Korea is a vibrant country with many interesting tourist destinations, relatively easy to go even for first-time travelers. My budget trip to Korea lasted 7 days (Korea itinerary 7 days) through 2 major cities: Seoul (The capital city) and Busan (The coastal city) 330km from Seoul, experience wearing Hanbok, Korean sauna (jjimjilbang), eating king crab, penis fish (Urechis unicinctus), spicy Korean fried chicken with cheese… but a total trip cost of only $550 for eating, drinking and playing in Korea including air tickets (excluding Visa). It may be even cheaper if you eat casual, take the local trains and not eager to try many things like me, hehe. Frankly, it is too cheap for a beautiful trip immersed in the golden autumn in the land of Kim Chi. Now, let’s check out my Seoul Busan itinerary blog with the detailed suggestions of 7 days Seoul Busan itinerary below.

Gyeongbokgung palace hanbok
Tourists wearing Korean traditional costumes at Gyeongbokgung
Myeongdong street
Bustling street at Myeongdong district. | 7 days seoul busan itinerary
busan itinerary 4 days,busan travel itinerary,busan trip itinerary-gamcheon-culture-village
The colorful houses in Gamcheon Culture Village, Busan | korea itinerary 7 days
Samgyeopsal (Grilled pork belly BBQ) (1)
Samgyeopsal (Grilled pork belly BBQ) is a favorite dish, also the pride of Korean cuisine.
best street food area in seoul,where to eat korean street food in seoul,where to eat street food in seoul333
Seoul street food | 7 days seoul busan itinerary

What is the best season to visit Korea?

It’s not an exaggeration, but every season here is beautiful in its own way. If you do not believe you can see the 4-season series of Korean films to verify: Autumn in My Heart – Winter Sonata – Summer Scent – Spring Waltz.

11cherry blossom in korea 2019 forecast
Cherry blossom in Jinhae

Tourists visit Korea the most in the spring with cherry blossoms from April to June and the autumn of yellow and red leaves from September to November (the most beautiful is from late October to early November) to enjoy the scenery, the average temperature is not too hot, not too cold, it is dry and sunny. You should avoid the biggest rainy months from the end of July and August every year, half of the rainfall in Korea will falls in these 2 months.

Changdeokgung,5 grand palaces in seoul,5 palaces in seoul,5 palaces seoul,five grand palaces in seoul (1)
Picturesque scenery in Changdeokgung palace in autumn | 7 days seoul busan itinerary

How to get to Korea?

1. Hanoi – Busan: At the time of ticket purchase, on the occasion of Vietjet Air’s promotion of $0, it cost only $112.58 (excluding the extra baggage allowance). If you can not hunt cheap tickets, you can buy tickets from Jeju Air, AirAsia, Asiana, Vietnam Airlines… the average price of $173 – $346/roundtrip, may be more expensive depending on the time.

2. Busan – Seoul: I take the KTX fast train that extremely smooth and clean, and the slow train is cheaper than 1/2 but takes longer and stops more stops.

busan seoul ktx ticket
KTX fast train from Seoul – Busan (330 km) takes only 2 hours and 20 minutes. The ticket price from Busan to Seoul: 56.800 won, cheaper than the return from Seoul to Busan: 59.800 won. | korea itinerary 7 days
KTX-II of Korail (Korea Railroad Corporation) between Changwon-Jungang and Changwon, South Korea
KTX train – comfortable ride
Inside KTX train | 7 days seoul busan itinerary

3. Getting around Busan or Seoul: You can travel by Bus and subway by using T-Money card.

t money
Getting around Seoul and Busan with T-money card purchased at convenience stores at the airport or in the city. The card fee (without the money) is 4.000 won, and top up additional 10.000 won to travel.
Transportation Cards
T-money transportation card
t money top up
When the T-Money card runs out of money, you can top it up with an automatic machine right inside the station, with English guide for foreigners. Choose to top up from 5.000 – 30.000 won/time. | 7 days seoul busan itinerary

Korea itinerary 7 days: Where to stay?

Our group stay in the dorm room (dormitory), bunk beds for cheap and convenient for traveling. Average price $9–$13/bed/night. Here are 3 hostels in Busan – Seoul are high rated on Booking.com. 6 nights in Korea, I spent only $60.

Kimchee Busan Downtown Guesthouse – Stay the first night. (You can check rates, reviews and book on Agoda.com or Booking.com).

Kimchee Busan Downtown Guesthouse

Kimchee Downtown Guesthouse – Stay 4 nights in Seoul, right near the subway station, and near city center, convenient traveling to City Hall Station, Seoul Station. (You can check rates, reviews and book on Agoda.com or Booking.com).

Kimchee Downtown Guesthouse
| korea itinerary 7 days

Blue Backpackers Hostel in Busan on the last day. Although it is a bit messy, it has a nice location, located near the beach and Haeundae seafood market. (You can check rates, reviews and book on Agoda.com or Booking.com).

7 days Seoul Busan itinerary — Day 1

7AM, I arrive at Gimhae Airport, Busan, South Korea. Buy T-money cards to take the train to the hostel. 9AM arrive at Kimchee Busan Guest House, store my luggage and rest.

Korea’s largest seafood market Jagalchi Shijiang: Enjoy King Crab – King of all crabs.

jagalchi busan (2)
Busan fish market with hundreds of large and small stalls indoor and outdoor. | 7 days seoul busan itinerary
jagalchi busan (2)
Our team chose 1 King Crab and some octopus, shellfish, spent about $86 for the first luxurious lunch in Korea | korea itinerary 7 days

Take the bus to Gamcheon cultural village: The place is known as the Santorini of Asia with colorful houses overlooking the sea.

gamcheon village (2)
The whole village is covered in beautiful Pastel paint.
gamcheon village (1)
Drawings and experimental art of artists are loved by locals, tourists and photographers.

7 days Seoul Busan itinerary — Day 2: From Busan takes the KTX fast train to Seoul

Morning: Visit Deoksugung Palace to see the Changing of the Royal Guard which taking place at 11am – 2pm – 3:30 pm daily. Each lasts for 30 minutes. If you wait until the end of the ceremony, you can also take photos with the guards in traditional costumes.

Changing of the Royal Guard at Deoksugung Palace
Changing of the Royal Guard at Deoksugung Palace | 7 days seoul busan itinerary

Afternoon: Visit Ewha Woman’s University – the largest university in the world for women.

Afternoon Visit Ewha Woman's University – the largest university in the world for women.
Ewha Woman’s University, Seoul with its unique architecture and beautiful natural landscape in the autumn.

Evening: Go to Hongdae Walking Street – The street is known as the capital of young people in Seoul.

A group of young people dancing and singing attracts crowds on Hongdae Street, Seoul

Korean sauna: Sauna, eat boiled eggs and drink rice water according to Korean movies, open overnight and super fun.

Korean sauna: 
Korean sauna or Jjimjilbang | 7 days seoul busan itinerary

Read more: Experience Siloam Jjimjilbang Seoul — Review one of the best Korean Jjimjilbang at Siloam Sauna, Seoul.

Seoul Busan itinerary blog — Day 3

Gyeongbokgung Palace – Seoul’s largest palace

Gyeongbokgung royal palace is very large and also very crowded coming to take pictures. The day we arrived was the last 4th day of the cultural festival so we had to get free admission.

Gyeongbokgung Palace

Read more: Royal palace Seoul — How to visit 5 grand palaces in Seoul?

Changdeokgung Palace – Secret Garden

Changdeokgung Palace seoul
A quiet corner of the Changdeokgung palace. | seoul busan itinerary blog
Changdeokgung,5 grand palaces in seoul,5 palaces in seoul,5 palaces seoul,five grand palaces in seoul (1)
Secret Garden

Bukchon Hanok Ancient Village: Wearing Hanbok

bukchon hanok village
Bukchon Hanok Village, one of the best places to visit in Seoul. | seoul busan itinerary blog
Hanbok at Bukchon

Afternoon: Watching the sunset at Namsan Tower, where the romantic love locks fence.

namsan autumn 2
Namsan tower in Autumn, the symbol of Seoul, Korea
Love locks | seoul busan itinerary blog

Read more: Visiting N Seoul Tower (Namsan Tower) — The symbol & one of the best places to visit in Seoul.

Seoul Busan itinerary blog — Day 4

Take the ferry to the island of Nami, 60km from Seoul. Details of the trip to the island I have a very details article here: Nami Island travel blog — The fullest Nami Island travel guide for a great trip to Nami Island for the first-timers.

nami island (1)
Ferry from the mainland to the island takes about 20 minutes.
nami island (1)
Romantic autumn scene on Nami island | seoul busan itinerary blog

Evening: Go to Myeongdong market. What to play in Myeongdong? Read more: Myeongdong food blog — Top 12 Myeongdong best food & Myeongdong street food you must eat.

grilled lobster,myeongdong food blog,myeongdong food guide,myeongdong must eat,what to eat in myeongdong (1)
Grilled lobster with cheese at Myeongdong
myeongdong food blog,myeongdong food guide,myeongdong must eat,myeongdong street food,what to eat in myeongdong
Myeongdong street food | seoul busan itinerary blog
Myeongdong night market,
Myeongdong night market

Seoul Busan itinerary blog — Day 5

Morning: Go to Namdaemun traditional market

namdaemun market seoul
Namdaemun Market Seoul | seoul busan itinerary blog
Namdaemun Market korean street food (1)
Extremely attractive snacks waiting for you to “pick”.

Gangnam Area – SM Town

SM Town
On the first floor at SM Town (Communication Center) sells albums of famous artists under the company. | seoul busan itinerary blog

Afternoon: Visiting Insadong Old Town: A place to sell souvenirs, galleries and visit the Ssamzie–gil area on this street – A vibrant place for young people with many Korean designer shops.

Insadong
Old town of Insadong, Seoul

What to do in Old town of Insadong? Read more: Insadong blog — The fullest Insadong guide for what to do in Insadong & things to do in Insadong.

ssamziegil shopping complex
Ssamziegil shopping complex | seoul busan itinerary blog
Ssamzie-gil area
Ssamziegil is a complex of more than 70 souvenir shops, unique design items.
Ssamzie-gil area
Ssamzie-gil area is very “artistic”, is my favorite place in Seoul. In the picture, tourists are drawing caricatures of portraits as souvenirs. | seoul busan itinerary blog

Evening: DDP (Dongdaemun Design Plaza) & Dongdaemun wholesale and retail market which opening overnight, shopping for my family.

DDP (Dongdaemun Design Plaza)
Dongdaemun Design Plaza is a new symbol of Korea’s design industry, near the famous Dongdaemun Market that operates overnight. Unique and large architecture like a huge spaceship, often holding exhibitions, fairs …
Dongdaemun Design Plaza is a new symbol of Korea's design industry, near the famous Dongdaemun Market that operates overnight. Unique and large architecture like a huge spaceship, often holding exhibitions, fairs ...
Evening here shimmering in the night with thousands of electric roses. | seoul busan itinerary blog

7 days Seoul Busan itinerary — Day 6

Take the KTX train back from Seoul to Busan (1:55PM – 4:20PM)

Check in at Backpacker Hostel and store my luggage. Going to Haeudae beach to see fireworks at the Busan Firework Festival held every 2 years.

Busan firework festival
Busan firework festival

Busan firework festival

7 days Seoul Busan itinerary — Day 7

Busan Gimhae International Airport 2
Busan Gimhae International Airport

5:20AM take the earliest train ride to Gimhae International Airport, Busan
6AM arrive at the airport. 8AM flying from Busan to Hanoi is 11:05AM. Finish the trip.

Some best day tours, trips, activities and transfer services, tickets in Seoul you can refer to:

hanbok korea3

More Korea travel guide? Read the fullest guide: Seoul blog, Busan blog and Jeju blog.

Living Nomads celebrates and is inspired by explorers and their passion for travel, curiosity about the world and unique points of view. Travel is eye-opening. Curious. Daring. Fun. We are here to help you travel better, cheaper & longer! Discover the art of traveling anywhere you want.