While Seoul itself is already mentioned in 18 BC, the city’s history is most heavily marked by 20th century geo-politics and Korea’s face as an early theatre for cold war manoeuvring among superpowers. Without similar help from allies in WWII, Korea was divided and unified itself into two countries. It is one of the world’s most contentious and tense borders.

Art & Culture

Seoul’s highly-educated and motivated citizenry mashes-up fashion, technology, re-defined pop music and local cuisine into an influential world palette. And none of it competes or detracts from the reverent traditionalism Korea and her capital nurture. An ordered kind of chaos balanced in the present between yesterday and tomorrow. Food stalls are preferred by locals but a dashing economy also fills world-class restaurants.


Ramped-up contemporary architecture has kept pace with Seoul’s aerodynamic economy. A concrete jungle ensued around belts of traditional temples and architecture. Then, thankfully, greenscapes caught-up to the modern tangle and have been built into and on top of buildings, sprawling parks, botanical gardens and spaces for indigenous wildlife from the continental subtropical peninsula to thrive.


Look down from any of the city’s Four Guardian Mountains onto a sprawling metropolis, a river delta or a city that does not sleep. It is easiest to blend everything the city offers with a dive into its never-ending nightlife. But to forgo the peaceful temples, lengthy footpaths and ancient walls is a missed opportunity.


Settlements of the area on the Han River around Seoul date back to 4,000 BC. As was par for the course, Korea remained an isolationist confederacy for thousands of years. Developing and protecting itself at the same time.
Later antagonism from neighbours like China and Japan dragged on and then western influence entered.

For better or for worse, Korea adapted and thrived. This most tech-ready nation positively and diplomatically influences and spans a region far beyond its geography.