What To See And Do in Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul In 2024

With its beautifully preserved traditional hanok houses that date back to the Joseon Dynasty, Bukchon Hanok Village offers a mesmerising journey into Korea’s illustrious past and insights into it’s cultural present. There are so many things to do in Bukchon Hanok Village, it truly is a must-see destination in central Seoul and an essential addition to any Seoul itinerary.

Located between Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung palaces, these traditional Korean houses offer the perfect place to have a break while seeing more of Korea’s traditional heart. Pop into a historic tea room and sample some healthy Korean tea, or try street food snacks and baked goods in the growing number of cafes and food stalls in this area. And definitely take lots of snaps in this picturesque area.

In this article you’ll discover numerous reasons to visit Bukchon Hanok Village and how to enjoy an afternoon in this area. I visit this area often when I’m in Seoul and I’ve included some of my favourite restaurants and cafes to check out that I’m sure you’ll love, as well as hanok house stays in Bukchon where you can spend the night in a traditional Korean building. I hope you enjoy visiting this area.

Affiliate Disclaimer: This site contains affiliate links and I may earn commission for purchases made after clicking these links.

Why Should You Visit Bukchon Hanok Village?

There are so many reasons why you should visit Bukchon Hanok Village, from the opportunity to take dreamy pictures dressed in flowing hanbok, to the chance to relax in a cosy cafe or teahouse. For me, the best reason is a mixture of those reasons and lots more. A morning or afternoon here never fails to charm and it’s the kind of place where you never get bored of visiting.

People in hanbok in Buckhon Hanok Village Seoul

Here are some reasons you should definitely visit Bukchon Hanok Village in Seoul:

1. Preserving Tradition: Bukchon Hanok Village is a living testament to Korea’s rich cultural heritage where you can see beautifully preserved traditional Korean houses, known as ‘hanok’, dating back to the Joseon Dynasty.

2. Historical Significance: This village, located between Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung palaces, once housed high-ranking officials during the Joseon Dynasty and you can see signs of Korea’s history all around.

3. Picturesque Views: As you stroll through the maze-like streets, you’ll be greeted with vistas of traditional houses set against the backdrop of modern Seoul’s skyscrapers. This unique setting makes it a popular K-Drama filming location, wedding photoshoots, and tourist snaps.

4. Cultural Immersion: Bukchon Hanok Village offers a wide range of immersive cultural experiences like traditional tea ceremonies, calligraphy lessons, and even dressing up in hanbok.

5. Art and Crafts: This area is home to numerous galleries and workshops where you can witness and purchase intricate Korean crafts, pottery, and artworks. It’s a fantastic opportunity to take home a piece of Korean culture.

Whether you’re a history buff, a culture seeker, or simply someone looking to escape the urban chaos, a visit to Bukchon Hanok Village promises a memorable and enriching experience that will stay with you long after you’ve left its charming streets. Find out all the best things to see and do in Buckhon Hanok Village, where to eat and drink, and lots of reasons why this should certainly be on your Seoul itinerary.

View of Seoul and N Seoul Tower

Where Is Bukchon Hanok Village?

Tucked away in the heart of Seoul, Bukchon Hanok Village is a peaceful oasis close to the bustling Insadong district. This historic neighbourhood is conveniently located between two of Seoul’s most iconic palaces, Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung, making it easily accessible by foot.

Nearest Subway Station: Anguk Station (Line 3 – Orange). Use exits 1 or 2 to get to the Bukchon Hanok Village. The village spreads out to the north-east and north-west of this station.

If you want to take a taxi or plan your way to Bukchon Hanok Village, copy and paste this address into Kakao Taxi or Naver Map to help you get to the heart of Bukchon.

Address in Korean: 서울 종로구 북촌로 39

When you arrive at Bukchon Hanok Village, there are maps available from Anguk subway station or from tourist information stands in the village. There are also maps of the village with key areas to visit highlighted. The maps also come with recommended walking paths around Bukchon.

Map of Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul
Map of Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul

Bukchon Hanok Village Opening Hours

Bukchon Hanok Village is open all day, every day, so plan your visit at a time that suits you best and uncover the magic of this historical gem in the heart of Seoul. However, as this is an occupied neighbourhood, please be considerate of making noise, especially at night.

Unlike many other attractions, this neighbourhood never closes its doors, allowing you the flexibility to explore at your own pace. Whether you visit for sunrise views, for afternoon tea and relaxation, or to embrace the enchanting night ambience, Bukchon Hanok Village is always ready to offer its timeless beauty and cultural treasures.

People exploring Bukchon Hanok Village at dusk
People exploring Bukchon Hanok Village at dusk

How Long Do You Need In Bukchon Hanok Village?

While the time you spend in Bukchon Hanok Village largely depends on your interests, a few hours are typically sufficient to see most of the sights. You can leisurely explore the winding alleys, visit museums, sip tea in traditional houses, and even take a hanbok photo shoot within a few hours.

If you want to visit nearby museums, relax in a cafe, enjoy a traditional meal, and explore all of the area, then consider dedicating half a day or more. Whether you have a brief window or a leisurely schedule, Bukchon Hanok Village offers a memorable experience that you won’t forget.

Bukchon Hanok Village Entrance Fee?

There is no entrance fee to explore Bukchon Hanok Village as this area is a residential area and open to the public. However, some of the museums and other attractions in the area may charge a fee to enter, so be sure to check when you go into one of the hanok houses.

Planning to visit Korea? These travel essentials will help you plan your trip, get the best deals, and save you time and money before and during your Korean adventure.

Visas & K-ETA: Some travellers to Korea need a Tourist Visa, but most can travel with a Korean Electronic Travel Authorisation (K-ETA). Currently 22 Countries don’t need either one.

How To Stay Connected: Pre-order a Korean Sim Card or a WiFi Router to collect on-arrival at Incheon Airport (desks open 24-hours). Alternatively, download a Korean eSIM for you travels.

Where To Stay: For Seoul, I recommend Myeongdong (convenient), Hongdae (cool culture) or Gangnam (shopping). For Busan, Haeundae (Beach) or Seomyeon (Downtown).

Incheon Airport To Seoul: Take the Airport Express (AREX) to Seoul Station or a Limo Bus across Seoul. Book an Incheon Airport Private Transfer and relax to or from the airport.

Korean Tour Operators: Tour companies that have a big presence in Korea include Klook, Trazy, Viator, and Get Your Guide. These sites offer discounted entry tickets for top attractions.

Seoul City Passes: Visit Seoul’s top attractions for free with a Discover Seoul Pass or Go City Seoul Pass. These passes are great for families and couples visiting Seoul – you can save lots.

How To Get Around: For public transport, grab a T-Money Card. Save money on Korea’s high speed trains with a Korea Rail Pass. To see more of Korea, there are many rental car options from Klook, EconomyBookings, and RentalCars.

Travel Money: Use money exchanges near Myeongdong and Hongdae subway stations for the best exchange rates. Order a Wise Card or WOWPASS to pay by card across Korea.

Flights To Korea: I use flight comparison sites such as Expedia and Skyscanner to find the best flights to Korea from any country. Air Asia is a good option for budget flights from Asia.

Travel Insurance: It is important to insure your trips to protect yourself against the unexpected. World Nomad is a specialized travel insurance provider with options for different coverage for travellers from around the world. You can also purchase cover when you are already travelling.

How To Learn Korean: The language course from 90 Day Korean or Korean Class 101 both have well-structured lessons and lots of useful resources to help you learn Korean.

What To See And Do In Bukchon Hanok Village

Woman in Korean hanbok outside a hanok
Woman in Korean hanbok outside a hanok

One of the reasons the Bukchon Hanok Village is so appealing for tourists and locals alike is because there’s so much to see and do in this area. Whilst this is a residential area, there are also a load of open houses where you can explore the historic buildings and discover museums, galleries, cafes, or guesthouses. You’ll find yourself spoiled for choice with an array of things to do in Bukchon Hanok Village.

Here are 10 of the best things to see and do in Bukchon Hanok Village:

1. See Hanok Architecture: The very essence of Bukchon lies in its traditional hanok houses. Wander through the labyrinthine streets to admire these beautifully preserved structures, each with its unique charm and history. Be sure to visit the Bukchon Traditional Culture Center, where you can learn more about hanok architecture and its significance.

2. Wear Hanbok: Embrace the spirit of the past by donning a hanbok, Korea’s traditional attire. Numerous rental shops offer a wide selection of vibrant hanboks. Once dressed, explore the village like a Joseon-era noble, capturing timeless photos against the backdrop of historic hanok. You can rent Korean hanbok from many places in Bukchon Hanok Village or reserve hanbok online.

3. Visit The Bukchon Traditional Culture Center: The Bukchon Traditional Culture Center serves as an excellent introduction to the village’s history and culture. Here, you can enjoy informative exhibitions, cultural workshops, and guided tours that provide insights into the heritage of Bukchon.

4. Explore Galleries and Workshops: Discover the artistic side of Bukchon by visiting the numerous art galleries and craft workshops tucked away in the village. These spaces showcase local talent and offer opportunities to observe artisans creating traditional crafts like pottery, calligraphy, and more.

5. Check Out The Gahoe Museum: This museum is a hidden gem within Bukchon. It features exhibitions and displays that delve into the history and culture of the area, providing valuable insights into the traditions that have shaped Bukchon Hanok Village.

Traditional Tea House In Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul
Traditional Tea House In Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul

6. Dine At A Traditional Tea House: Sip on traditional Korean tea in one of Bukchon’s serene tea houses. These cozy spots provide a tranquil escape where you can enjoy not only aromatic teas but also the ambiance of a bygone era. If a cup of tea isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of cafes, too.

7. See The Sights From The Bukchon Observatory: For panoramic views of the village and its traditional rooftops, head to the Bukchon Observatory. This spot offers a unique vantage point to appreciate the hanok architecture and the charming alleys that wind through the village.

8. Buy Unique Souvenirs: The streets of Bukchon Hanok Village are home to aspiring and master artisans creating wonderful Korean traditional crafts, which are perfect gifts and souvenirs from your time in Seoul. Craft shopping is one of the most fun things to do in Bukchon Hanok Village.

9. Stroll In Samcheong Park: North of Bukchon Hanok Village, Samcheong Park provides a peaceful natural escape. Stroll through the parks, discover beautiful ponds, and enjoy a leisurely picnic while surrounded by nature. You should definitely visit here for autumn foliage sights in October.

10. Take A Bukchon Hanok Village Walking Tour: Embark on a walking tour of the village to explore its hidden gems. These expert guides will lead you through the winding streets, sharing captivating stories about historic hanoks, former residents, and the village’s transformation over time.

If you’re interested in taking a tour of Bukchon Hanok Village during the day or night, then check out these Bukchon Hanok Village tours. Alternatively, you can make your own way around the area, but you’ll miss out on the interesting insights provided by the guides and hidden areas they can show you.

These top attractions within Bukchon Hanok Village promise a diverse array of experiences, ensuring that you can find something captivating and memorable in this unique area of Seoul.

What’s The Best Way To Explore Bukchon Hanok Village?

Street in Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul

To truly savour the essence of Bukchon Hanok Village, I recommend not trying to rush your way through the area and instead plan some extra time to explore at your leisure. Start your exploration early in the morning or during the late afternoon to avoid the main crowds so you can experience the village at its most tranquil.

Begin at the Bukchon Traditional Culture Center and learn about the village’s history and architecture. Meander through the maze-like alleyways at your own pace and don’t be afraid to take some detours down side streets if they look interesting. Don’t be afraid to get lost; unexpected turns lead to the most delightful discoveries.

Visit the various galleries, workshops, and hidden museums that are dotted throughout the village and talk to any local artisans whenever the opportunity arises. There might be friendly locals who want to share their knowledge and insights into the area with you.

After a bit of time exploring, definitely don’t miss the chance to savour a traditional Korean tea or snack at one of the charming tea houses and cafés, where you can rest and absorb the atmosphere. If you’re hungry, check out one of the traditional Korean restaurants for meals such as kalguksu or sujebi.

Finally, ascend to the Bukchon Observatory for stunning panoramic views. To capture the village’s timeless beauty, keep your camera handy, as every corner reveals a picturesque scene. Consider joining a guided night tour to witness the village’s enchantment under the soft glow of lanterns.

Cafes And Restaurants In Bukchon Hanok Village

Traditional Korean Tea Ceremony Set
Traditional Korean Tea Ceremony Set

Culinary Delights in the Heart of Tradition: Bukchon Hanok Village is not just a feast for the eyes; it’s also a haven for food enthusiasts. While exploring this historical neighbourhood, you’ll find an array of delightful cafes and restaurants that cater to a variety of tastes.

From traditional Korean teas and delectable dumplings to modern fusion cuisine, Bukchon offers a diverse culinary landscape within its centuries-old hanok walls. This section introduces the best places to savour traditional & contemporary flavours, ensuring a treat for your taste buds and senses.

Here are 5 of the best cafes in Bukchon Hanok Village for you to relax and unwind in:

1: Drawing Tree Café

In the heart of Bukchon lies Drawing Tree Café, a cafe that perfectly encapsulates the blend of traditional charm and modern elegance found in this historic area. As the name suggests this café is not just a place to enjoy a drink, but an experience in itself. You can see the stunning grounds of Changdeokgung Palace from the windows of this cafe.

Why Visit: Apart from its majestic setting and delightful menu, what truly sets Drawing Tree Café apart is its commitment to preserving the area’s long-established legacy. Many ingredients are locally sourced, and traditional brewing methods are employed, ensuring an authentic Korean café experience.

서울 종로구 창덕궁길 35 3층

Korean Name:

Drawing Tree Café In Bukchon Seoul
Drawing Tree Café
Cha Masineun Tteul Café In Bukchon Seoul
Cha Masineun Tteul Café

2: Cha Masineun Tteul

Cha Masineun Tteul, translating to “A Garden Where One Drinks Tea”, perfectly describes what this café represents – a peaceful haven amidst Seoul’s urban hustle. Apart from being a café, Cha Masineun Tteul occasionally hosts traditional tea ceremonies. These ceremonies, led by tea masters, provide insights into the age-old Korean rituals and the art of tea appreciation.

Why Visit: This cafe isn’t just a place to drink tea; it’s a fun experience to add to your Seoul trip where youn can learn about the beauty in simplicity and the deep-rooted traditions of Korea. Each visit promises a journey of introspection, relaxation, and authentic Korean hospitality.

서울 종로구 북촌로11나길 26

Korean Name:

3: Cafe Knotted Anguk

As with other cafes in this area, Cafe Knotted Anguk doubles as a gallery space, showcasing works from emerging local artists and offers visitors the chance to enjoy a good brew with artistic views. This initiative not only supports the art community but also enriches the cafe experience.

Why Visit: Cafe Knotted Anguk is more than just a place to relax with art and coffee, there are some really sweet, delicious donuts here which this cafe chain are famous for. These round buns are stuffed full of cream, jams, sauces, and lots of other sweet fillings. There are also cakes and other sweet treats to indulge in.

서울 종로구 북촌로 6-3 1층

Korean Name:
노티드 안국

Knotted Café In Bukchon Seoul
Knotted Café
Osulloc Tea House In Bukchon Seoul
Osulloc Tea House

4: Osulloc Tea House Bukchon

Originating from Jeju Island and renowned for its premium teas, the Osulloc Tea House from Osulloc, provides a harmonious blend of tradition and modernity. Look out the wide windows and gaze out into the scenic vistas of Bukchon, which certainly enhance the tea-drinking experience. This tea house occasionally hosts traditional tea ceremonies, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in Korean tea culture.

Why Visit: The Osulloc Tea House offers you the chance to experience the many different ways green tea has been used in Korean food and drink culture. From a wide range of delicious green teas, to soft and thick ice creams, wafers, and even luxurious chocolates, if you’re a fan of green tea, you’ll love the Osulloc Tea House in Bukchon.

서울 종로구 북촌로 45 오설록

Korean Name:
오설록 티하우스 북촌점

5: Low Roof Café

Low Roof, true to its name, is a cozy, intimate space with minimalistic decor, characterised by muted colour palettes and warm wooden touches. One of the unique features of Low Roof is its rooftop seating area. Overlooking the picturesque Bukchon Hanok Village, this space allows visitors to take in panoramic views of the area, making the coffee experience even more memorable.

Why Visit: Despite the deceptive street-facing exterior, with square lines of concrete, you’ll find a charming central garden area with hanok buildings, a delicately crafted Korean garden, and a cosy spot to enjoy one of the many sweet treats and the cafe’s signature cream latte. This place is great for visiting in summer with lots of outdoor seating and photogenic backgrounds to pose in front of.

서울 종로구 북촌로 46-1 1층

Korean Name:

Selection of Korean dishes at traditional restaurant

Bukchon Hanok Village is a food-lover’s dream full of Korean flavours. The restaurants here are tucked away in centuries-old houses, offering you an experience that’s as much about the architecture as it is about the traditional Korean food. From royal cuisine to fusion food that mixes modern and traditional dishes together, Bukchon’s dining scene is an exploration of Korea’s culinary heritage.

Here are 5 of the best restaurants in Bukchon Hanok Village to try delicious dishes:

1: Ggul Bap-Sang

If you want a really royal experience from your trip to Bukchon Hanok Village, then you should definitely pop into Ggul Bap-Sang and try a traditional set meal that’s fit for a king or queen. You can experience a wide spread of carefully crafted dishes served on traditional bronze plates with over a dozen side dishes (banchan) to sample. This is certainly a place to go for those iconic Korean food pics.

Bap-Sang (Traditional Set Meals): This restaurant takes pride in its meticulously crafted set meals, where each dish complements the next, resulting in a harmonious culinary symphony. From flavourful main courses to vibrant side dishes, each plate promises a unique taste sensation.

서울 종로구 삼청로 101 1층

Korean Name:

Korean royal court cuisine
Korean royal court cuisine
Bowl of Seollongtang in Seoul
Bowl of seollongtang

2: Eunseol Seolleongtang

Eunseol Seolleongtang will introduce you to the timeless appeal of Korean broths and show you why these steaming bowls are so popular in Korea, especially during the cold winter months. Each simmering pot is packed full of hearty ingredients that compliment the hot broth. This place isn’t just suitable for winter, however, as the cool air conditioning will provide welcome relief in summer.

Seolleongtang: A heartwarming, milky-white broth made from slow-cooked ox bones, this is Eunseol Seolleongtang’s signature dish. The broth’s depth of flavour, achieved through hours of simmering, beautifully complements tender slices of meat and soft rice. As well as seolleongtang, there are other soups and stews containing different cuts of beef and unique seasoning profiles.

서울 종로구 북촌로5가길 44-6

Korean Name:

3: Samcheong Sujebi

Samcheong Sujebi, listed in the Michelin Guide 2023, will make you feel like you’ve entered into a friendly Korean family’s house for a nutritious family dinner that everyone will love. This busy restaurant doesn’t offer a wide menu, but what it does offer it does perfectly. Find out why this restaurant is so highly reviewed and awarded for yourself and satisfy your stomach and taste buds.

Sujebi (Hand-torn Noodle Soup): A dish that will warm your heart. The chewy noodles, immersed in a comforting broth, have a wonderful texture that sits between soft and gummy.

Seasonal Banchan: Accompanying the main dishes is an array of banchan (side dishes) that change with the seasons, showcasing the freshest ingredients and intricate preparations.

서울 종로구 삼청로 101-1

Korean Name:

Samcheong Sujebi in Seoul (1)
Samcheong sujebi
Hwangsaengga Kalguksu in Bukchon Hanok Village
Hwangsaengga kalguksu

4: Hwangsaengga Kalguksu

A trip to Hwangsaengga Kalgusku, another entry in the 2023 Michelin Guide, will be a treat for lovers of authentic Korean noodle dishes. Hwangsaengga Kalguksu, a restaurant steeped in history, offers you the chance to enjoy a heart-warming bowl of one of my favourite Korean dishes – kalguksu. If you’re visiting Korea in winter, then you’ll really appreciate the energy these thick, knife-cut noodles provide.

Kalguksu (Knife-cut Noodles): The star of the menu, this dish showcases noodles that are hand-cut, boasting a unique texture and freshness. Submerged in a rich, aromatic broth and accompanied by an array of ingredients, these noodles never fail to restore energy lost from a busy day exploring Seoul.

서울 종로구 북촌로5길 78

Korean Name:

5: Kkangtong Mandu

Kkangtong Mandu is a real delight for those who want to sample genuine Korean dumplings. The restaurant’s interior is both cozy and authentically Korean. Aside from the classic dumplings, Kkangtong Mandu offers an array of signature dishes that highlight Korea’s culinary richness. The steamed buns and noodle soups are must-tries.

Mandu (Dumplings): These dumplings are a flavour-packed marvel. These bite-sized delights are filled with a mix of succulent meats, vegetables, and seasoned to perfection, promising a symphony of textures and flavours with each bite.

서울 종로구 북촌로2길 5-6 1층

Korean Name:

Cafe and restaurant image credits: Naver Map

Museums And Galleries In Bukchon Hanok Village

Gallery in Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul
Gallery in Bukchon Hanok Village Seoul

No visit to Bukchon Hanok Village would be complete without checking out one of the many art galleries and museums inside the historic hanok buildings. These small treasure troves of Korean culture and history offer a glimpse into life in Joseon-era Korean that you won’t find elsewhere.

Here are 5 must-visit museums and galleries in Bukchon Hanok Village for culture vultures:

1. Bukchon Traditional Culture Center: A pivotal starting point for any visitor, the Bukchon Traditional Culture Center showcases the rich history and culture of Bukchon Hanok Village. It offers exhibits on the village’s evolution, traditional architecture, and the lifestyle of its early inhabitants.

  • Highlight: Don’t miss the traditional craft workshops where you can experience and learn age-old Korean artistic techniques.

2. Han Sangsu Embroidery Museum: This museum is dedicated to the intricate art of Korean embroidery, celebrating the legacy of Han Sangsu, a renowned embroidery master.

  • Highlight: Be captivated by the exquisite details of traditional garments, screens, and accessories, each telling a tale of dedication and craftsmanship.

3. Kumho Museum of Art: Positioned in a beautifully restored hanok, this museum is a haven for contemporary art lovers. It hosts rotating exhibitions, featuring new and established Korean artists.

  • Highlight: Explore the contrast of modern art set against the backdrop of traditional architecture, creating a unique and immersive experience.

4. Gahoe Museum: Dive deep into the world of traditional Korean paintings and amulets at the Gahoe Museum. It boasts a collection of over 1,500 artifacts, including folk paintings and talismanic images.

  • Highlight: Join the museum’s hands-on workshops where you can try your hand at creating traditional Korean paintings or crafting personal amulets.

5. Dong-Lim Knot Museum: Dedicated to Korea’s intricate art of decorative knotting, the Dong-Lim Knot Museum unravels the history, techniques, and evolution of maedeup (Korean knotting). Founded by the master knot-maker, Sim Yeong-mi, the museum offers a deep dive into this unique craft.

  • Highlight: Engage in interactive workshops where you can learn the basics of maedeup, crafting your own decorative knots to take home as treasured souvenirs.

Exploring Bukchon Hanok Village is like stepping into a living museum where every alley, door, and stone carries a story. But to truly grasp the cultural depth and artistic vibrancy of this enclave, a visit to these museums and galleries is a must. Just be careful not to accidentally enter someone’s house!

What To Buy In Bukchon Hanok Village

Bukchon Hanok Village Sign with Korean Hanbok

Souvenir shoppers or those looking for a memento from their time in Seoul will love the various traditional gifts for sale in Bukchon Hanok Village. The streets pulsate with the vibrant energy of local artisans and vendors, each stall offering a piece of Bukchon’s soul at great prices.

From handcrafted jewellery and traditional Korean clothing, like hanbok, to intricate wooden crafts and artisanal ceramics, Bukchon’s shops are a treasure trove for those seeking authentic souvenirs. Delicate Korean fans, decorative knots (maedeup), and hand-painted scrolls are popular finds.

As you stroll, also indulge in local delicacies and teas, adding flavours to your Bukchon memories. The street markets here aren’t just about shopping; they’re about immersing yourself in a rich cultural experience, bringing home tangible memories of a place where tradition meets the present.

Traditional Korean Souvenir
Traditional Korean Souvenir

Beyond the architectural gems and scenic views of Bukchon Hanok Village, visitors can find a unique shopping experience, encapsulating the essence of traditional Korean culture. If you’re not sure what to bring back for your friends and families, these suggestions will help you out.

Here are the top 5 stores selling gifts and souvenirs that every visitor to Bukchon will love:

1. Hanbok Boutiques: Embrace the elegance of Korea’s traditional attire at various hanbok boutiques dotted across the village. Must-buy: Purchase or rent a vibrant hanbok, adorned with intricate designs, and roam the streets of Bukchon for an authentic Korean experience.

2. Traditional Craftwork Stores: These artisanal hubs showcase Korea’s rich heritage of crafts, from woodworking to pottery. Must-buy: Hand-carved wooden trinkets, ornate ceramic vases, and delicate fabric crafts make for timeless souvenirs.

3. Local Tea Houses: Snuggled within the historic nooks of Bukchon are quaint tea houses that offer an array of traditional Korean teas and brews. Must-buy: Packaged traditional teas like green tea, ginseng tea, and herbal blends. Also, don’t miss out on beautifully crafted tea sets.

4. Artisan Jewelry Shops: Craftsmen in Bukchon take pride in crafting exquisite jewelry pieces that marry traditional motifs with contemporary designs. Must-buy: Unique handcrafted necklaces, earrings, and bracelets adorned with Korean symbols and patterns.

5. Korean Paper (Hanji) Stores: Hanji, traditional Korean paper, is both durable and versatile. Bukchon’s Hanji stores offer products ranging from stationery to decorative items. Must-buy: Handmade Hanji notebooks, lanterns, and wall hangings.

With its harmonious blend of history and commerce, Bukchon Hanok Village provides a shopping experience like no other. As you walk the ancient pathways, let the artistry of traditional Korean craftsmanship captivate you, and ensure you carry a piece of Bukchon back home.

Whether it’s the rustle of a hanbok, the warmth of a cup of traditional tea, or the intricate details of a wooden artefact, each souvenir is a memory etched in time from this mesmerising village.

Hanok Stays In Bukchon Hanok Village

Inside a Hanok Stay In Seoul
Inside a Hanok Stay In Seoul

if you really want an authentic Korean experience, why not book a stay in a traditional Korean hanok? Some of the hanok in Bukchon Hanok Village have been converted into hotels or hostels and will provide you with the chance to sleep and relax as Koreans did many years ago.

Korean families traditionally slept on futons on the floor and used a system of underground heating (ondol) to keep warm in winter. This system is still in place today and you can experience it with a hanok stay. Don’t worry, rooms come with modern conveniences, so life won’t be as hard as before.

From the quaint courtyards of traditional guesthouses to the inviting ambiance of local hostels, Bukchon Hanok Village offers an array of hanok accommodations that promise not just a place to rest, but a cultural immersion into Korea’s storied past. You’ll also get a delicious traditional breakfast.

Here are the top 5 hanok accommodations in Bukchon that promise a memorable stay:

1. Rakkojae Seoul: This luxury hanok guesthouse immerses its guests in Korea’s rich cultural heritage. With traditional wooden interiors, ancient ondol floor heating, authentic tea ceremony, and a tranquil courtyard garden, the ambiance is a step back into Korea’s Joseon dynasty era.

2. Moon Hanok Guesthouse: A delightful blend of the historic and the contemporary, Moon Guesthouse offers the charm of living in a traditional hanok with modern amenities. Participate in Korean cultural activities organized by the guesthouse, from craftwork to culinary sessions.

3. Bukchonmaru Hanok Guesthouse: Reflecting Bukchon’s timeless beauty, this guesthouse provides a panoramic view of the village and Seoul’s iconic Namsan Tower from its rooftop. Wake up to a sumptuous traditional Korean breakfast, prepared with seasonal ingredients.

4. Cheong Yeon Jae Hanok Stay: This beautifully preserved hanok allows guests to experience Korean culture intimately through charming woodwork and papered windows. Enjoy a serene morning in the guesthouse’s quaint courtyard garden, a perfect spot for relaxation and meditation.

5. Hanok 24 Guesthouse: Hanok 24 presents a harmonious blend of traditional architecture with modern amenities, ensuring a comfortable stay for travellers. The guesthouse often holds traditional music nights, letting guests experience the melodic beauty of Korea’s musical heritage.

Let the whispers of the past lull you to sleep and the melodies of the present greet you each morning as you immerse yourself in the enchanting world of Bukchon Hanok Village. In case these aren’t to your liking, there are plenty of other great hotels in nearby Myeongdong.

Places To Visit Near Bukchon Hanok Village

Gyeongbokgung Palace At Night in Seoul
Gyeongbokgung Palace At Night

While Bukchon Hanok Village itself is a mesmerising tapestry of history and culture, the surrounding areas of Seoul also hold many treasures waiting to be discovered. If you’re looking to broaden your itinerary and explore beyond the village’s boundaries, why not add these hot-spots to your plans.

My personal recommendation for visiting Bukchon Hanok Village as part of a 1-day trip around central Seoul includes visiting at least one royal palace, Insadong Art Street, Jogyesa Temple, and the Cheonggyecheon Stream. You can easily see all of these in one day at a slow pace.

Here are 10 nearby attractions to Bukchon Hanok Village that are simply unmissable:

1. Gyeongbokgung Palace: A shining example of Joseon Dynasty architecture, this sprawling palace complex once served as the royal residence. Don’t miss the changing of the guard ceremony at the main gate, which happens several times a day. You get free entry if you’re wearing hanbok.

2. Changdeokgung Palace and Huwon (Secret Garden): Another Joseon Dynasty marvel, this palace is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The adjoining Huwon (Secret Garden) is a serene oasis in the heart of the city and one of my top recommendations for autumn leaves in Seoul.

3. Insadong: A vibrant neighbourhood known for its traditional crafts, tea houses, and art galleries. Perfect for picking up souvenirs and experiencing Korea’s artistic spirit. Be sure to check out weird and wonderful places like the Poop Cafe and fun attractions like the Dynamic Maze.

4. Samcheong-dong: A harmonious blend of the traditional and the modern, this area is filled with cafes, boutiques, and art galleries, all set against a backdrop of beautiful hanok. A favourite of mine is the Owl Museum, a quirky museum dedicated to sharing owl souvenirs from around the world.

5. Jogyesa Temple: A symbol of Korean Buddhism, this tranquil temple offers a peaceful retreat from the bustling city and boasts beautiful lotus lanterns, especially during the Buddha’s birthday celebrations. There are often flower displays throughout the year and cultural attractions to marvel at.

Jogyesa Temple In Seoul
Jogyesa Temple In Seoul

6. Seoul Museum of History: Dive deep into the city’s past and explore exhibits detailing Seoul’s transformation from a historic capital to a modern metropolis. If it starts raining in Seoul, this is a great place to stay dry and also learn about local history at the same time.

7. Cheonggyecheon Stream: Once a neglected waterway, it’s now a rejuvenated urban park, perfect for leisurely strolls and evening walks amidst light installations. Head to the start at Gwanghwamun Station and you’ll find a bizarre giant shell statue. This area hosts night markets in the summer.

8. Unhyeongung Royal Residence: Once home to a Joseon prince, this residence provides insights into royal life during the 19th century. During spring and autumn, this historic site hosts a reenactment of King Gojong and Empress Myeongseong’s royal wedding, which was held in 1866.

9. Tongin Market: This traditional market boasts an array of stalls selling delicious Korean street food, produce, and trinkets. A highlight is the “Dosirak Cafe” or “Lunchbox Cafe,” where visitors can use old-fashioned Korean brass coins to buy local delicacies and create their own custom lunchbox.

10. Jeongdok Public Library: A sanctuary for book lovers, this public library, set amidst lush green surroundings, is a great spot to unwind and delve into Korean literature. Grab a takeout coffee from one of the nearby cafes and relax here with a book or plan the next stop of your Seoul adventure.

Expanding your journey around Bukchon allows you to truly capture the multifaceted beauty of Seoul. From royal palaces echoing tales of yore to urban escapes offering solace in the midst of the city, the attractions around Bukchon promise a rich tapestry of experiences you’ll never forget.

Tips For Visiting Bukchon Hanok Village

I’ve explored Bukchon Hanok Village dozens of times in all different seasons. It’s the kind of place that draws you to it’s beautiful streets even when you’ve seen them before. I want to share some tips to help you get the most out of your visit. I hope they help you.

Here are my 5 essential tips for visiting Bukchon Hanok Village

1. Respect the Residents: Remember, Bukchon Hanok Village is not just a tourist attraction, it’s a living community. Many of the hanok are private residences. Avoid loud noises, don’t intrude on private properties, and always be respectful to the local inhabitants.

2. Wear Comfortable Footwear: The village is characterised by its winding alleyways and hilly terrain. Make sure you wear comfortable walking shoes to easily navigate the cobblestone streets and steep inclines. This applies to your whole trip as you’ll find you walk a lot more than normal.

3. Visit Early or Late: Bukchon Hanok Village can get quite crowded, especially during weekends and holidays. To truly appreciate its serene beauty, try visiting early in the morning or later in the afternoon. This way, you can avoid the peak tourist hours and enjoy a more peaceful exploration.

4. Participate in a Hanok Experience: There are several places in the village that offer cultural programs where you can experience traditional Korean activities such as tea ceremonies, calligraphy, or wearing a Hanbok (traditional Korean attire). Participating will provide a deeper understanding and appreciation of Korean culture and offer you some amazing photo opportunities, too.

5. Guided Tours Are Available: To gain a comprehensive understanding of the village’s history and architecture, consider joining one of the many guided tours available. Some are even free! They provide invaluable insights that you might miss if exploring on your own.

Whether you’re wandering the streets or diving deep into Korea’s rich cultural history, keeping these tips in mind will ensure your visit to Bukchon Hanok Village is enjoyable and respectful. Embrace the village’s timeless beauty and let its tales of the past whisk you away on a captivating journey.

Support In My Korea

Thanks for reading. If you want to help me to create more great content in the future, why not buy me a coffee? A strong coffee helps me write more and is a simple way to show gratitude for this free content.

Buy Me A Coffee
Buy a coffee for Joel at In My Korea

Liked This? Pin It For Others

If you enjoyed reading this article, then please share this with your friends on Pinterest.

Related Articles

Joel Marrinan Profile Picture
About the author

Hi! My name is Joel, I'm the author of In My Korea and writer of this article. I've lived, worked and travelled in Korea since 2015 and want to share my insights, stories and tips to help you have the best experience during your trip to Korea.

I love learning more about Korean culture, hiking the many mountains, and visiting all the coolest places in Korea, both modern and traditional. If you want to know more about my story, check out the 'about me' section to learn why I love living in Korea.

Leave a comment

Share to...