Hidden shopping path in central Seoul

Written by on May 23, 2011 in Lifestyle, Travel

Are you planning to come to Seoul during a rainy season? Are you already in Seoul and tired of shopping in crowded areas where you can barely move forward? Here is what you can do. It’s very simple and very easy. Take subway line no. 2 and get off at City Hall Station or Dongdaemun History & Culture Park Station. Then what do you do? Just keep walking through the underpass, from City Hall Station to Dongdaemun History & Culture Park Station or vice versa. What you’ll see is the longest underpass in Korea with all kinds of shops you might be interested in. I’ll say it’s a hidden shopping mall of Seoul.

Not many Koreans know that City Hall, Euljiro 1-ga, Euljiro 3-ga, Euljiro 4-ga, and Dongdaemun History & Culture Park Station are all connected by the underpass. Even a fewer people know that there are all kinds of shops imaginable that sell various goods from clothes to massage chairs.

The underpass is only 3 km long. It’s walkable, not busy, and is always open except on Sundays. Shops are kind of categorized by station. Around Dongdaemun History & Culture Park Station, for example, its specialized items are sports uniforms and gear. From Barcelona jerseys to Korean soccer team’s uniforms and inline skates along with golf equipment, anything you want to shop for your sports life would be there.

From Euljiro 3-ga to Euljiro 4-ga Station, you’ll see a lot of print shops. They deal from huge signs to name cards with a wide range of prices. Creating your own name card won’t take very long and won’t charge you a lot. If you like a certain name card design in a shop, just simply point it out and let them know your name with contact numbers. More than 100 cards would cost you less than 10,000 won.

More shops are available such as mobile phone shops, book stores, camera shops, souvenir shops, and fashion stores like clothes and shoes. Inventions including tiny folding glasses, pen-sized umbrellas or posture correcting shoes and shirts from small companies that could be very successful if they met a right time are also displayed in there. Some restaurants and coffee shops are also located in the underpass. Moreover, as you would pass more than 20 exits while you’re walking along the underpass, feel free to see what each area has to offer you. Gwangjang market, the biggest vintage market in Korea; and Bangsan Market, where all kinds of bakery ingredients and tools can be found are simply located at Euljiro 4-ga area.

Remember, the underpass market is fun to visit but I wouldn’t strongly recommend it for people who are seeking the latest fashion trends. However, if you love variety and want to see unique products that are rare to be found in normal markets, then, your schedule for this weekend is just filled. Enjoy shopping, enjoy walking through the underpass!

By Jessica Seoyoung Choi
Korea.net Staff Writer

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