Put together history and cutting-edge architecture in the middle of a bustling metropolis like Seoul—you get the spectacular and celebrated Dongdaemun Culture and History Park. Designated as a historical and cultural district, the Dongdaemun Culture and History Park is a representation of the living history of Seoul. In fact, several relics were unearthed during the construction of the place. Some of which date back to the early Joseon Dynasty. Dongdaemun Culture and History Park houses traditional buildings and modern-day cultural facilities that every traveler will find fascinating.
Complete your Seoul experience with these top five things to do at the Dongdaemun Culture and History Park. You can have your shopping spree as the finale of all the activities you can do in the place.
Enter Heungjingjimun then Stroll Along Dongdaemun Seonggwak Park
Start your journey into the park by entering Heungjingjimun. More commonly known as the Dongdaemun Gate, Heungjingjimun (Gate of Rising Benevolence) is the eastern gate and part of the Seoul Fortress during Korea’s storied past. It’s the largest among all the gates of the complex. There are four main gates—East, West, South, and North—with a corresponding Hangeul character such as benevolence, righteousness, propriety, and wisdom.
This big gate leads to the Dongdaemun Seonggwak Park where you can take a stroll and get a bird’s eye view of the entire landscape that Dongdaemun has.
Walk Along the Seoul Fortress Wall then Admire Art at the Ihwa Mural Village
Prepare yourself for a bit of a hike to the Seoul Fortress Wall to get another skyline view of Seoul. Breathe in the fresh air and tread on some more until you reach the Ihwa Mural Village, located near Daehakno. Marvel at the mural paintings upon each turn, corner, and even steps. Take in all these artistic wonder which only you can find in Dongdaemun.
Relax at Cheonggyecheon
Cheonggyecheon, a subterranean stream that flows all the way to the Han River, is the perfect place to relax after all the walking you’ve done. You might chance upon a community event such as concerts while you’re there.
Marvel the Dongdaemun Design Plaza
Designed by the world-renowned and celebrated architect Zaha Hadid, the Dongdaemun Design Plaza is a must-visit place for every architecture aficionado. Two stadiums standing side-by-side house several permanent and temporary exhibitions.
Fancying a unique souvenir to take home? This place sells some really funky artworks, apparel, and books. And in case you’re now famished from all the tour you’ve been doing around the place, you can check out some of the cafe chains on the lower level of the plaza.
Shop at the Dongdaemun Market
Because Seoul is known as a shopping haven, your trip won’t be complete unless you’ve had your shopping spree. Dongdaemun Market has its own share of traditional and modern shopping centers. Hailed as Korea’s largest wholesale and retail shopping district, Dongdaemun Market does not fall short on shopping malls and specialty shops. Take your pick from a myriad of shops and items to buy which range from silk fabric to shoes, clothes, sporting wear, pet products, toys, etc. Although the night market is more popular, you can actually go here even during the day.
Visit Dongdaemun Culture and History Park and explore the top places in Seoul now!
*Featured image from Korea Tourism Organization