Tag Archives: Itaewon

Scaling The Steep Hills Of Itaewon, Seoul, Korea

The Steep Hills Of Itaewon will test the sturdiest of legs

After the rain of the previous night had cleared away, I returned to the foreigner district of Itaewon in Seoul, Korea to do some shopping.  I was in serious need of new shirts that actually fit me without them stretching to the bursting point as if I were a sausage, and the shirt was the casing.

After I successfully accomplished my mission where I dusted off my haggling skills in the basement clothing markets, I went for a wander, as I didn’t have to catch the train for several hours.  So I took to the labyrinth-like back streets of the neighbourhood, trying to find hidden gems and excellent views…

 Itaewon Seoul Korea

As I got into the part of Itaewon behind the business district, I got into the residential area, which is quite a bit older than the modern businesses most people associate with the district.

 Itaewon Seoul Korea

Popping out of the alley and onto the edge of Itaewon Hill, I climbed up this steep street to get a photo of the incredible vista you see above.  But trust me, guys, this climb was seriously tough.  If I had a car, I’d be very self-conscious about parking my car on this road.

You don’t have to take my word for it, feel my pain in the video below … it was brutally steep!

In Motion: A Rainy Night In Itaewon, Seoul, Korea

Itaewon Seoul Korea

Standing out like a patch of North America in the middle of South Korea, Itaewon is the preeminent foreigner hub in Seoul, and by virtue of this, the biggest gathering place for expats in the entire country. Western-style bars, restaurants, and stores with appropriately sized clothing are all available in relative abundance, leading to frequent trips to this area by desperate teachers from the provinces. Also, many Koreans find it to be the best place to experience foreign cultures in the whole country, made all the more significant by the fact that this country is very homogeneous (Korea is 98% ethnic Korean), making it hard to connect with all things international outside of this area.

Below, I make my first foray into this vibrant district, on a moody and rainy night in Seoul

Have you ever been to Itaewon?  Have a favourite bar/restaurant/shop you frequent there?  Let us know about it in the comments!