Seoul is a city full of sightly contrasts. A city where old and new often collide. From the peaceful gardens found throughout the Five Grand Palaces to the bustling streets of Myeongdong; Seoul is a place that seems to exist within a time wrap. Nowhere did I find this more evident than in Seoul’s Bukchon Hanok Village.
Bukchon is a time-honored village that is home to hundreds of traditional houses known as Hanok that date back to the Joseon Dynasty. These houses are representatives of Korea’s finest traditional architecture. They were built to naturally blend with the surrounding landscape and to easily adapt to the seasons and temperatures. The open style designs often provided a functional space which made living in these houses simple and organic. Today, many of these houses have been converted into guesthouses, restaurants, and cultural centers. I really enjoyed exploring this area and found the structures to be elegant and stunning.
Wandering the streets of Bukchon transports you to another point in time. It is a unique cultural experience that should not be missed while exploring the city of Seoul. The historical serenity of the area often makes you forget you’re in one of the most populated cities in the world.
Not to mention, I found the views from the hilltop village to be truly unequaled as I got to enjoy the contrasting perspective of the traditional rooftops against the backdrop of modern skyscrapers. If it weren’t for the gleaming skyscrapers in the distance, it’d be easy to think it was some remote village of sorts. While exploring the village I highly recommend visiting one of the many traditional tea houses in the area.
I sincerely suggest stopping by the Bukchon Hanok Village while in Seoul. I found it to be a very unique area and enjoyed my time there. It is located between the Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung Palaces where it’s easily accessible by the Seoul Metro and only a short walk from Anguk Station.