If you've lived in Seoul for a while you may start to miss some of your back-home products. You also, however, don't really want to go out on an all-day shopping trip to Wal-Mart or Costco or wherever you go for Western goods. Your free time would be better spent having fun, right?
Here is an idea: do both at once. Make an outing to the Seoul World Cup Stadium and (sometime during your time there) make a visit to the Carrefour (French version of Wal-Mart) that is right in the stadium! It's open until midnight, so you can (if you have them) pack up the kids (or girlfriend, or whatever) head to the stadium, inline/blade or stroll in the park or climb to the top of the nearby hill (which, mind you, was a garbage dump in a former life), enjoy the little lake, do some shopping and head home.
Seoul WCS also has concerts and such on holidays (I think Carrefour may be closed on those days, though, call to find out) so there is sometimes something special to see or do there.
Tip: the Korean pronounciation of Carrefour is Ka-Ray-Poo (for some reason). Carrefour came to Korea in 1996 and now has 27 hypermarts around the country.
The World Cup Park was built to commemorate the 17th FIFA World Cup. Opened in May 1st, 2002, the park was once a 15-year-old landfill that held over 92 million tons of garbage. It took 6 years to stabilize the waste (measures were taken to prevent the garbage runoff from contaminating the environment) and an additional year to build the actual park itself. The park is located near the Seoul World Cup stadium, and is made up of five smaller parks including the Pyeonghwa 'Peace' Park, Haneul 'Sky' Park, and Noeul 'Sunset' Park.
The Seoul World Cup stadium was completed in 2001 for the 2002 World Cup, which was jointly hosted by South Korea and Japan. The stadium's 64,000 spectators are covered by a unique, lightweight fabric roof covering which has an opening over the field. Though I am not a big soccer fan, I was impressed by SWCS because of the efforts taken to make it useful after the World Cup. Inside the stadium, there is a large shopping mall and large food court. Outside of the stadium are five large parks which attract people from all over Seoul on the weekends.
I was there one day wandering around the park area with no umbrella when a huge downpour began, completely out of the blue. We got soaked on our way from the hillside next to the stadium back to the subway.
There were 10 stadiums in Seoul or is it South Korea and the largest of which is the Seoul FIFA World Cup Stadium. Our tourist guide is proud to say the Koreans are No. 1 in Asia in terms of sports. Red, blue and white pictures of their national football team and the 2002 FIFA World Cup adorned the walls.
We breezed through the stadium and headed to their Ginseng Chicken Soup Restaurant and Dongdaemun Market - now you're talking sense!
Sports to me is only a matter of national pride - Manny Pacquiao's boxing match against Erik Morales or Bata Reyes' prowess against the Black Widow!
Admission: 1,000 won
It's a nice place to go if you're into soccer history, but you can't see anything when it's closed. There's good shopping inside though and a big department store (Carrefour)
What made it worth going for me were the parks just outside the stadium. Nice pix and view of the Han river and the city if you climb the hill.
Japan and South Korea co-hosted the World Cup, and S Korea did especially well! The Koreans are understandably very proud of their national team's herculean achievement. The stadium was not in our itinerary, but our korean guide brought us there anyway.
They have life-sized cardboard figures of the Korean players at one of the entrances. Inside the stadium, there is a mini-gallery featuring the Korean team.
The best thing about visiting this place is it brings back the excitement we felt when we watched the Korean team advancing through the various stages of the World Cup.
The Seoul World Cup Stadium was built for the 2002 World Cup that was jointly hosted by South Korea and Japan. It holds 64,000 spectators. The architecture resembles a Korean traditional shield-shaped kite and sailboat.
A bonus is that there is a Carrefour (something like Wal-Mart) attached to the stadium if you need any shopping.
With a capacity of about 64,000 people, some of the K-League (local, Korean teams only, no big names) games get about 10-20% of that, it seems. Nevertheless, it's quite a good show as many companies send their employees to games and they get right to it cheering, chanting, banging and hooting for pretty much the whole game.
Don't worry about eating (or even shopping) before you go there. There are not only Korean 'delicacies' (hotdog on a stick, instant noodles, shrimp chips) but also some Western outlets as well (not in the seating areas, but on the lower, retail levels) such as Pizza Hut, Starbucks and others. Also there is a Carrefour (or Ka-ray-poo, as Koreans translate it)
The Seoul World Cup Stadium architecture embodies the beauty of a Korean traditional shield-shaped kite and sailboat.
It has a seating capacity of 63,930.
Along the hallways of the stadium, there were exhibitions on all the football players that played for the South Korean team in 2002.