All sorts of foreign travelers are choosing Korea as their holiday destination and it’s no wonder why. South Korea has something for everyone: tech enthusiasts will be amazed by the way Korean cities seamlessly blend tradition and modernity while lovers of the outdoors can spend time hiking in the country’s stunning mountains and even ski during the winter.
South Korea is also a very family-friendly destination. It’s a safe first-world country where locals are friendly towards tourists and happy to help. It’s more affordable than other popular Asian countries and yet its cities are modern, clean, and offer plenty of activities for children and accommodation options for all tastes.
Finally, South Korea is designing a new electronic visa system that will make it possible for eligible parents to apply for a Korean visa online in minutes without stressful trips to their nearest embassy and saving them precious time and effort.
In this article, you’ll find useful information for parents who are considering Korea as their next family holiday. This includes:
- Why Korea is child-friendly
- The best places to visit with your family in Korea
- Documents and other requirements for children to travel to Korea.
Is Korea Child-Friendly?
South Korea is a truly accessible destination for families. Everything is convenient and world-class, and not only tourist attractions: think streets, hospitals, public transport, hotels. Parents can rest assured that they will find the best services and infrastructures.
In fact, the government is making a conscious effort to make public spaces more child-friendly. Stations, cinemas, shopping malls, and museums are being renovated across the country to be able to offer a nursing room for local and foreign mums. Moreover, steps are being taken to make South Korea stroller-friendly and accessible with wheelchairs.
Public transport is certainly one of South Korea’s perks when it comes to traveling. Tourists often don’t have their own means of transportation and with young children, long coach rides across the country can become a nightmare. South Korea’s fast trains solve the issue with fast, reliable, and affordable routes.
Locals love and respect children and will be likely to act extra welcoming and friendly towards families visiting their country. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or directions. Just remember that although the younger generations are highly proficient in English, elders may have some trouble understanding you.
South Korea for Families: Kid-Friendly Activities
There is much to do in South Korea. In fact, the great variety of attractions and activities available in South Korea probably will have you spoiled with choices.
Museums for Kids in South Korea
Foreigners might be surprised by the fact that almost all museums in South Korea have dedicated interactive exhibitions for children. There are plenty of highly manual and playful activities (dress-ups, puzzles, etc) so your children will likely have lots of fun even if they don’t speak Korean.
Korea for Food Lovers Who Travel with Families
South Korea is a paradise for foodies. You can see how eating together is seen as a communal experience at the famous Korean barbecues where you can cook your own meal at the table (just be careful with the coals and flames). Korea is also home to kimchi and bibimbap, two world-famous staples.
And it’s not all about restaurants: South Korean cities buzz with food markets that will blend eating and sightseeing. The Jagalchi Fish Market in Busan, for example, is famous across the country and a real must-visit for seafood eaters.
What Can Families Do in Seoul?
Seoul is a modern and stroller-friendly city. Parents of young children and toddlers will find it to be one of the more stress-free places to visit. Supermarkets across town will be able to offer baby porridge and snacks and you’ll find baby rooms and even sleeping rooms with baby cots in multiple locations (try department stores, for example).
Here are a few things that families can enjoy in Seoul:
- Baby and theme cafes
- Children’s Grand Park with a zoo and an amusement park
- Lotte World Aquarium
- The Royal Palaces
- Traditional Hanok villages
- Non-verbal theaters
Do Children Need a Visa to Visit South Korea?
In general, all foreigners that are not from a visa-exempt country need a travel permit in order to enter Korea. This means that minors will have to file their own Korean visa application separately, even though they may be helped and accompanied by their parent(s) or guardian(s).
However, this is not always the case. Depending on your specific circumstances (especially, the type of visa you’re traveling to South Korea with), you may be able to have your offspring on your passport and visa.