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Seoulthe soul of south korea

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1 City 5 Ways: Outdoor Enthusiast

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Where to Stay // JW Marriott

The Marriott’s central location is ideal for reaching nearby mountain hikes and parks such as Seripul Park, a peaceful oasis just steps away where you can hike the entire trail in two hours.

Photo courtesy of Marriott International, Inc.

Morning // Bukhansan National Park

This accessible park has miles of trails through forests dotted with granite peaks, Buddhist temples and a 300-year-old fortress wall.

Photo courtesy of Korea Tourism Organization

Midday // Changdeokgung Palace

A guided tour of Changdeokgung Palace's Secret Garden leaves at 11:30 a.m. daily. The stroll through the royal garden—dotted with forests, ponds and pavilions—is one the most scenic in Korea.

Photo courtesy of Korea Tourism Organization

Afternoon // Banyan Tree Spa

To relax posthike, the Banyan Tree Spa on Mount Namsan offers Tender Touch, a gentle massage using an oil-infused rice pouch. 

Dinner // Sanchon
Run by a former Buddhist monk, Sanchon is a vegetarian sanctuary known for temple cuisine made from local, seasonal roots, herbs and vegetables.

Photo courtesy of Banyan Tree Spa

Seventy percent of Korea is covered with mountains, and there are 37 mountains in Seoul alone, making it a surprisingly outdoorsy urban center.

Text by Robin Cherry

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