Seoul Day 4: Namdaemun | Dongdaemun Toy Market
Namdaemun is the largest traditional market in Korea and when night falls, it is also a wholesale market. You can find all sorts of items here, think of it like the Chatuchak in Bangkok. And as the gluttony family, we first hunt for the Kalguksu Alley that has supposedly nice yummy food!
21, Namdaemunsijang 4-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul | Closed on Sundays | Hoehyeon Station (Line 4), Exit 5
From Hoehyeon Station, exit 5, turn right and walk straight for a short distance of 10m or so. And you should see a sight like this:
Once inside, you will be greeted by these two rows of noodle stalls bustling with customers. How anyone squeezes in is beyond me as the space are really tight! But actually we didn’t get a chance to go in, the moment we neared the entrance, we got ushered into the very first stall in front of the entrance! Very competitive here, I tell ya.
Still, the food was great! I shall assume the quality of the stalls there should be somewhat on par.
The menu has chinese on it, so it will be an advantage if you can read chinese. The stall helper speaks chinese too so we made our order with no issue. But for those who can’t read/speak chinese, you can refer to this blog for an interpretation of the menu.
This is one of the most fulfilling meal we had in Seoul! Although really simple, but really yummy. I love how unassuming the food looks and then surprise you with the great taste. And besides the great food, there are also plenty of shopping that can be done here.
As the largest traditional market in Seoul, you can see that it caters to a different crowd from Ewha Fashion street and Hongdae. The stuff here are mostly wholesale and every shop is bursting with goods piling and stacking everywhere.
We were rather dazed by all the shops and stuff available. Until something more colorful caught my mummy’s eyes.
Children’s clothes shop! Finally I see some shopping I can do with Daddy E’s approval! hahaha
Most clothes here are made in Korea and of good quality. Price wise, it’s reasonable. You can definitely get cheaper ones from the open carts out on the streets outside than in a store front tho. But indoor got heater, shopping in the warmth is definitely more welcoming than shopping out in the cold!
After this we head to the Stationary and Toy Market in Dongdaemun.
Toys and Stationery Market in Dongdaemun
36, Jong-ro 52-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul | Dongdaemun Station (Seoul Subway Line 1 & 4), Exit 4.
When I read about this Toys and Stationary Market, I made it a point to come to have a look. And I tell ya, it was hard to drag my 3yo out of the shops.
I can’t tell if the prices here are truly cheaper within Seoul, as most shops do not put the price upfront. You will need to ask the owner for the prices, and they are not exactly the friendliest people around. We did get a big toy for Baby E tho.
Ebay is selling at USD$86. We got this at around 50,000 won so I guess it’s much cheaper! It’s of good quality, comes with a school bus with music, 6 figurines and furniture pieces that make up the kindergarten.
Baby E loves this! And insisted to head back so she can unbox and start playing lol. And this is how we ended our day early.