Seasonal Escape Group Travel to SEoul and Busan, SOUTH KOREA
Inclusive Dates: June 7, 2023 to June 15, 2023
"Catch the Korean Wave: FOod, Culture, Entertainment & History"
Seasonal Escape to South Korea
Hosted By Sheila J Brown, Asia Group Travel Specialist
Ambassador with the Korean National Tourism Office/NY.USA (2018-2020)
Howard University, Film & Television/Concentration in Asian Studies (Korean Language) '21 | SCAD (MFA in FILM) '23
Sheila will assist the group and provide cultural insight and serve as a concierge while in Seoul to customize your experience. She is familiar with Seoul and South Korea, as a resident while attending Ewah University/ Seoul and two terms as an Ambassador with the Korea National Tourism Office in the USA. Sheila speaks, writes and reads the Korean language having completed the Middlebury Language Institutes Korean Immersion Program at Mills College in Oakland CA and Korean Language studies at Howard University, Washington DC.
Seoul: A city home to 5 ancient palaces of Korea built centuries ago. A city where you can shop, eat and have fun even ito the wee hours of the night. A city that leads today's world-wide K-Pop and drama trends. A city with a population of more than 10 million. Seoul. The City has been the nation's capital for more than 600 years since the Joseon Dynasty (1392 -1910) when it was called "Hanyang". Although a fast changing trendy city, it has well preserved its precious history.
7 June 2023 DEPART FROM USA - Group Air will depart from ATL
Please make your own way to the airport for your flight to Seoul, South Korea. Group Air will be available in October - Gateway - ATL
8 June 2023 ARRIVE SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA
Upon arrival at Incheon Airport, you will be met by your guide, and transferred to your hotel to check in. This is a private transfer from the airport. The rest of the day is at leisure.
Accommodation: Plaza Hotel (4 Nights)
9 June 2023 SEOUL CITY TOUR (Breakfast/Lunch)
Your first day in Seoul will start with a visit to Hikr Ground,New playground for travelers to Seoul, HiKR Ground, an eXtended Reality Korea promotional hall, opened its doors on July 22, 2022
Next stop is Gyeongbokgung Palace, which was built in 1395, it is arguably the most beautiful and remains the grandest of the five grand palaces built during the Joseon Dynasty.
Afterwards, we enjoy a Hanbok Wearing Experience during visiting the palace. (Hanbok rental included for 2 hours, female/male costumes available, will be able to select from a variety of options and change at the shop.) After lunch, we continue to Insa-dong Arts and Crafts Street, one of the most memorable attractions in Seoul and represents the focal point of Korean traditional culture and crafts. Stores in Insa-dong specialize in a wide variety of goods that can only be purchased or appreciated in Korea: hanbok (traditional clothing), hanji (traditional paper), traditional teas, pottery, and folk crafts.). Our tour will not complete without a visit at the Namdaemun Market, the largest traditional market in Korea with shops selling various goods. Most of the goods are made directly by the store owners. At the end of the tour, you will be transferred to your hotel.
10 June 2023 DMZ FULL DAY TOUR (Cancelled) (Breakfast )
We depart in the early morning to have a full-day DMZ Tour that is a highlight of this trip. Remember to bring along your passport for today's visits. Your first stop today is Imjingak Park, which was built to console those from both sides who are unable to return to their hometowns, because of the division of Korea and here, is where the "Freedom Bridge" is located.
The Bridge of Freedom does actually cross the Imjin River and connects with the North-South railway and it used to be a railroad bridge, which was used by repatriated POWs/soldiers returning from the north. Now, no one crosses this bridge.
Your next stop is the 3rd Infiltration Tunnel which was discovered by South Korea in 1978. It spans over 1,635m in length, 2m in width and 2m in height and is located 52km from Seoul. It is estimated that approximately 30,000 soldiers could move through the tunnel per hour. We continue to visit the DMZ Theater/ Exhibition Hall, to view a video that explains about the 3rd tunnel and other tunnels as well as history of the division of Korea. Afterwards, we visit the Dorasan Observatory, which allows visitors to see North Korean military personnel as well as great views of Kaesong and Geumgangsan Diamond Mountains in North Korea.
At the end of your day, we transfer back to the hotel and the rest of the day is at leisure.
*Please note tour inside DMZ will be on shared DMZ shuttle bus. No private vehicle allowed unless we have 30 of our own group. Also note there is a dress code at the DMZ; please do not wear any torn clothing (including torn jeans), no clothing with profanity or offensive writing, no leather pants, and no military uniforms. During the summer no flip-flops, short shorts or miniskirts are permitted.
11 June 2023 HWASEONG FORTRESS & KOREAN FOLK VILLAGE TOUR (Breakfast /Lunch )
In the morning, we visit Suwon Hwaseong Fortress, one of the most prominent and well built military structures constructed during the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910) and the official fortress of Suwon-si, Gyeonggi-do. The fortress, constructed from 1794 to 1796, was built as a display of King Jeongjo's filial piety towards his father and to build a new pioneer city with its own economic power.
After lunch, we visit the Korean Folk Village where we will see over 260 traditional Korean buildings relocated to the folk village and restored according to the original life style of the Korean people in the late Joseon period. Household goods of each region are exhibited, showing their own grace so that you can experience traditional Korean lifestyle. The rest of the day is at your leisure.
Please prepare a backpack or a small carry-on luggage for the next day trip as your big suitcases (maximum 2 pieces per person) will be delivered by a luggage truck to the hotel, which will be arrived on the same day in Busan.
Busan; The 2nd largest city and best known port city of Korea, visitors can enjoy a chic and tasty tour. The city's traditional markets boast a delicious array of disses and the beaches of Busan, the most popular in Korea, are highly lined with bright and fancy skyscrapers . Busan hosts Asia's best film festival the Busan International Film Festival, and many other festivals like a fireworks festival, a beach festival and more held throughout the year.
12 June 2023 SEOUL - BUSAN BY KTX TRAIN (Breakfast/Lunch )
We check out of the hotel and transfer to the Seoul Station to board on the Standard Class of the KTX fast train to transfer from Seoul to Busan, a major port city boasting a coastline with fine beaches, scenic islets and tall mountains.
Upon arrival in Busan, you will be met by a local guide and enjoy a full-day City Tour in Busan.
The tour includes Youngdusan Park, home to a variety of monuments, including Busan Tower. After lunch, we continue to explore the Jagalchi Fish Market, located on the shoreside road in Busan's Jung-gu, is Korea's largest seafood market, selling both live and dried fish. After the Korean War, the market solidified itself as a fish market. Our last stop is Gamcheon Culture Village, which is formed by houses built in staircase-fashion on the foothills of a coastal mountain, earning this village the nickname "Machu Picchu of Busan." Many alleys that cut through this community are vibrantly decorated with murals and sculptures created by the residents.
Accommodation: Paradise Hotel - Busan (3 Nights)
14 June 2023 Busan at Leisure (Breakfast/Dinner )
Free at your leisure today on the beach.
This evening, meet your guide at the hotel lobby for a Farewell Seafood Dinner at a local restaurant.
15 June 2023 DEPART BUSAN (Breakfast)
We check out of the hotel and then with private transfer to Busan Station to depart by train to Seoul in the morning. Upon arrival at Seoul Station, you will be transferred to Incheon International Airport to take your flight back home.
Welcome back home!
PRICING is Based on 15+ Travelers
Double Occupancy USD$2550 per person
Inclusions in above prices:
· 6 nights first class (4. 5 star) hotel accommodation as per itinerary based on twin share. City Center Seoul and Oceanfront in Busan
· All transfers and transportation is by private coach (Any individuals travelling outside the group arrangement must organize own transportation)
· Roundtrip standard class KTX train between Seoul and Busan
· Roundtrip separate luggage transfer between Seoul and Busan
· Local English speaking guide in each city
· Transportation Cards ($1 for 1,000-won credit (each) / Card will be pre-charged with the desired credit and are re-chargeable.)
· Arrival Meet & Greet guide assistance, Departure guide assistance.
· Sightseeing, Tours and admissions as per the itinerary
· Meals as indicated on itinerary (B-full breakfast, L-Lunch, D - Dinner)
Exclusions in above prices:
· All airfares, departure taxes & fuel surcharges, seat selection - Will be added in January 2023
· Personal items
· Optional Tours
· Meals unless listed in itinerary
· Tips & Gratuities for the guide and driver
· Early check-in & late check out of rooms (standard check-in time is 3pm and check out 12pm)
· Travel Insurance - Available
· Visa/passport handling fees (if applicable)
Plan-to-Go Deposit/Fee* : $250 Non-Refundable) to confirm your place in the group; or until all 20 spaces are gone.
Additional Travel Deposit: $500 Due by December 15, 2022
Final Payment: May l 1, 2023
Plan to Go Deposit/Fee: $250 Per Person within 7 days of registration. This deposit will be applied to your final payment. It is not refundable nor transferable. If travel is cancelled by traveler for any reason, the deposit is converted to an administrative fee and is retained by SmartBird World Travel. If travel is cancelled by the supplier, the Plan to Go Deposit may be applied to future SB World, SB World Luxe, Bougie Girls Getaways or Seasonal Escapes Exclusive Group itineraries.
The Travel Deposit is $500 Per Person and is due by December 15, 2022 or until all spaces (20) are filled.
The Per Seat Deposit for Air is $100 Per Person and is due within 10 days of confirming flights
The final payment is due 60 Days Prior to Travel
Please Note: Additional Bio-Security requirements may be implemented by your destination (s) after the group has booked. Should we learn of any such requirements between now and the group’s departure we will inform you. Any extra costs associated will be passed on to the group and included in the final invoice.
GROUP AIRFARE - Will Be added from ATL
· Based on TBD Airlines routings and schedules. Domestic add ons are on TBD Airlines
· Taxes and fuel surcharges are subject to change and are not guaranteed until tickets are issued and will be re-quoted at time of final invoicing
· All international and domestic fares are subject to change with confirmation of flights
· Seat deposits and airfare guarantees will be applicable (see terms & conditions for more details
Note that name corrections are NOT permitted once the e-ticket has been issued. Where the name has been misspelled, the reservation must be cancelled and a new booking made in the correct name at same or higher fare for the same dates/itinerary and a new ticket issued.
SEAT SELECTION IS NOT NECESSARILY OFFERED ON GROUP BOOKINGS IF REQUEST IS POSSIBLE IT WILL BE A BLOCK - PLEASE NOTE SEATS ARE UNDER THE AIRLINES CONTROL.
In addition to the non-refundable Plan to Go Deposit of $100 the following cancellation penalties apply for Land/Hotels/Tours/Transportation :
More than 91 days prior to departure loss of non-refundable deposits
Between 90-61 Days prior to departure 75% of net tour price
60 days or less prior to departure 100% non-refundable
Important Note: Cancellation penalties for some travel arrangements may differ from our general conditions. In this occurrence, you will be advised of these addendums at the time of confirmation or prior to any penalties becoming applicable and as soon as we are notified of these special conditions.
It is strongly recommended that clients purchase cancellation insurance to protect themselves against cancellation due to illness prior to or during travel. In the event a traveller becoming ill during a tour and has not purchased insurance, all hospital and medical expenses are the traveller's responsibility. Based on the supplier's current cancellation policies the passenger may incur up to 100% cancellation penalties and should protect themselves with cancellation insurance.
PASSPORT & VISA INFORMATION*:
Please ensure that you have arranged all documentation with the appropriate consulate well in advance of their departure from the USA and that passports are valid for the minimum validity required for ALL destinations being travelled to.
Passports must be valid for a minimum of 6 months from your scheduled return date.
South Korea: At the time of quotation, the following entry requirements are applicable to this itinerary:
Not required for stays less than 90 days.
*applies to US passport holders only. Please make sure that all destinations to be visited or transited verified with the applicable consulate(s) for entry requirements prior to departure, together with requirements for anyone traveling on non-USA passports
CURRENCY AND PRICING FLUCTUATIONS
This proposal is based on the current exchange rate(s). Should there be considerable currency fluctuations, we reserve the right to apply any necessary surcharges. In the event of any additional fuel surcharges by the Land Suppliers and/or airlines, we reserve the right to add these to the costs of the land package and/or airfare. Any applicable increases will be advised in writing prior to final payment. Prices are guaranteed once final payment has been made.
a) Land: A minimum of 10 paying adult passengers travelling on the same itinerary/ arrangements.
b) Air: For most airlines, a minimum of 10 paying adults departing on the same date and travelling to the same destination on the same flights. Return travel on the same date from the same destination, however, approximately 10-25% of the group size may be permitted to vary their return travel date depending on the airline rules. For deviations, the airfare is subject to current airfare levels and airfare guarantees do not apply.
c) Should the number of passengers fall below the required minimum (10), the booking will be deemed as F.I.T. Travel. The group rates will no longer apply.
SmartBird World Travel and/or its agents act only as agents for the client in all matters pertaining to travel. They assume no responsibility nor liability in connection with the service of any train, vessel, carriage, aircraft, motor or other conveyances which may be used, either wholly or in part, in the performance of its duty to the passenger; neither will it be responsible for any act, error, or omission, or any injury, loss, accident, delay or irregularity which may be occasioned by reason of any defect in any vehicle or through the neglect or default of any company or person engaged in carrying out the purpose for which tickets or coupons are issued. In the event that it becomes necessary or advisable for the comfort or well-being of the passengers, or for any reason whatsoever, to alter the itinerary or arrangements, such alterations may be made without penalty to the operators. Additional expenses, if any, shall be borne by the passengers, conversely refund will be made to the passengers if any saving is effected thereby. The airlines concerned are not to be held responsible for any act, omission, or event, during the time passengers are not on board their planes or conveyance. The passage contract in use by the airlines concerned, when issued, shall constitute the sole contract between the airlines and the purchaser of these tours and/or passenger. The right is reserved to withdraw any or all tours should conditions warrant, also to decline to accept or retain any passengers as Members of the tours. Supplier nor agent can assume no responsibility for lost tickets or coupons.