Korean nightlife is exciting! Richard and I have been living in Korea over 4 years now together, and we never get tired of the options available to us. It’s really amazing how this place has such a wide variety of things to do pretty much every night of the week! What’s even better is that a lot of the options available can be achieved for a reasonable price. And who doesn’t love saving some money?!?
Whether you’ve just arrived in Korea, have been living here a number of years, or grew up here, there’s literally an unlimited amount of things to do in the evening and night times in and around Seoul.
The way we see it, Korea is just as much a nocturnal society as it is a regular 9-5 one. Especially (but not limited to) on the weekends, restaurants, markets, bars, coffee shops, clubs, shopping – you name it! is open much later into the evening. This offers a much wider range of activities for everyone, and in particular for people who might be working a regular shift during the week.
Lets start with neighborhoods since many of the same or similar activities are available in multiple locations. In Seoul there are many neighborhoods for getting together with family, friends, etc. In our video, we specifically mentioned Hongdae, Sinchon, Gangnam and Itaewon. These are not the only neighborhoods for night life in Korea by any stretch, but they are considered by some to be the more popular ones. Heck, Eat Your Kimchi’s studio is located in Hongdae! Hongdae, for instance, is a place where many young people in and around Seoul like to meet up and then go have coffee, dinner, go clubbing, shopping, eat some street food, or just walk around. Heck, that’s what I like to do! There are some hills there so bring your walking shoes, but there is just about every kind of restaurant imaginable in Hongdae, along with several local universities as well. This has led to building up Hongdae to this artsy locale of diverse people looking to get into something fun as well as relax and kick back with friends possibly over a glass of wine.
Sinchon is just around the corner and can be walked to from Hongdae. I’ve done it before. It’s about a 20-25 min. walk or so, or a 3000 Won taxi ride. You could even take the subway one or two stops over as well to get there. Sinchon is a far cry from Hongdae, but still offers a lot of things happening at night like restaurants and places to have a drink. Lots of university students hang out there in the evenings. There’s a particular place we love to go and dance there on a Sat. night so if yu’re in the neighborhood, drop me a line! ☺
Gangnam is probably Seoul (and Korea’s) most well known and popular place for people to convene. It literally has everything. Gangnam is a bit more pricy to go out and eat dinner compared with Hongdae, and so you find younger 20-somethings hanging out in Hongdae a lot, and the more seasoned 30-somethings hanging out in Gangnam. There are some fantastic clubs in this area of Seoul that could easily rival any of the best clubs in the world. We’ve been to a few of them, and they are fun fun FUN! The are also a bit pricy so bring your deep pockets. A single drink can run as high as 20,000 Won (about $18 U.S.) and bottles of liquor (ordered Korean style) can run several hundred dollars US to start.
Itaewon is probably the least known of the four neighborhoods we mentioned in the video because of its relative popularity amongst a general Korean crowd. This should, however, not deter you in the slightest! This little neighborhood nestled in the center of downton Seoul just minutes away from Seoul Station is arguably the most diverse throughout the entire city. Dubbed the ‘Expat Village’, locals frequent this location for a wide selection of foreign (and Korean!) food available in all sorts of restaurants, cafes and street vendors. This place is known for its good food, and great selection of drink too! Richard likes stopping here from time to time to check out the new beer choices at some of the local pubs. Shopping in this area is great as well, especially if you are looking for Korean souvenirs.
What’s really great about Korea is that some places are open 24 hours a day, like corner stores and some coffee shops and restaurants. This makes living here so much more easy since we sometimes are up late working on Hallyu Back stuff. Korea does has it all. Now all you have to do is come here and experience it! 😉