Seoul

Travel Guide
Seoul showing a city, a high-rise building and a river or creek

The South Korean metropolis has some of Asia’s busiest markets and nightlife districts alongside tranquil teahouses and palaces surrounded by gardens.

Seoul is brimming with youthful vibrancy. Art galleries, cinemas, bars and boutiques are dotted all over the city. Seoulites are also in touch with their past, and you’ll find plenty of instances of traditional Korean culture in palaces and theatres.

Korea has suffered from many conflicts, and some of the bruises still show in Seoul. The city’s Five Grand Palaces are testament to this; all of these complexes have been destroyed or badly damaged. Today they have largely been restored to their former glory and house national treasures, art and traditional architecture. For particularly fine examples of these palaces, visit Gyeongbokgung, Deoksugung and Changgyeonggung.

Locals possess optimism and friendliness in abundance. Younger Seoulites will be eager to use their language skills to help you out, and older residents, although not as proficient with their English, are still overwhelmingly warm.

Shopping opportunities in Seoul are boundless. Choose from designer outlets in Myeongdong, traditional craft shops at Insadong and bargain malls at the huge Dongdaemun Market. Wear your new attire while exploring the city’s nightlife. Hongdae Young Street has an eclectic collection of bars, clubs, live music and independent cinema.

Soak up classic Korean culture at venues like Chongdong Theatre. Here, you can marvel at spectaculars featuring traditional music, dance and costume. Sample local cuisine at well-priced stalls and restaurants that serve Korean classics such as kalguksu (“knife noodles”) or donkas (deep-fried pork cutlets). Foodies will want to pay homage to the Korean national dish (kimchi) at the Pulmuone Kimchi Museum. Kimchi is a fermented vegetable (cabbage, radish or cucumber) dish seasoned with spices. Finish your dining experience with a visit to one of Seoul’s excellent teahouses.

When you want some quiet time, escape to one of Seoul’s regenerated areas, such as Cheonggyecheon Stream. This stretch of water in the city center features greenery, wildlife and local art. It’s a great example of Seoul’s ability to innovate, educate and entertain all at once.

Seoul has hot summers and cold winters. The best time to visit is around March through May (spring), or September through November (fall) . Navigate the city using the well-priced and efficient subway system, considered one of the best in the world.

Seoul Travel Guide Video

Where to stay in Seoul

ENA Suite Hotel Namdaemun
ENA Suite Hotel Namdaemun
4 out of 5
36, Sejong-daero 11-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is S$82 per night from 24 Oct to 24 Oct
Excludes taxes & fees
Located in Jung-gu, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Sungnyemun Gate and Deoksugung Palace. Cheonggye Plaza and Dongdaemun History and Culture Park are ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (1,789 reviews)
"Cleanliness and location was good"

Reviewed on 4 Oct,2021

ENA Suite Hotel Namdaemun
The Shilla Seoul
The Shilla Seoul
5 out of 5
249, Dongho-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is S$415 per night from 3 Nov to 3 Nov
Excludes taxes & fees
Located in Jung-gu, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Namsan Park and National Theater of Korea. Korea House and Dongdaemun Design Plaza are also ...
4.7/5 Exceptional! (1,119 reviews)
"Superb hospitality. Extravagant staffs. Nice Cuddled up bedding. If planning to dine on the property, make sure to make a reservation ahead as most of the restaurants gets fully booked. Children are restricted in Indoor swimming pool on weekdays so consider staying with kids on weekdays. there’s ..."

Reviewed on 9 Oct,2021

The Shilla Seoul
Grand InterContinental Seoul Parnas, an IHG Hotel
Grand InterContinental Seoul Parnas, an IHG Hotel
5 out of 5
521, Teheran-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is S$316 per night from 25 Oct to 25 Oct
Excludes taxes & fees
Located in Gangnam, this luxury hotel is 1.2 mi (1.9 km) from Seoul Olympic Stadium and 2.6 mi (4.2 km) from Lotte World. Olympic Park and Dongdaemun History ...
4.6/5 Wonderful! (908 reviews)
"The staffs were super kind and the whole property was well maintained with a great effort to protect guests from the Covid pandemic."

Reviewed on 19 Oct,2021

Grand InterContinental Seoul Parnas, an IHG Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Uljiro CO-OP Residence
Uljiro CO-OP Residence
3 out of 5
246, Eulji-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is S$50 per night from 25 Oct to 25 Oct
Excludes taxes & fees
Located in Jung-gu, this aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Dongdaemun Design Plaza and Dongdaemun History and Culture Park. Doota Mall and Cheonggyecheon ...
4/5 Very Good! (1,951 reviews)
"good place to tour for 3 subway station"

Reviewed on 11 Sep,2021

Uljiro CO-OP Residence
Oakwood Premier Coex Center
Oakwood Premier Coex Center
5 out of 5
46, Teheran-ro 87-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is S$296 per night from 31 Oct to 31 Oct
Excludes taxes & fees
Located in Gangnam, this family-friendly Seoul aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Teheranno, Starfield COEX Mall and COEX Convention and Exhibition Center. ...
4.6/5 Wonderful! (914 reviews)
"Great Location!"

Reviewed on 7 Oct,2021

Oakwood Premier Coex Center
Orakai Insadong Suites
Orakai Insadong Suites
4 out of 5
18 Insadong 4-Gil Jongno-Gu, Seoul, Seoul
The price is S$132 per night from 21 Nov to 21 Nov
Excludes taxes & fees
Located in Jongno, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Jogyesa Temple and Cheonggyecheon. U.S. Embassy & Consulate in Korea and Gwanghwamun are also ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (758 reviews)
"Excellent location and spacious rooms"

Reviewed on 16 Oct,2021

Orakai Insadong Suites
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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