24 days in Thailand, South Korea & Chicago Itinerary

24 days in Thailand, South Korea & Chicago Itinerary

Make it your trip
Drive
1
Chicago, United States
— 1 day
Fly
2
Bangkok, Thailand
— 4 nights
Fly to Phuket, Bus to Phuket Town
3
Phuket Town, Thailand
— 4 nights
Bus to Phuket, Fly to Seoul
4
Seoul, South Korea
— 7 nights
Fly
5
Jeju, South Korea
— 4 nights
Fly
6
Seoul, South Korea
— 1 night
Fly
7
Chicago, United States
— 1 night
Drive

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Chicago, United States — 1 day

Windy City

A huge and vibrant city, Chicago is home to top-notch theaters, shops, museums, galleries, and restaurants.
Start off your visit on the 22nd (Mon): admire the striking features of Skydeck Chicago - Willis Tower, stroll around Millennium Park, then explore the world behind art at The Art Institute of Chicago, and finally ponder the design of Buckingham Fountain.

For photos and more tourist information, you can read our Chicago travel planning site.

Quincy to Chicago is an approximately 5-hour car ride. In May, daily temperatures in Chicago can reach 71°F, while at night they dip to 52°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Mon) so you can fly to Bangkok.
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Museums · Parks
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Bangkok, Thailand — 4 nights

City of Angels

Enjoy cultural, historical, and culinary exploration during your holiday in Bangkok, the capital of Thailand and the most populous city in the country.
Bangkok is known for historic sites, shopping, and nightlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: steep yourself in history at The Grand Palace, buy something for everyone on your list at Siam Paragon, take in the spiritual surroundings of Temple of the Golden Buddha (Wat Traimit), and meet the residents at SEA LIFE Bangkok Ocean World.

To see photos, where to stay, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Bangkok trip builder website.

Traveling by flight from Chicago to Bangkok takes 23 hours. The time zone changes from Central Standard Time (CST) to Indochina Time (ICT), which is usually a 13 hour difference. In May, Bangkok is warmer than Chicago - with highs of 96°F and lows of 81°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Sun) early enough to travel to Phuket Town.
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Shopping · Historic Sites · Parks · Zoos & Aquariums
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Phuket Town, Thailand — 4 nights

The economic hub of the eponymous island, Phuket Town attracted merchants from China, India, and Portugal long before it became a tourist destination.
Change things up with these side-trips from Phuket Town: Patong (Spas, Bangla Road, &more). And it doesn't end there: surround yourself with nature on Elephant Jungle Sanctuary Phuket Offices, get interesting insight from Bubba Diving Phuket, get great views at Chaithararam Temple (Wat Chalong), and take in the spiritual surroundings of Big Buddha Phuket.

To see reviews, photos, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Phuket Town day trip planner.

Traveling by combination of flight and bus from Bangkok to Phuket Town takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Expect slightly colder temperatures when traveling from Bangkok in May; daily highs in Phuket Town reach 90°F and lows reach 75°F. On the 1st (Thu), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Seoul.
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Outdoors · Wildlife · Tours · Parks
Side Trips
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Seoul, South Korea — 7 nights

One of east Asia's major cultural and financial centers, Seoul boasts five World Heritage Sites and a huge selection of museums, temples, shrines, palaces, parks, gardens, and glass-and-steel skyscrapers.
Take a break from Seoul with a short trip to DMZ Haemaru Village in Paju, about 1h 25 min away. Next up on the itinerary: take an in-depth tour of Gyeongbokgung Palace, admire the landmark architecture of Changdeokgung Palace, admire the natural beauty at Namsan Park, and shop like a local with Namdaemun Market.

For photos, reviews, where to stay, and tourist information, read our Seoul holiday planner.

You can do a combination of bus and flight from Phuket Town to Seoul in 10 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus, flight, and train; or drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from Phuket Town to Seoul. Plan for little chillier temperatures traveling from Phuket Town in June, with highs in Seoul at 82°F and lows at 67°F. On the 8th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to Jeju.
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Side Trip
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Jeju, South Korea — 4 nights

Island of the Gods

The main town on the largest of Korea's islands, Jeju, has a volcanic landscape protected by UNESCO. The World Heritage-listed volcanic island includes the country's highest peak, sets of impressive lava tubes and columns, and several crater lakes.
Venture out of the city with trips to Seogwipo (Gasiri Wind Power Plant, Seongsan Ilchulbong, &more). The adventure continues: explore the fascinating underground world of Manjanggul Cave, make a trip to Mysterious Road (Dokkaebi Road), go for a walk through Handam Coastal Trail, and head outdoors with Hamdeok Beach.

To see traveler tips, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Jeju trip planner.

Getting from Seoul to Jeju by flight takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of train, taxi, and ferry; or do a combination of car and ferry. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Mon) to allow time to fly to Seoul.
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Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Beaches
Side Trip
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Seoul, South Korea — 1 night

Kick off your visit on the 13th (Tue): make a trip to Hongik University Street and then shop like a local with Kwangjang Market.

To find ratings, maps, and tourist information, refer to the Seoul vacation planner.

You can fly from Jeju to Seoul in 2.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of ferry, taxi, and train; or do a combination of ferry and car. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Tue) early enough to catch the flight to Chicago.
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Chicago, United States — 1 night

Windy City

To see where to stay, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, read our Chicago trip itinerary builder website.

Fly from Seoul to Chicago in 16 hours. The time zone changes from Korean Standard Time (KST) to Central Standard Time (CST), which is usually a -15 hour difference. You will leave for home on the 14th (Wed).
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Nightlife · Parks · Fun & Games · Outdoors
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Thailand travel guide

3.8
Land of Smiles
Offering a rich culinary heritage, sun-kissed beaches, exotic culture, tropical climate, and stunning landscapes, a Thailand vacation remains one of the world's greatest magnets for curious travelers. In between the busy and crowded cities, the Asian nation features a quiet countryside: a blend of lush rice paddies, flourishing tropical forests, and tiny villages living according to an age-old agricultural clock that continues to play a major role in the locals' lifestyle. A tour of Thailand reveals a deep devotion to Buddhism, exemplified by eye-catching temples lavishly decorated with golden Buddha statues, simple shrines, and lively religious festivals celebrated throughout the country.
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Phuket travel guide

4
Pearl of the Andamans
Thailand's largest island, Phuket lures both die-hard divers and casual beach lovers interested in spending most of their time basking in the sand and munching on local delicacies. Picturesque lagoons and an abundance of modern amenities may be the main incentive for a Phuket vacation, but you can find plenty of other things to do here once you get your fill of sun and sand. Away from the busy waterfront, the island boasts many gardens, Buddhist temples, museums, and aquariums that deserve a top spot on any traveler's Phuket itinerary.
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South Korea travel guide

4.2
Land of the Morning Calm
Though it boasts a history spanning thousands of years, South Korea ranks among the world's most urbanized and modernized countries, with nearly half of its population living in high-rises concentrated in the national capital. In this land of pristine mountain scenery, many South Korea vacations involve some form of winter sports--not surprising for the country that won the bid to host the 2018 Winter Olympics. Curious travelers wishing to get to know South Korea's heart and soul spend only a small part of their holiday in big cities like Busan and Seoul, devoting much of their attention to the tranquil countryside that seems largely untouched by the 21st century.
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