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How to choose the best Korea tour package

To find the best Korea tour package we analyzed several tours in detail.

We looked at several aspects such as the group size and the itinerary. We didn’t do any of these tours ourselves so we don’t share any personal experiences. 

What we do is give you, at a glance, a handy overview of all the important aspects of these tours so that you can choose the one that best suits your needs.

We traveled independently throughout the country.  We found some inspiration in these tours and created our own. We put a lot of time in preparing for this trip. 

Creating your own trip gives you more freedom to explore the country at your own pace but if you don’t like to do your own planning, or if you simply don’t have the time, these tours are an excellent alternative.

All these tours roughly follow the same route that we did and will take you along many highlights of South Korea.

There are several different South Korea tour packages.  We covered the 4 that appealed most to us because of their good itinerary.  We give the pros and cons of each of the tours.

But let’s start this article by highlighting some points in favor of a Korea package tour.  Despite the fact that we like to travel independently, there are situations where it is more interesting to join an organized tour.

There is a really good chance that this post contains affiliate links. If you click one of them, we may receive a small commission (for which we are deeply grateful) at no extra cost to you.

Comparison table of the best Korea tour guide packages

If you don’t have the time to read the whole post, check out the table below.

In the table below you can quickly compare the most important aspects of the different tours.

Best of South KoreaSouth Korean ExpressSouth Korea Real Food South Korea Explorer
Duration8 days7 days8 days9 days
PriceStart from €1.699 or $1.890 depending on the exchange rateStart from €1.995 or $2.219 depending on the exchange rateStart from €2.075 or $2.308,69 depending on the exchange rate.Prices start from €2.271 or $2.710 depending on the exchange rate.
Start and finish tourSeoul to SeoulSeoul to SeoulSeoul to SeoulSeoul to Seoul
Group sizeMaximum 16 average 12Minimum 3 maximum 24Minimum 1, maximum 12Maximum 18
GuideChief Experience Officer ( CEO) and local guidesQualified local tour guide ( there will be a separate driver and tour guide for groups of 5 or more). The guided tour to the DMZ will be in conjunction with other tour groups.A group tour leader accompanies the tripTour leader
AccommodationStandard hotels3-4 star hotelsI didn’t find the category of hotelsStandard hotel, homestay, and a simple monastery
Places that are visitedSeoul, Busan, Gyeongju,Seoul, Andong, GyeongjuSeoul, Jeonju,Gyeongju, BusanSeoul, Andong, Gyeongju, DMZ
HighlightsDMZ, temple stay in BusanDMZ, Bulguksa, and Seokguram temple, visit the UNESCO-listed Hahoe villageFocus on food experiences, hanok, and temple staySeoul, DMZ, Namsan mountain
TransportationPrivate van, train, subwayPrivate air-conditioned vehiclesPrivate vehicle, train, public bus, metro, and taxiBus, flight
Meals included7 breakfasts, 1 dinner6 breakfasts ( Jain, Vegetarian, Halal, and Kosher food options on request.)5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, and 4 dinners ( Jain, Vegetarian, Halal, and Kosher food options on request.)Some meals are provided
Physical gradingNot mentionedThis tour requires a good degree of fitnessNot mentionedActive
Age rangeages 12+ ( minors under 18 must be accompanied by an adult)18 to 70 years old15-99 year old14-85
Tour languageEnglishEnglishEnglishEnglish
TouroperatorG AdventuresOn the Go toursIntrepid travelExplore
BookingBest of South KoreaSouth Korean ExpressSouth Korea Real FoodSouth Korea Explorer

South-Korea essentials 

Why taking a Korea package tour might be more interesting than going independent

Let’s start by summing up the pros and cons of taking a Korea holiday package. 

Pros and cons about joining a Korea package tour 

  • More comfortable than going independently. You don’t have to plan anything and you can fully enjoy the destination.
  • Less stressful than going on your own.
  • You will meet new people and make new friends.
  • You can see a lot in very little time, which is perfect if you only have limited vacation days.
  • Since you are traveling with a guide, you will get a lot of information about Korean’s history, culture, food, etc.
  • Less freedom, you have to follow the group.
  • Less flexibility and often not a lot of free time.
South Korea Folk Village
Some Korean tour packages include a visit to a Korean Folk Village

Cheap flights to South Korea

Flights aren’t included in these South Korea tour packages. You will need to book your flights separately. 

If you want to score a cheap flight to Seoul, we advise you to take a look at Momondo. 

This flight aggregator compares hundreds of flight booking sites and will show the cheapest results. You can compare the results, choose a flight that suits you, and Momondo will direct you to the site where you can make your booking.

Read our complete guide about finding cheap flights.

Find your cheap flight on Momondo:
Flights to Seoul

TourRadar 

We used TourRadar to find these Korea trip packages. 

TourRadar is an online travel agency specializing in multi-day tours.  Their well-arranged interface makes it easy to compare package tours from different operators.

Instead of searching on every tour operator’s website, you can find everything on one site. 

They have a lot of Korea package tours available.  You can search the whole of Korea or a specific region.    To narrow down the search results you can use one of the many filters like duration, departure date, age range, travel style, region, accommodation type, price, etc. 

We really like the intuitive interface and the fact that you can compare all tour operator’s packages on one site.

TouRradar screenshot South Korea
South Korea Travel packages on TourRadar

The results page shows you the different tours with their duration, the itinerary, highlights, travel style, etc. TourRadar also shows real reviews from other travelers that took this trip, they may help in giving you a better idea of what to expect from the tour.

These are the key advantages of TourRadar

They have a 24/7 support service that can answer any questions you have about an upcoming trip.

They don’t charge a booking or credit card fee.

If you find the same tour cheaper anywhere else you can use their best price guarantee and they will match that price.

Every booking earns travel credits ( 3% of the overall value) that you can use towards future bookings. You can use your travel credits to make your next vacation even cheaper.

Booking a tour with Tourradar is sometimes cheaper than booking the same tour directly with the tour operator. Pretty amazing not?

Which Korean vacation packages exist

TourRadar offers Korea package tours as short as 3 days and as long as 15 days.  We focused on the 7-day Korea packages for this article.

Follow this link to see tours of a different duration. You can use the filter on the left side of the page to select the tours of your desired duration.

Below we describe 4 great 7-day Korea package tours in detail.

We list the highlights and the pros and cons of each tour so you can pick the one that suits you most based on your interests and preferences.  

At the end of this article is an overview table where you can see the details of all tours together at a glance.

We hope that our article will help you to find your tour and that you will have an amazing holiday in Korea.

We did our best to make this overview as detailed and as accurate as possible.  We will also regularly update his post but if you would notice any changes before us please leave us a note so that we can make the necessary changes.

Seoul Sign South Korea
Welcome to Seoul! This is where your Korea tour adventure starts

1. Best of South Korea 

Tour description

This 8-day tour operated tour by Gadventures takes you along many highlights of Korea such as the bustling cities of Seoul and  Busan, and the cultural capital of Gyeongju. You will also visit the famous DMZ zone. 

You will travel in a group of maximum of 16 people. Most of the time the group counts around 12 people. The minimum age to participate in this tour is 12. Minors under 18 years old must be accompanied by an adult. 

Most of the nights you will stay in a standard hotel with breakfast included. One night you will experience a spiritual temple stay. You will stay in a traditional room with a futon, and a mattress on the floor. Here you will learn more about temple etiquette and take part in the morning meditation.  At the temple breakfast and lunch are included. 

Traveling is done by private van, train, and the local subway. 

Physical grading is rated as light. This means that if you have a normal condition you will be fine. 

Highlights

Pros and cons about joining the South best of Korea tour 

  • You see a lot of Korea’s highlights
  • Tour isn’t too rushed.
  • Everyone with a normal condition can take this tour.
  • Less freedom, you have to follow the group.

Important information

  • International flights and visas aren’t included. If you are looking for cheap flights to Seoul, click here. 
  • Insurance isn’t included. World Nomads has really good insurance for South Korea. Ask for a quote here. 
  • This South Korea tour package is also bookable as a private trip. 
  • If you travel single you can opt for a private room by paying a supplement. Otherwise, you will share a room with someone else.
  • TourRadar can request G Adventures to hold spaces for you for up to 48 hours without any credit card details.

Conclusion 

The Best of South Korea tour is a guided tour that isn’t too rushed. This tour is for everyone who wants to get a first impression of this wonderful country. The highlights of this tour are a visit to the DMZ and a traditional temple stay.  We love the fact this tour takes enough time to visit Seoul.

Perfect for first-time visitors who don’t want to miss the DMZ.

Price 

Prices start from €1.699 or $1.890 depending on the exchange rate. 

More information and booking:
Best of South Korea Tour

JSA Panmunjom, South_Korea, DMZ
Visiting the DMZ will be a highlight of any South Korea tour

2. South Korean Express 

This 7-day tour operated in English by On the Go tours brings you from Seoul to Andong and the cultural capital of Gyeongju.

You will also visit the famous DMZ zone. 

The group will have a minimum of 2 to a maximum of 24 people. The tour is 100% guaranteed to depart with 2 people. Only people 18 years or older can participate in this tour. 

You will stay in 3 and 4-star hotels and breakfast is always included. 

Jain, Vegetarian, Halal and Kosher food options are possible on request.

Traveling is done in private airconditioned vehicles.

I couldn’t find info about the level of physical grading but in a review, I read there is a lot of walking involved.

Highlights

Pros and cons about joining the South Korean Express Tour

  • Jain, Vegetarian, Halal and Kosher food options are possible on request.
  • Maximum 24 people. Tour is 100% guaranteed to depart with only 2 people.
  • Private airconditioned vehicle.
  • Less freedom, you have to follow the group.
  • This tour doesn’t visit Busan, South-Korea’s second-biggest city.

Important information

  • International flights and visas aren’t included. If you are looking for cheap flights to Seoul, click here. 
  • Insurance isn’t included. World Nomads has really good insurance for South Korea. Ask a quote here. 
  • The guided tour to the DMZ zone will be together with other tour groups.
  • If you are traveling alone, you will share a room with another person. If you prefer your private room, you will have to pay a single supplement. 
  • TourRadar can request On The Go Tours to hold spaces for you for up to 48 hours without any credit card details.

Conclusion

I found a few reviews about this tour.

People who took this tour say the tour both focuses on Korea’s history and on the new Korea, the tour guide is very knowledgeable and the hotels are of a good standard.  There is a lot of walking involved in this tour so be prepared for that.

Price 

Prices start from €1.995 or $2.219 depending on the exchange rate.

More information and booking:
South Korean Express Tour

Korean street food
Korea has a lot of street food you can try

3. South Korea Real Food Adventure

This 8-day tour is the foodies’ favorite.  It is organized by Intrepid travel and has an English-speaking guide.  The tour goes to places such as Seoul, Jeonju, Gyeongju, and Busan, and as the name says it will focus on the country’s rich cuisine.

The tour includes 5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, and 4 dinners. Together with your guide you will taste street food, visit food markets and try local Korean drinks and food. Another highlight is the Kimchi cooking class.

Jain, Vegetarian, Halal and Kosher food options are possible on request.

You will stay one night in a Hanok, a traditional Korean house, and also experience a temple stay during which you will see the monks perform martial arts.

The group is relatively small with a minimum of 1 to a maximum of 12 people accompanied by a group tour leader. This tour is open to all over the age of 15.

Traveling is done by private vehicles, trains, public buses, metro, and taxis. But since you also will be walking a lot, this tour requires a good degree of fitness.

Highlights

  • Seoul
  • Jeonju Hanok Village
  • Gyeongju
  • Busan
  • Hanok stay
  • Temple stay

Pros and cons about joining the South Korea Real Food Adventure

  • Perfect trip for foodies
  • Hanok and Temple stay
  • Kimchi cooking class, Korean street food tour, Jagalchi Seafood Market tour
  • Visiting a craft brewery in Jeonju
  • Martial arts demonstration
  • A small group of minimum 1 to a maximum of 12 people.
  • Less freedom, you have to follow the group.

Important information

  • International flights and visas aren’t included. If you are looking for cheap flights to Seoul, click here. 
  • Insurance isn’t included. World Nomads has good coverage for South Korea. Ask a quote here. 
  • You can pay a supplement to stay in a single room with the exception of the Temple stay where no single rooms are available.
  • Straight couples are not able to share a room at the temple since this is against Temple rules.  Men are women are bunked separately, usually, 2 people will share a room, in busy periods it might be that 3 people of the same sex will share a room.
  • Many South Korean hotels have a limited supply of twin rooms. If you are traveling as a couple and you prefer a double bed. Please mention this when booking. 

Conclusion

This South Korea food Tour gets excellent reviews. From the reviews, we can conclude that this tour is a great introduction to South Korea.

We read that the activities are well selected and the food at the chosen restaurants was amazing.

The accommodation was better than expected and the transport was well organized. A single client didn’t like it and didn’t find it value for money but didn’t explain why. 

This is the perfect tour for you if you want to eat your way through Korea while seeing a lot of highlights of this beautiful country. 

Price 

Prices start from €2.075 or $2.308,69 depending on the exchange rate.  

More information and booking:
South Korea Real Food Adventure

Seoraksan National Park, South Korea
Seoraksan National Park, an impressive national park in South Korea

4. South Korea Explorer

This South Korea Explorer does a great job of exploring the culture and history of South Korea in a unique and interesting way.

The tour visits a number of areas in South Korea which are sometimes outshone by the capital, Seoul.

This allows participants to truly learn about the history of South Korea throughout the ages.

The tour starts and ends in Seoul, with time spent in Gyeongju, South Korea’s second-largest city and an ancient capital,  Andong, sometimes known as the spiritual capital of Korea due to the many temples in the area and Namsan Mountain, full of natural beauty and spiritual heritage.

One night of the tour will be spent in homestay accommodation with locals to the region and one will be spent in a temple stay, both of which will provide unique experiences and ways to connect with the local culture.

The temple stay will take place at Samhwasa Temple, after which the tour will explore Buseoksa Temple, a 7th Century temple significant for its great size, and the 11th Century stone buddha at Jebiwon.

While in the cultural town of Hahoe, you can explore the Hahoe Folk Village and the Hahoe Mask Museum.

This area has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a unique look into Korea’s history.

The tour will also visit some of the top temples of South Korea. At the end of the trip, there will be a visit to the Demilitarized Zone, or DMZ, of Korea. This is the border between South Korea and North Korea and is highly guarded by both sides.

It is one of the last remaining parts of the Cold War and an ongoing issue for South Korea. Visiting the DMZ allows you to gain insight into this uniquely Korean issue.

The tour is run by Explore! with a maximum group size of 18. The tour is operated in English and participants can be in the age range of 14-85. As previously mentioned, two nights of accommodation are a homestay and temple stay. The other nights are at a standard hotel.

Highlights

  • Myeongdong shopping district
  • Gyeongbokgung Palace
  • Namsan Mountain
  • Hahoe
  • DMZ

Pros and cons of joining the South Korea Explorer

  • Large variety of cultural and historical sites
  • Able to see more than just the capital
  • Homestay and temple stay accommodation provide a unique experience
  • Many of the places visited are temples, this could become repetitive
  • Not many meals are included with encouragement to go to local restaurants – the language barrier may be an intimidating challenge for some travelers.

Important information

  • International flights and visas aren’t included. If you are looking for cheap flights to Seoul, click here. 
  • Airport transfers are included
  • Insurance isn’t included. Have a look at World Nomads travel insurance. Ask a quote here. 
  • Some meals are provided – 8 breakfasts, 1 lunch, and 2 dinners. The tour prioritizes choice and encourages travelers to experience local restaurants for their meals.

Conclusion

This tour is a great option for travelers looking to explore beyond the bright lights of Seoul and see more of the cultural and historical background of South Korea. From traditional temples to world heritage villages to the DMZ, this tour takes you on an adventure through Korea’s past and present.

Price 

Prices start from €2.271 or $2.710 depending on the exchange rate.  

Check prices and availability:
South Korea Explorer

Travel insurance for your trip to Korea

Travel insurance isn’t included in any of these South Korea tour packages.

We absolutely recommend taking out travel insurance before you leave for South Korea. World Nomads travel insurance doesn’t only cover injuries or illnesses. It also covers trip cancellations, theft, and more.

You can find more information about World Nomads here or click the button to get a free quote:
WORLD NOMADS

Conclusion

Korea is a wonderful country with a rich culture and impressive national parks. 

It is possible to discover the country on your own but joining a guided Korea tour is an excellent idea if you don’t like to plan your trip or simply don’t have the time.

All the above tours are a good choice for those who will go to South Korea for the first time.  Foodies and culture lovers will love the South Korea Real Food Adventure. 

The South Korea Explorer is another excellent program.  It is jam-packed with activities, it won’t be the most relaxed 7-days in Korea but you will absolutely see a lot and this tour gets raving reviews.

Which one is your favorite?