Gangnam is one of the most popular areas in South Korea, with its glamorous lifestyle and numerous entertainment and tourist attractions available in the area.
There are a lot you can do in Gangnam, there are places where you can eat, shop, watch movies, take photos, or even have educational tours! Yes, having luxurious and glamorous lifestyle doesn’t mean you can’t have a fun education too!
Do you want to know what the examples of those tourist spots are?
1. Bongeunsa Temple
This temple, formerly known as The Gyeonseongsa Temple, is located north of COEX Mall. The temple was built in the 10th year of Silla King – Weongseong (794). In 1498, Queen Jeonghyeon renewed The Gyeonseongsa Temple and renamed it to The Bounseunsa Temple.
The Bounseunsa Temple holds 3,479 of 13 types of Buddhist scriptures, including King Jeong-hee’s works. A Buddhist ceremony called Jeongdaebulsa is held on the ninth day of eighth month of Lunar calendar where monks lined up carrying scriptures on their heads reciting Beopseongge (a Buddhist ceremony).
This temple is one of few historical architectures left in Gangnam, a city that has rapidly become modernized, and can act as a “sanctuary” in the midst of Gangnam’s busy life.
Upon entering its gate, you will feel as if you are in an entirely different dimension, asthe atmosphere immediately contrasts this busy lifestyle of Gangnam’s with its strong calm and peaceful atmosphere.
This temple is a historical symbol left from Gangnam, a city that has become modern and sparkling. This place is like a “sanctuary” amid the bustle of Gangnam region.
The entrance gate to the temple is made of solid wood depicting four kings of heaven (four heavenly kings) on its right and left sides, and there are two statues of elephants standing firmly to welcome you.
Entering the gate of this temple, the atmosphere immediately changed as it entered another dimension. Feeling calm and peaceful feels so strong. The area is vast and consists of multiple stories, and this temple is one of 14 main temples and is the center of 80 small temples throughout Seoul. There are stairs leading to a beautiful room with ornaments on ceiling and a towering Buddha statue on standing position.
You can simply spend your time walking around enjoying the view and taking a few photos along the way, or you can opt to stay in the temple for few days and try the temple activities such as tea ceremonies, arrow 108, eating Buddhist food, and interacting with the monks.
This trip wouldn’t put too much dent in your wallet either as it’s not very expensive.
2. Seoulleung Park
Seouleung Park is located in 1 Seoulleung-ro 100-gil, Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, and is open from Monday to Saturday at 6 am to 9 pm. Seonjeongneung is the burial place of two kings and one queen of Joseon dynasty. The westernmost tomb belongs to King Seongjong, the ninth king of the Joseon dynasty. His first wife, Queen Han, died at the age of 18 and was buried near Munsan, north of Seoul.
Upon entering the yard, you can see a red gate with taeguk (yin-yang) symbol. Red color symbolizes chastity. Then, there will be two stone paths leading to the sacrificial building. Do take note that you need to walk on the lower path as it meant for the living and the elevated path is meant for dead kings.
The park itself is decorated with a lot of tall trees, benches in pedestrian area, and a sight of many small hills making it really comfortable to relax your mind in.
3. Kimchi Field Museum
Kimchikan Museum is where you can learn about various types of kimchis, their histories, and manufacturing process. You can also taste the kimchi. It is located on ground floor of COEX Mall and is open from 10 am to 5.30 pm. Even though it’s not large, it does give you comfortable atmosphere to learn in.
The museum exhibits beautifully presented artificial kimchi shapes from behind a glass display case. If you aren’t a reader type, you can press a button to have the explanations read for you.
4. COEX Aquarium
The COEX Aquarium is one of the largest aquariums in South Korea, consisting of 650 species with over 40,000 aquatic creatures living in it. It provides 90 tanks within 14 “discovery zones” including 6 thematic areas.
The areas include Story of Korean Fish, Fish in Wonderland, Amazonia World, Garden of Jellyfish, and they all provide you with different yet equally enjoyable experience.
You can get COEX Aquarium tickets for 28,000 KRW for adults, 25,000 KRW for teenagers, 22,000 KRW for children, and 20,000 KRW for elderly. Access is free for children under 3 years when accompanied by at least 1 parent.
5. Coreana Art and Culture Complex
Coreana Art and Culture is the largest museum in Korea for cosmetics. This museum was created with the goal to preserve and promote beauty goods and beauty culture of Korea.
It holds around 53,000 various beauty items collected by Dr. Yu Sang-Ok, one of the executive directors of Coreana Cosmetics. The museum has made important contribution to education and research of Korean cosmetics by presenting the history behind them and by holding traditional cosmetics exhibitions.
You can get ticket to Coreana Art and Culture Complex for 4000 KRW for adults and 3000 KRW for students if you come alone or in small group.
However, you can get discount for coming with bigger groups (10 or more people) which then makes the price 3000 KRW for adults and 2000 KRW for students.
Entry is free for elderly (65+ years), children (7- years), and people with disabilities.
6. W Museum Figure
W Museum Figure is located in Cheongdam-dong, Gangnam-gu. It is a museum with unique concept, combining sculptures, toys, and amusement parks into one gigantic fun time. It provides entertainment for children, teenagers, and adults alike.
The museum consists of six themes, the exhibition hall includes entertainment, a large hall with coffee shop inside, a mania shop that provides merchandise and other facilities with various action figures.
You can get ticket for 15,000 KRW for adults (20+ years), 13,500 KRW for teens (14-19 years), and 12,000 KRW for children.
You can get 30% discount if you come with at least 15 people group. They also provide 30% discount for people with disabilities and 10% discount if you make online reservations.
Entry is free for children aged 3 and under.