Even if you’ve already been in Seoul for a while, or are currently planning your first or second trip there, it’s hard to run out of fun things to do in Seoul. But the problem is that if you go online and search the topic, especially if you are new to the country and the language, many sources always seem to tell you the same things. Because of this, it’s easy to get the feeling that there’s not much to do or see in Seoul.
It’s time to shake that feeling off now! We’ve compiled together a list of fun things to do in Seoul that include many of those spots you’ve already read about before, but also many others you might not know about yet. This post is your perfect source for a bucket list for Seoul!
Fun Thing #1: Spend the Night at Dongdaemun
You heard me right! If you want to stay out all night but not in the traditional sense of partying, you should head over to Dongdaemun. Their shopping centers are open until 5am and the Megabox movie theater is also open all night. Shopping and movies have never sounded as much fun before, am I right??
Fun Thing #2: Visit Bukchon Hanok Village
This is the perfect opportunity to combine traditional Korean culture and architecture with indulging in pretty cafes and restaurants. And because this village comprised of traditional Korean housing is located right at the heart of the city, you’ll get to see just how magnificently traditional and modern Seoul blend together!
Fun Thing #3: See the City from the Bus
If you want to maximize the amount of fun things to do and see in Seoul during your stay, how about knocking off a lot of the major attractions on one go and take the Seoul City Bus Tour? There are different route options offered, you can hop on and off wherever you’d like, and the cost for the bus ticket is only 10,000won.
Fun Thing #4: Have a Photoshoot While Wearing a Hanbok
All over the city, and online, exist shops where you can rent yourself a beautiful hanbok for a few hours (~13,000won) or even the whole day (~26,000won). Once you’ve put on this comfortable Korean traditional clothing, make the most out of it and go have an amateur photoshoot with your friends at one of the many palaces in Seoul! If you come in dressed up in a hanbok, the entrance fee will be waived. And if you’ve still got time left on your hands after checking out the palaces, why not have an afternoon stroll in a hanbok around the city center? Making everyone envious of your magnificent outfit.
Fun Thing #5: Check Out the Palaces
Gyeongbokgung Palace, Deoksugung Palace, Changdeokgung Palace, Changgyeonggung Palace, and Unhyeongung Palace are all among the most popular tourist attractions in Seoul, and are all located close enough to each other you could even see them all in one day! Even if you opted out of renting out that hanbok from fun thing #3, checking out these palaces will still make your afternoon fun. And don’t worry if you’ve already visited some of them once – each season in Seoul brings out a new kind of beauty to be seen on these palace grounds.
Fun Thing #6: Walk around Cheonggyecheon
This stream going through the center of Seoul is stunning both day and night, offering different kinds of atmosphere whether you go during the day or at night. Twice a year, in May and October/November, the river also lights up beautifully for a lantern festival.
Fun Thing #7: Sample Korean Alcohol
While Korea only offers a limited selection of Western alcohol, and at a rather steep price at that, their own alcohol offerings keep getting increasingly interesting as the years progress. Whether it’s soju or makgeolli, the often fruity flavors certainly don’t stop at one. In fact, the abundance of different flavors available ensure that there’s a lot of fun to be expanded over several days, so don’t hesitate to go out now and find your favorite! Though do be careful not to have too much fun or the day after might be uncomfortable (even if it brings along the perfect opportunity to indulge in Korean hangover soup called haejangguk (해장국)).
Fun Thing #8: Put Up Love Locks at Namsan Tower
Okay, you definitely aren’t required to put up any love locks anywhere, but do head up to Namsan Tower to get the best view of the city. There are hiking routes available to get up the mountain, but most people opt to take the cable car up. You can either stay on ground once you reach the tower, or head over to the top floors of the tower and into the observatory to see the city around you. And if you do decide to put up your own love lock to accompany the many others, those can be purchased right at the gift shop. It’s a nice way to commemorating having been at Namsan Tower, or in Seoul in general.
Fun Thing #9: Eat and Shop at Common Ground
It hasn’t been too long since the shopping center called Common Ground, made entirely out of ship containers, opened up right by Konkuk University (건대). With it came three floors worth of shopping, restaurants, cafes, a small gallery, great photoshoot spots, and several festivals held all around the year. It’s definitely THE shopping center to visit if you can check out only one of them!
Fun Thing #10: Stop By ALL the Animal Cafes
Korea has got a strong café culture, and they have truly taken it to another level by opening several animal cafes all over the city. Even if you’ve already visited some of the dog and cat cafes for afternoon cuddles, the fun hasn’t stopped there: Seoul now also has raccoon, sheep, and bird cafes among others! And each of these cafes are guaranteed to offer a different kind of fun.
And this is just a fraction of all the fun things to do in Seoul! We’ll keep updating our list periodically to give you more and more options for what to do for fun while in Seoul. But for now you can start off with this list of 10!