Did you know that around the Seoul City Hall area you can discover and visit so many places by walking only? Check out this article for more details.
It’s been a habit of me that whenever I go outside and roam around I prefer to go to a certain place and from there I start to do a walking tour course. That’s the reason why I discovered so many places by means of walking only.
This blog will be about the places you can visit around the Seoul City Hall. The City Hall is located in the center of Seoul where you can see the present, past, and future of Korea. This is also one of the favorite tourist spots of every foreigner visiting the country. So let’s start the walking tour course here.
Places to Visit Around Seoul City Hall Area
Seoul Plaza is located at the front of the Seoul City Hall where you can enjoy different kinds of outdoor exhibits, events, mini-concerts, and others. During the winter season, tourists and locals can experience the ice skating rink at a very cheap price.
While Seoul Plaza is giving you an outdoor experience, the Seoul City Hall is offering an eco-friendly building because of its indoor green wall.
Aside from that, you can also visit the Seoul Metropolitan Library which is open to everybody. This building was the old Seoul City wall and has been renovated to become a library. It is open during weekdays from 9:00 am to 8:00 pm but closed on Mondays and Holidays. During weekends it is open from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm.
Across the street, you will see the Deoksugung Palace. Deoksugung, meaning “the palace of virtuous longevity”, is the only palace which as a western-style of buildings inside aside from being famous in its elegant stone walls. In 1575-164, when Gwanghaegun ascended to the throne, Deoksugung became a proper palace. Over the following decades, the palace became an official palace and a temporary resident. The stone wall of Deoksugung is one of the most elegant roads in Seoul (It was featured in the drama Goblin.)
Things you can do at Deoksugung Palace
- Watch the changing of the Royal guards ceremony
- Visit the National Museum of Contemporary Art
The palace visiting hours is 9:00 am to 9:00 pm and closed on Mondays. The admission fee is 1,000 won and free of charge wearing a hanbok upon entrance. Free admission too for children under 6 years old, seniors (65 years and above), and every Culture day usually held every last Wednesday of the month. For more details, check the Deoksugung website here.
Deoksugung Doldam-gil (Deoksugung Stone-wall Road)
Deoksugung Doldam-gil or Deoksugung Stone-wall road is approximately 900 meters in length with 20 benches and 130 trees along the road. This road offers a romantic and quiet walk during the day or night and all throughout the year.
Seoul Museum of Art (SeMA)
If you like art this place is best for you because this museum not only shows the Korean artist’s work but also the works of international artists. Admission is free for regular exhibitions and fees may apply for special exhibitions.
The museum is open during weekdays (except Mondays and Holidays) from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm. After visiting this place you can have a stroll or walk through the Deoksugung Doldam-gil.
This also one of the filming locations of Korean dramas including Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-Joo, Boys Over Flowers, Love Rain, One Spring Night, and Hotel del Luna.
Jeongdong-gil is a perfect place for a stroll and did you know that this path connects two palaces in Seoul in the old times?
If you will walk at the back wall of Deoksugung which is known as the Deoksugung Doldam-gil (Deoksugung Stone-wall Road) and follow the road going to the direction of Jeongdong theater, at the end of the road you will find the Donuimun Gate. Though the gate is not visible, at present you will know that you are standing at the Donuimun Gate if you reach the Donuimun Museum Village.
Things you can do at Jeongdong-gil
- Check out for Jeongdong Theather – this is a public theater where traditional music, dance, and plays are being held and performances usually start at 4:00 pm but schedules may vary so please check their website first before going. Closed on Mondays.
- Visit Jungmyeongheon Hall of Deoksugung Palace – this was a residential area for Western Missionaries before.
- Visit the Annex Building of Former Shinailbo (New Asia Daily) in Seoul – this building is a Cultural Heritage No. 402 which is used as the office of Singer Corporation. This corporation is an American manufacturer of sewing machines which up to present is being seen in the market.
At Jeongdong-gil you can also pass the different embassies like the Russian Embassy, British Embassy, German Embassy, and the US Embassy.
Seoul Museum of History
The Seoul Museum of History is a place for visitors to enhance their understanding of the historic events and places of the city. For over 600 years, the museum preserved the most significant relics of the city. Visitors can join the interactive exhibitions with various hands-on programs. The museum also offers an automatic translator (various languages are available) which is called U-Exhibit Guidance System for visitors. This is to let the visitors more interested and understand the information well and it’s more convenient.
The museum offers free admission and operates from 9:00 am to 8:00 pm during weekdays (Tuesday to Friday). During weekends and holidays, it is open from 9:00 am till 7:00 pm. During winter, from November to February the museum is open from 9:00 am up to 6:00 pm. For more details, you can visit the Seoul Museum of History‘s website.
For more details, you can check out for Seoul Museum of History: Traces of the City
Located on the west side of Seoul, Gyeonghui Palace or Gyeonghuigung was the secondary palace for the king. It was also called “Seogwol” which means “Palace of the West” where the King relocates in times of emergency. From the Joseon Dynasty, about 10 kings (In-Jo to Cheol-Jong) stayed in this palace.
In the past, this palace has an arched bridge connecting to Deoksugung but currently, you need to cross to Jeondong street and walk to Desoksugung. Seoul History Museum, the street of Jongno and Jeongdong street are the main landmark of Gyeonghuing Palace.
The palace is closed on Mondays and January 1, which opens at 9:00 am up to 6:00 pm. Admission is FREE but if visitors are coming with a car, the parking fee is 3,000 won for the first two hours. You can check the website here (Korean Only).
Gyeonghuigung Palace is also one of the filming locations of the Netflix Series Kingdom Season 1.
Donuimun Museum was reconstructed to preserve the history of the old neighborhood of Saemunan. In this museum, it shows how big Gyeonghui Palace was. But currently, 10% of the palace has been restored and the neighborhood has been reconstructed with apartments and restaurants.
Donuimun Gate was the largest gate in Seoul and has been destroyed in 1951 during the Japanese colonial period. There’s a lot of interesting things that you can see here, for more details you may visit Donuimun Museum Village’s website.