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Seoul Castle & palace tours

Our most recommended Seoul Castle & palace tours

Morning 3-Hour Intro to Seoul Tour (Palace, Temple & More)

1. Morning 3-Hour Intro to Seoul Tour (Palace, Temple & More)

Begin your tour from the hotel in Seoul between 8:00AM and 9:20AM. Stop first at the Jogyesa buddhist temple. Notice the locust trees and baeksong trees in front of the Daeungjeon, a truly beautiful sight. Gaze in wonder at the Daeungjeon and the main temple building which are about 500 years old. Continue on to the Gyeongbok palace where you'll first observe the changing of the guard ceremony. Then, explore Gyeongbok Palace, built in 1395 and is arguably the most beautiful palace in Korea and remains the grandest of all the five main palaces in Seoul. Next visit Cheongwadae, the presidential blue house, known for its beautiful, blue tiles. These tiles and the smooth roof are in beautiful harmony with Mount Bugaksan behind it. Discover how the blue house with its blue tiles and the smooth curve of the roof represents the beauty of Korea. Here you'll have the chance to visit Cheongwadae Sarangchae, a history center that gives visitors a chance to follow in the footsteps of the presidents of Korea and learn about the fascinating history of Seoul before the tour ends at around 12:30PM.

Private Customized Seoul Tour with Your Korean Buddy

2. Private Customized Seoul Tour with Your Korean Buddy

Take this private 4-hour walking tour to explore Seoul at your own pace with a customized itinerary. Select where you want to go and plan your route with your guide. Scope out the best places to visit during your stay, learn how to get into top restaurants and learn how to navigate the transport system. For history lovers, visit Gyeongbokgung Palace, Changdeokgung Palace, Bukchon Hanok Village, Samcheongdong, and Insadong. If you are more interested in the modern aspects of the city, go to Gangnam district, COEX, and relax by the Han River. For shoppers, visiting Myeongdong and Namdaemun Market is highly recommended.

Seoul: Gyeongbokgung Palace History Walk

3. Seoul: Gyeongbokgung Palace History Walk

Visit Gyeongbokgung Palace, established in 1395 as the main palace in the Joseon Dynasty, on a guided tour with tickets included. Stroll around the majestic Seoul landmark and immerse yourself in Korean history with the live commentary of an expert. Meet your guide at Gyeongbokgung station and head to Gyeongbukgung Palace's main gate. Take some time to look around the palace and admire the architecture. Learn about the history and hear the hidden stories of the largest palace of the Joseon Dynasty. Take photos of the locations where kings and queens once stood, and discover the influence the dynasty had on Korean society during its five centuries in power. End your tour at the Gyeonghoiru pavilion, the event hall of the palace. Enjoy some time to explore at your own pace after the tour.

Seoul: Dark Side of the City and Ghost Stories Walking Tour

4. Seoul: Dark Side of the City and Ghost Stories Walking Tour

Prepare yourself for the creepiest, historically accurate, and frighteningly bone-chilling tales. Korea has a unique history that will suck you in. You will see places where bloody massacres occurred. You will walk under a bridge that carries a dark sinister secret. You will encounter three of Seoul's five palaces and learn the secrets about one of them that even Seoulites do not know. Your tour will be led by a historian who will tell you the dark side of Korean history including Prince Suyang's slaughter of his nephew's men and the massacre at the site where Korea's first Western hospital was at. Tales in Japanese Colonial times will be shared while walking in royal palaces. The itinerary extends to other parts of Seoul such as Nagwon-dong and Chenggyecheon Stream. Hear modern urban legends, true crime events, and quirky secrets of buildings that the local government would prefer you did not know. You might actually meet a ghost so do not be too surprised. You will get a basic orientation of Seoul’s layout and see many sites including the three of five palaces, the Cheonggyecheon Stream, Tapgol Park, the Insa-dong neighborhood, Seoul City Hall, and the iconic Gwanghwamun Square. Your guide is an invaluable source of information and full tips about other places to see and eat. There will be restroom breaks and opportunities to have beverages and snacks. If you want to explore the dark back alleys and secret spots filled with horror, take the "Premium Tour" for extended and exclusive story-sharing.

Seoul: Full-Day Royal Palace and Shopping Tour

5. Seoul: Full-Day Royal Palace and Shopping Tour

Discover the palaces and shopping spots of Seoul on a multi-stop tour including a local guide, hotel pickup, lunch, and all entry fees and tickets. Travel by air-conditioned minivan to highlights like the Blue House, Gyeongbokgung Palace, Namdaemun Market, and the Jogyesa temple in Insadong. Following pickup, meet your local guide and start exploring the many cultural highlights and popular spots around Seoul, including shrines, markets, museums, palaces, neighborhoods, and hanok villages. Depending on your tour day, your itinerary may vary: Cheonggyecheon Stream is an 11-km-long modern stream that runs through downtown Seoul. Created as part of an urban renewal project, Cheonggyecheon is a restoration of the stream that was once there before during the Joseon Dynasty. Cheongwadae (The Blue House) is the presidential residence of the Republic of Korea and is regarded as the heart of the nation. While entering is not allowed, see this historic location from outside the main gate. Cheongwadae Saranchae is a Korean presidential exhibition center, newly opened in January 2010. Enter inside to learn more about Korean culture and history (Monday tours visit the outside of the building only). Saranchae is closed on Tuesdays. The Royal Guard Changing Ceremony is a great opportunity to experience a rare traditional scene in Korea. Be sure to bring a camera to take lots of pictures. Admire the guards’ costumes with brilliant primary colors. Gyeongbokgung Palace is the oldest palace of the Joseon Dynasty, located at the northern end of Seojong-ro Street. Built in 1394 as the main palace of the Joseon Dynasty by its founder King Taejo, it's the most comprehensive and grandest of the five palaces of the period. Stroll around the grounds to see the National Folk Museum of Korea, where visitors can browse the unique cultural and historical traits of Korea and the lifestyle of the bygone days. As Gyeongbokgung Palace is closed on Tuesdays, Gyeongbokgung Palace, the National Folk Museum of Korea tour, and the Royal Guard Changing Ceremony will be replaced with a tour of Deoksugung Palace on Tuesdays. Jogyesa is located on one of the most popular cultural streets in Seoul, Insa-dong. Very close to the palace of Gyeongbokgung, it is the chief temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism (since 1936) and it plays a leading role in the current state of Seon Buddhism in South Korea. Changdeokgung Palace was used as the main palace by many Joseon Kings and is very well preserved. The palace was registered with UNESCO in 1997. On Mondays, you'll visit Jongmyo Royal Shrine instead. Insadong is the perfect place in Seoul for visitors wanting to experience the traditional aspects of Korea. Discover art galleries, traditional craft stores, antique art dealers, traditional tea houses, and local-favorite restaurants. Namsangol Hanok Village stands out between tall buildings in the middle of the city with its five restored traditional Korean houses, a pavilion, a pond, and a time capsule. On Mondays enjoy a similar visit to Bukchon Hanok Village instead. Sungnyemun Gate (Mondays: outside only), normally known as the Namdaemun, is one of the Eight Gates in the Fortress Wall of Seoul. Take memorable photos of one of the gates that surrounded the city during the Joseon Dynasty. Namdaemun Market is an open-air market close to the downtown area and high-end hotels. Get the chance to shop some of the best selections of merchandise in the nation and interact with the locals. The market’s history traces back to the Joseon Dynasty and since then has become the main place to exchange daily products between urban and rural areas of Korea

Seoul: Northern Sides of Seoul / Gwangjang Market

6. Seoul: Northern Sides of Seoul / Gwangjang Market

Your day will start with a pick-up from your hotel to Gyeongbokgung Palace, the most beautiful and remains the largest of all five palaces. (Tuesday: visit Changdeokgung place) Then, move to Bukchon Hanok village which literally translates to "northern village," where many traditional houses operate as cultural centers, guesthouses and restaurants. Walk to Samcheongdong lined with cafes, museums, antique shops and galleries where you can enjoy the art and shopping. Next, go to Ihwha Mural Village, located less than a 10 minute walk uphill from the buzzing Daehakno area. As you head up the slopes of Mount Naksan, the noise and crowds will give way to fresh air and gorgeous, expansive views of the city but also to something unexpected - street art. Lastly, your trip will end at Gwangjang Market, the nation’s first market. Although the goods are not brand name products, the wide selection of high-quality goods at inexpensive prices will make it an enjoyable shopping experience. The market is famous for the delicious foods so have lunch or some snacks.

Seoul: Deoksugung Palace Walking Tour

7. Seoul: Deoksugung Palace Walking Tour

this unique opportunity to take a walk inside a historical palace at morning/night and learn the history of the Daehan Korean Empire. The palace served as the royal quarters for 13 years, until the first and last Emperor Gojong struggled to get back sovereignty over the palace under the Japanese Occupation.  Explore the important milestones of modern Korean history in the middle of a beautiful sightseeing, surrounded by an architectural mix of Oriental and Western styles. Meet your guide at City Hall station and go through the main gate of the palace, Daehanmun Gate.  Follow your guide through Junghwajeon, the main throne hall, Seokeodang, the most beloved building of King Gojong, Hamnyeongjeon, the King's bed chamber, and Jungkwanheon Hall, the cafeteria where the emperor enjoyed his coffees. Feel free to stay behind after the tour to explore at your own pace and take some photos.

Seoul: Night Tour to Deoksugungpalace and Sevit some

8. Seoul: Night Tour to Deoksugungpalace and Sevit some

Explore the wonderful night lights of Seoul with a professional guide and visit Deoksugung palace which has a great view. Take in this unique experience and look at this ancient palace at night with beautiful lights.  Head to Han River and from Banpo bridge, watch the beautiful rainbow fountain show which is available from April until October. From November until March you will visit Noeul cafe at the Dongjak bridge instead of the fountain. (You will visit Noeul cafe at the Dongjak bridge on rainy days and in winter. The drinks there normally cost about 7,000~8,000 won which is at your own expense.) Go to the man-made floating Island Sevit Seom with fancy lights. Find some great place to take a fantastic photos. Stop at the Cheonggyecheon stream and Seoullo 7017 where you can enjoy the night view of Seoul, which is famous for its great view and featured in many k-dramas and k-movies.  Have a calm walk looking down at the city's night view and listen to the history behind it. After enjoying the night views of Seoul, the tour takes you back to the Myeongdong area.

Seoul: City Highlights Tour with Gyeongbokgung Palace

9. Seoul: City Highlights Tour with Gyeongbokgung Palace

The tour begins at Gyeongbokgung Ticket Place, where a historical guide will explain the history of Gyeongbokgung Palace. (Including the ceremony of changing the guards) On this tour, we will visit Hanok Street, a location that has been used in numerous dramas and movies. Your beautiful photos will be taken by a professional photographer! In the observatory cafe, you will also be able to enjoy Korean traditional tea. An example of a modern hanok is Baek In-je House in Gahoe-dong, located in Bukchon Hanok Village during the Japanese administration period. A main room with a good view of the whole village, spacious bedrooms, a large garden, and annex buildings make up the structure. Keeping the beauty of the traditional hanok while incorporating the modern trend of its time, Baek In-je House represents the Bukchon Hanok Village together with Yun Bo-seon House as an important example of both architecture and history. Jogyesa Temple is both Seoul's main temple and the district head temple of the Jogye order. During the Goryeo period, the temple was built in the late 14th century but was destroyed by fire in the late 15th century. Gakwangsa Temple was rebuilt in 1910 by Han Yong-un and Lee Hee-gwang, two respected monks. As part of Korea's Buddhist tradition, the temple was renamed Tegosa Temple in 1936. During the 1954 purification drive, Japanese influence was eliminated and traditional Buddhism was revived, resulting in the current Jogyesa Temple. (Including traditional Korean bread called kukhwapang) A street in Insa-dong that appears frequently in Korean dramas! There will be lots of handmade gifts and delicious food!

Seoul: Gyeongbokgung Palace, Jogyesa Temple, and Cheongwadae

10. Seoul: Gyeongbokgung Palace, Jogyesa Temple, and Cheongwadae

Spend the day exploring the best of Seoul, with your experienced guide. Stroll through the Insadong area, known for traditional goods and cafes. Listen as your guide describes historical stories of Korea. Learn about Hanguel, the alphabetic system used for writing the Korean language. Start your tour from Jogyesa Temple, the head temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism, and discover the history of the temple. Continue to Gwanghwamun Square and see the statues of King Sejong the Great, and Admiral Yi Sun-sin.  Visit Gyeongbokgung Palace, established in 1395 as the main palace in the Joseon Dynasty. Walk under Gwanghwamun, the main gates of the palace. Take some time to look around the palace and admire the architecture. See Cheongwadae, the home of the President of the Republic of Korea, also known as the Blue House. Relax in this hidden area with views of the mountains surrounding it, before visiting a museum to learn more about Korea. Lastly, head to Tongin Traditional Market and marvel at the traditional Hanok houses in Seochon Hanok Village. Call into a traditional medicine place in Hanok and taste Korean herbal tea in this hidden gem.

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What people are saying about Seoul

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 92 reviews

Laura made us see the culture of Korea. Made us see the palaces of different kings. Explained us the history of the country. Introduced us to their cultural food. She is very knowledgeable and patient of answering questions. And of course thought us where to go for shopping.

Very spooky tour. Shaun was a very charismatic and knowledgeable guide, with a deep understanding of Korean folklore. Highly recommend taking this tour, as there is only one other tour like it in all of South Korea.

The tour was great value - covering the temple, palace, modern history and ginseng tasting at the end for a really low price. Our guide Moon was also great - knowledgeable and friendly!

Soojin was a great tour person and very knowledgeable about the history of Korea.

This tour is a perfect introduction to Seoul for first-timers!