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Namdaemun Market

This traditional Korean market is the largest and oldest in Seoul, and where you’ll find all manner of clothes and food at very reasonable prices.

Namdaemun is comprised of over 10,000 stores, stalls and vendors. Here you can buy anything from fishing gear to stationery, clothes and children’s toys. Even if you’re not looking to spend, Namdaemun is a colorful place to explore and soak up Korean culture. Mingle with locals doing their shopping, taste traditional food from street stalls and pick up souvenirs to take home.

The market was named after the nearby Namdaemun (Great South Gate). It has been operating in its current form since 1964, although there’s been some form of market here since the 15th century. The market is busy at any time of the day and night, so come when you’re in the mood for a little jostling and haggling. Allow at least a couple of hours to explore the market fully.

Namdaemun is a mixture of permanent stores housed in buildings and pop-up stalls lining the streets. Its lack of vehicle access means many goods are transported by bike or cart; keep your wits about you when wandering the streets. 

Getting lost is part of the fun, but be sure to visit the underground arcade beneath Namdaemun-no to the north of the market.

You can find clothing, fabric and jewellery at wholesale prices throughout the market. Bargaining with vendors is widely accepted. That said, levels of English can be quite basic, so be prepared to spend some time agreeing on a price.

Namdaemun is a great place to eat. Dozens of stalls offer cheap and simple meals like mandu gook (dumpling soup) and bindae duk (mung bean pancake). 

To get to the market, take the subway to Hoehyeon. Namdaemun Market is open Monday through Saturday. Retailers are generally open during the day. Wholesalers operate from late at night through to the early morning. If you have children with you, watch them closely, as it’s easy to get lost. 

There are plenty of unique ways to get the most out of Namdaemun Market. Here are some of some of the most popular:

For more things to do, have a look at our Seoul things to do page.


Guide to Exploring around Namdaemun Market


Map

Best Lodging Options Near Namdaemun Market

See all 1,936 Properties near Namdaemun Market
ENA Suite Hotel Namdaemun ¥9,169
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.

    Lotte Hotel Seoul ¥16,897
    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. Deoksugung Palace and Cheonggyecheon are also within 10 minutes. Euljiro 1-ga Station is only a 2-minute walk and City Hall Station is 5 minutes.

      Sotetsu Fresa Inn Seoul Myeong-dong ¥6,656
      Sotetsu Fresa Inn Seoul Myeong-dong

      Sotetsu Fresa Inn Seoul Myeong-dong

      48, Myeongdong-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Myeongdong, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Myeongdong Street and Lotte Department Store. Namsan Park and Seoul City Hall are also within 10 minutes. Myeong-dong Station is only a 4-minute walk and Euljiro 1-ga Station is 6 minutes.

        Tmark Grand hotel Myeongdong ¥8,089
        Tmark Grand hotel Myeongdong

        Tmark Grand hotel Myeongdong

        52, Toegye-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul
           
          4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Jung-gu, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Namdaemun Market, Postal Museum of Korea, and Bank of Korea Museum. Seven Luck Casino Millennium Seoul Hilton Branch and Sungnyemun Gate are also within 10 minutes. Hoehyeon Station is only a 2-minute walk and Myeong-dong Station is 8 minutes.

          Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Seoul Myeongdong ¥10,886
          Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Seoul Myeongdong

          Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Seoul Myeongdong

          27 Myeong-dong 8-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Myeongdong, this hotel is steps from Myeongdong Nanta Theatre and Myeongdong Street. Namsan Park and Lotte Department Store are also within 10 minutes. Myeong-dong Station is only a 3-minute walk and Euljiro 1-ga Station is 8 minutes.

            Hotel Venue G ¥4,390
            Hotel Venue G

            Hotel Venue G

            117, Cheonggyecheon-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Jongno, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Cheonggyecheon, Myeongdong Street, and Lotte Department Store. Jogyesa Temple and Seoul City Hall are also within 1 mi (2 km). Jongno 3-ga Station and Euljilo 3-ga Station are within a 5-minute walk.

              L7 Myeongdong by LOTTE ¥11,498
              L7 Myeongdong by LOTTE

              L7 Myeongdong by LOTTE

              137 Toegye-ro Jung-gu, Seoul
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Myeongdong, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Myeongdong Nanta Theatre, Namsan Park, and Myeongdong Street. Namdaemun Market and Sungnyemun Gate are also within 15 minutes. Myeong-dong Station is only a 2-minute walk and Chungmuro Station is 8 minutes.

                Millennium Hilton Seoul ¥13,871
                Millennium Hilton Seoul

                Millennium Hilton Seoul

                50, Sowol-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, Seoul
                   
                  5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  This family-friendly Seoul hotel is located in a regional park, just steps from Seven Luck Casino Millennium Seoul Hilton Branch and Namsan Park. Sungnyemun Gate and Namdaemun Market are also within 10 minutes. Hoehyeon Station is only a 5-minute walk and Seoul Station is 10 minutes.