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13 things you've got to do in Seoul
If you don't believe Seoul is one of the world's great cities, you haven't experienced this 'best of' whirlwind of shopping, culture, food and photos. Lots of photos
By Rachel Sang-hee Han (/author/rachel-sang-hee-han) , Frances Cha (/author/f rances-cha) 17 December, 2012
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Korea's tourism industry may be scrambling (http://travel.cnn.com/seoul-tourism-attempts-take-advantagegangnam-style-697301) to harness the newfound fame of the Gangnam district south of the Han River, but the truth is the coolest experiences from a visitor's perspective are concentrated in the northern part of the city. Got some spare time in Seoul? Here's what to do.
1. Korea Furniture Museum
Yes, we know, it sounds like the kind of place even your grandparents would find boring, but hear us out on this insider's secret. The Korea Furniture Museum
(http://travel.cnn.com/seoul/visit/most-exquisite-museum-seoul302040) houses more than 2,000 traditional furniture
pieces, plus 10 hanok (traditional Korean houses). The museum itself is one of the most important and beautiful pieces of architecture in Seoul, and one of the first places global curators and designers visit when they hit the city.
Martha Stewart loved it, so will you.
Important: Reservations are required. No walk-ins.
330-577 Seongbuk-dong, Seongbuk-gu; +82 2 745 0181; tours and restaurant reservations by appointment only; www.kofum.com (http://www.kofum.com/)
Run by Korea's largest telecommunications provider, SK Telecom, T.um (http://travel.cnn.com/seoul/play/tum-809028) offers an amazing look at the technology we'll be using in the very near future. The best thing about the sneak preview of these shopping avatars and self-driving cars is realizing how awesome your life is going to be in 10 years. Reservations must be made in advance on the website -daily 11 a.m. walk-in tours are conducted only in Korean. T.um, Jung-gu, Euljiro 2-ga 11; +82 2 6100 0601; tum.sktelecom.com
The future is present at T.um.
3. Bukchon Hanok Village
Bukchon is irrefutably the most beautiful historical district in the city, a place where visitors wander through tiny streets and peer over the gabled walls to view old hanok (traditional Korean houses) of various shapes and sizes.
Jongro-gu Korea's wisest king.com/seoul/drink/20-b est-korean-drinks-741087) Prettiest village in the city. Recently.jsp) Date tea. Jongro-gu. Insadong The traditional Insadong (http://travel.jsp) . Korean galbi When it comes to grilling.seoul. Jongro-gu. cheerful barbecue joint with branches in both Gangnam and Gangbuk.Memorable pit stop: the outdoor museum and bittersweet omija in one of the tea houses. 4. +82 2 730 7416.go.visitkorea. DIY projects. 31-1 Samcheong-dong. toys). King Sejong statue. All three of Seoul's major tourist spots are a short walk from small Gwanghwamun subway station. Gwanghwamun station Gyeongbokgung Palace.cnn.kr/enu/SH/SH_EN_7_2_2_1. Or tea date.or. Here are more of our barbecue recommendations (http://travel. 5.com/seoul/eat/cityessentials/seoul%E2%80%99s-5-best-bbq-583679) . Insadong. Knowledgeable staff will help you get galbi (juicy cuts of beef) smoking perfectly. 105 Gye-dong.cnn. Bukchon Culture Center (http://b ukchon.or. Open views of the palace with the massive mountains in the distance are some of the most impressive in the city. Tasty teas and handmade accessories make for a nice little sojourn in the city. as well as Kyobo bookstore within the Kyobo building. moderate. 6. english. Koreans don't mess around.cnn. 83 Doryeon-dong. In the Finance Center's basement levels you'll find the best lunch options in the financial district. Maple Tree is a budget-friendly. and most convenient sub way station. +82 2 3707 8388 More on CNN: 20 delicious Korean drinks (http://travel.com/seoul/visit/insadong-art-nostalgia-and-boho550899) district has been through some major changes.kr/eng/index. The Cheonggyecheon stream. Jongro-gu.visitkorea. which has cute stationery and other design products (accessories. it's shed its tourist trap image of crummy souvenirs to become a cool artsy spot with a new crop of galleries and modern tea shops. gadgets. the restaurant has two more .kr (http://english.
co. and certainly among the hottest nightlife spots of the moment. 9.kr/jjmahoneys/) Comment Where suits are standard.J. you don't .cnn.having forced the crown from the ridiculously massive Ellui. 116-1 Itaewon-dong. http://twitter.kr (http://club octagon. Mahoney's in the Grand Hyatt caters to a slightly older crowd than the average nightlife venue in Seoul. there aren't that many bars with great views in Seoul -." don't expect any here (in fact.com/top- hings-do-and-see-seoul-915321) J. www. (mailto:?subject=13 things ou've got to do in Seoul&body=http://travel.co. Gangnam-gu. Yongsan-gu.co 8 J. +82 2 797 1234.mapletreehouse. you'll b e gasping for air. 140-738 322 Sowolro.hyatt. New Hilltop Hotel.seoul.grand.J. the whole trend has been dying out).kr/) 7.co. (http://www. but it's a fun place for cocktails and live music -. seoul.com/seoul/play/seoulbooking-made-slightly-less-awkward-157143) culture. cluboctagon.kr Korean-style b arb ecue.hyattrestaurants.kr/) When you're on top of the heap. You'll be fighting for air space amid massive crowds -every night is a party in here.grand. Mahoney's Surprisingly. Although Korean clubs are famous in the region for "booking (http://travel.branches in Itaewon and Dogokdong. +82 2 516 8847. Periodic laser shows and constant crazy dancing are the big draws. Yongsan-gu. Glam is one of the few stand-andmingle bars in Seoul.kr (http://www. Octagon Octagon is the hottest club in the city right now -. +82 2 792 6164 Be warned. Grand Hyatt Seoul. Nonhyun-dong 152.mapletreehouse. Glam More lounge than club. anyway.especially in summer.cnn.non-stuffy ones.co.
More on CNN: The supermodel's guide: Where to shop in Seoul (http://travel. providing striking views of the traditional city juxtaposed with the modern skyline.cnn. it's even b righter.mostly to watch their skeptical expressions ("Mexican food in Asia? Ugh!") turn to surprise and delight. This extends to desserts. Gangnam-gu. Both men and women go for trendy.com/seoul/life/real-gangnam-style-b eauty-b eltwedding-town-24-hour-culture-507941) . Galleria's Gourmet 494 Whoever is behind the foodie makeover at Galleria Department Store. 494 Apgujeong-dong. Itaewon-dong 181-8 2/F.doota. 13.gourmet494. The luxury store has taken every hot new restaurant in the city and convinced them to open branches in its "premium food boutique" in the basement. More on CNN: The real 'Gangnam Style': Beauty belt. GQ and W magazines are also located within this building). +82 2 3449 4114. 10. in a section on the other side of the food court.gourmet494. Recommended: Kimchi Carnitas Fries and shrimp tacos. www. particularly at night.jsp) It's true -.com) At night.a luxury food court is one of Seoul's b est dining options. +82 2 511 6070.org (http://www. 18-12 Euljiro 6-ga. so temples all around the country are coming up with unique programs catering to travelers. www.bongeunsa. Bongeunsa This temple in Gangnam is a wonderfully serene spot in the middle of the city.cnn. vatoskorea. www. There's a reason why waits can take up to three hours on weekends. 12. 73 Samseong-dong.hide it. Vatos We like to take foreigners here -. budget-friendly clothes and accessories. Yongsan-gu.com/) Kimchi Carnitas Fries at Vatos.b ongeunsa.com/gourmet494/index.org/) Ironically. 24-hour culture (http://travel.com (http://www.cnn. Doota has emerged as the most stylish of the non-brand boutique-studded shopping malls in the Dongdaemun district (the Korean branches of Vogue. Jung-gu. +82 2 3398 3333.com (http://www. Gangnam-gu. the temple location was chosen for its remoteness. This year marks the tenth anniversary of Korea's temple stay program (http://travel.com (http://vatoskorea. Doosan Tower Short for Doosan Tower.com/seoul/shop/supermodels-guidewhere-shop-seoul-074539) 11. we applaud you. centuries ago. +82 2 797 8226. wedding town.com/seoul/visit/temple-stay-48hours-sudeoksa-temple-936870) . as the area stays open until the small hours of the morning.doota.
" There are great views in Seoul? 1 △ ▽ Reply • Share › hy ebin0110 1 2 months ago Well. (/author/frances-cha) Read more about Frances Cha (/author/frances-cha) Tags: KOREAN TRAVEL (/TAGS/KOREAN-TRAVEL) .um or Doosan tower. Tomatillo is by far the best .cnn. It is honestly better than anything I've had in Mexican communities in CA. It's located in Gangnam. but that is also overpriced and small portions. (/author/rachel-sang-hee-han) Read more about Rachel Sang-hee Han (/author/rachel-sang-hee-han) Frances Cha is a Digital Producer at CNN Travel. RESTAURANTS IN SEOUL (/SEOUL/TAGS/RESTAURANTS-SEOUL) ..com/seoul/visit/50-beautiful-placesvisit-korea-873093) Best day and weekend trips from Seoul. Reply K raft y D 2 Share › > GreenT87 Reply • a month ago Why would you go to Korea to eat Mexican food? △ ▽ Share › • Max imuz > GreenT87 2 months ago Julio's? It is overpriced.com/seoul/visit/9-provinces-19-attractions-korea-311599) (http://travel. SEOUL MUSEUMS .cnn. I liked Vatos WAY more.. go to Vatos which is usually packed with nothing but foreigners (Vatos was started by an American Gyopo. If you are looking for amazing Mexican food with a ton of avocados at a sit down restaurant that has great food and alcohol.com/best-day-weekend-trips-seoul-912241) (http://travel. by season Beyond Seoul: 19 reasons to explore Korea 50 beautiful places to visit in Korea P aid D is tribution 25 comments Leave a message. Newest Community Faleh A lghubari • The Best Beach: Ancient Mayan Approved ★ Share 4 ⤤ ⚙ a month ago △ ▽ well since I came here I haven't done or visited any of those things and places yet <__> Reply • Share › K raft y D a month ago 9. and rather bland. has small portions.. not a Korean so it's a Korean-ish take on a US restaurant that is serving food from another country). But if you are just looking for a WESTERN style Mexican theme BAR then yes. and NV. JJ Mahoney's "Surprisingly. but the award winner is the 'Clevland Burrito' and choose the vegetarian option (coming from a meat lover). It has kimchi fries because that's generic for all Mexican places in Korea. (/SEOUL/TAGS/SEOUL-MUSEUMS) (/TAGS/TRAVEL-FEATURES) SEOUL TOURISM (/SEOUL/TAGS/SEOUL-TOURISM) . TRAVEL FEATURES You might like: (http://travel.non-stuffy ones. △ 1▽ Reply • Share › GreenT87 2 months ago △ ▽ 7. I live in Seoul but I never heard about T. MI. go to Julio..cnn. anyway. there aren't that many bars with great views in Seoul -. Hongdae.Rachel Sang-hee Han is a freelance writer for CNN Travel. and Jongro.
value. hoang 1 7 months ago so interesting! △ ▽ Reply Share › . the comparison to Mexico is definitely appropriate. it is no where near the same level as Mexican food in California. You must not have eaten in many places in California. > Maximuz • 2 months ago △ ▽ see more Reply Max imuz Share › My comment about being Mexican-American and having traveled extensively in Mexico is not a matter of pride.. Julio in Jongro overlooks the Chunguchun and is within walking distance to many major tourist destinations in Jonggak (also the US embassy since this website is owned by a US news business). Compared to other places I've been to in Seoul." but I did not try to compare any place to anywhere in Mexico. We were talking about authentic food. I am Mexican American from California and have traveled extensively in Mexico... because despite the great strides Korea has made since I've lived here. > GreenT87 • 2 months ago △ ▽ Max imuz 2 • see more Reply Share › 6 months ago When did Insadong become authentic? △ ▽ △ ▽ Reply • Share › p56741944 7 7 months ago 15 Slander Japan Reply Share › • dis qus _LJc h28LR24 13 7 months ago 14. and Taco K (also Daejeon) are better than both Julio's and Vatos.. Amigos in Itaewon is the best. Furthermore... I'm sure it is going to be of much value to foreigners who can or want to identify with you and your opinion. MI. so sorry if you feel one-uped. it is to show that I have some knowledge on the subject. not Daejeon.. so yes. but the owner is rude as hell." 1 △ ▽ Reply Share › GreenT87 This article is about Seoul. and NV." The info about my name was just an interesting coincidence I wanted to share. It is great to know you are proud of being an American Mexican and to also be named "Julio.. I also happen to be named "Julio. It's great to know though your opinion as an American Mexican from California who has traveled in Mexico. when your very argument was that Vatos was too "western" and you had more experience as you have had it in three different states in the US. not as a form of qualification. Mexican food in Cantina (Daejeon City). Have plastic surgery △ 1▽ Reply • Share › ros y . You seem to scoff at this even though you tried the same thing with: "It is honestly better than anything I've had in Mexican communities in CA. thanks for giving the opinion that you think both places (Julio & Vatos) are overpriced and give small portions. You are trying to downplay the idea of experience. But thanks for mentioning your favorites when in Daejeon. I disagree with you on Tomatillo and no. My intention wasnt to one-up you. If you want true authentic tasting Mexican food. Next. I've not been to Amigos but if what you say is true I don't plan to go. I don't agree when taking into account the establishment quality and locations.
. 4 △ ▽ • Reply Share › rg 7 months ago terrible list.. not a word or reference to tradition.J. I was so surprised to find out that one of the owners went to my high school in Texas.. which Koreans are all about using. not Korean. Galleria 494 gathers Seoul's best Western restaurants.. Even the address itself says Gangnam-Gu.wikipedia. Nonhyeon-Dong. 2 △ ▽ 2 Reply Share › • TP > Carlos Hernandez Reply 7 months ago umm those are metal scissors not chopsticks. the Koreans have a tradition of drinking tea dating back more than 1300 years. △ 1▽ • Reply Share › Tom 7 months ago Good list but. 5 △ ▽ • Reply Share › A laine 7 months ago Vatos is awesome.. Insadong is a place in seoul.will try to check them out next time! 1 △ ▽ Reply • Share › p56741944 3 △ 1▽ 7 months ago Reply Share › B ernard P arent > p56741944 • 7 months ago The Galbi eaten now in Japan is actually an influence from Korea -. Notice the metal chopsticks. Japanese like to use wooden chopsticks more (even the fancy ones). △ 2▽ • Reply Share › Ian 7 months ago Why is so much of this list in Itewon? Tons of other places i would rather go that are less touristy.. 1 Reply • Share › Chef Hans 10 7 months ago No:14 PLEASE dont eat dogs and cats. Mahoney's is effectively a brothel frequented by business travelers. Man it's a small world. That type of grilled meat is available in both countries anyway. obviously haven't been to Seoul/experienced the real Seoul. You are in Seoul so why are you eating Western? Bad Western? 17 △ ▽ Reply Share › . The 6th picture is probably Korean galbi.org/wiki/K.. And. 1 △ 1▽ △ ▽ Reply • Share › Owen Marble 7 months ago p5674. removes all their atmosphere and puts them in a basement. Itaewon is a "Dong" in Yongsan-Gu.: http://en. your Galbi picture is Japanese... 3 Fred 1 • △ 2▽ Reply Share › 7 months ago Octagon is not in Itaewon. As for tea.. J. 4 △ ▽ Reply Share › Carlos Hernandez > rg • 7 months ago The galbi picture is Korean. fyi △ ▽ Share › S oon • 7 months ago great list! wish i had known about some of these while I was in seoul last . It's in Chongdam / Gangnam area.Mic hael K • 7 months ago #9 Octagon is *NOT* in Itaewon.the Japanese did not eat meat before the 20th century (it was thought to be poisonous).
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