Sights

N Seoul Tower & Namsan is the central attraction, literally, with Namsangol Hanok Village at its base and the shopping spectacle of Myeong-dong nearby. To the west of Namsan, Seoullo 7017 is a new green walkway that is worth a look if you are near the Namdaemun Market as it is quite short and lit up beautifully at night. To the north of the market are the glassy curves of the new City Hall building with one of the world's largest living plant walls inside.

Sleeping

There are plenty of guesthouses and hostels just south of Myeongdong station. It makes a convenient base near the station and Namsan, even if shopping is not your focus, but the roads can be steep and inconvenient if you are bringing lots of luggage.

Best Lists

Sleeping

Eating

There's an excellent choice of street food cooked up by vendors within Myeong-dong's shopping district and, despite its tourist appearances, is often a better choice than the mediocre restaurants in the area. Eating in the food alleys of Namdaemun Market is a highlight.

Best Lists

Eating

Drinking & Nightlife

This area lacks the cool for great bars, though the guesthouse area south of Myeongdong station has some cosy drinking options. The restaurant at the top of Namsan has knockout views for a cocktail.

Best Lists

Drinking & Nightlife

Entertainment

Seoul Showtime

Seoul has a number of long-running shows that fuse martial arts, slapstick comedy, magic, dance and audience participation. The nonverbal shows don't require any Korean knowledge, making them appealing to all ages and language levels.

There is also traditional Korean music, changgeuk (Korean opera, similar to Western opera), orchestra and dance on offer.

Best Lists

Entertainment

Shopping

The largest market in Korea – Namdaemun Market – is here, selling souvenirs, luggage and knock-off clothing for half of what you might pay elsewhere. For more organised and international brands and chain stores, the neon-lit stores of Myeong-dong have you covered and are worth visiting if you enjoy night-time buzz. Head to old-world department stores for the charm as much as the luxury goods.

Underground Arcades

In addition to Myeong-dong's abundance of overground retailers, there are hundreds to be discovered in a series of underground arcades. The longest, stretching 4km beneath Eulji-ro from City Hall to Dongdaemun, is Eulji-ro Arcade; many of the stalls here stock fashions that are a throwback to yesteryear. More upmarket vendors selling handicrafts and antiques can be found in the Sogong Arcade beneath Sogong-ro.

Best Lists

Shopping