
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Hotel pickup and drop-off
Professional guide
Air-conditioned vehicle
Lunch
Gratuities
This operator has two meet-up options available. You can either meet at the departure point below or select a location for pick-up.
Seoul , Seoul, South Korea

The first attraction we will visit is Jogyesa Buddhist Temple

Hmm...we can’t seem to find this place. Please check the spelling, or choose another location.

8:30 AM

Please arrive 1 hour before your selected start time for pickup. Your operator can coordinate exact time and location.

This activity will end right where it started.If you cannot see your hotel information, please let your hotel information Then, the tour operator will arrange the meeting place.
Start your palaces and markets tour of Seoul with hotel pickup by coach. Listen to your guide’s interesting commentary as you drive past the stately Blue House — the executive office and official residence of the South Korean head of state and the President of the Republic of Korea.

Your first stop is Gyeongbokgung Palace, the largest of the Five Grand Palaces and the first royal palace, built in 1395 by the Joseon Dynasty. Admire the original or restored gates, pavilions and royal halls as you meander the grounds on a guided tour. At the on-site National Folklore Museum, browse extensive artifacts and learn about Korean life from ancient times to the 20th century via exhibitions and illustrative replicas.

Re-board the coach for Jogyesa Buddhist Temple, the chief temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism. Gaze at the statue of an enlightened Buddha inside its main hall, which dates back five centuries.

After seeing the famous Buddhist temple, you will stop by a Ginseng Center around midday before sitting down for a Korean lunch at a local restaurant before driving to the World Heritage–listed Changdeokgung Palace. Explore the beautifully preserved grand pavilions, massive gate and several halls. Walk around the landscaped grounds featuring Geumcheongyo Bridge along with lotus ponds, lawns, trees and flowers at the Huwon (Rear Garden).

After you’ve been steeped in Korean heritage, you’l head to two famous markets in Seoul: Insadong and Namdaemun Market. Stroll the craft galleries and quaint teahouses along the Antique Alley of Insadong before finishing up at the Duty Free Shops then Namdaemun — Korea’s largest traditional market. Browse a multitude of goods for bargains and search for the perfect souvenir to take home.

Your full-day tour concludes with drop-off at your hotel in Seoul.

Please note: Gyeongbokgung Palace is closed on Tuesdays, in which case you’ll visit Deoksugung Palace; this walled palace compound is home to the Seoul Museum of History, which you’ll also tour with your guide. Changdeokgung Palace is closed on Mondays, in which case you’ll visit Changgyeonggung Palace — another one of the Five Grand Palaces of the Joseon Dynasty, featuring incredible ancient structures.
Itinerary
Stop At:  
Jogyesa Temple
Jogyesa Buddhist Temple, the chief temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism. Admire the lovely locust and baeksong trees lining the entrance and enter the main temple, dating back 500 years, to see the statue of Seokgamoni, the historic Buddha at the moment of enlightenment
Duration: 20 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Pass By:  
The Blue House (Cheong Wa Dae)
Blue House, the residence of the South Korean head of state and the President of the Republic of Korea.
Stop At:  
Gyeongbokgung Palace
Gyeongbokgung Palace, constructed in 1395. Because much of this royal palace was destroyed during the Japanese occupation, there are many restoration projects underway. With your guide, marvel at the grandeur of the original and new portions.
Duration: 1 hour 
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
National Folk Museum of Korea
National Folklore Museum, whose historical replicas illustrate traditional Korea. Browse the extensive artifacts to learn what life has been like for Koreans from ancient times to the 20th century. You’ll also learn about the deep roots of Confucianism in Korean culture. And then we will visit to Ginseng Center (shopping center)
Duration: 15 minutes
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Insadong
Insadong Antique Alley in central Seoul . With your guide, wander down alleys to browse traditional Korean restaurants, teahouses and galleries full of antique artifacts and local artwork.
Duration: 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
Stop At:  
Changdeokgung Palace
Changdeokgung palace, a perfectly preserved palace from the Joseon Dynasty. As you explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site, discover the grand pavilions, massive gate, several halls and the Geumcheongyo Bridge Before go to the next attraction, we will stop by at duty free shop
Duration: 40 minutes
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Namdaemun Market
Namdaemun Market, the largest traditional market in Korea, opened in 1964. with various goods in store. You can find great bargains here and snatch up the perfect souvenir to remind you of your trip to Korea!
Duration: 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Free
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • A moderate amount of walking is involved; comfortable walking shoes are recommended
  • Please advise any specific dietary requirements at time of booking
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 30 travelers
  • OPERATED BY KOREA TOUR (DMZ TOUR)
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace?
A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
  • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
See all safety measures taken by Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace.
Q:
What is the policy on sanitization during Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace?
A:The policies on sanitization are:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
See all safety measures taken by Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace.
Q:
What is the social distancing policy during Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace?
A:The policy on social distancing is:

  • Contactless payments for gratuities and add-ons
See all safety measures taken by Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace.
Q:
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace?
A:The policies on staff health & safety are:

  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
  • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
See all safety measures taken by Korean Palace and Market Tour in Seoul Including Insadong and Gyeongbokgung Palace.

Traveler Photos

Reviews

4.0
star-4
125 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 125 reviews
star-5
My "seoul"
Jessica_H
, Feb 2020
All the attractions and places we visited were incredible and our tour guide was so cute and sweet. Definitely recommend this tour.
star-4
THe tour was really informative and...
ORLANDO R
, Sep 2018
THe tour was really informative and well paced, no rushing at all, the food was ok, the guide was amazing and energetic
star-1
Our tour guide Yoanni, or whatever...
cubandragon05
, Jun 2018
Our tour guide Yoanni, or whatever her name was, was very overwhelming and always got upset if anyone stayed behind taking pictures. I personally felt rushed and didnt get as much from from the tour as I would have liked. Also, we visited TWO stores that were a HUGE waste of time! I didnt pay to go on this tour so I could have sellers trying to get more of my money, it was ridiculous. So much time wasted doing this! Ive done tours with viator all over the world and this one has to be the worst one. Waste of money!
star-4
A good tour, well paced and covers a...
Jordan
, May 2018
A good tour, well paced and covers a nice diversity of sites. Enough time to see things without being rushed but not so much that it feels like you are lingering when you could be moving on. The chance to wander the street markets was good too. Our guide spoke well and was informative.
star-4
My husband and I are not fans of...
Chai Ling T
, Dec 2017
My husband and I are not fans of museums and places so we chose this tour for the obligatory been-there-done-that experience. It was surprisingly fun and interesting. Tour guide Sonia from Holiday Tours and Travel was fantastic. Highly recommend this tour - a great all-in-one!
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-2
good basic overview but the afternoon...
Terri F
, Dec 2017
good basic overview but the afternoon markets are a waste so I would find a different tour
star-4
This was a very pleasant tour with a...
jvmilic
, Sep 2017
This was a very pleasant tour with a friendly and knowledgeable guide... most appreciated!
star-5
This was an excellent experience and...
Samuel M
, Jun 2017
This was an excellent experience and our tour guide Leslie was fantastic. This is a tour that moves along quickly so prepare to look and move on. I think the best thing about this tour was that it was a small group so we all go to know each other. This was one of the highlights of our trip to Seoul.
star-3
This was a jam packed tour which...
Mo
, May 2017
This was a jam packed tour which covered alot of the major highlights of Seoul including palaces, shopping areas and temples. The highlight was Changdekong palace - this was less busy than the more famous Gyeongbokung Palace and was more serene. The Visit to Gyeonbokung palace is fun to do however - you will see many people dressed up in traditional costume and there's also the changing of the guard to watch as well. Just before Gyeongbokung palace, there is the national museum of Korea - that's very interesting. The tour seemed to be a bit rushed and we were in a big group, in too small a bus. Although you are not in the bus for alot of the time - its still nice as a tourist to be able to look out of the window and take photos and this was not always possible. The guide was good - she was informative for the most part and willing to answer questions. The tour includes two shopping stops - one at the Ginseng place and one at an amethyst store. The ginseng place Ginwells I think was quite interesting and if you are inclined to buy some then this is the place to do it - during other tours they take you to another shop which is almost twice the price, and there is no real chance to buy at the airport surprisingly. The amethyst store is just a pure sales job, no information, and the items for sale are not even nice - they really should drop this. The two shopping street stops Insadong and one cheaper area were disappointing . I was hoping to see some traditional arts and crafts for purchase but this was limited , there was instead alot of tourist tat . This time could have been spent going to another historical site or spending more time at one of the palaces. Overall the tour was good but in retrospect I would have preferred to take a smaller private tour where we could have taken our own time and had more influence over the itinerary
star-5
Sonia was amazing! Such a fun a...
Gabriela G
, Mar 2017
Sonia was amazing! Such a fun a worthwhile tour! Highly recommended. .

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