Korea Travel

9 Days Korea Free and Easy Itinerary for Winter – Initial Planning

We make use of the long weekend to firm up on our year-end holiday. Our criteria is simple – it must have SNOW! ☃ In fact, it was Edison’s idea because he enjoyed his first snowy winter vacation so much last year that he wants to see snow again this year. So, we decided to go to Korea and stay in a ski resort. And now, it’s time to plan our Korea free and easy itinerary.

Why Korea, you may wonder. I know, it doesn’t snow that much in Seoul and their ski resorts are mainly artificial snow. We spent 9 days in Korea three years ago during summer and we enjoyed our time there. We joined a package tour so we got a chance to visit many places including Jeju (my favourite part of the trip). However, the time spent in Everland and Lotte World were too short. Therefore, I always think that if we could visit Korea again, I would definitely do it free and easy in winter. 😀

Everland in 2016

Before deciding on Korea, we had several other places in consideration including Club Med Beidahu, Nagoya and Tokyo. I was thrilled to find out that there are several ski resorts near Tokyo and we can visit Disneyland too. But at the end, Japan was dropped as V is not keen to go to Japan three times in a row. I also read that Jilin, China has extreme cold weather of about -20 degrees, and I was so paranoid of how cold it will get.

In the end, we decided on Korea and booked our flight tickets to Seoul (YES!). Last year, when we were transiting in Incheon airport to Sapporo, it was snowing beautifully. I hope that this year, we will be as lucky as last year to see real snow in Seoul.

Now, I’m going to share my preliminary 9D8N Korea free and easy itinerary with you.

Itinerary

Day 1: Singapore -> Incheon

We will be taking a day flight and arrive Incheon at 8pm. Getting to Seoul is very convenient with KAL Limousine Bus or Incheon Airport Limousine Bus that costs ~$16 per person. I bet all of us will be tired after the flight, hence it’s better to book a Private Incheon International Airport Transfers for Seoul that costs just $80 per car.

Now, I can even buy Klook T-Money card before my trip and collect from Incheon airport upon arrival. This is certainly ease our journey into Seoul and have I mentioned this – the card is super cute too LOL!

Day 2: Seoul Theme Parks

Visit Lotte World Theme Park, Lotte World Aquarium and Seoul Sky Lotte World Tower. Klook offers discounted combo tickets to these 3 attractions.

Dinner and shopping in Myeongdong (my cosmetics paradise!)

Day 3: From Seoul to Gangwon-do

Join the Klook tour to Gangwon-do and visit Nami Island, Petite France, Garden of Morning Calm as well as Gangchon Rail Park. This tour has several pick-up points at Hongdae, Seoul Station, Myeongdong and Dongdaemun. Interestingly, lunch is also provided.

Day 4: Seoul City Sight-Seeing

Explore Namsan Cable Car, N Seoul Tower, Gyeongbokgung Palace, Changdeokgung Palace, Bukchon Hanok Village, Insa-dong and Hongdae.

N Seoul Tower sits atop Namsan Mountain (243m). The observatory offers panoramic views of Seoul and the surrounding areas. Remember to lock in our love! 💞 Place a love lock there and secure our eternal love (bring our own lock!).

Gyeongbokgung Palace is the most beautiful palace in the city. Watch the Royal Guard-Changing Ceremony and visit the Underground Museum.

Changdeokgung Palace is one of the filming locations of popular K-drama Moonlight Drawn by Clouds. Being a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is also the most well-preserved palace with a rear garden that has a giant 300-year-old tree, pavilion and pond. I heard that you can rent a traditional hanbok from a nearly shop and get free entrance!

Day 5: Seoul to Everland

We are going to spend the entire day in Everland this time YAY!

Day 6: Seoul to Vivaldi Park

I’ve looked into various ski resorts in Korea – read my earlier post, if you haven’t. Since we’ve been to Alpensia and Yongpyong, most likely we will be staying at Vivaldi Park this time. I’ve heard rave reviews from my friends and I like it because it’s so near to Seoul. The resort even provides free shuttle bus to foreigners!

Day 7: Full day at Vivaldi Park

Have fun at Ski World, Snowyland and Ocean World

Day 8: Vivaldi Park back to Seoul

Seoul Land Theme Park

Day 9: Incheon -> Singapore

Accommodation Options

As of now, I’ve shortlisted the following two hotels for this trip:

Metro Hotel

This hotel is highly recommended by parents in a forum. It has an excellent location in Myeongdong – 3 mins walk to Euljiro 1-ga Subway Station and 8 mins walk to Myeongdong Station. Additionally, it’s also within 5 mins walk to Lotte Hotel Seoul where the free shuttle bus pick-up point to Vivaldi Park is located.

Image Credit: Metro Hotel | Family Flex Room

What I love most is their Family Flex Room that comes with 3 beds. It’s so affordable you can’t believe it! Nightly rate is approx. KRW 198,000 ($228) for 3 person including breakfast.

Novotel Ambassador Seoul Dongdaemum Hotels & Residences

This is an upscale Accor Hotel located in Dongdaemun. Opened in July 2018, this hotel is fairly new. It’s just 4 mins walk from Exit 12 of Dongdaemun History & Culture Park Station. I’m eyeing at the Residence Deluxe 1 Bedroom with 1 king-size bed that comes with washer, dryer and kitchen.

Image Credit: Novotel Ambassador Seoul Dongdaemum Hotels & Residences

More to come soon! Be sure to bookmark this post as I will be updating my Korea free and easy itinerary from time to time. If you have any suggestions, please please drop me a comment below. I’d really appreciate it! 😀

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13 comments

Ivy Wee August 14, 2019 at 2:40 PM

Hi, thanks for sharing very useful info travel info about Korea. I have been referring to your recommendations as my family will also be travelling at the end of this year. Could I ask you where you will be staying at the Ski Resort?

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Emily August 14, 2019 at 4:22 PM

Dear Ivy,
Thanks for visiting my blog. Initially, I’ve planned to stay at Daemyung Vivaldi Ski Resort. Then, I changed my mind to stay at Holiday Inn Resort at Alpensia (already booked haha!). Most likely (if time permits), I will do a day trip to Vivaldi Ski Resort as I want to visit the Snowyland. 🙂

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Ivy Wee August 22, 2019 at 4:05 PM

Thanks so much for sharing 🙂

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Linda August 29, 2019 at 10:21 AM

Hey, thanks for sharing!! We are also thinking of Vivaldi Park but am not sure when they open. You have any idea? initially planning first week of Dec, but a bit worried that they aint open yet.. Noticed you planned 3 days at Vivaldi Park, while i was initially thinking just a day trip. haha.. you think its too short?

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Emily August 29, 2019 at 11:23 AM

Hi Linda,
As I know, Vivaldi Park will be opened from early Dec. However, Snowyland opening will be slightly later in mid Dec. Initially, I planned to do a 3D2N at Vivaldi. Then, I changed my mind a book a 3D2N at Alpensia instead. I will do a day trip to Snowyland.

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Linda August 29, 2019 at 12:53 PM

Thank you so much. Then perhaps I should move my dates to nearer xmas.. btw, where did u get the info on the opening dates? i can’t find it on their website! haha..

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Emily August 29, 2019 at 4:24 PM

Hi Linda,
I checked with several tour agents in Seoul – Winterfriend and Koreal Trip. In fact, they are already opened now for Dec booking. 🙂

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Grace August 31, 2019 at 9:14 AM

Hi, may i know how you book the hotel at vivaldi park? Through agent?
Hi, may i know which website you used to make reservation for ski resort?

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Emily August 31, 2019 at 10:16 AM

Hi Grace,
Until today, Vivaldi Park website is still not opened for public booking. However, you can book through agents like Winterfriend, Koreal trip and JSki. I have emailed them for quotes and all of them have responded promptly. Hope this helps.

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Grace September 1, 2019 at 11:08 PM

Thanks for sharing, Emily.

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Melody September 24, 2019 at 2:33 PM

Good Day! I have plans to stay 3D2N ski resort before going back to Seoul City with my family. May i know why did you choose to stay at Alpensia vs Vivaldi?

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Emily September 25, 2019 at 1:44 PM

Hi Melody,
I heard that Vivaldi is always crowded with visitors – especially the ski area for beginners. The accommodation type is Family Condo with 1 Queen Bed + 1 Ondol. This means one of us have to sleep on Ondol. I prefer hotel-type of accommodation, hence I chose Alpensia instead. I’ve planned to make a day trip to Vivaldi Snowy Land since it’s only an hour from Seoul.

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Melody September 25, 2019 at 1:52 PM

thanks for sharing…i am otw to plan the trip too;)

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