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The Korea National Tourism Organization is touting several
cultural festivals being held in Korea this fall. Among the
upcoming events is the Geumsan Ginseng Festival (Sept. 6-15), held
in rural Chungcheongnam-do Province. The area is known for its
ginseng, which is priced 20% to 50% lower when sold locally vs. in
other areas. Highlights include a dig-it-yourself harvest trip and
cooking classes. Events take place in and around the Ginseng
Museum. Web sites: www.geumsan.chungnam.kr or www.insamfestival.co.kr.
The Andong International Mask Dance Festival (Sept. 27 to Oct.
6) celebrates the mask dances developed by peasants in ancient
times when the ruling yangban elite forbid open criticism of
themselves. Apart from dance performances, the event includes
fireworks, a chariot battle and a food festival. Web site: www.maskdance.com.
The Gimje Horizon Festival (Oct. 3-6) pays tribute to the
region’s rice-farming heritage, with hands-on events including the
making of traditional farm tools and scarecrows; catching
grasshoppers; and even a fish-catching contest. Web site: www.egimje.net.
Operator Plans N. Korea Tour
Santa Monica, Calif.-based Universal Travel System recently led
its first tour group to North Korea, and the company has slated a
second North Korea trip for Oct. 12-20.
Highlights of UTS’ recent trip included a stay at the 45-story
Hotel Koryo in Pyongyang; a visit to the USS Pueblo, a U.S. Navy
ship captured by the North Koreans in 1968; and Panmunjom, the
border village guarded by both North Korean and U.S. military.
The October departure will feature a similar itinerary; cost is
$3,460 per person, double, land only. Roundtrip air from Los
Angeles is approximately $825. Call 310-393-0261 or
Business Stays in Seoul
Long-term business travelers to Seoul have a new accommodations
option in the newly opened Coatel Chereville, in the southern part
of the city.
The Coatel Chereville, located on Teheranno Street in Seoul,
features 365 guest rooms, including suites for long-term visitors,
rooms for shorter-staying guests and living suites with office
All suites have kitchens and washing machines. Rates range from
approximately $150 to $325 per night, with discounts available for
Call 011-82-2-6288-3400. Web site: www.coatel.co.kr.