This establishment is a breath of fresh air in my opinion. But its name is a contentious issue.
Often its called 'the Bar' by many because above the door is a sign that says the bar (even though this is the name of a bar above). Others call it 'Bar 33' because this is apparently what the new management has dubbed it. But others (the Seoul oldies - like me) call it 'Norae Hanun Saramdul' And this is the name still above the door. Although the sign itself is in Korean characters and made of nailed pieces of birch. But this sign sets the scene.
As you descend the stairs you will see dim lights, loud retro music and what I love most, Koreans and Westers mixing socially.
Beer is cheap and sold by the pitcher or the pint. Cocktails are rudimentary, the winelist (do they have one?). But you can request any song you can think of (they have it.. and if they don't they'll download it.) And then when you drink to much and need the bathroom, you can ascend the stairs and experience something quite sobering.
This bar is one of my faves. I've coming here on and off for quite awhile.
Dress Code: Dress how you want. You'll blend in withthe graffiti that way.
It's a tiny venue, seating maybe 200-250 people...just perfect for newer acts or if you want a more intimate scene.
I saw The Koreans there in Fall of 2004...had no idea what to expect from the place. I think it may also be used for plays and such (judging from its website) also.
Dress Code: Depends on the act, I gather.
Ok, this is not probably supposed to be in 'Nightlife' but I usually went here before, during or after a nighit out. It's just fantastic.
Bascially it's a bing-soo (Korean dish also popularin Taiwan and many other Asian countries in different forms) place but a chain (Ice Berry is another one) and it's good. They take shaved ice, add yoghurt to it and top it with your choice of 2,3,4 or 5 fruits. Mmmmm. Gettin ghungry just thinking about it.
In front of the University of Hong-eek, there are a lot of bars and clubs. Usually the street is packed with people who seek for good fun for the night on the weekends..
The last friday of everymonth is called club day. On the day, if you pay about 15 US$ you will get a white band. With the white band around your arm, you can enter around 10 clubs for free, and have free beer, coke etc as much as you want. ( unless you order something real posh.. ) Once you get there, you can get all those available clubs' info pretty handy.
Well... However, since almost every club's jammed with people, you gotta keep special eye on your belongings, and also be careful of drunk-violent people, too. I wouldn't recommend going there all by yourself.
you can get there by subway, line2, come out from the gate 6, it's about 10 min walk away.
Dress Code: Whatever suits you is alright
Han is a very big river that runs through the center of the city. It was full moon then and the night views of the Seoul lights created a dreamy effect...I run out of adjectives!
At the grassy areas along the river, there are several food stands located that sell beverages and snacks. Many of these shops are open 24 hours.
Sorry if the picture is blurred...I was shivering while taking that shot hahaha.
Info from Korea Travel Guide:
A symbol of Seoul, the Han River runs through Seoul east to west, with an average depth of 2.5m and width of 175m. The river is crossed by 23 bridges and there are excursion boats plying between Yeouido and Jamsil.
At 12 different points along the 41.5km-long riverbank are Hangang Riverside Parks equipped with sports facilities such as soccer and baseball fields, volleyball and basketball courts and swimming pools. Facilities for water skiing, yachting, boating and fishing are also available.
Dress Code: Wear a nice comfortable pair of walking shoes and warm jacket. The night can be sooo cold.
I think when I read the card for this I mis-read it as the Benny Hill show. I mean, who wouldn't want to see that, right? unfortunately Benny hill died in the 90's and I went to the Walker Hill show instead. I only say unfortunately because it was so expensive.
The show itself is actually pretty neat. There is a lot of traditional Korean folk music, and dance, and if you get the meal package, the meal is very nice. Plus, there are ladies in skimpy clothing during the "rock show" which is always something that the Kdoc enjoys. (read that as, kdoc desperately needs a girlfriend.)
There are 2 shows nightly, one at 5pm the other around 9. Costs range from 60,000 won to 90,000, depending on whether you want just wine, or a four course meal and decent seating.
Dress Code: It is a nicer show. I wore a suit and was not at all out of place.
Nanta means "hard pounding" in Korean so as you can guess, the theatre production "Nanta" is a percussion comedy show similar to something like "Stomp" or "Tapdogs" but using kitchen equipment. It's about this group of chefs in a restaurant that have only an hour to make a banquet. Anyway they use real food on stage and had real soup which they got a couple of people from the audience to sample and the percussion includes knives on wooden blocks, pots and pans and whisks in collanders etc etc. It was extremely good and very very funny. It's a must see in Korea.
Dress Code: casual
This place is good, prettty much better than any other club in Korea.
Volume brings in many of the world's higher ranked DJs, and the Friday/Saturday entrance fee reflects this. Entrance is usually 20,000 won before 11pm, with a free drink. After 11pm, price is 30,000 won with a free drink.
DJ spins in the center of a large LED lightbank displying visuals. Interior is multi tiered, with the second floor reserved for VIPs.
Mixed drinks are not cheap, over 10,000. Heinekens are only 5,000 each.
Atmosphere inside was great! Everybody out for a good time, and friendly...
The entrance fee discourages both the military guys and Koreans that like to get drunk and cause a rukus from going.
Dress Code: They have a sign ay the entrance, saying "Dress code: Club Trendy".
A bit more upscale than the typical gungy Itaewan or Hongdae club, but I still got in wearing jeans and a Tshirt. Very similar to Apgujeong clubs. Dress to impress.
Want salsa, but too new to adventure?
This is for you. They have free lessons almost everyday, and once you learn the basic steps, half is already done.
ok ok. I am a bit exaggerating. but it's true that they have free lessons everyday, I am very new though, and also I don't think I was talented about dancing, but was a great fun to be there. There are also many warm-hearted people, who'd be willing to dance with you even htough you can only do basic things.. =)
Dress Code: whatever suits you the best. you can also bring your clothes there and get changed int he club. =)
If you go out drinking with Koreans, prepare to consume a lot of soju. Soju is that national drink, and it comes in small bottles of clear liquid. It is not as strong as vodka or gao liang, with an alcohol level of about 25%, but if you drink it in the copious amounts that some Koreans do, you'll be buzzing nonetheless.
Drinking with Koreans comes with its own set of customs, the most important of which is that you never pour your own glass. If your neighbor's glass is empty, he is expecting you to fill it (but would never ask). Once you top him off, he'll return the favor.
If you are being required to drink more than you can hold, it is possible to sneak water into your soju glass and get away with a few shots of H2O if no one is looking. But if you get caught, be prepared to drink enough soju to more than make up for what you skipped.
I have seen many performances of traditional and folk music in many countries over the years but this has to be one of the best. 80 minutes of excellent music that goes way beyond Pan-gut (but don’t worry, it includes that as well!) including some stunning musical performances that show how dynamic and varied Korean music can be.
The theatre was filled for the performance, and most people seemed to be Koreans, suggeting that there is a great domestic appetite for Korean traditional music.
Each day, the orchestras play the SamulNori (including a contemporary composition), the Buchaechum or Fan Dance, the O-gomu (the spectacular five drums dance) and the Pang Gut.
On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays you also et the Sanjo Ensemble, the Hwagwanmu or Flower Dance and The Gayagum. On Wednesdays, Fridsys and Sundays these are replaced with the Court Music Ensemble, Taepyungmu, and an exhibition of Pansori Korean opera.
Woodstock is a tiny, dingy place. The music is loud and the place is usually packed. The music is by request and you can hear anything from The Doors to Britney in the same night. This is a great place to let go and dance and drink pitchers of beer.
Itaewon is a place where quite a reasonable number of South Koreans speak English because of the American presence there.
This is because ~ I have never see American Military Police (8 of them) going round each bar/shopping outlet in full military gear Exerting/Showing their presence and keeping the "Peace" in another sovereign country like South Korea
Apart from this there are loads of shops selling wares which can easilt obtained in Dongdaemun. Comparitively more expensive then other places but the has the ADVANTAGE of nightlife which unrivalled in other spots.
I did not spend a lot of time here but some people enjoyed it.
Dress Code: Usual wear.
Seoul is a conservative city, but also one that is changing fast, and its small - but heady - gay scene is a perfect illustration . Tucked between a mosque and Itaewon`s hiphop-blasting ghetto-fabulous red light district is "Homo Hill" : a cluster of bars and clubs offering Seoul`s best night out, in an unparralleled exotic location.
Make no mistake, Korean boys work hard but they party harder! If you are coming from Tokyo (as I did) you might well be shocked -pleasantly! - by the jostling dancefloors and the upfront , outgoing attitude.
On Summer nights clubbers take breaks between bars, hang with their friends and flirt on the cobblestoned street outside- a cool, cruisy vibe!Often theres as much fun going on on the streets as inside!
There are two dance clubs - "G" is the best. Recommmended for funky house music and a fun crowd (tip: the pretty fashionista boys congregate in the left hand corner by the airconditioner). "Why Not?" , a few doors up, is small and hella cruisy. If you cant pick up here, give up. Poppier music.
"Queen" is a charming, chilled bar directly opposite. Go here first, enjoy the dirt-cheap happy hour and then head off for a night of dancing."Soho" is a relaxed, sophisticated bar/restaurant , good for intimate dates.
Scattered around Itaewon there are a few other gay haunts - ask around. "Heaven" is particularly recommended. An art deco theme, (ironic?) show tunes blaring, a charmingly flirtatious tapdancing barman and regular fondue nights make this a novel addition to Seoul`s scene.
For fun of a more , ahem, intimate kind, there are several "saunas" around the Hill. One is in the middle of the African street (see: "Itaewon" must see page), halfway up, next to a Pakistani restaurant, Look for the "sauna" symbol...but be ready for anything- its rough-as-hell, with absolutely no frills, and not for the faint of heart!!!
Still, a taste of Seoul`s fast emerging (and hard-living) gay scene may well provide your most exotic, and exciting memories, of the city.
Dress Code: None
If you are shopping for clothes, shoes and any fashion items, Dongdaemun nicht market complex is the place to go. There's a stage right outside the buildings and often live music to get the crowd. Even if you are not shopping, it's an experience.
Dress Code: anything goes