Friday, July 31, 2009

Photographs of Seoul South Korea

Enjoy this slide show of images of Seoul by travel photographer Daniel Allen.

There are images of Seoul by night, night clubs, Korean food and Korean martial arts.

© Daniel Allen

Thursday, July 30, 2009

North-South Korea Border

The roughly 248km-long Military Demarcation Line between North and South Korea is a forbidding and heavily militarized place.

North-South Korea Border

Tours of the DMZ can be arranged in Seoul and are an amazing experience. Visitors are taken to the now deserted village of Panmunjom (Panmunjeom), 53km from Seoul. Main points of interest on your organized tour are the Joint Security Area and the Third Tunnel (dug by North Korea to try to infiltrate the South) and Camp Bonifas - "In Front of Them All".

South Korea Border Guard

T1 through T3, in the Joint Security Area (JSA) are conference rooms (image below) right on the "border" between the two Koreas.

North-South Korea Border

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Lonely Planet Korea Guide

Lonely Planet Korea GuideLonely Planet: Korea

by Martin Robinson, Andrew Bender, Rob Whyte, John Banagan
Lonely Planet
ISBN: 1-7410-4558-4
416 pp

At first glance, one would think it would be impossible to feel lonely in Korea, being the intensely dense country that it is. However, after spending a day trying to navigate around the sometimes bewildering concrete megalopolis that is Seoul, endless streams of people pushing past you and cars honking constantly in your face, a first-time visitor to Korea will be thankful for the Lonely Planet’s new guide to this, oft overlooked, country.

Many tourists often jump between more well-known China and Japan but they are missing out and this comprehensive guidebook helps to tell them why. Of course, everyone who visits Korea spends time in Seoul and the capital and its offerings are extensively covered. As a long-term resident of Seoul, the book is perhaps not aimed at people like me but I found much of the information useful and I was inspired to try one of the walks suggested and I am very happy that I did, I was even happier with the amazing restaurant that I found on the way, though I may keep that to myself.

The rest of the country is covered in impressive detail, as you would expect from Lonely Planet. There is quite a comprehensive and interesting section on visiting North Korea which certainly whetted my appetite as did the section of Korean food which offered a useful introduction to the nation's colourful and fiery cuisine.

One minor quibble is that the locations for Seoul attractions and facilities are shown on maps only, while the information about the attraction is listed on another page. So, if you are looking for good pubs and clubs you have to constantly flick between pages. The nearest subway station in the information section would be helpful as a quick guide to where the place was.

The strength of the book is in the little nuggets of background information and the enthusiasm of the writers that is immediately apparent and which provided me with a new-found determination to explore the fascinating, maddening and unique country that is South Korea.

Buy this book from Amazon USA UK Japan

Monday, July 27, 2009

Korean Police

The Korean police force the Korean National Police Agency is a unified national police force. The KNPA was set up in 1945.

Korean Police

As in neighboring Japan, Korean police operate hundreds of local police boxes throughout the country as well as larger police stations.

Korean Police

The emergency telephone number for the police is 112.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Korea News 26 July 2009

South Korean Economy Grows


Korean Bicycle Companies Making a Comeback

Korea Herald

Manchester United Beat FC Seoul 3-2

Korea Times

Korea's Oldest National Tree Found

Chosun Ilbo

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Changing of the Guard

Seoul, like Buckingham Palace in London, has a Changing of the Guard ceremony. Seoul's Changing of the Guard takes place at Gyeongbok-gung Palace.

Changing of the Guard

The Changing of the Guard ceremony takes place on the hour from 10.00-16.00 outside the main entrance with the soldiers wearing traditional uniforms. Look out for the feathers in the guard's helmets and the beautiful beads of their chin straps from their wicker helmets.

Image © Jake Davies

Friday, July 24, 2009

Seoul Weather

July is a hot and humid month in Seoul with temperatures in South Korea's capital rising above 30 degrees Centigrade. June and July are the months of the annual rainy season or monsoon.

Temperatures plunge below freezing in the winter months of December through February.

Weather in Seoul

Welcome to Korea Visitor Blog

Welcome to Korea Visitor blog