When we were living in Korea, I discovered that the play wasn’t the thing, but coffee; or rather, coffee shops were the thing.
My office was/is situated in a little neighborhood near Gangnam (yes, THAT Gangnam). Surrounding said office, were three Starbucks, two Dunkin Donuts, at least two Coffee Bean & Tea Leafs, as well as the elusive Caribou Coffee.
In addition to those main-stream, corporate coffee houses, there were a plethora (and I do mean this) of smaller places. Places like Ediya, Tom N Tom’s, Coffee Factory, Seven Monkey’s, Coffine Gurunaru, Yellow Tree, and Serendipity (these last two were actually in my neighborhood specifically, while the others could also be found just about anywhere in Seoul) JUST to name a few. There are literally hundreds of these places, many of them in hidden locales, holes in the wall, off the beaten path.
A Google search of coffee houses in Seoul and there are listing of places I’ve never heard of! There is (or was when we were living there) even a bird themed house (in which live birds are free to fly about) and a cat themed house (in which coffee lovers can drink their cuppa in the company of random cats). The logistics of these two are interesting to ponder and should we make it back to Seoul anytime soon, I’ll be dragging my husband and son with me to check them out. And the one my boss would take us out to, without fail, whenever the occasion called for coffee, doubled as a flower shop.
If you find yourself in Seoul, please, please visit the local chains, you will NOT be disappointed.