In this third installment of our Seoul City Guide, Boxer Jess takes us to the bustling tourist spot of Myeongdong. Myeongdong is best known for its huge array of beauty stores and if you wanted to do a one-stop hop to get all your skincare products, this is the area you need to head to. Myeondong also houses some delicious cafes and food options, so read on to find out where you can get the best breakfast and gyozas in the city!
Directions to Myeongdong:
Take the green subway line to “Euljiro 1(il)-ga” Station (Line 2) or “Myeongdong” Station (Line 4).
Here’s a pinch of what this one stop K-beauty/shopping haven has to offer:
If you are looking to spoil yourself at any time of the day, this is the place to be. They’ve recently changed their opening hours, so you can get your pastry fix as early as 7:30am. Seasonal menus and breakfast promotions are updated regularly on their Facebook page, and be sure to check out one of their signatures, the omelette soufflé. Be warned that this spot is usually packed, but of course, the pretty interior and beautiful spreads are worth the visit.
Located at the ground floor of ‘State Tower Namsan’ building, 1-1 Hoehyeondong 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, Republic of Korea
Daily : 07:30 ~01:30
Site: Bover Lounge
This is the latest megastore in Myeongdong—a 3-storey Innisfree Green Store and Cafe. There are plenty of other Innisfree stores around Myeongdong itself but this is the flagship store where you’ll find an extensive range of products. If cosmetics aren’t what you are looking for, head up to their zen-inducing Innisfree Green Cafe for fresh juice and salads while taking a breather from the packed crowd outside. They even offer free luggage storage*, be sure to enquire within if you need that service.
Innisfree Green Store and Cafe
Myeongdong 15-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
Daily : 09:00 – 23:00
Myeongdong Gyoza is a famous eatery both with the locals and foreigners and although they have two outlets in the same street, I would suggest going to the main outlet that is situated beside H&M. The queue can get lengthy but it moves pretty quickly. Food wise, order the “Kalguksu” (soup noodle) and “Mandu” (dumplings)—the free flow of extra garlicky kimchi is the star! This isn’t the best place for long conversations and catch ups, so make sure to hurry off once you are done eating, lest you get chased out.
25-2 2ga, Myeongdong 10-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
Daily : 10:30 – 21:30
Site: myeongdong gyoza
Once your belly is filled, walk along the street and make a left turn and you’ll find this Olive Young flagship store that has almost everything, from cosmetics to yummy snacks. There is a coffee shop above as well, and the immediate tax-refund (for foreigners) is a great bonus and convenience if you are planning a major drugstore haul.
Olive Young (Flagship Myeongdong)
53, Myeongdong-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, Korea
Daily : 10:00 – 22:30
8Seconds is a local Korean label, kind of like Gap of Korea. They are currently collaborating with K-pop star G-Dragon—here are some of his ‘Spring picks’ should you like to have a look.
32 Myeongdong-gil, Myeongdong 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu
Daily : 11:00 – 20:00
If you are looking for deals and steals on shoes, drop by ABC Mart. There are a few outlets around Myeongdong and products do vary from one store to another. Note that there are different discounts ongoing and if you are a foreigner, there might be some other tax-free specials as well. Brands from Adidas to Toms can be found here, with sizes catered for kids, juniors, and adults.
12 Myeongdong 8-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
Daily : 10:30 – 22:30
For more travel inspiration, check out our column City Guide for must-see spots in Paris, Japan and Korea.