We’ve all heard of Gangnam and Hongdae, the two most widely known places in Seoul, right? These two vibrant neighborhoods are always bustling, jam-packed with people on a weekend night. However, young Koreans who want to spend a quiet night out are turning their eyes to secret alleys which recently rose to fame with their unique atmosphere. Follow us for a tour around the top hidden alleys trending in Korea.
Located within walking distance from the foreign-clustered district Itaewon, Kyungridan-gil is known for its exotic dining spots and an array of pubs. Behind the enormous fame is a young entrepreneur Jang Jinwoo, who opened eight restaurants and cafes on the same street since 2011, when the street was narrow and quiet. His business goal was to just do what he likes to do and meet good people. With his simple yet so profound attitude, his business’ success attracted fellow young entrepreneurs around the area, and it was only a matter of time before the alley became busy with visitors. On a weekend night, it is almost impossible to find a place to sit down at Kyungridan-gil with waiting lists everywhere.
Likewise, a young entrepreneur Lim Donghyuk opened a small Thai restaurant ‘Tuk Tuk Noodle Thai’ in an uncommercial area beside Hongdae. The restaurant soon went viral and fellow young entrepreneurs gathered to set up business with little capital. Now, the dark street is filled with lights from restaurants serving international cuisine, creating an area of cultural diversity. Yeonnam dong has a quiet, somewhat antique vibe, as a reminiscence of the 70s. It is an area that knows how to preserve and create harmony between the old and new, influenced by the artistic culture of Hongdae attracting a wide age range from 20s to 80s.
Seochon is the most traditional hot spot among those introduced in this article, perhaps due to its location right next to Gyeongbokgung Palace – the must-see tourist attraction in Seoul. Seochon is a mixture of tradition and contemporary nowadays, with houses looking but not fully in the Korean-style Hanok tangled with each other along a long alley. Seochon became famous after it was introduced in several media platforms including TV shows and films, now attracting visitors with their distinct traditional mood.