Seodaemun Prison History Hall is a former prison now turned museum located in Seodaemun Independence Park. For the history geeks among us: this is a place you must not miss out on if you want to learn about past Japanese occupation in Korea.
The museum was built in remembrance of all the executed Korean Independence Movement followers, patriots, and political prisoners. The grounds include seven jail cells, a historical exhibition hall, an execution room, watchtowers and a basement jail cell.
The Seoul Museum of History, located in the Jongno district of Seoul, showcases the historic development of Seoul. From the prehistoric era to the city’s modern-day state, the museum houses many relics that traces the city’s changes over the span of hundreds of years.
With both permanent exhibitions as well as special exhibitions throughout the year, visitors will be able to learn about things such as the city landscape of Seoul was during the Joseon Dynasty, Seoul’s ancient palaces, and the city’s changing geography.
Opening hours change seasonally, so be sure to check the official website for up to date details.
The National Folk Museum of Korea is located inside Gyeongbokgung Palace in the Jongno district of Seoul. The museum presents artifacts that were used by Koreans throughout history and features both domestic and agricultural items on display.
The National Folk Museum of Korea presents three permanent exhibitions and two special exhibitions are held at least four times a year. Opening hours may vary, so be sure to check the official website for exact details.
Ever felt like seeing double or triple or even standing upside down? Seoul’s Trick Eye Museum is exactly the place you should hit up if you ‘re looking to collect some bizarre looking pictures of yourself.
An exhibition space where culture and entertainment are combined, this museums invites you to touch, photograph and interact with their installations and optical illusions. With walls, floors and ceilings which seem to come alive, Trick Eye Museum allows you to have a fun experience (and take some great shots at the same time). Your entrance fee will allow you access to the indoor ice slide, an action figure painting station and a costume dressing area!
Adult – 15,000 won
Children & Youth with student ID card (18 & under) – 12,000 won
The Dongdaemun Design Plaza, also known as the DDP, is a neo-futuristic plaza comprised of five halls: the Art Hall, Museum, Design Lab, Design Market, and Dongdaemun History and Culture Park.
Diverse cultural exhibitions, conventions, fashion shows, conferences, gatherings and other events are held here year-round, including Seoul Fashion Week and Cosmobeauty Seoul. Built in 2011, the DDP remains one of the newest and most iconic landmarks in the city.
Popular Korean Dramas, such as ‘You Who Came From The Stars’ or ‘Producer,’ have filmed scenes at the DDP, and the space remains a well-visited tourist attraction. For those ones who are looking for a late night activity: Take a stroll through the 24h Design Market!
Made up of five main buildings, the Seoul Arts Center is said to be one of the ten best art centers worldwide. The Opera House, the Music Hall, the Hangaram Art Museum, the Hangaram Design Museum and the Calligraphy Art Museum lets both music and art lovers alike enjoy multiple interests in one place.
A variety of artistic performances and exhibitions are offered throughout the year. Not only does the SAC promote Korean art and culture, but it also links Korea with the international art scene.
Also, try visiting SAC’s fountain plaza or one of their many cafes and restaurants. The outdoor space offers a relaxing place for both locals and tourists to rest.
Seoul Museum of Art (SeMA) is a modern art museum and is the representative art museum of Seoul, the capital of South Korea.
SeMA is a 3-story building with 6 exhibition halls, a lecture hall for educational programs, and a library where art-related books, magazines, and visual reference materials are available to the public.
A permanent collection resides in one of the exhibition halls, titled “The Soul of Chun Kyung Ja”, which exhibits the work of the famous Korean artist Chun Kyung Ja.
[B1] Lecture halls, seminar room, etc.
[1F] Exhibition hall, resting area
[2F] Exhibition hall, library, Chun Kyeong Ja room
[3F] Exhibition hall, theater room, gallery
[Outdoor] Sculpture park
Located in the residential neighbourhood of Tongui-dong, near the historic Gyeongbokgung Palace, Daelim Museum began its life as Korea’s first photography museum. Today, it holds exhibitions that embrace not only photography but also design and a range of other fields, while continuing to expand its own boundaries.
Daelim museum’s vision is to function as a museum where the everyday becomes art. As such, the museum strives to create exhibitions that suggest new types of lifestyle, allowing the general public to enjoy art within everyday life by casting new light on the value of the objects that surround us.
How To Get There
Exit 2, 3 at Gyeongbokgung Station
- Go straight 100 meters from exit 3
- Turn right onto alley next to Starbucks
- Go straight 100 meters
- DAELIM MUSEUM
Exit 4 at Gyeongbokgung Station
- Go straight 100 meters from exit 4
- Turn left along the sidewalk
- Go straight 170 meters by Fashion Institute of KOLON
- Turn left onto alley next to Fashion Institute of KOLON
- Go straight 40 meters
- DAELIM MUSEUM
First established in 1986, Museum Kimchikan is a food museum dedicated to one of the main staples of Korean cuisine – Kimchi. Visitors can learn the history of Kimchi and Kimjang – the process of making kimchi, which also has been designated as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
The exhibits focus on the history of kimchi, its many historical and regional varieties, and its importance to Korean culture and cuisine. The museum also regularly offers activities for visitors to partake in, such as demonstrations of the kimchi-making process, kimchi tastings and cooking classes.
Located past Yongsan station, The National Museum of Korea is the flagship museum of Korean history and art, as well as being the largest museum in South Korea. The museum houses precious Korean cultural assets that display the story of Korea’s history, all the way from the ancient era to now.
Be sure to check out the museum grounds with many environmentally friendly and beautiful rest areas.
Exhibition Hall Information
Prehistory and Ancient History Gallery on F1
The southern part of the Ancient Hall consists of 10 exhibition rooms, each of which features a different era from the ancient Paleolithic Age to the era of the Balhae Kingdom. Here, mainly masterpieces and historic items from prehistoric eras or ancient times are on display. (10 exhibition rooms: Paleolithic Age, Neolithic Age, The Bronze Age, Early Iron Age, Proto-Three Kingdom Era, Goguryu Kingdom Era, Baekje Kingdom Era, Gaya Kingdom Era, Unified Silla Kingdom Era, Balhae Kingdom Era)
Medieval and Early Modern History Gallery on F1
The northern part of the History Hall consists of 9 rooms, each of which is under a different theme, including traditional ideologies, kings and Dynasties of Goryeo to the Joseon Dynasty. Historical documents and items on display are interesting and easy to understand for visitors. (9 exhibition rooms: External Exchanges, Traditional Ideologies, Society & Eeconomy, Kings & Nations, Documents, Epigraph, Maps, Hangeu, Printing)
Calligraphy and Painting Gallery on F2
Visitors may enjoy masterpieces of Korean calligraphy, paintings, Buddhist paintings, and woodworking & lacquerware. (4 exhibition rooms: Calligraphy Room, Paintings Room, Buddhist Paintings Room, Wood & Lacquer Room)
Invaluable culture assets and items donated by Yi Hong-Geun, Bak Byeong-Rye and other donors are on display here. Visitors can not only appreciate the beauty and significance of each piece, but also the generosity of its donor. (Exhibition rooms: Yi Hong-Geun Room, Donated Cultural Assets Room, Kim Jong-Hak Room, Yu Gang-Yeol Room, Bak Yeong-Suk Room, Choi Yeong Do Room, Bak Byeong Rye Room, Kaneko Room, Yu Chang-Jong Room, Hachiuma Room, Yi U-Chi Room)
Sculpture and Crafts Gallery on F3
Presenting Buddhist sculptures and metal & ceramic works that emphasize the beauty of Korean culture. (Exhibition rooms: Buddhist Sculptures Room, Metal Crafts Room, Ceramic Crafts Room – Celadon Porcelain, Ceramics Crafts Room – Buncheongsagi, Ceramics Crafts Room – White Porcelain)
Asia Gallery on F3
Displays cultural pieces from China, Japan and Central Asia to increase public understanding of Korea’s neighboring countries and to promote cultural diversity (6 exhibition rooms: Indonesia Room, Central Asia Room, China Room, Cultural Assets from Sinan Seabed Room, Excavated Relics of Nangnang Room, Japan Room)
Located in Yongsan-gu, Seoul, the War Memorial of Korea was established in 1994 on the former site of the army headquarters as a way to exhibit and memorialise the military history of Korea. The memorial was built with the purpose of preventing war through lessons and information about the Korean War and for peaceful reunification.
The War Memorial of Korea houses artifacts and displays to commemorate those affected by the war. Visitors of all ages can participate in 20 various educational programs and cultural events, or independently enjoy the indoor and outdoor exhibits.