The charms of Samcheong-dong

Last year, I brought three Pinay visitors to Samcheong-dong and Bukcheon. They told me they might not have seen those places if they had joined a group tour. Maybe, since I don’t really see a lot of foreign tourists in those places whenever we visit (which is not really often).

Samcheong-dong is a hilly neighborhood in Jongro-gu located near Gyeongbok-gung (the palace). The first time I went to this place was sometime in the fall of 2004. It was so lovely with the fall colors of the trees, the quaint shops, restaurants, cafes, galleries and couples walking on the sidewalk holding hands.

I’ve been to Samcheong-dong a couple of times but I haven’t really had the chance to take photographs until last year, when I brought the three Pinays there. We met after a late breakfast at Dunkin Donuts. I first took them to Changdeok-gung and then we walked to Bukcheon and went down Samcheong-dong. From there, we took a taxi to Gyeonghui-gung where we watched a taekwondo demonstration. Late lunch at a Chinese restaurant. We walked again to Gwanghwamun Plaza where they had a blast taking pictures of the gorgeous flowers that occupied half of the area that time. Took them to Insa-dong and then Namsan Hanok Village to wear hanbok. Oh we had such a long day that we didn’t go home until after 11PM.

One of the must-see places in Seoul is Samcheong-dong. It’s unlike your ordinary Korean street. The people are a little more fashionable than the average. The crowd is usually younger. If you’re ever in Seoul and you have an hour or two to spare, do drop by Samcheong-dong to see a different face of the city.

Shops, cafes and galleries…













Flea market on Saturdays






27 comments

  1. ms.betchay regular po ung flea market every saturday? marami rin po bang tinda? and mura po ba? panu po mtatagpuan un?

    1. hi kat! yup regular yung flea market every saturday… meron din sa hongdae… pero mas malapit kasi kami sa samcheong-dong… kung mura? relative… affordable naman kasi marami sa tinda dun eh handmade

    1. hi kayni! oops, that isn’t me… she’s one of the pinays i accompanied… i have the permission to post her pics ;p

  2. hi Betchay! thanks for this post. i’ll have to add this to our itinerary at mukhang magugustuhan ng sister ko because of the flea market. kaso, every Saturday lang ba open ung market? we already got our visas so by June 12-15, we’ll be roaming around Seoul, yey!. hope to meet you next month!

    1. yup, it’s a must place to visit… ang ikli naman ng vacation ninyo… maybe we could meet on a sunday though 😉

  3. Oh Cool! There’s a flee market! I’m a fan of flee markets. Everything’s so cheap and I feel this certain thrill when I get to find something cool. I’m a fan of thrift stores here in the Philippines too. LOL. 🙂 If I ever get the chance to finally land my ass there in Korea, I’ll definitely stop by Samcheong – dong.

    1. There is a bigger flea market near Dongdaemun and another one in Hongdae, which is also every weekend. I haven’t actually bought anything from a flea market since I always go to our recycling center every Friday to check some of the trash thrown by the neighbors.

  4. Betchay-nim, if ever pupunta kami ng korea, could you give us a tour too?

    anyway, name places in seoul are really confusing, IMO…samcheong-dong almost sounds like samseong-dong…

    1. Sure… kung hindi ako busy.

      Correct sobrang confusing ng mga pangalan ng lugar sa Korea. Meron din Sincheon at Sinchon na nasa parehong subway line pero sobrang magkalayo.

  5. I have a planner /diary w/c bought in g-market korea that has lots of pics of samcheong-dong.I was happy when I saw the photos of the shops you posted because I wonder where are these quaint shops that is in my diary….I wanna go there.I love old looking place…

  6. From what I know these buildings are at least 80 years old, I love how old town still exists in the middle of high rise bustle of Seoul. Very beautiful pictures

    1. Too bad though that some Seoul city officials don’t think that these old buildings are attractive to foreign visitors. That’s why they’re renovating the old city hall to make it look like it came from some faraway planet. They also demolished “Pitmalgol” where my husband and I used to eat grilled fish after spending time at Kyobo Bookstore.

  7. ito ang mga type kong puntahan whenever i visit countries, just walking around neighborhoods like this with quaint shops, these are things not included if u join tour groups, they will bring u to shops that are selling uninteresting stuffs, which are obviously so overpriced, bec. of the commission for the tour guide. anyway, ms betchay, hay i love to go back to korea, been there twice na, but my wish is to be able to go there during autumn, bec. i havent seen fall foliage in my whole life!

  8. Hello Ate Betchay! 🙂

    Woow! I really appreciate what you are doing for Filipinos who are interested in Korea and its culture. My cousin and some friends will be going there end of October to 1st week of November.. hope we could meet and you could give us a tour. We are so clueless on how to watch kpop performances. Also, we want to shop for makeup and accessories like the one you have in the pics above! 🙂 Thanks and hope you’ll have time.

    Aimee

  9. nice, weekend flea market… I’ve been to Hongdae and I think it’s busier kasi malapit sa Uni… Saan pong line malapit ang Samcheong-dong? love the blog, keep it coming 🙂

  10. Hi Anna!

    Grabe, I just saw this post!! Thank you so much for spending time with us. You’re the best!!

    Lott and I are going back on Oct. 13-16Let’s meet up. We plan to treat you at the Namsan Tower for dinner maybe. So excited to see you again. Hope to catch up with you.

    I miss these places! Punta tayo ulit! 🙂

    Regards,

    Sandie

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