The Cresting Wave?

South Korea

Duration 10 days
Suggested group size 12 - 20 students / 2 Envoys Field Staff
Suggested ages 15 - 18
Experience Korean Wave & Economic Development
Divided Koreas


The Cresting Wave?

South Korea II

South Korea's 'Miracle on the Han' transformed it from a war-torn society to a global industrial powerhouse. Fueled by export-oriented strategies and a strong work ethic, it became a hub for electronics, automobiles, and steel. Challenges like income inequality and societal pressure on financial success accompany this journey. This program explores the socio-historical aspects of South Korea's economic development, analyzing the balance between rising standards of living and associated costs.

“Hopes of reunification, the story unfolds in the pages of separation, longing, and a shared history.“


“In South Korea, K-Pop is more than music—it's a lively dance of beats and stories. Every melody is a chapter in a cultural phenomenon that echoes worldwide.“


Impact Statement Everywhere we go, we carry a promise – to engage with respect, act with purpose, and leave a positive imprint. As envoys of our journey is more than travel; Our footprint is light, but our impact is profound, creating bridges of cooperation and mutual growth across the globe.

Day 1

Students fly to South Korea, greeted by Envoys educators. After settling in, there's a safety briefing and group activity to foster dynamics and set shared agreements. The day continues with exploring the surroundings and enjoying a welcome dinner, introducing students to Korean cuisine.

Day 2

We head to Bukchon Hanok Village to experience the Joseon Dynasty and participate in a traditional arts and crafts workshop. After visiting the buddhist Jogye Temple we head to downtown Insadong Area, to the AmazingRace Insadong that challenges students' communication and orientation skills.

Day 3

We travel to the lively Myeongdong Area in Seoul, to experience modern Korean fashion and youth culture. We attend the famous Nanta show, a traditional Korean drumming performance mixed with entertaining cooking. The day ends with insightful interviews of young people in modern South Korea.

Day 4

Students explore how green architecture is incorporated into urban Seoul. We visit City Hall and its art installation, City Plaza, The Green Wall and the Cheonggyechoen River, famous for its pedestrian walkways. We later divide into smaller teams, each selecting a neighborhood of Seoul to explore.

Day 5

We visit the trendy Gangnam district and explore Garosu-Gil road, immersing in Korean hallyu culture. Next a private tour of Samsung D’light, a center for Samsung Electronics, showcasing Korea's tech growth and economic prowess. The day wraps up with a Korean tradition–A group karaoke hall!

Day 6

We head to the renowned Gwangjang Market and participate in a food scavenger hunt. Later, a hands-on cooking class unveils the secrets of Korean cuisine. Afterward, students use Seoul's efficient subway to reach the Korean War Museum, connecting prior knowledge with the information at the exhibit.

Day 7

We visit the Demilitarized Zone, which offers media and educational activities, deepening our understanding of a divided Korea. After snacks and a late lunch, we engage with North Korean defectors studying English in Seoul, gaining an emotional insight into the sadness surrounding Korea’s division.

Day 8

Located in Seoul's Naksan mountain foothills, this temple provides a reflective space after a demanding week exploring Korea. The stay involves ceremonies, meditation, and silent meals. Preparing students for this experience is key, leading to a deeper self-understanding in relation to the world.

Day 9

After breakfast, we hike through Bukhansan National Park to the top of Baegundae peak. At the summit, we discuss the city's changing nature. In the afternoon, students explore a Seoul neighborhood of their choice. The day ends with a debrief and reflection workshop to process experiences.

Day 10

We wake up and pack our bags. After eating breakfast and completing our program evaluations, we board our bus to Incheon airport for our return flights home.

Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1 Slideshow 1

Lenses of Inquiry


The Korean Wave

In 2002, the Korean soap opera Winter Sonata sparked an Asian frenzy, followed by PSY's Gangnam Style on YouTube. The popularity of all things Korean, from fashion, sneakers and film to music and cuisine, has made the Republic of Korea the preeminent conveyor of ‘modern Asian’ culture to the West.


Korean Development Story

South Korea, a global industrial powerhouse, excels in shipbuilding, steel, and electronics. Rapid economic growth, however, led to intense competitiveness increasing issues like depression, alcoholism, and suicide. Students will explore the positive and negative impacts of this economic growth.


Divided Koreas

Since the Korean War armistice, the peninsula has faced division, separated families, and a constant sense of threat. North Korea remains one of the world's most secretive nations. Through empathic interviews and panels with defectors, we seek to understand the realities of life north of the DMZ.


let us clear any
doubts you might have

At Envoys, we work to unite and educators from around the world to explore issues of global significance.

Do I need a visa to travel this destination?

What currency is used, and how can I exchange money?

What vaccinations or health precautions do I need?

Related trips

Discover more learning experiences

A Nation Seeking Itself


South Korea I

Discover South Korea's unique blend of ancient traditions and cutting-edge technology on a student trip. A journey of learning and adventure!

Ancient Civilizations
South and Central America


Peru I

Discover the ancient wonders and diverse landscapes of Peru on an educational student adventure. A journey of learning and adventure!

Environment, Cultural Immersion & Nomadism


Morocco II

Discover the rich history and diverse landscapes of Morocco on an educational student journey. A journey of learning and adventure!