Bukchon Hanok Village is a village of Korean tradition in modern Seoul. It is one of the coolest places to visit in Seoul. Hanok refers to wooden houses that once dominated South Korea during the Joseon Dynasty. What makes Buckchon so special is that people in Korea do not have to travel outside of Seoul to see these historic hanoks. Therefore, Buckchon Hanok Village is a living museum of historic Korean housing and architecture. At Buckchon Hanok Village there are many hanoks that are being used as functioning homes. Some have even been converted into coffee houses, tearooms, and galleries. Those traveling to South Korea can stay at these lovely hanoks through Airbnb. Airbnb and Seoul Tourism Organization partnered to offer the Seoul Hanok Stay experience.
Bukchon Hanok Village offers something different for those looking to escape the busy life of Seoul. Over the past decade, Buckhorn Hanok Village has become popular with millennials as social media influencers upload beautiful photos and videos of the village. There are maze-like alleys in the Bukchon neighborhood, where you will find eight designated “viewing spots” for tourists. In addition, the Bukchon area offers some wonderful shopping opportunities, especially for those looking to buy high-quality Korean ceramics and traditional Korean teas.
What do Hanok Houses Look Like?
Most hanoks have a central, dirt courtyard. Around this courtyard are several rooms with sloping roofs of slate tiles stacked on plaster and wooden beams. Between the vertical beams of wood stand strong walls of plaster and mud. The materials used for Hanoks, such as soil, wood, mud, and rock, are all-natural resources and do not cause pollution. Moreover, on the inside, it is covered with sheaves of mulberry paper. This paper is used for the doors and the lining of the floors. The whole house is heated from beneath by wood fires. Hanoks are known for being specially designed for interior heating in the winter and cooling in the summer. This form of heating is used in many modern homes in Seoul today.
Below are other areas to check out when visiting Bukchon Hanok Village.
Connecting Bukchon is Samcheongdong. This area has a wide selection of interesting cafes and restaurants. It is also a great place to go for a walk. If you walk along the main road, you will find Samcheong Park, paths from here will lead you to Seoul’s old city wall. Make sure to go through winding alleyways where you will find several hanok-style restaurants serving hanjeongsik (traditional Korean full-course meal). You will find even more restaurants near Anguk station.
Choong-Ahn High School
At the top of the Bukchon area is the prestigious Choong-Ang High School. It was built in 1937 and is one of Seoul’s most beautiful buildings designed in a western style. Furthermore, the high school is still run today, so tourists can only visit it on weekends. You will find a sports field if you walk further behind Choong-Ang High School. You can get a clear, unique view of the off-limits northwestern corner of Changdeokgung palace. This was where they housed official portraits of the kings of Joseon.
The Bukchon Asian Cultural Art Museum
The Bukchon Asian Cultural Art Museum has some of the most beautiful Korean and Asian works of art. The museum’s founder spent most of his life collecting art from Korea and other parts of Asia. In addition, the museum building was made to look like a traditional Korean hanok. Moreover, you can also participate in folk painting and traditional cooking. Therefore, for those looking for a hands-on Korean museum experience, this is the museum for you.
Hours of Operation: Tuesday – Sunday 10 am – 6 pm (last entry 5 pm)
Admission: 5,000 won
Those interested in Korean urban street art can check out Urban Break, which is sometimes held in Seoul.