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With ten million residents in the city proper and another ten million in the surrounding satellite communities, Seoul is one of the largest, most densely populated cities in the world. The metropolis is divided into 25 administrative districts, called ‘gu,’ which are subdivided into neighborhoods called ‘dong.’ Of these ‘dong,’ six standouts are worth visiting.

Seoul Neighborhoods


Seoul’s premiere tourist destination is comprised of handcraft boutiques, ancient palaces, and the Cheonggyecheon stream—a colossal urban renewal project that returned a dollop of much-needed green space to the downtown core.


Finance, commerce and traffic converge in this congested district adjacent to Jongno-gu. Early evening is an electrifying experience with pushy crowds, intriguing street food (try the peanut butter squid) and megaphone-shouting buskers.


Straddling the northern bank of the Han River, Yongsan is base camp for the US 8th Army and Itaewon, Seoul’s only multi-cultural district and, unfortunately, one of the city’s grimiest areas.


Rumors suggest it was once a landfill; today Gangnam is a playground for the rich, famous and indiscreet with chic shops, marquee nightclubs and plastic surgeons.

Hongik-Sinchon-Ewha Universities

The daytime aura of academia found in the area’s coffee shops and eateries evaporates at night when quirky bars and dance venues service hedonistic students and party-seekers.


This sprawling district is noted for its flat terrain and big venues like Olympic Stadium and Lotte World, one of the country’s largest hotel and theme park complexes.

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