Seoul, South Korea, is one of the most vibrant, captivating, and modern cities in the world, with the perfect blend of age-old and futuristic locations. There are thousands of streets in this beautiful city, but some surely stand out more from the rest.
There are many must-visit streets in Seoul that are simply iconic. These include Myeongdong Shopping Street, Ikseondong Culture Street, Daehakro Entertainment Street, Gangnam Shopping Street, Itaewon Food Street, and more.
While some of the streets are hidden gems, others are buzzing with popularity. In this article, we will guide you about the Seoul streets you absolutely need to visit when you’re in South Korea.
Famous Seoul Streets To Visit:
1) Myeongdong Shopping Street
Full of life, lights, and people, this is an extremely famous street in the heart of the city. It is a popular tourist spot because there are so many shopping and eating places here.
If you’re someone who loves Korean beauty and fashion, you need to go to Myeongdong and take a look at the luxury stores on this street. Lotte and Shinsaegae also have massive stores here. Plus, the food carts have a variety of delicacies at affordable prices. A must-try is their popular French-fry coated corndog.
You can also get a taste of rich history by visiting the Myeongdong Cathedral nearby. The street is perfect for an afternoon or night visit. However, the only catch is that it is an extremely busy and crowded place.
Location: Take Myeongdong Subway station on Seoul Subway Line No. 4, then get out on Exit 6/7. Or, you can take Euljiro 1-ga Station on Seoul Subway line No. 2 and then get out on Exit 5/6.
2) Ikseondong Culture Street
Another unique street area that deserves a visit from any tourist in the capital of South Korea is Ikseondong. If you want to take a ride through history and tradition, this hanok neighborhood has just the right architecture. But what makes these streets truly stand out is the enchanting fusion of modern and ancient.
In fact, it is also a super hip neighborhood with stores offering contemporary Korean fashion. You can also visit the street to try out some of the best international cuisines in Seoul. This area is on the pricey side, so you should have plenty of cash if you’re planning to drink or dine here.
There is so much to see in Ikseondong because of the fascinating concepts in the cafes and restaurants. You’ll find indoor lakes, stepping stones on water, and even an indoor shooting range. Many of the artsy designs are made by young artists.
It is also a great place to capture Instagrammable moments as there are colorful shops and alleys known as “photo zones” in this cultural street.
Location: 6 min walk from the Jongno District
3) Namdaemun Market Street
Namdaemun is the largest market in the city of Seoul. It is a traditional yet modernized market with almost every type of item available. Whether its clothes, purses, shoes, souvenirs, or food supplies, you will find everything here. And the best part? You can purchase inexpensive yet high-quality merchandise from this particular market.
Another great aspect of Namdaemun is how tourist-friendly it is. You can easily find vendors who can understand and even speak English. Plus, there are helpful attendants to assist you with money conversions or directions.
If you visit this lively marketplace, some foods you must try include Japchae Hotteok Pancakes, Mandu, Dakkochi, Bungeo-ppang, and Kalguksu.
Location: Namdaemun Market is a short walk from the Hoehyeon Station. Take Subway Line 4, and take Exit 5.
4) Daehakro Entertainment Street
This is a hidden gem adored by the locals and often unknown to tourists in Seoul. This underrated yet charming place is always full of life and people no matter what time it is. The street is a perfect spot for youngsters as there is so much to do here.
Daehakro can also be a perfect date night destination or a romantic stroll at night. You will find concerts, plays, and musicals happening on the street side. Or you can head over to the local cafes and restaurants and try out local or international cuisine.
If you step away from the shops and cafes, you can visit the Ihwa mural village nearby. Here, you will find old, rustic buildings painted with vivid colors and quirky images.
Overall, Daehakro has a chill, laid-back vibe that makes it distinct from other streets in Seoul.
Location: Located directly outside Exit no. 4 of Hyehwa Station in Jongno-gu.
5) Cheonggyecheon Stream Street
Another picturesque concept in Seoul is the stream in Cheonggyecheon with paths on the sides. This natural walkway is ideal for a soothing stroll with lovely lighting, sitting areas, and gorgeous views. Tourists, couples, families, and even office workers often take a “nature break” at Cheonggyecheon Stream.
After the famous Han River, this is the second-most popular water attraction in Seoul. You can visit the eastern end of the stream for a walk, while the Dongdaemun and Gwangwhamun sides have different offerings.
On the Gwangwhamun part, you will find lots of bars, cafes, and restaurants with views of the stream. Whereas the Dongdaemun side has the main market and you can easily access large malls from here.
At night, the colorful lights make the stream glitter in its full glory. This is one spot every tourist must visit when in Seoul.
Location: You can take Subway Line 5 that goes to Gwanghwamun Station and then Exit 5. Alternatively, you can take Seoul Subway Line 1 or 2 heading to City Hall Station and Exit 4. These stations are near the Cheonggye Plaza, located at the starting point of the Cheonggyecheon Stream.
6) Garosugil Luxury Shopping Street
If you’re someone who loves fancy, luxurious vibes then this street is the one you need to visit. Garosugil Street is situated in one of the richest neighborhoods of Seoul. The moment you take a glimpse of it, you just know that this place has a vibe of its own.
This upscale street is located in Southern Seoul, in Sinsa-Dong. It is the go-to shopping place for fashion enthusiasts and even celebrities, so you will also have a chance of bumping into your favorite K-pop star.
The sides of the street are lined with well-maintained trees and greenery, adding to its lush look. In fact, Garosugil literally means “Gingko tree-lined street”. There are boutiques, shops with large windows, and fancy cafes for visitors. But one of the best sights here is the fashion-savvy crowd in eye-catching dresses!
You should also know that the only Apple Store in Seoul is also situated on this street. Plus, there are lots of designers and luxury stores as well as vintage ones, selling classic second-hand pieces.
Location: The street runs from the Sinsa Station (Subway Line 3) all the way to Hyeondae high school. Taking the subway is recommended as it can easily get you there.
7) Bukchon Hanok Street
This street is home to a historical village located on top of a hill between Changdeok Palace, Gyeongbok Palace, and Jongmyo Royal Shrine. The Bukchon Hanok Village is one of the most famous areas in South Korea and is super popular for its cute, old-school feel and sweeping views.
Dating all the way back to the Joseon dynasty, the village is lined with hundreds of hanok (traditional Korean) houses. Many of these hanoks are now open to visitors who want to learn about and experience the traditions and old Korean way of living.
You can visit the Bukchon Hanok street in the village and stop by at the tea houses and guesthouses here. Tourists can also try on historic Korean dresses and get their photos taken.
As this is a residential area, visitors are advised to stay respectful and avoid creating a disturbance.
Location: You can reach the Bukchon Hanok Village by taking the subway to Anguk Station (Seoul Subway Line 3). Then, take Exit 3 and head to your right.
8) Hongdae Party Street
Are you looking for food, drinks, partying, and nightlife in Seoul? You need to head over to Hongdae Street. This is a hotspot for the youngsters in Seoul and has tons of fun activities to offer. Among the three famous nightlife districts in Seoul, this one also happens to be the most affordable.
There are clubs, restaurants, and lots of shopping centers in Hongdae. As the street mostly caters to the younger lot, you can easily find the latest tech, accessories, and fashion here. Plus, there are some unique cafes like the Akdong Healing Cafe with live raccoons and cute animals to play with.
It is recommended to visit Hongdae street in the evening as the place comes to life once the sun sets. You will come across street acts, performers, and all types of entertainment. And of course, lots and lots of partying.
However, if you prefer to avoid the crowds, visiting in the morning or early afternoon is a better idea.
Location: The street is situated right in front of Hongik University.
9) Itaewon Food Street
Are you a foodie looking to try delicacies from every corner of the world? Itaewon food street offers Indian, Mexican, Brazilian, Italian, and all kinds of Korean food all in one place. However, it is mainly people who want to have international cuisine who visit this street the most.
One of the best aspects of Itaewon food street is its diversity. The amalgam of cultures and people from different places makes it an experience of its own kind.
In the spring and autumn season, you will enjoy the fresh night breeze, the gleaming ambiance from neon lights, and people enjoying their food on outdoor tables or simply walking around. And the sound of music is the cherry on top.
Some of the most loved restaurants here include Cleo, Privilege Bar, Blind Spot, Braai Republic, Jonny Dumpling, and Petra.
Location: You can simply take the subway from the Seoul Station to Samgakji Station 4. Or, you can take the subway (Line 6) from the Samgakji Station to Itaewon Station 6.
10) Gangnam Shopping Street
Oppa Gangnam Style? Yes, the smash-hit song refers to this buzzing area in Seoul. In fact, this may be the “most famous” street in Seoul as it has been featured in several international music videos as well.
This shopping street offers the latest in Korean fashion, technology, and beauty. You’ll find local as well as international brands like Zara, Etude House, Under Armour, Innisfree, MUJI, INDIBRAND, Nike, and ABC-Mart.
You can stop here to enjoy drinks in the evening or have a scrumptious meal at one of the cafes and restaurants. There are plenty of mouthwatering options and familiar names like Shake Shack, Starbucks, The Brasserie, and Line Friends Cafe.
The main street consists of upper-end and luxury stores, whereas the backside portion has more interesting offerings. The area comes alive once the darkness sets in and people visit Gangnam to party.
Although this area is quite popular among the youth, you can expect to see older audiences and people in their late 20s and up.
Location: Take line 2/Sinbundang, Exit 10/11 from Gangnam Station. Then, exit directly to Gangnam-daero. Or take Line 9, Exit 5/6 from Sinnonhyeon Station, and exit to Gangnam-daero.
11) Mangwon-dong Cafe Street
The Mangwon-dong neighborhood has many layers to it; with Han River park on one end and the Mangwon market on the other. There was a time when this was the “poor area” of Seoul. However, it is now one of the cutest, most Insta-worthy streets with so much to offer.
It is a place you can head to when you want to have a relaxing time, indulge in sweet desserts, and have fun photo sessions with your friends.
If you’re an Instagram lover, some of the best places to visit here include Coffe Shop Dongkyung, Founyard Bakeshop, and Atmosphere. Another famous place is Cafe Zapangi which has an adorable pink vending machine as its entrance.
Although the main appeal of Mangwon-dong is the cafes, you can also find vegan and vegetarian food places and luxurious restaurants here.
Overall, the prices are on the higher side compared to other standard streets of Seoul. Still, it is a place absolutely worth exploring for its trendiness.
Location: You can reach Mangwon-dong by getting off from Mangwon Station and taking Exit 2. Now head to the residential area on the West.
Wrapping things up…
The streets of Seoul are filled with wonder, imagination, art, and history that visitors love to take in. There are places that represent tradition, and others that ooze luxury and a modern lifestyle.
Our top 11 picks for Seoul streets to visit will add a whole array of experiences to your trip. With delicious food, designer clothes, art galleries, photography spots, and places with lovely views, you will have so much to do in the capital of South Korea.