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  • South Korea
  • Flavours of South Korea with Tokyo

Flavours of South Korea with Tokyo

11 Day Escorted Tour With 4 Day Extension

South Korea, East Asia

Originally a small fishing village, Tokyo is now the world's largest metropolitan area and home to some 35 million people. The capital city is synonymous with Japan and perfectly demonstrates the country's juxtaposition of ancient traditions and Zen calm with the hectic madness and love of new technology. Extend your stay in Japan to explore this electric city and experience the passion of Tokyo.

2020 Dossier

2021 Dossier

Tour Highlights

  • Enjoy a longer stay in Tokyo
  • Witness the heavily guarded border between North and South Korea on a tour of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ)
  • Enjoy a comprehensive city tour of Seoul, visiting Changdeokgung Palace, N Seoul Tower and the Bukchon Hanok Village
  • Learn how to make Korea's famed beef barbeque
  • Explore the ancient palaces, tombs and temples of Gyeongju
  • Visit the traditional Hahoe Folk Village, A UNESCO world heritage site
Train
Coach
Boat
Airplane
Walking
1
Number of nights

This map is for the main tour only

Itinerary

Day 1
UK to Seoul

Depart London on your scheduled, overnight flight to Seoul.

Day 2
Seoul

Dinner

On arrival in Seoul, you will be met by your representative for a short tour of the city including the Changing of the Palace guard. Enjoy lunch at a local Korean restaurant before being transferred to your hotel and checking in. After time to settle in, re-join your group for tonight's welcome dinner at a local Korean restaurant, giving you the opportunity to sample Korea's world-renowned cuisine.

Day 3
Seoul

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Following breakfast, embark on a tour of South Korea's Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), the no man's land that forms the highly secure frontier between North and South Korea. Visit Dorasan train station, which connects north and south, and the Dorasan Observatory which overlooks the DMZ. Explore the 3rd Infiltration Tunnel, a secret passageway built by North Koreans trying to tunnel into the south, and view the heavily guarded Bridge of Freedom which links the two nations. After lunch, return to Seoul and browse through the stalls of Gwangjang Food Market. Travel to the N. Seoul Tower which rises above the city skyline and provides panoramic views over the city, then return to your hotel for dinner.

Day 4
Seoul

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Seoul has undergone a dramatic transformation over the last five decades, with the ravages of the Korean War making way to sleek skyscrapers and neon-lit districts. The city still retains several remnants of its imperial past and today's walking tour takes in these centuries-old structures, using Seoul's world-class underground system to move between sights. Starting at Changdeokgung Palace, built by the kings of Korea's Joseon Dynasty, explore the pavilions and rooms of this imperial residence before touring its Secret Garden, where the pond, greenery and pavilions combine to create a tranquil setting. Witness the changing of the palace guards then continue onward to Insadong Antique Street and browse through the wares on display in elegant, wooden shopfronts. Travel to the Kimchi Museum and learn more about how this local fermented cabbage dish grew to its current popularity then stop in at the Buddhist temple of Jogyesa. Continue onward to the Bukchon Hanok Village, teeming with charming, traditional 'hanoks' or wooden houses before returning to your hotel.

Day 5
Seoul to Busan

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

This morning, transfer by metro to the train station (luggage will be transported to your hotel) and board your high-speed train to the coastal city of Busan. On arrival in Busan, set out on an afternoon coach tour of the city, stopping first to wander through Gamcheon Cultural Village with its pastel-coloured houses set in the slopes of a mountain. Next, pay your respects to the soldiers killed in the Korean War at the UN Memorial Cemetery then visit peaceful APEC Nurimaru Park and the soft sands of Haeundae Beach. Climb 108 steps to picturesque Haedong Yonggungsa temple and explore this sacred Buddhist site which boasts a stunning setting on Busan's coastal cliffs. Transfer to the hotel for check-in and dinner.

Day 6
Busan to Gyeongju

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

After breakfast, embark on a morning tour, moving between sights by metro. Wander through bustling Jagalchi Fish Market and haggle with the hawkers of Kukje Market, where you'll stop for a delicious lunch. Visit nearby BIFF Square, Korea's answer to the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and continue on to the soaring Busan Tower. Next, transfer to Busan Train Station and embark on your rail journey to Gyeongju, taking in rural landscapes and urban skylines along the way. On arrival, enjoy dinner and a night-time tour of Anapji, the site of a spectacular palace and pond.

Day 7
Gyeongju

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

A full-day tour of Gyeongju takes in the major sites of Korea's ancient former capital, known as the 'Museum Without Walls'. Travel from the immense Buddha statue which lies in Seokguram Grotto to UNESCO-listed Bulguksa Temple where you'll explore its Buddhist relics, pavilions and gardens. For lunch, visit a Korean cooking school where you will learn how to make Korea's delectable beef barbeque and dine on your culinary masterpiece. Continue onward to the age-old observatory of Cheomseongdae before taking in the greenery of Tumuli Park and browsing through ancient artefacts in the Gyeongju National Museum.

Day 8
Gyeongju to Andong

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Transfer to the train station for your train to Andong, a city renowned for its open-air heritage museums. On arrival, continue to Hahoe Village where you'll discover hundreds of ceremonial masks on display in the Hahoe Mask Museum. Soak in sweeping views of the village from nearby Buyongdae Cliff then wander through the local market. Transfer to your hotel for check-in and dinner, followed by an evening at leisure.

Day 9
Andong to Seoul

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Depart Andong this morning and travel by coach to Punggi where you'll visit the city's sprawling ginseng plantation and the area's oldest ginseng market. Marvel at the amazing variety of ginseng products on display then journey onward to the Daegang Makgeolli (Rice Wine) Brewery in Danyang. Here, you can learn about and taste this unique alcoholic drink and see samples of home-brewed Korean liquor that date back to the Japanese colonial era. Continue on to Seoul, where a night of entertainment awaits. Re-join your group for a farewell dinner and a trip to see 'Nanta', one of the most famous theatrical performances in the country.

Day 10
Seoul

Breakfast

Enjoy a day at leisure to explore this bustling metropolis at your own pace. Alternatively, a number of optional excursions are available (at a fee). Make stir-fried glass noodles and seafood pancakes at a cooking class, join a workshop and learn how to make kimchi (Korea's traditional fermented cabbage) or enjoy a show at the Jeongdong Theatre.

Day 11
Seoul to the UK

Breakfast

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK or continue on to your chosen extension.

Day 12
Seoul to Tokyo

Breakfast

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight to Tokyo, upon arrival transfer to your hotel where the remaining day is spent at leisure.

Day 13-14
Tokyo

Breakfast

Your time is free to explore the fascinating city of Tokyo at your leisure.

Day 15
Tokyo to the UK

Transfer to your hotel for your flight back to the UK.

View Full Itinerary

Dates & Prices

Ginza Grand Hotel

More info
Dates
Price (per person)
Dates available
February 2021
from £2,948
1 Date
17th Feb - 2nd Mar
£2,948
March 2021
from £3,118
1 Date
17th Mar - 29th Mar
£3,118
April 2021
from £3,148
3 Dates
13th Apr - 26th Apr
£3,168
20th Apr - 3rd May
£3,148
27th Apr - 10th May
£3,148
May 2021
from £3,248
1 Date
25th May - 7th Jun
£3,248
June 2021
from £3,298
1 Date
8th Jun - 21st Jun
£3,298
August 2021
from £3,398
1 Date
17th Aug - 30th Aug
£3,398
September 2021
from £3,248
2 Dates
7th Sep - 20th Sep
£3,248
28th Sep - 11th Oct
£3,368
October 2021
from £3,158
2 Dates
12th Oct - 25th Oct
£3,238
26th Oct - 9th Nov
£3,158
November 2021
from £3,138
1 Date
3rd Nov - 16th Nov
£3,138
December 2021
from £3,018
1 Date
1st Dec - 14th Dec
£3,018

Accommodation

The hotels listed below are provided for guidance only and final confirmation of your accommodation will be sent to you approximately 90 days before you travel
Hotel Sunroute Shinagawa Seaside
3 nights
, Japan
More details

Tour Reviews

L Montgomery

01 Apr 20

The guide Stefano had a difficult time due to the Coronavirus outbreak, he managed all issues well.

Sew Ng

13 Oct 19

Good centrally located hotel. No complaints about any of the hotels.

Mary Bailey

13 Oct 19

All hotels were very good apart from at Andong. This was rather basic to say the least but for 1night we could make do.

S Newman

03 Oct 19

Most of the hotels were good and staff very pleasant. Our tour manager went above and beyond to make sure everyone was well informed, Very helpful. A full on tour which was i was looking for, an exciting country to visit.

L Campbell

25 Sep 19

The guide in South Korea (stephan) went above and beyond what was expected from him, couldn't be more helpful.

Karen Davie

16 Sep 19

Lovely hotels, professional and helpful staff. Food and room was excellent.

Natasha Mort

15 Sep 19

All were really good, clean and with excellent staff. One a bit less so and I would have put excellent apart from that one. I loved every minute of this trip. I would like to take my family next time and will definitely use Mercury again.

Denis Buckoke

16 May 19

The BW Seoul Garden was easily the best, a real pleasure

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Important Information

A visa is not required for your travel to South Korea. Further advice should be sought from the applicable tourist authority for other nationalities and for general queries. We strongly advise you check your destinations' Tourist Board or Embassy for the most up-to-date guidelines regarding visas and passport validity.

You must obtain suitable travel insurance prior to departure. Mercury Direct is partnered with Holiday Extras which offer insurance at the following prices: <br /><br /> <table class="basic" cellspacing="0"><thead><tr><th><b>Age in Years</b></th><th><b>Up to 64</b></th><th><b>65 - 74</b></th><th><b>75 - 85</b></th></tr></thead><tbody><tr><td>Up to 17 days cover</td><td>£39</td><td>£75</td><td>£129</td></tr></tbody></table> For all persons 86 years and over, please contact us for insurance prices. Please ensure you provide us with the name of your insurer, policy number and their 24 hour emergency contact number as soon as possible. Mercury Direct will not be liable for any costs incurred by you due to your failure to take out suitable travel insurance from the date of booking.

If booking more than 10 weeks before departure a deposit of £49pp will need to be paid at the time of booking with the full amount payable at 10 weeks prior to departure. The deposit applies to adults and children. If you are within 10 weeks of travel then the full balance of the holiday will be payable.

Each passenger is entitled to 23kg of hold luggage. There is also an allowance of one cabin bag not exceeding 25cm x 45cm x 56cm in size and one personal bag not exceeding 45 cm x 36 cm x 20 cm that you can take on the aircraft as hand luggage. Weight restrictions will be finalized on your e-ticket receipt. Should you wish to take additional luggage you will need to pay an additional fee for this at check-in. Heathrow Airport advises that you should arrive at the airport at least three hours prior to your flight time for international departures.

It is your responsibility to check any health and vaccination requirements applicable to your booked arrangements. We can only provide general information about this. Health and hygiene facilities and disease risks vary from country to country. You should take health advice about your own needs as early as possible and in good time before your departure. Sources of information include; www.fco.gov.uk, www.travelhealthpro.org.uk, www.hpa.org.uk, your General Practitioner or a specialist clinic.

This tour is accessible to most people with a good level of fitness and normal mobility. It involves climbing of steep stairs and getting on and off coaches, trains and metro trams. This tour is not suitable for anyone with walking difficulties.

There is no minimum number of travellers for this extension however the main tour passenger numbers will apply for the main part of the tour. If in the unlikely event there are less than the required number of people booked on your main tour date then you may be asked to change to a different date. A full refund will be made available to you should this alternative not be suitable.

This is a fully escorted tour, meaning that you will be met on arrival by your local guide who will remain with you for the duration of your trip, ensuring that you have first-hand knowledge at all times. Please note: there is no guide for the extension options.

Currency information: The currency in Japan is the Japanese Yen, known as JPY. We recommend that you exchange your currency before you leave the UK.

You will need to take some extra money with you to cover any personal purchases, such as souvenirs, laundry and extra drinks and snacks. Approximately £400 - £500 will be sufficient for the duration of the tour, depending on how much of a bargain-hunter you are!