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Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
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Myeongdong Cathedral

Dating back to the late 1800s, this Gothic church is the final resting place of martyrs and offers a pleasant respite from Seoul’s hectic streets. 

Myeongdong Cathedral is a revered place of worship and an influential symbol of Christianity in Korea. Visit this church to experience the spirituality and kindheartedness of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Seoul and to admire its arresting architectural design. Established in 1898, Myeongdong Cathedral was the first brick church in Korea built in the Gothic style. It stands on the site of a place where religious groups had been gathering since 1784. 

Approach the cathedral via a series of staircases leading to a broad cobblestone courtyard and offering excellent views of the Gothic-style edifice. Rising above the main portal is a 148-foot-tall (45-meter) bell and clock tower. Wander around the perimeter to see multiple instances of arch windows, pilasters, rose windows and spires. At the rear of the building is a memorial statue of Kim Tae-gon Andrew, the first Korean-born Catholic priest and one of the nation’s first martyrs. 

The interior is a simple yet masterful work of art. It features a long nave that leads to the main altar, with a vaulted ceiling and arcades on either side of the aisle. Above the main entrance is a huge pipe organ. Study the stained-glass windows, which portray characters and scenes from the Bible. 

Beneath the main altar visit a crypt that stores the relics of Korean martyrs. They were fatalities of religious persecutions in the 1800s. Among them is Laurent Joseph Marius Imbert, who was a French bishop working in Asia. Pope John Paul II canonized these and other martyrs during his 1984 visit to Korea. 

Find the cathedral in the Myeongdong neighborhood of central Seoul. Get here by taking the metro to Euljiro 1-ga, Euljiro 3-ga or Myeong-dong station and then continue on foot. Surrounding the cathedral is a busy shopping district home to department stores, luxury fashion boutiques and restaurants. 

Myeongdong Cathedral is open daily and admission is free. Attend Mass services in English on Sundays. Christmas Eve attracts a huge congregation for its Midnight Mass service.


Guide to Exploring around Myeongdong Cathedral


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Best Lodging Options Near Myeongdong Cathedral

See all 2,067 Properties near Myeongdong Cathedral
Lotte City Hotel Myeongdong ¥7,599
Lotte City Hotel Myeongdong

Lotte City Hotel Myeongdong

362, Samil-daero, Jung-gu, Seoul
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Myeongdong, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Seoul City Hall, Namdaemun Market, and Gwanghwamun. Gyeongbok Palace is 1.3 mi (2 km) away. Euljilo 3-ga Station is 6 minutes by foot and Euljiro 1-ga Station is 8 minutes.

    ENA Suite Hotel Namdaemun ¥6,652
    ENA Suite Hotel Namdaemun

    ENA Suite Hotel Namdaemun

    36, Sejong-daero 11-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Jung-gu, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Sungnyemun Gate and Deoksugung Palace. Cheonggye Plaza and Dongdaemun History and Culture Park are also within 3 mi (5 km). City Hall Station is 6 minutes by foot and Seoul Station is 11 minutes.

      The Shilla Seoul ¥25,033
      The Shilla Seoul

      The Shilla Seoul

      249, Dongho-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
         
        5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Jung-gu, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Namsan Park, Korea House, and Dongdaemun Design Plaza. Dongdaemun History and Culture Park and Dongdaemun History & Culture Park are also within 1 mi (2 km). Dongguk University Station is only a 4-minute walk and Yaksu Station is 13 minutes.

        Shilla Stay Gwanghwamun ¥7,097
        Shilla Stay Gwanghwamun

        Shilla Stay Gwanghwamun

        71, Sambong-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Jongno, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Jogyesa Temple, Sejong Cultural Center, and Gwanghwamun Plaza. Cheonggye Plaza and Gyeongbok Palace are also within 15 minutes. Jonggak Station is 6 minutes by foot and Gangwhamun Station is 6 minutes.

          Hotel PJ Myeongdong ¥5,890
          Hotel PJ Myeongdong

          Hotel PJ Myeongdong

          71, Mareunnae-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Jung-gu, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Korea House and Cheonggyecheon. Myeongdong Street and Namsan Park are also within 15 minutes. Euljilo 3-ga Station is 5 minutes by foot and Chungmuro Station is 6 minutes.

            Grand Hyatt Seoul ¥19,401
            Grand Hyatt Seoul

            Grand Hyatt Seoul

            322, Sowol-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul, Seoul
               
              5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Itaewon, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Namsan Botanical Garden, Itaewon Antique Furniture Street, and Leeum Samsung Museum of Art. Itawon Street and Blue Square are also within 15 minutes. Itaewon Station is 11 minutes by foot and Hangangjin Station is 14 minutes.

              Four Seasons Hotel Seoul ¥25,480
              Four Seasons Hotel Seoul

              Four Seasons Hotel Seoul

              97, Saemunan-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul
                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in the center of Seoul, this family-friendly hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Seoul Finance Center, U.S. Embassy & Consulate in Korea, and Gwanghwamun. Seoul City Hall and Deoksugung Palace are also within 15 minutes. Gwanghwamun Station and Gangwhamun Station are within a 5-minute walk.

                Lotte Hotel Seoul ¥16,987
                Lotte Hotel Seoul

                Lotte Hotel Seoul

                30, Eulji-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
                   
                  5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  This family-friendly Seoul hotel is located in the business district, within a 5-minute walk of Seoul City Hall and Lotte Department Store. Myeongdong Street and Cheonggyecheon are also within 10 minutes. Euljiro 1-ga Station is only a 2-minute walk and City Hall Station is 5 minutes.