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Visitors eat grilled meat at a restaurant inside Seongsu Galbi Alley.
NEIGHBORHOOD GUIDE

A guide to local favorites in Seongsu

Visitors eat grilled meat at a restaurant inside Seongsu Galbi Alley.
  • By Haeryun Kang
  • Photos by Jean Chung
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Seongsu
Seoul
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Seongsu has plenty of cool cafes and restaurants, as an up-and-coming neighborhood should. It’s also famous for handmade leather shoes (although they can be costly), and has the highest concentration of bicycles in Seoul, with its biker-friendly infrastructures and the Seoul Forest just next door. Seongsu is often heralded as a model of how to combat gentrification to protect residents and the local culture from rising real estate costs. Its district government was the first in Korea to enact a gentrification prevention law.

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Haeryun has lived in Seoul since 2014. She loves its mountains, although more the idea of them than the actual hiking.

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Seongsu

Seoul Forest
The third-largest park in Seoul is home to beautiful trees, honeybees bred for urban beekeeping projects, botanical gardens and deer.
Seoul Forest, Seoul Forest, 273 Ttukseom-ro, Seongsu-dong 1-ga, Seongdong-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Daelim Changgo
This is Seongsu’s best example of renovating an industrial warehouse into a hip cafe and art gallery.
Daelim Changgo, 78 Seongsui-ro, Seongsu 2(i)-ga 1(il)-dong, Seongdong-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Cafe Onion
The epitome of Seongsu’s “industrial chic” style can be found at Cafe Onion. Try the tasty pastries and drinks while enjoying the monstera plant by fading paint on the walls, or sit on the rooftop, which has a great view of Seongsu.
Cafe Onion, 8 Achasan-ro 9(gu)-gil, Seongsu-dong 2(i)-ga, Seongdong-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Amazing Brewing Company
Taste local craft beers unique to Seongsu, including Shocking Stout, which received the grand prize from the 2017 Korea Wine & Spirits Awards, and Rocket Man, a Belgian dark strong inspired by President Trump and Kim Jong Un.
Amazing Brewing Company, 27-12 Seongsu-dong 1(il)-ga, Seongdong-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Seongsu Galbi Alley
This small street is packed with BBQ restaurants specializing in galbi, or grilled pork/beef ribs marinated in soy sauce. Come for the food, but stay for the evening vibes.
27 Seoulsup 4-gil, Seongdong-gu, Seoul
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Haeryun Kang
Haeryun has lived in Seoul since 2014. She loves its mountains, although more the idea of them than the actual hiking.
Jean Chung
Jean is a contributing photographer to The Washington Post based in Seoul. Born and raised there, she appreciates the energy of the city and makes sure to take friends visiting from overseas to Gwangjang Market downtown.

CITY GUIDES