Travelers from everywhere in the world are flocking to a completely open Asia for longer, multi-country journeys this yr.
U.S. vacationers specifically are trying east this yr. According to information from journey app Hopper, all three of this previous summer season’s top trending locations amongst U.S. vacationers have been Asian cultural capitals.
Seoul, South Korea is a serious vacation spot main this pattern. In truth, Seoul is the eleventh most popular metropolis on the planet for worldwide vacationers, based on Mastercard’s Global Destinations Cities Index.
The variety of vacationers to South Korea quadrupled originally of this yr, with a complete of 4.4 million guests to the nation as of this June. According to specialists, that quantity is predicted to double by the tip of the yr.
So, why is the South Korean capital extra well-liked now than ever earlier than?
Here are 4 the reason why Seoul is now probably the most well-liked locations on the planet:
Trendy Revival of Seochon Neighborhood
The 500-year-old neighborhood of Seochon has modified loads since its heyday within the Joseon period.
Today, the historic neighborhood has been restored and revived, creating an irresistible mixture of authenticity and modernity.
An infusion of fashionable new companies and an inflow of younger inventive Koreans has breathed new life into Seochon over the previous couple of years. Narrow curving alleyways lined with conventional Korean houses (hanok) of polished darkish wooden and white stone give approach to inventive retailers and well-liked nook cafes.
Tourists are drawn to the genuine environment of the village. Local meals stall proprietor Jo Gyeonghwan told CNA Luxury, “If you explore the alleys, you can see renovated hanok-style cafes and restaurants which cannot be easily found in other areas.”
Recently restored homestays are marketed to vacationers in search of a distinctive conventional expertise in a vibrant space. Architect Park Jung Hyun has been reworking these homes for a few years. With fashionable kinds “ranging from a Korean-Scandinavian design to an earthy-modernist hideout,” these renovated hanoks supply one thing for each sort of traveler.
This yr, extra vacationers than ever earlier than are selecting their locations primarily based on their favourite TV collection and flicks in a red-hot journey trend often called “set-jetting.”
XO, Kitty, a spin-off of the record-breaking American Netflix collection To All The Boys, not too long ago held the #3 slot in Netflix’s high 10 rankings and generated a cult-like fan following. A primary of its type, the collection attracts key inspiration from well-liked K-dramas whereas conserving issues accessible in an English language format. The collection is set virtually completely in Seoul and options just a few of town’s well-known landmarks.
Fans of the uber-popular series are flocking from the U.S., Europe, and past to the South Korean capital to see the place a few of its most epic scenes have been filmed. The most iconic spots from the collection embrace the love locks on the N Seoul Tower and the Grand Hyatt Seoul.
And it’s not simply XO, Kitty bringing Western vacationers to the websites of their favourite Korean exhibits.
According to the New York Times, 60% of world Netflix customers have watched a Korean-language TV present or movie. (Earlier this yr, Extraordinary Attorney Woo – an inspirational collection about an autistic lawyer– skyrocketed into Netflix’s high 10 in over 50 international locations.)
Data from Expedia exhibits that two-thirds of vacationers have thought-about taking a visit primarily based on their favourite exhibits. With the wildfire of worldwide fandom of Korean collection and flicks, the set-jetting pattern will in all probability proceed to lean in Seoul’s favor.
Tik Tok Tourism and Gen Z Trends
Yep, it’s one other TikTok sensation driving a tourism increase.
‘Personal Color Analysis’ is the most recent craze – and it’s obtained vacationers operating proper to Seoul. In a 60-minute session, specialists determine what colours of garments, make-up, equipment, and hair are most flattering to your pores and skin tone.
According to TIME, the subject “personal color analysis Korea” has 375 million TikTok views.
While the service has been round for many years for public figures, the Korean magnificence business has been main the cost in making it accessible to on a regular basis folks.
Like many different magnificence and beauty providers, private shade evaluation costs in Seoul are as much as 70% decrease than in different main cities like New York or L.A., making it a motivating issue for worldwide tourism.
In truth, so many vacationers are coming to Seoul for this service that the Korean Tourism Organization arrange a pop-up shade evaluation studio in New York’s Rockefeller Center this summer season. Unsurprisingly, it was an enormous hit – particularly amongst Gen Z.
New Direct Flights
Today, it’s simpler than ever to fly to the South Korean capital. While Seoul’s Incheon Airport has lengthy been a key worldwide flight hub, it’s seeing a surge in new routes from everywhere in the world nowadays.
Some finances airways are promising costs 20% decrease than full-service carriers like Korean Air and Asiana, making Seoul extra accessible to vacationers on a decrease finances. Low-cost service Air Premia additionally launched a brand new route from Newark to Seoul this previous May, whereas Northern Pacific Airlines plans to supply extra inexpensive flights to Seoul and different Asian locations through Alaska by the tip of this yr.
In Europe, Prague Airport launched new direct flights to Seoul at first of the summer season season. In Australia, Jetstar additionally launched a long-awaited service from Sydney to Seoul just a few months in the past. Asian locations like Vietnam, Japan, and Singapore additionally added new routes from each full-service and low-cost carriers.
As airways everywhere in the world scramble to satisfy elevated demand for flights to Seoul, it’s protected to say we’re not the one ones seeing this Asian capital’s recognition skyrocket!
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This article initially appeared on TravelOffPath.com