Seoul’s global reputation centers on its rapid pace, technological prowess and glittering skyscrapers. But wander its streets and there’s a whole other world waiting to be discovered — one of history, culture and art. Still surrounded by its ancient city walls, which can be easily hiked, Seoul is home to five palaces, all well worth exploring, although Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung are the real standouts. For those keen to steep themselves in modern Korea, Seoul’s legendary and often overwhelming nightlife is the place to start, especially around Gangnam. Clubs attract the best DJs in the world and there’s always karaoke for partygoers keen on something a bit more intimate.

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