With the Olympic Games in full swing, we are reminded of our recent family trip to South Korea. It was our first trip to Korea and it was an amazing family vacation destination. We immersed in culture exploring ancient palaces and learning to make kimchi, a national Korean favorite, learned history at the War Museum and in the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) along the North Korean border and are in some pretty intersting place. Here is our list of Top 12 Things to Do with your family in Korea.

  1. Learning about ancient Korea at Gyeongbokgung Palace in Seoul, South Korea. You can watch the changing of the guard and learn about traditional ways of life. And you’ll be with a lot of school groups, so the kids will have fun meeting locals!
Gyeongbokgung Place, Seoul, South Korea

Learning about ancient Korea, Gyeongbokgung Palace, Seoul, South Korea

Gyeongbokgung Palace, Seoul, South Korea

Posing with local school kids, Gyeongbokgung Palace, Seoul, South Korea

2) and in the Insadong area where ancient architecture houses modern Koreans while views of modern Seoul loom in the background.

Insadong, Seoul, South Korea

Discovering ancient architecture in Insadong, Seoul, South Korea

Insadong, Seoul, South Korea

Where ancient Korea meets modern Korea, Insadong, Seoul, South Korea

3) Views from N Seoul Tower and discovering the romantic side of Koreans along the lock walls…covered in messages of love!

View of Gangham area of Seoul from N Seoul Tower

View of Gangham area of Seoul from N Seoul Tower

Love Locks, Seoul Tower

Love Locks, Seoul Tower

4) Kids will marvel at modern technology on a family trip in South Korea! It seems to be incorporated into everything from robot greeters at the airport to how you open doors to how you flush toilets! Modern technology includes amazing performances including a hologram performance by Sy and other KPOP stars at the KPOP experience!

Toilet, Seoul, South Korea

Toilet, Seoul, South Korea

 

5) Making magic at the Trick Eye Museum was one of our kids’ favorite activities in Seoul! Illusions make for interesting pictures that’s for sure!

 

Trick Eye Museum, Seoul, South Korea

Trick Eye Museum, Seoul, South Korea

6) Learning the art of making kimchi, one of Korea’s favorite national dishes, at the Kimchi Museum in Seoul was a fantastic family activity. Kimchi is basically pickled cabbage with lots of spices…although our kids put about half the fish sauce in than what you are supposed to use!

Kimchi Museum, Seoul, South Korea

Learning to make Kimchi, Kimchi Museum, Seoul, South Korea

7) The whole family will love the heart pumping fun at one of the world’s largest indoor theme parks, Lotte World in Seoul, where roller coasters beckon, as well as ice skating, pop performances and more.

Lotte World, Seoul, South Korea

Hitting the rides at Lotte World, Seoul, South Korea

8) Our kids loved cooking food on your table in hot pot restaurants, which are popular throughout Seoul.

Hot Pot restaurant, Seoul, South Korea

Hot Pot restaurant, Seoul, South Korea

9) Learning about the lead up to and the events of the Korean War at the War Memorial of Korea in Seoul. Kids will learn a lot and love seeing all the huge planes and tanks outside.

 War Museum in Seoul, South Korea

Learning Korean War history at the War Museum in Seoul, South Korea

10) Visiting the DMZ, the demilitarized zone separating North and South Korea. The kids thought the face-off between the South Korean and North Korean border guards at the Joint Security Area (JSA) was fascinating and learned a lot about the peace process. Our family got to visit the conference room where representatives from the two countries meet with the U.N. to discuss any problems that arise and, since the room is half in North Korea, we technically got to visit that country as well. Other places of interest around the DMZ include walking through tunnels which were dug under the DMZ and visiting the peace wall near Imjingak

DMZ on the North Korea, South Korea border

Watching the face-off at the DMZ on the North Korea, South Korea border

Peace messages near DMZ, South Korea

Seamus looking at messages of peace from Korean families who were split up when the countries were split

11) Korea has some interesting place for families to eat, but none as eccentric as the Cat Cafe in Seoul where felines cuddle up to you while you eat. Seamus loved holding the fluffy pets! (Although we didn’t order food…a bit hairy there! 😉

Cat Cafe, Seoul, South Korea

Hanging with friendly felines, Cat Cafe, Seoul, South Korea

12) While we are talking eating for families in Korea, don’t miss visiting a traditional market to eat off “street” vendors…traditional food made for locals and lots of fun for the whole family.

Kwangjang Market, Seoul, South Korea

Eating with locals at Kwangjang Market, Seoul, South Korea

That’s our list of top things to do with families in Seoul, South Korea. Hope you enjoy the Olypmic Games and when you get a chance visit this interesting place with its fascinating blend of ancient culture and modern technology!