In Seoul, there’s everywhere else, and then there’s Hongdae. This is the Korean capital’s center of alternative culture – its most vibrant, most exciting, and most unpredictable neighborhood. It’s the city’s laboratory, its band stage, its design studio, its dance floor. It’s a place for rebels and misfits and good-time kids, where young Koreans come to cut loose. Above all, though, it's just incredibly fun.
This tour will take you through the heart of Hongdae, to its bars, boutiques, cafes, and clubs. Along the way you'll also catch some of its lively street theater and we'll explore the history and energies that have made this neighborhood so unique.
Gopchangjeongol Bar, Sangsang Madang, Hongdae Park
Begin outside of Hongik University Station, Exit 9. The station is on Seoul Subway Line 2, the AREX Airport Line, and the Gyeonggui-Jungang Line. Face the KFC with your back to the main street.
Places to stop along the way:
Drink in Gopchangjeongol Bar, browse the neighborhood boutiques, explore Sangsang Madang art space, eat at Samgeori Pocha, hang out in the Hongdae Park.
Best time of day:
Hongdae's most vibrant and alive at night, especially on weekends.
Seoul's a remarkably safe city. Pretty much the most serious thing you have to worry about here is someone who's had too much to drink stumbling into you.