Non-touristy things to do in Seoul?

Long story short, I am going to be staying with a friend in Seoul for about 3 weeks in December. We have several things planned out together (e.g., Gyeongbokgung, Korean BBQ, Gwangjang Market, Nami Island, etc). However, my friend is going to be working most of the days I'm over there, so I need to find some stuff to do to occupy myself while my friend is at work. I'd really appreciate some suggestions for interesting things I can do in Seoul (or within a day-trip distance from Seoul) that are unique and not blatant tourist traps. It doesn't have to be super exciting stuff either: just things to help occupy my time as I wait for my friend to get off work. I've thought of trying out a jjimjilbang (public bathhouse) and making my own name stamp/seal.

Thanks! 🙂

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  1. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    I don't know how about leave and never come back?

  2. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    Just walk around, visit museums, go to Incheon, Suwon and Ichon

  3. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    >MMCA (National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art) Seoul
    i don't know what is permanent but when i visited had good exhibitions about 80s and 90s seoul and how the olympics totally changed seoul. and some good things about anti-dictatorship protests.
    >National Museum of Korea
    good permanent collection which shows Korean history over the last 3000 years and explains korean development and wars from 3 states until today. very interesting.

    • 3 months ago
      Anonymous

      >my friend is going to be working most of the days
      >Non-touristy things to do in Seoul?
      yes
      wake up 7am in your apart which is in satellite city of seoul take a sub or bus which full of people so you as a foreigner will think are these people even have a human right? to seoul, arrive before 9 am at your work work til 6pm and go back home. repeat it until your retirement (60 years old).

      There is nothing really a foreigner can enjoy except tourist's things unless you have some native friend who's willing to take care of your journey in here.

      Otherwise, as a native, also rooooner of seoul, why not just walking around? it's winter so i don't recommend it strongly...

      tldr: what native seoulers(90% of them are actually from gyoenggido, incheon...) do in their free time?
      going cafe with friends, department stores, groceries(mart), staying in house.

      >i don't know what is permanent but when i visited had good exhibitions about 80s and 90s seoul and how the olympics totally changed seoul. and some good things about anti-dictatorship protests.
      i think you find pic rel quite familiar

    • 3 months ago
      Anonymous

      OP here

      I might check out the National Museum. It seems like it could occupy me for at least a good chunk of a day. Thanks!

      >Non-touristy
      Uh, getting a job, cleaning your house, going to school. You're a tourist OP. You'll never be a local.

      Thanks for the nonanswer

      https://i.imgur.com/TMgEXUH.jpg

      >my friend is going to be working most of the days
      >Non-touristy things to do in Seoul?
      yes
      wake up 7am in your apart which is in satellite city of seoul take a sub or bus which full of people so you as a foreigner will think are these people even have a human right? to seoul, arrive before 9 am at your work work til 6pm and go back home. repeat it until your retirement (60 years old).

      There is nothing really a foreigner can enjoy except tourist's things unless you have some native friend who's willing to take care of your journey in here.

      Otherwise, as a native, also rooooner of seoul, why not just walking around? it's winter so i don't recommend it strongly...

      tldr: what native seoulers(90% of them are actually from gyoenggido, incheon...) do in their free time?
      going cafe with friends, department stores, groceries(mart), staying in house.

      >i don't know what is permanent but when i visited had good exhibitions about 80s and 90s seoul and how the olympics totally changed seoul. and some good things about anti-dictatorship protests.
      i think you find pic rel quite familiar

      Thanks for the nonanswer

      What are your hobbies?
      If you're already planning on making your own name plate, maybe have your friend find you a nearby pottery course and/or a cooking course as well.
      The national museum is free to visit.
      Note that Seoul's old town (Hanyang?) also had a wall reconstruction. It can be a multi-day project to check it out.
      Basically all of Korea has cozy, warm cafes, make sure you don't just go to the chain ones.
      Visit the royal tombs Seonjeongneung, stare at Gangnam before and after.
      Brace yourself for Christmas music, it will be worse than in the West.
      Hanji (mulberry paper) art making is pretty Korean, too, so if you find any hanji-related courses after your name stamp is ready, that could be a thing.
      Have your friend take you to karaoke (noraebang) and at least one underground drinking spot and a rooftop bar.
      If you're any bit interested in Korean pop culture, note that KBS does free tours in multiple sites (their HQ and their historical external studio in Suwon at least). There are potentially also free tours of other companies, in the Digital Media City, that I don't know.
      Whatever you do, enjoy the metro system. It's so good. They also have a museum obviously.
      Look up temples as well maybe, they always take in volunteers to clean the yard for a day.

      Wow, thanks for putting in all this effort for a response!

      >maybe have your friend find you a nearby pottery course and/or a cooking course as well.
      Yeah, that could be fun!

      >Note that Seoul's old town (Hanyang?) also had a wall reconstruction. It can be a multi-day project to check it out.
      Noted. I'll be sure to check it out!

      >Basically all of Korea has cozy, warm cafes, make sure you don't just go to the chain ones.
      I'll ask my friend for some recommendations.

      >Brace yourself for Christmas music, it will be worse than in the West.
      Noooooo!!!!

      >Hanji (mulberry paper) art making is pretty Korean, too, so if you find any hanji-related courses after your name stamp is ready, that could be a thing.
      This is awesome. Thanks!

      >Look up temples as well maybe, they always take in volunteers to clean the yard for a day.
      Cleaning up around a temple is kinda weird, but I'm considering doing it, since it sounds pretty unique.

      Thanks again 🙂

      • 3 months ago
        Anonymous

        What a snarky c**t lol, go frick yourself TOURIST

  4. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    >Non-touristy
    Uh, getting a job, cleaning your house, going to school. You're a tourist OP. You'll never be a local.

  5. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    What are your hobbies?
    If you're already planning on making your own name plate, maybe have your friend find you a nearby pottery course and/or a cooking course as well.
    The national museum is free to visit.
    Note that Seoul's old town (Hanyang?) also had a wall reconstruction. It can be a multi-day project to check it out.
    Basically all of Korea has cozy, warm cafes, make sure you don't just go to the chain ones.
    Visit the royal tombs Seonjeongneung, stare at Gangnam before and after.
    Brace yourself for Christmas music, it will be worse than in the West.
    Hanji (mulberry paper) art making is pretty Korean, too, so if you find any hanji-related courses after your name stamp is ready, that could be a thing.
    Have your friend take you to karaoke (noraebang) and at least one underground drinking spot and a rooftop bar.
    If you're any bit interested in Korean pop culture, note that KBS does free tours in multiple sites (their HQ and their historical external studio in Suwon at least). There are potentially also free tours of other companies, in the Digital Media City, that I don't know.
    Whatever you do, enjoy the metro system. It's so good. They also have a museum obviously.
    Look up temples as well maybe, they always take in volunteers to clean the yard for a day.

    • 3 months ago
      Anonymous

      but that's all touristy!

      • 3 months ago
        Anonymous

        So what?

        OP here

        I might check out the National Museum. It seems like it could occupy me for at least a good chunk of a day. Thanks!

        [...]
        Thanks for the nonanswer

        [...]
        Thanks for the nonanswer

        [...]
        Wow, thanks for putting in all this effort for a response!

        >maybe have your friend find you a nearby pottery course and/or a cooking course as well.
        Yeah, that could be fun!

        >Note that Seoul's old town (Hanyang?) also had a wall reconstruction. It can be a multi-day project to check it out.
        Noted. I'll be sure to check it out!

        >Basically all of Korea has cozy, warm cafes, make sure you don't just go to the chain ones.
        I'll ask my friend for some recommendations.

        >Brace yourself for Christmas music, it will be worse than in the West.
        Noooooo!!!!

        >Hanji (mulberry paper) art making is pretty Korean, too, so if you find any hanji-related courses after your name stamp is ready, that could be a thing.
        This is awesome. Thanks!

        >Look up temples as well maybe, they always take in volunteers to clean the yard for a day.
        Cleaning up around a temple is kinda weird, but I'm considering doing it, since it sounds pretty unique.

        Thanks again 🙂

        Btw the visitKorea official website is headache-inducing to navigate, but there are some reasonable itineraries there.
        Also use google image search to find tourist maps of Seoul. Yes, they are tourist maps, but I can assure you most tourists just go to the top 10 sights and that's it. There will be much more on the maps.

        • 3 months ago
          Anonymous

          OP here

          Appreciate the tips, sorry for sounding pretentious. I have come to understand that everyone is a tourist when they have no intention on staying somewhere. I apologize to everyone ITT.

      • 3 months ago
        Anonymous

        Seoul isn’t a very touristy city, so it’ll probably be far more locals doing all that stuff

  6. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    >Non-touristy things to do
    get a job, you fricking tourist

    • 3 months ago
      Anonymous

      I have a job, and a pretty good one at that. How else do you think I can afford to go to Korea for three weeks?

      What a snarky c**t lol, go frick yourself TOURIST

      Useless nonanswers get snarky replies. Them’s the breaks.

      So what?
      [...]
      Btw the visitKorea official website is headache-inducing to navigate, but there are some reasonable itineraries there.
      Also use google image search to find tourist maps of Seoul. Yes, they are tourist maps, but I can assure you most tourists just go to the top 10 sights and that's it. There will be much more on the maps.

      Thanks again for being the only helpful anon ITT

      OP here

      Appreciate the tips, sorry for sounding pretentious. I have come to understand that everyone is a tourist when they have no intention on staying somewhere. I apologize to everyone ITT.

      Why are you lying? I’m the OP, not you. I’m not apologizing for shit.

      • 3 months ago
        Anonymous

        OP here, dunno why this guy insists on LARPing like he's me. Appreciate the advice from everyone, ignore this homosexual trying to burn bridges.

  7. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    Make some friends at Beer O Clock if you're not an autist.

  8. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    I live in Korea. December here is really cold, and this winter has been really really cold, colder than last year for sure. I recommend preparing for that.

    Trip ideas...
    Go to the DMZ
    Take a bus to Seoraksan National Park, stay overnight
    Go to Suwon and walk along the fortress wall
    Go for a hike up Bukhansan in central Seoul
    Take the train to Busan for a few days (honestly 3 weeks is too long to stay in Seoul, and Korea is small enough that it would be a waste not to check out the other cities)

    Jimjilbang...
    Do it. It's fun.

  9. 3 months ago
    Anonymous

    the mountain behind the blue house, you need your passport.

    Also I heard Korea has the world's lowest fertility rate, as a white man wanting kids should I make my way over?

    • 3 months ago
      Anonymous

      >I heard Korea has the world's lowest fertility rate, as a white man wanting kids should I make my way over?
      white man logic. brilliant.

      • 3 months ago
        Anonymous

        Ur weird poo

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