Shopping Report – Seoul
Every shopping fanatic who arrives at Seoul will hear of Myeong-dong. The prestigious locale of many international flagship stores to the country, this extensive network of main streets and small alleys is a good mix of upscale labels and underground boutiques that are packed during weekends. Big names to be found here include Zara, H&M, UNIQLO, and Nike, whereas the sprawling floors of the famous Lotte Department Store offers a comprehensive array of duty free shopping that you can pay for and collect at the airport before your departure – very handy if you intend to do some intensive shopping and need to keep your arms free for other purchases.
Myeong-dong also offers a great selection of local specially labels, such as Beanpole, Codes Combine, and Banila B, all of which offer the iconic urban casual style so easily spotted on the streets of Seoul. Cosmetics fans will have no shortage of standalone and flagship K-beauty boutiques such as Nature Republic, Etude House, The Face Shop, and Too Cool For School.
Literally translated to mean “south gate “, Namdaemun Market is located on the main southern gate of the old city wall, and is Korea’s oldest traditional market, originating as early as the 14th century under the reign of King Taejong (1367 – 1422). Commonly referred to as the “even has kitchen sink market”, its mind-boggling plethora of small vendors offers up a cornucopia of clothing, fresh vegetables and flowers, household goods, and other assorted knick-knacks all in one massive congregation. Many tourists and wholesale retailers alike seek out this market for its hustle and bustle – especially at night, when the soul of Seoul comes alive and the city thrives with pop-up tent-and- table eateries hawking local snacks and street food.