Dongdaemun is a shopping area comprised of thousands of small shops. Some of them are the usual sidwalk affairs, but there are dozens of buildings with hundreds of stalls offering just about any kind of clothing you can think. Additionally, there is the largest fabric shop in the world where if you can think of a pattern, color, or material, it will likely be there and at a much reduced price. Most of the shops inside the buildings are closed on Sundays, but Sundays are the best time for the best bargains. If you come in at Dongdaemun Stadium station, you will exit near the stadium. Keep the stadium on your right until you are completely past it. Hang a right until you come to the street that is nearly blocked with sidewalk shops. There, you can buy a backpack for a dollar, a nice dress shirt for 2 or 3. Dresses that would cost 80-100 USD can be had for 10. Closeouts, overstocks, season changes will cut your clothing price by up to 90%.
You use the new river as a guide. Two years ago, this was a 6 lane highway. It was hidden underneath. When the officials decided the highway was overstressed, they decided to remove it and restore the river.
Do NOT sit down at any of the sidewalk eateries though. The food is good, safe, tasty and twice the price. Instead, orient towards the gate with the stadium at your back. Cross the street then go to the huge street by the gate (Chongno) and turn left. A few blocks down you will find restaurants in all of the little alleys.
Bargaining is expected in most places, but in the second large green building on the second floor where the leather goods are sold, there is little bargaining. It is mostly Russian, and they set a price and don't budge much. Interspersed along clothing shops that line the sidewalks, you will find watches, wallets, purses, notebooks, shoe polish, and too much else to list. Here, you can bargain. Bring cash, no credit cards accepted in most places-none at the sidewalk shops.
The original east gate for the walled city of Seoul was the Gate of Uplifting Mercy (coming in from our rural abode in Kangwando province, it centainly was merciful to us).The current structure dates from 1869. On top of the arch-shaped gate is a gatehouse. A circular surrounding wall protects against flooding. Today the gate is best known for being adjacent the huge East Gate Market with thousands of vendors.
During the day (after 11am) this area is bustling with energy. During all hours of the night especially after midnight (Friday/Saturday) you can shop here at the night market. It's set up along the street behind one of the stadiums.
There are two stadiums near the Dongdaemun (East gate), one of which is the old soccer stadium. If you go inside there is a flea market with an assortment of things (I think only during the day time it's open).
Pretty much you can shop in the underground shopping areas (Pyeongwha market) for goods such as material, yarn, buttons, hats, etc. This is where the wholesale for clothing takes place. You will spend hours here.
If you prefer shopping in a building you can go to Doota, Hello APm, or Migliore from 10/11am until 5am (I think) I do know that shopping is an all night event.
When you get hungry there are also many places to choose from...street food or restaurants (mostly all Korean foods)
The street food is always available also. Vendors all along both stadiums and also around a few streets are PACKED with ajummas who want you to sit in their tent. All of the food is reasonably priced and you can get a bottle of soju as you sit in the tent with the ajossis (old men) and their friends after a long days work.
If you walk north toward the Dongdaemun (East gate) you will run into the Cheonggyecheon (Cheonggye stream) you can stroll along that for a couple of miles either toward City Hall or in the opposite direction toward the Han river (not as scenic).
Dongdaemun is a very large shopping area, bustling with life any time of the day or night. Yup, it's any die hard shopper's dream: 24 hours of action! You can buy almost anything you dream up in this shopping district. There are 30 malls housing 27,000 shops, and hundreds of street vendors which come out mostly at night, starting at 10 p.m. You can find clothes, shoes, bags, belts,sun glasses, accessories, underwear, towels, bedsheets, second-hand books, yarn, fabric, household goods....get the picture? Enjoy the outdoor entertainment and fashion shows held at the stages located right outside the three bussiest malls: Doota, Migliore, and Freya Town.
Because different places are open at different times, your best bet would be to pick up your free Dongdaemun Market Shopping Guide from the Tourist Information office located right outside the Dongdaemun stadium.
The Pungmul Flea Market, located in the Dongdaemun stadium itself, is a very interesting Sunday afternoon outing. You can find anything from musical instruments to weapons to dildos (this last one is not a typo).
Dongdaemun Gate, Originally called Heung-injimun ("Gate of Uplifting Mercy") used to served as the main eastern gate in the wall surrounding Seoul. First built in 1397. The present Dong-daemun Gate was completely rebuilt when Daewongun (father of King Gojong of the Joseon Dynasty) was in power (in 1863). The present gate is slightly larger than the original one. The architectural structure is similar to that of Namdaemun Gate. But Dongdaemun, which was constructed in the late era the Joseon Dynasty, is excessively detailed.
Dongdaemun is distinguished from other gates by a half-moon outer baffle wall, built in a semicircle to entrap enemies who tried to enter the gate.The base is a granite structure with a single arch, above which is wooden superstructure in the form of a two-storied pavilion, five-gan (a measure of the distance between two pillars) wide and two-gan deep, with a hipped roof. There is much ornamentation in the pavilion design, displaying the skill of the Joseon Dynasty-era artisans. The tongue-shaped ornamentation atop the columns is typical of the wooden architecture of the late Joseon period.
Located nearby are Dongdaemun Market (one of Korea's largest and most popular) and Dongdaemun Sports Stadium.
Dongdaemun is Korea's largest wholesale and retail shopping district has 26 shopping malls, 30,000 specialty shops, and 50,000 manufacturers.
You can buy silks, clothes, shoes, sporting goods, plumbing and electrical supplies, electronics, office supplies, toys and just about almost everything.
The Great East Gate market. So whats really great about this market?
Well, lots ~ like all those who have been here. Its a mind boggling market selling anything from shoes to undergarments.
For me, its the SHOES!
I got my shoes from the shoes market (naturally). The price was soooooo good. A pair for 22000 won (after bargaining like a mad fool) which is about US$22.
You can easily get to this place by Subway
A landmark not to be missed.
You will see this upon exiting the Dongdaemun Subway station. You have to use the subway to get here.
You can be like the old couple in the background of this photo, fully appreciating its wonder and awe! And they are sweet!
You can buy many kinds of luxury products fake and authentic in a low price. Dong Dae Moon top 2 places are DOO TA TOWER and MILLIORE TOWER >
Doo TA Tower B2 , is famous for it and
if you focus on buying bags, 7 or 8 floor .
Dongdaemun is often described as the largest market in Asia, but its not. Its a whole city district, filled with seemingly innumerable specialist bazaars, multi-level shopping centres, and crowds 24 hours a day. Its one of Seoul`s absolute highlights.
Dongdaemun means "The East Gate" - named after the historic relic you see standing at the entrance. Its stood, been bombed, torn down, reconstructed, damaged, bickered over, and now photographed, for hundreds of years. A true city icon. Stretching behind it is the vast labyrinth of Dongdaemun.
My tips: the lovely Sunday flower market
The pet market :iguanas and occassionally
The stationery market : frilly, girly writing pads,
sparkly pens and stickers
The magazine market : old and new Japanese, Korean and
European fashion magazines.
There are two malls called APM. The main one is so-so, but the slightly hidden smaller one is a rough diamond . Its behind the stadium and open only at night( dont arrive before 10pm!!!) . Come here first to get an idea of prices and the latest designs -you`ll often see the same clothes recycled in other malls for double the price ! Its a rough, no-frills place but as an added bonus the shop owners and customers comprise many of Seoul`s hottest young dudes..another kind of "shopping"....hehehe
Of the big centres, Doota is my pick. It operates 24 hours and is packed all night.Head for the retro and recycled floor. On a sidestreet behind the centre are the bizarre "zipper" and "chain" markets peddling their specialized goods.
Pick up a map.You` ll need one. And check out my shopping advice in the dangers section - ESSENTIAL reading!
Dongdaemun is the east gate of Seoul. The original one was built in 14th century, but the existing one was built in 1869. This gate has seen a few renovations until today. The famous Dongdaemun Market is located in this area.
Dongdaemun is good for retailers looking for cheap buys - lots of wholesalers selling mostly fashion and household goods. There's a street selling paper product, one selling children's toys. The buildings flanking the river are mostly fashion or household items "warehouses" - find shoes, clothes, accessories, curtains, bedsheets etc.
Go take lunch at one of the wholesale markets for a hearty, cheap meal of noodles or dumplings.
The Dongdaemun History Museum was established within the Dongdaemun History and culture Park to Preserve and show artifacts found from excavation work conducted during the park's construction. A total of 2,778 pieces comprising 2,575 artifacts were discovered from the site with occupation ievel ranging from the early Joseon Dynasty to modern times.
( from home page )
Admission Times : 10am ~ 9pm ( year round )
Admission Fee : Free
Dongdaemun Market presents all kinds of goods ranging from small accessories to shoes and men's and women's wear at discounts of up to 20~30%. Since most stores are open all night long, the area is bustling with shoppers who cannot sleep at night. As the area is one of the most jammed areas in Seoul, using public transportation, bus or subway is recommended. Shopkeepers of larger shopping centers can communicate in English or Japanese.
While taking a walk along the Dongdaemum district, I saw this structure that looks like a palace... so I took a picture. Eventually, after reviewing the map, I found out that this is the major eastern gate that surrounds Seoul during the Joseon Dynasty. It’s more commonly called Dongdaemum than Heunginjimun, (maybe because Dongdaemum is easier to pronounce) being the prominent landmark in Seoul which means “Great East Gate”. It’s amazing that it’s just regarded as a major eastern gate but really, for me, looked like a palace. (yeah, I really can't believe that it's just a gate!)
After taking a picture, you can go ahead and head for shopping since the area is surrounded by shopping malls, markets, stalls, etc.…
For fashionable clothes, head to Doota Mall or Migliore. usually, the shopping malls are open until midnight.