10/19/2013 11:19 pm ET Updated Dec 19, 2013

Soul Searching in Seoul

Feeling stressed? Unbalanced? In need of some inner peace? Our travel experts at FlipKey have a great solution for you. As South Korea's former capital nearly 2,000 years ago, there is still plenty to discover in the city of Seoul including ancient royal palaces, the great Hangang river, and numerous peaceful parks. While some travelers prefer to stop their flight short in favor of prominent cities in mainland China, others know that with a bit more distance, the peaceful gem that is Seoul waits ready to be discovered. Here are just a few spots that are sure to get put you back in touch with your inner self:

Seoul Photos

This photo of Seoul is courtesy of TripAdvisor

The expansive Dream Forest is Seoul's fourth largest park and provides beautiful scenery for a stroll, especially along Cherry Blossom Path in Spring when the flowers are in full bloom or even Maple Tree Forest when the leaves begin to turn in the fall. Although it is a high traffic spot for travelers, with 660,000 square meters of nature to go around, you'll have no problem finding some quiet spots to escape to.

If that last visit didn't help you find your center, make your way over to the Jogyesa Temple, which is home to the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism. At this particular temple, travelers may choose to take part in the Temple Life Program, a five hour workshop introducing anyone and everyone to the ways of Buddhism and day-to-day temple activities. If you're looking to search for spiritual awareness in a more celebratory way, plan a trip to Seoul in May for Buddha's birthday when the temple hosts the Lotus Lantern Festival. This celebration is a wonderful way to discover the color and vibrancy of South Korea's culture and truly inspires international participation.

Photos of Jogyesa Temple, Seoul

This photo of Jogyesa Temple is courtesy of TripAdvisor

If, even after all of this, you're still not feeling the presence of Seoul's spirit, we recommend a visit to the neighborhood of Insa-dong to visit its many teahouses. A short journey away from Seoul's main tourist area in Myeong-dong, Insa-dong has a lot to offer those looking to explore just outside of the city center. Drink in the beauty of your surroundings at the aged and traditional Sin Yetchatjip tea house, complete with a cozy atmosphere and some friendly parrots that may even chatter to you in Korean. Feeling intimidated by the prospect of getting to all of these locations in Seoul? Worry not, because the public transportation in the area is highly developed and efficient. So, no matter where you choose to stay, rest assured knowing that the city will be easily accessible.

Sign up for our email.
Find out how much you really know about the state of the nation.