The area of Euljiro is full of history and trendy locations right in the heart of Seoul. The area is centered around Sewoon Plaza, a large commercial building built in the 1970s. As unique and trendy shops began opening alongside the old printing factory, lighting, and tool stores, this hot place received the name “hipjiro,” a combination of the words hip and Euljiro. Here is a charming tour course perfect for a day trip to Euljiro.
The Euljiro tour can start from any station connecting to Cheonggyecheon Stream on the Seoul Subway Line: Eujiro 3(Sam)-ga Station, Euljiro 4(sa)-ga Station, and Jongno 3(sam)-ga Station. Wherever the trip begins, visitors can reach all the major spots of Euljiro by following the countless alleys. The Euljiro area has an ironwork alley, lighting alley, and nogari (dried pollack) alley, making for a great sightseeing trip. Another method is by entering any alley and shop to each liking.
The area of Euljiro is also famous for its countless Pyeongyang naengmyeon (cold buckwheat noodles) restaurants. The cold and unique flavor of the soup is a special trait of Pyeongyang naengmyeon. The noodles go especially well with meat. Each store has a variety of selections from bulgogi to suyuk (boiled beef slices), pyeonyuk (boiled pork slices), and much more.
Popular Pyeongyang naengmyeon restaurants
Fragrant coffee and sweet dessert are a must during travels. The Euljiro area has common coffee shops as well as unique cafés with a different vibe.
In particular, Coffee Hanyakbang is popular among not only locals, but also tourists. This café specializes in pour over coffee.
Just like its name Hanyakbang, which refers to an old-fashioned pharmacy dealing with medicinal herbs, the interior of the café is decorated with old cabinets inlaid with mother-of-pearl, vintage record players, and antiques giving it a unique retro look.
Across the street from Coffee Hanyakbang is a bakery shop that specializes in cake and chocolates. Hyemindang used to be the location of a medical facility called Hyeminseo during the Joseon period. The antique interior design from that period is the biggest characteristic of this shop.
Sewoon Plaza is Korea’s first mixed-use commercial building and used to be a popular electronics department store. The building has Sewoon Electronics Department Store, Cheonggye Arcade, Daerim Arcade, Dasisewoon Plaza, and more. The building is famous for being the filming location for Korean dramas “Vincenzo (2021)” and “Guardian: The Lonely and Great God (2016).”
In particular, Cheonggye Arcade and Daerim Arcade have cafés, bookstores, and restaurants that are popular on social media. At Geumjiokyeop, visitors can find posters, books, and goods from old popular films. Horangyi is a recommended coffee shop with old school vibes.
To wrap up the Euljiro tour, how about spending some time at a charming wine bar or pub.
The wine bars in Euljiro have retro entrances but the interior design is completely different. Each bar has its own characteristic. There is one wine bar named Le temple that serves delicious dishes made with Jamόn, cheese, and fruits. Some have LP bars playing the classics, like at Pky and The Edge, and some, such as eulijiok and Le temple, have live DJ performances.
Euljiro Nogari Street is perfect for beer lovers who want to enjoy beer and nogari at an affordable price. People sit on tables along the alley and enjoy the summer night.
* Some stores subject to closure due to social distancing.
* This column was last updated in June 2021, and therefore information may differ from what is presented here. We advise you to check details before visiting.