Seoul Shopping Tips by mke1963
Seoul Shopping: 178 reviews and 319 photos
On both sides of the street (on Sundays at least!), itinerant vendors lay out stalls and mats on the pavements.
Most of the merchandise says "Avoid me! I am crap!" rather loudly.
However, one guy, on the south side of the street had some very nice, very cheap and totally undecorated wooden kitchenware and tableware...chopsticks, bowls, rests, spoons.
I bought up a load and really made his day.
I'm sure everyone knows a place to buy this kind of stuff, but this was a particularly nice 'find' for me after a long walk through Changgyeonggung and Jongmyo.
What to buy: Woodent table and kitchenware
What to pay: 800-1000 won per item
Address: Jongno 3-ga
Directions: South side of the street
Theme: Local Craft
This huge subterranean bookstore in the basement of the Kyobo Insurance building, has an impressive foreign language section at the back of the store. They do not have as many books on Korea as Seoul Selection, but they have a much bigger range of general books, and they have a lot of Japanese, French and German books as well.
Address: Kyobo Insurance building, Sejongno
Directions: Entrance is from the Sejongno pedestrian underpass or on Jongno 1-ga just to the east of the Kyobo. They are a bit sniffy about showing you down the back stairs from the Kyobo lobby itself!
Seoul Selection is a well known local institution. It is a coffee shop-cum-bookstore in the basement of a grey brick building near the Gyeongbokgung palace, just a few metres away and to the north of the Dongsipjagak watchtower.
The shop has pretty much every book written on Korean politics, language, culture and history and a good selection of contemporary Korean fiction translated into English.
They have a limited selection of CDs and DVDs as well as a fair number of second-hand books.
What to buy: English books
Directions: It's right at the bottom of the road, behind the ancient stone watchtower. Opposite the vehicle entrance to the Gyeongbokgung.
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