Your ultimate guide to Seoul

Restaurants and bars, museums and galleries, clubs, music, movies and more

Best restaurants around Seoul museums for a beautiful day out
Restaurants

Best restaurants around Seoul museums for a beautiful day out

Around many of Seoul's prominent museums, a cluster of restaurants, cafés and bars is adding unique vibes to each of the neighborhoods, while the surrounding areas also offer something different from all the hustle and bustle of the city. Take a stroll through some elegant or thought-provoking artworks, and grab a drink or a bite to eat at a nearby place — we can say with confidence that it'll be a simply beautiful day.

A journey to the '70s Seoul on Jungnimmalli-gil
Things to do

A journey to the '70s Seoul on Jungnimmalli-gil

The deteriorated elevated-road near Seoul Station, which has been keeping its presence in the center of the city for 45 years, will be soon eliminated. What we’ll see instead is a 10.3-meter wide and 1.24-km long elevated-park, decorated with trees and shrubs. There will be book cafés, libraries, as well as 5 walking-courses: Jungnimmalli-dong Course, Sogong-dong Course, Myeongdong Coursem Namsan Course and Human-dong Course. Among them, Jungnimmalli-gil is an old 2.5km path connecting Jungnim-dong and Malli-dong. From an over-100-year-old cathedral to Korea’s first residential complex and a 45-year-old seolleongtang (ox bone soup) joint, this old neighborhood which seems to finally awaking from a long sleep has unique and one-of-a-kind offerings.

Better together: living and loving life with animal friends in Seoul
Things to do

Better together: living and loving life with animal friends in Seoul

Animals of all kinds can offer us valuable insights that we may have forgotten in the haste of our daily life — only if we're ready to pay attention with pure intention for love and communication. What is intimately sharing life with animals like? What are some ways to spend more time with our beloved animal friends? Here are some information and stories for the hopeless animal lovers in Seoul.

Euro inspired places found in Seoul
Things to do

Euro inspired places found in Seoul

Struck by a bit of wanderlust? Same here. While we so often wish we could drop everything and leave for a week, it wouldn’t hurt for us to have some places within our reach that we can retreat to. From Berlin to Copenhagen, Paris and Barcelona. Check out our list of temporary solutions within Seoul.

Time Out Seoul picks : Hot spots in Seoul
Things to do

Time Out Seoul picks : Hot spots in Seoul

What is your favorite area?

Best to do this season

Makgeolli, the go-to drink for Seollal holiday get-togethers
Restaurants

Makgeolli, the go-to drink for Seollal holiday get-togethers

Traditionally made with rice, barley or wheat and naturally fermented (and sometimes flavored with nuts or fruits), makgeolli is known to be the oldest alcoholic drink in Korea. Fragrant and refreshing, this milky drink which pairs beautifully with many Korean dishes makes for an especially great choice for large gatherings during holidays. And of course, what you get at a convenient store represents only a fraction of the diverse types you can try and explore in Seoul. Whether in a traditional setting or with a modern twist, these makgeolli bars will offer an array of delectable and invigorating sips.

The best Hanok-style cafés in Seoul
Restaurants

The best Hanok-style cafés in Seoul

Having a cup of Korean traditional tea is a must.

In celebration of the oldest in Seoul
Things to do

In celebration of the oldest in Seoul

They're matters of pride—for what kept their originality through all the years.

Everyday hanbok
Shopping

Everyday hanbok

Wear hanbok on Chuseok? Nah, that’s not exactly what we’re saying. We get enough of that on the evening news. What we are suggesting is that hanbok is returning to people’s everyday lives. On Instagram, you can definitely find those who go on overseas trips or on short tours to hanok villages in their hanboks. (Search #hanbok or #한복 if you don’t believe us). Hanbok promoter and traveler Kwon Mi-ru roams around the world in hanboks she made herself and says it feels like she loves herself better when she wears it. This spotlight on the hanbok is coming from outside of Korea as well. Chanel’s KarlLagerfeld, as well as foreign fashion media outlets like style.com praised the beauty ofhanbok—which many Koreans had no idea was going on. “Tchaikim” is one brand that’s mesmerized even Tilda Swinton. Designer Kim Young-jin’s second brand “Tchakim” not only shows a modern interpretation of hanbok but also makes you want to wear it. One of their most popular items, the “Cheollik dress,” was inspired by the traditional uniform for military officers, and yet it manages to still be new and beautiful. Tchaikim refuses to be bound to names like “daily hanbok” or “fusion hanbok.” Instead, they want to be known as a readymade brand that brings hanbok aesthetics and sentiments to life. Along with Tchaikim, several other brands are introducing various styles of modern, beautiful hanboks which are perfect for you to wear right away.

Popular stories

Looking for old markets
Things to do

Looking for old markets

Taking a slow stroll in four old markets of Seoul for traditional medicine, antiques, vintage fashion items, and curios.

4 very mega malls of Seoul
Shopping

4 very mega malls of Seoul

Starting with the COEX Mall, huge malls have been popping up around Seoul for the past few years. With countless choices for shopping, food and fun, they're bringing "one-stop lifestyles," indeed. You can try the world's top 10 desserts, watch the latest film releases through world's largest screen and enjoy indoor climbing, hot springs and even live indie music without taking a step outside in the cold weather. All you need to do is to check out our list of suggestions before you head there so you don't waste your day wandering around these those 4 mega malls built in an overwhelming scale.

Our Northern Neighbor
Things to do

Our Northern Neighbor

My grandfather has only once discussed the passing of his parents in the Korean War to his children and grandchildren—when I came back to Korea after 17 years. A kind but stoic man, he welled up with tears as he rushed through the story: He was only 13 years old when his parents told him to pack and run away and that they would catch up soon. A few minutes from his house, he looked back to see that his home, with his parents in it, had been lit on fire. In his own way, by telling me this anecdote, my grandfather wanted me to know the significance of this place he believed I should consider home.   My story isn’t particularly unique; many South Koreans can relay similar tales of their parents and their parents’ parents. Seoul is a blooming, blossoming city but the color of our capital is made even brighter when contrasted to the war only a short drive from here (an armistice agreement was signed in 1953, but the two Koreas are technically still at war). The cuisine, culture and stories of that some might consider brother or enemy still hold so much relevance here in Seoul. Our histories are inescapably intertwined and they are, to say the least, our neighbors. By Hahna Yoon

Hot hanoks
Hotels

Hot hanoks

Six hanok hotels and guesthouses in Seoul that will save you from the tropical nights of the city

Read everywhere, in Seoul
Things to do

Read everywhere, in Seoul

In Seoul, paper is popular this season. It is in large part due to these marvelous bookstores, libraries as well as book bars and cafés providing unique atmosphere and materials ranging from poetry to fashion magazines and LGBTQ books. Here’s our list of places for your autumn reading.

Best of Seoul

5 secret day trips near Seoul
Things to do

5 secret day trips near Seoul

TBH, as much as we love Korea, long holidays during the summer usually mean vacationing outside of it. After all, the country's small enough that you can explore most places over long weekend breaks. Another TBH? As much as we love Seoul, we need to get out of here every once in a while too—even if it's just for a day or two. In our October issue, in light of the beautiful weather, that's exactly what we did. We drank beer all day long, listened to music in a 1,100-year-old forest, watched the sunrise from the west coast, traveled on trains for hours and had everything but bibimbap in Jeonju. Here are all our secrets to all our secret places, so go on and escape!

Looking for old markets
Things to do

Looking for old markets

Taking a slow stroll in four old markets of Seoul for traditional medicine, antiques, vintage fashion items, and curios.

Seoul's up and coming vinyl bars
Music

Seoul's up and coming vinyl bars

The Best Hotel Rooftop Bars in Seoul
Bars

The Best Hotel Rooftop Bars in Seoul

Fancy the rooftop bars in Manhattan, Marina Bay in Singapore and Bangkok, with sweeping skyline views? We're happy to let you know that Seoul's checked another box as an exciting metropolitan city. In addition to the hotel terraces that have been transformed from existing outdoor space, a number of well-known hotels in Seoul have opened up new space with the sole and serious purpose of spectacular views. Unextravagant yet astonishing skyline of Gwanghwamun, N Seoul Tower's presence right in front your eyes, and thrilling night views of Gangnam—they're all included in this list. Enjoying a moment high above the city, you might fall in love with the city all over again.