taewon, while known for its multiculturalism, is not considered one of the trendiest places in Seoul. However, from this unlikely source came some of Korea’s up-and-coming trendy streets, all following in the footsteps of Gyeongnidan-gil Road. Located along a narrow side street of Itaewon, this road is lined with small cafés, international eateries, unique accessory shops, and more. At Gyeongnidan-gil Road, and the streets that have followed suite across the nation, the sum is worth more than its parts. Check out these trendy roads wherever they fit into your travel itinerary. Just be sure to NOT post them on social media; you’ll want to keep these places all to yourself!
Amidst the offices and private homes that fill the area, Songnidan-gil Road stands out with its line of cafés and small restaurants. While the area always had cafés and restaurants, there was a huge increase in the wake of Lotte World Tower & Mall opening. Popular restaurants along Songnidan-gil Road include Mija Restaurant, serving a special myeongnan dongaseu (fried pork cutlet with pollack roe) and chamsora bibimbap (mixed rice with horned turbans), Gabaedo, Peach Grey, Danji Café and more. The street is perfect for a stop before or after visiting Songpa Naru Park.
Songnidan-gil Road travel tips
- Be sure to check out the information board at Seokchonhosu Intersection, across from the LG Best Shop. The board shows the entire area, with restaurants marked by category, including Korean, Western, Japanese, cafés and more.
- Get a Songnidan-gil Road restaurant map from the Songpa Tourism Information Center within Songpanaru Park! The map features information about 108 restaurants and cafés along Songnidan-gil Road. This helpful guide is available in Korean, English, Japanese, and Chinese.
- Songnidan-gil Road
- Address: Area of 23, Baekjegobun-ro 43-gil, Songpa-gu, Seoul (서울특별시 송파구 백제고분로43길 23)
- Directions: Walk for approx. 10 min from Songpanaru Station (Seoul Subway Line 9), Exit 1
- Songpa Tourist Information Center
- Address: 180, Jamsil-ro, Songpa-gu, Seoul (서울특별시 송파구 잠실로 180)
- Directions: Walk for approx. 10 min from Jamsil Station (Seoul Subway Line 2, 8), Exit 6
- Website (Songnidan-gil Restaurant Map): www.songpa.go.kr (Korean only)
Suwon, just under an hour out of the capital, is a city of history but it is by no means a stranger to change. While the UNESCO-recognized Hwaseong Fortress and Haenggung Palace might be the highlights of a visit to Suwon, the newest attraction is Haengnidan-gil Road. This small street next to the fortress might appear rather boring at first glance, but the area has become quite popular through word-of-mouth and on Korean social media. There are about 90 different shops, each with their own unique style, from modern cafés and exotic pubs to pottery studios and black & white photography galleries. It’s also near Suwon Fried Chicken Street, great for when you want a bit more than the food offerings of cafés.
Haengnidan-gil Road travel tip
- There are many ways to take in the area around Haengnidan-gil Road and Hwaseong Haenggung Palace, including by bicycle rental, pedicab, the Hwaseong Fortress Tourist Trolley, and even a hot air balloon! The prices vary widely, and some activities may require an ID.
* Experience programs within Hwaseong Fortress (Tourist Trolley included) currently unavailable to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
- Haengnidan-gil Road
- Address: Area of 43, Hwaseomun-ro, Paldal-gu, Suwon-si, Gyeonggi-do (경기도 수원시 팔달구 화서문로 43)
- Directions: Take Bus No. 13, 66, 66-4, or 700-2 from Suwon Station•Novotel Suwon Bus Stop to Janganmun Gate•Suwon Traditional Culture Center Bus Stop and walk for approx. 5 min
Hwangnidan-gil Road in Gyeongju is yet another rising star within a city brimming with historical attractions. Just like a trip to Bulguksa Temple wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Seokguram Grotto, a trip to Daereungwon Ancient Tomb Complex should also include a visit to Hwangnidan-gil Road! This road perfectly merges Korea’s traditional charm with a modern flair through rooftop cafés overlooking a hanok village, restaurants serving folk cuisine, and shops selling modern-style hanbok. The area was recently selected as one of KTO’s 100 Must-go Attractions for 2019-2020.
Hwangnidan-gil Road travel tip
- If possible, plan to visit on the weekend to also enjoy the Gyeongju Free Market Bonghwang Jangte. The market takes place Saturdays and Sundays in the area north of Daereungwon Ancient Tomb Complex. Stop by to enjoy busking performances, food trucks, and handmade crafts.
* Gyeongju Free Market Bonghwang Jangte currently closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
- Hwangnidan-gil Road
- Address: Area of 1080, Poseok-ro, Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do (경상북도 경주시 포석로 1080)
- From Gyeongju Station: Walk for approx. 20 min towards Gyeongju Station Tourist Information Center
- From Singyeongju Station: Take Bus No. 50, 51, 70, or 700 to Seorabeol Intersection and walk for approx. 15 min
- Gyeongju Free Market Bonghwang Jangte
- Address: 33-1, Bonghwang-ro, Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do (경상북도 경주시 봉황로 33-1)
- From Gyeongju Station: Walk for approx. 15 min towards IBK Bank
- From Gyeongju Express Bus Terminal: Walk for approx. 15 min towards Seorabeol Intersection
- Operating hours: TBD
* Currently closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19
If you’re looking for the hottest of hot attractions in Busan, look no further than Haeridan-gil Road near Haeundae Beach! Up until 2013, this area was a village next to an active railroad track, keeping people away. However, the space became quite desirable after the line was discontinued, and many private cafés opened up. Each shop is unique and stand-alone, due to having originally been a residence. The buildings are painted in a rainbow of colors, making for outstanding photo backgrounds!
Haeridan-gil Road travel tips
- Travel by public transit! The residents tend to use what little public parking there is available.
- Wear comfortable walking shoes. The shops in Haeridan-gil Road are often spaced out and separated by private houses so you’ll get quite a workout exploring the area.
- Haeridan-gil Road
- Address: Area of 533-1, U-dong, Haeundae-gu, Busan (부산광역시 해운대구 우동 533-1)
- Directions: Walk for approx. 5 min from Haeundae Station (Busan Subway Line 2), Exit 1
Gaengnidan-gil Road in Jeonju has become a hot place thanks to the many young people visiting it. Originally called Gaeksa-gil Road, the name was changed to follow the –ridan-gil naming trend. The street offers unique restaurants, cafés with fun photo zones, and even bakeries selling the Jeonju classic treat, choco pies! The local pubs are also quite popular for their newtro vibes!
Gaengnidan-gil Road travel tips
- Gaengnidan-gil Road is within walking distance of many popular Jeonju attractions, including Jeonju Hanok Village, the youth mall above Jeonju Nambu Traditional Market, and Jeonju Cine Complex.
- The street was originally lined with gaeksa, government accommodations for officers on official business.
- Gaengnidan-gil Road
- Address: Area of 10-1, Jungang-dong 2-ga, Wansan-gu, Jeonju-si, Jeollabuk-do (전라북도 전주시 완산구 중앙동2가 10-1)
- Directions: Take a bus for approx. 30 min or a taxi for approx. 20 min from Jeonju Station