Myeongdong is one of the busiest and most popular districts in Seoul. Tourists and locals flock towards the area that is widely known for it’s shopping amenities and the many different restaurants that are also available.
Lotte and Shinsegae are two very large departments stores within the area and they are ideal for someone looking to find many different retailers and products under one roof. The main streets are lined with many well-known clothing brand stores such as Nike, Forever 21, Zara, H&M etc. There are also many Asian and Korean clothes shops that I recommend looking out for, the fashion and trends can be very similar to European brands but are available at a fraction of the price.
The clothing sellers that are not to be overlooked are the street vendors that set up stalls down the main streets and side streets. They offer very cheap prices and you can usually barter with them if buying multiple items. Clothing items range from snapback hats, t-shirts, pajamas to handbags and backpacks.
Myeongdong is a thriving mecca for female cosmetic products. This became apparent as I walked down the streets seeing sales personnel heckling at shoppers to come inside their stores to test the beauty products. Multiple outlets of the same beauty brands are dotted throughout the area.
Of course there are many different side streets that also offer more shops for you to explore and seek out great bargains. Many of the shops offer free gifts such as facemasks etc to female customers.
I fancy myself as a sneakerhead, and so for me Myeongdong was fantastic. If you are looking for great prices on sneakers then I advise you to head to the Nike store, Les More, the Puma Store and various other outlets that are dotted around the streets.
Restaurants line the upper floors of the Myeongdong streets and also the side streets. Food cuisines include Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese, Italian and multiple fast food restaurants. Some restaurants will have employees on the streets to show you where the restaurant is and they will help you pick out your meal.
The choices are vast so don’t be afraid to wander around until you find a restaurant that you are comfortable visiting and sitting down in. Below is an example of a delicious meal I enjoyed while sitting in what seemed to be a very upmarket restaurant that I chose while wandering around.
Cafes are also very common in Myeongdong, of course the conventional and highly popular coffee shops such as Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks are located in the area.
As pictured at the top of this blog you see a man dressed as a cat and I have also included a different one below. This is a walking advertisement for the Cat Café located in Myeongdong.
Animal Cafes are very popular in Korea, you pay an entry fee, order your drink and you can sit in the café that is host to cats and dogs that are free to wander around the café to be petted by you. Many people find this experience therapeutic and this is reflected in the sheer numbers of people looking to enter the cafes.
The street food was my favourite part about Myeongdong, both food and drinks are available at very cheap prices. A large amount of street vendors set up their stalls in the evening time and the entire are can get very busy late evenings but the atmosphere is incredible.
My two favourite items from the street vendors were the freshly squeezed orange and lemon juice that comes in a plastic pouch that the sellers will produce fresh for you while you wait.
My second favourite item is a whole coconut that the vendors pierce a whole in for you. A straw is placed inside so that you can drink the coconut water within and the taste is delicious.
How to get there:
Take the subway line 4 to Myeongdong Station and get out at Exit 7, you can follow the crowds of people to the shopping area that is less than 5 minutes from the station itself.
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