This is Seoul at its most youthful and liveliest. Come here for cafés, bars, clubs, cinemas and boutiques.
The Hongdae district is close to Hongik University, and is a favourite with young revellers. Hongdae Young Street constitutes the main artery of life in the area. Soak up the urban culture found in the shops and galleries by day. After dark, this is the place to experience Seoul’s nightlife.
Start at the Hongdae Tourism Information Center, where friendly staff will provide you with a map and information about what’s happening in the area. The center is open late.
If you’re looking for gifts or items for yourself, explore the various boutiques and vintage stores that line Hongdae Young Street. Don’t miss Sangsangmadang; this 11-story building houses an independent cinema, performance hall and various stalls selling arty souvenirs. If you appreciate street art, bring your camera. The area around Hongik University is covered in accomplished work created by students and other artists.
You won’t have any trouble finding cafés and restaurants in Hongdae Young Street. There are many independent outlets selling homemade food for affordable prices. There’s also a massive variety of cuisine, including everything from Korean to Irish to Vietnamese.
Hongdae Young Street is the center of Seoul’s nightlife. During the day, you’ll likely see buskers and break dancers in the street. At night the clubs and bars along the street blast all types of music: indie, electronic, hip-hop and acid jazz. Many bars are open late and some are open 24 hours a day, especially at the weekend.
There is often a special event happening in Hongdae Young Street. Club Day, on the last Friday of each month, gives you entry to a number of clubs in the area for the price of one normal entrance fee. Every Sunday, Hongdae hosts a bazaar, where you can pick up secondhand goods and handmade crafts.
To reach Hongdae Young Street, catch the subway to Hongik University Station.