South Korea is always a great idea especially if you’re traveling with friends and loved ones. In this post, I’ll share 10 fun things to do in South Korea that you can enjoy with your best buddies!

Things To Do In South Korea With Friends

Just a quick back story. I went to South Korea with my two travel buddies slash high school BFFs back in November 2015. It was our first out of the country trip together. So this was such a memorable trip for us. I remember I scored a cheap Cebu Pacific airfare deal for this and booked them right away!

⚠️ IMPORTANT REMINDER: Postpone, don’t cancel! Let’s save the tourism industry. Some information in this post may have changed due to the pandemic and it might affect your travel plans. Always be a responsible traveler and keep yourself updated by reading COVID-19 advice from your local authorities and in your point of destination/s before traveling. You can go ahead and take inspiration from this post, bookmark it, or save it on your Pinterest travel board for future reference.

Don’t have time to read everything now? I gotchu boo! Save this “Top Things To Do in South Korea” article on Pinterest for later by clicking any of the images below! 😉

We spent 6 days in South Korea and we made sure to include as many fun activities as we could. Come and reminisce with me! And start planning your South Korea adventures with your friends soon! So let’s get started!

Trip Planning Tips

10 Fun Things To Do In South Korea With Friends

Trip Planning Tip 1

Experience 3D optical illusions at Trick Eye Museum Seoul

This list of fun things to do in South Korea is not arranged in any particular order. But let’s start with Trick Eye Museum Seoul. Ready your cameras or phone cams when you visit this one of a kind interactive museum! You will definitely have a blast taking shots and figuring out the best angles to make the photos appear real enough. Make sure to showcase your best acting skills too!

The gallery combines traditional art with trick art techniques and augmented reality technology to provide visitors with various 3D optical illusions. Aside from that, you can also enjoy the winter wonderland Ice Museum and Carnival Street filled with mini-games inside.

TIP: Book via Klook to get discounted Trick Eye Museum tickets

📍 Where is Trick Eye Museum Seoul located?
20, Hongik-ro 3-gil, Mapo-gu, Seoul (Open Google Maps)

Trip Planning Tip 2

Be cute at the Hello Kitty Cafe in Myeongdong

Fun Things To Do In South Korea Hello Kitty Cafe
Top things to do in South Korea: Be cute at the Hello Kitty Cafe
Top things to do in South Korea: Dine in at Hello Kitty Cafe

The Hello Kitty Cafe in Myeongdong is a must-visit for all Hello Kitty fans! It’s overloaded with pink and cuteness – the food, the interior, the ambiance, everything.

Although the food was just so-so… the main attraction really was the Hello Kitty experience.

Note: As of this writing (Nov 2020), the Hello Kitty Cafe branch in Myeongdong is permanently closed already. 😞 I think their other branches in Seoul are permanently closed too. You can instead visit Hello Kitty Island in Jeju. They have more than just a Hello Kitty Cafe — you can also find a gift shop, Kitty History Hall, Art Education Hall, and many more themed around this beloved cat!

📍 Where is Hello Kitty Island located?
340, Hanchang-ro, Andeok-myeon, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do (Open Google Maps)

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Trip Planning Tip 3

Visit different Korean Palaces

Fun Things To Do In South Korea Visit Palace
Top things to do in South Korea: Visit different Korean Palaces

Get a glimpse of South Korea’s rich history when you visit any of the five grand palaces of Seoul. But if you don’t have time to visit all, here are the top ones you can add to your things to do in South Korea list.

Gyeongbokgung Palace

Gyeongbokgung Palace was built in 1395 and was used as the main royal palace of the Joseon dynasty. It’s the largest of all five palaces and is said to be the most beautiful. You can also find the National Palace Museum of Korea and the National Folk Museum within the premise.

Don’t miss out on the traditional changing of the guard ceremonies in Gyeongbokgung Palace (you can check the schedule here).

During our visit, we were approached by a group of middle school students who offered free tours around Gyeongbokgung Palace. They do so to practice their English to foreigners, so it’s a win-win for all! Grab the opportunity to be toured by a local if you do spot them!

Changdeokgung Palace

Visit Changdeokgung Palace if you want to see genuinely old structures. It has the most pre-20th century structures still standing up to this day, compared to other palaces that already underwent many modern reconstructions.

Deoksugung Palace

If you’re not into grand palaces but still want to experience seeing one, then Deoksugung Palace might be the one for you. It’s much smaller than the others so it’s not so overwhelming. Located near it is another small palace, Gyeonghuigung, so you can combine these two palaces and have a nice stroll in between.

Trip Planning Tip 4

Try their famous chicken and beer combo

If you’re obsessed with k-drama, I’m sure you have noticed how Koreans love pairing chicken with beer! They actually have a term for it called “chimaek,” which is a combination of the English word “chicken” and “maekju,” the Korean word for beer.

Fun Things To Do in South Korea Chicken and Beer
Top things to do in South Korea: Try their famous chicken and beer combo

Chimaek is considered a classic combination in South Korea beloved by many office workers, families, and friends hanging out. In the evening, you will usually see many Koreans crammed into booths enjoying a handful of chicken and gulping their bottle of beer.

We particularly enjoyed this yummy combo especially because we visited during the chilly autumn/winter season. They helped warm us up!

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Trip Planning Tip 5

Shop till you drop at Myeongdong shopping district

Top things to do in South Korea: Shop till you drop at Myeongdong

Myeongdong is the ultimate shopping haven, especially for Korean skincare lovers! You can find Innisfree, Nature Republic, Too Cool For School, Skin Food, Etude House, and many more lined up along the streets and alleys. You can also find many international brand stores like H&M, Uniqlo, Adidas, Nike, etc.

It’s impossible to visit Korea’s best-known shopping and fashion district and NOT buy anything – even just some face masks as a souvenir. There are also many dining restaurants in the vicinity for when you get hungry.

Trip Planning Tip 6

Wear the traditional Korean garment Hanbok

South Korea’s traditional garment is called a hanbok. It’s a two-piece dress worn for formal or semi-formal traditional events like festivals and ceremonies. Don’t miss your chance to look like a Korean from way back in history.

There are many hanbok rental shops around Seoul (for a minimal fee and for a certain number of hours). If you visit any of the palaces I mentioned above, chances are you’ll see many tourists wearing this colorful, beautiful Korean garment. It makes for a great photo-op opportunity, and one of the popular things to do in South Korea.

But did you know that you can rent a hanbok in Seoul for FREE? And you don’t even have to sweat under the sun to get a nice photo with it! You can have it done in a studio. That’s what we did! Yes, the photos above are not from the actual places. They’re all taken from a studio!

Head over to Myeongdong Tourist Information Center for your FREE hanbok experience. You can choose from their pretty selection of hanbok (plus head accessories), then choose a backdrop (mostly popular Korean tourist spots) from the touch screen TV, position yourself in front of the camera, and snap away. You can then have the photos emailed to you at no extra charge. Note that there’s a 10-minute rule per attire.

📍 Where is Myeongdong Tourist Information Center located?
43-1 Myeongdong-gil, Myeong-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea (Open Google Maps)

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Trip Planning Tip 7

Stroll around Nami Island

Aside from being known as the shooting location for the 2002 hit Korean drama Winter Sonata, Nami Island is also one of South Korea’s most recognized tourist destinations. Visitors flock to this island for its refreshingly beautiful natural landscape.

South Korea Adventure Blog
Top things to do in South Korea list: Stroll around Nami Island

We visited during autumn, and everything was covered in orange foliage. It was nice to walk around, breathe in the fresh air, and simply appreciate Mother nature. We even lied down and just enjoyed everything around us.

Fun Things To Do In South Korea Nami Island
Top things to do in South Korea list: Stroll around Nami Island

We visited during autumn, and everything was covered in orange foliage. It was nice to walk around, breathe in the fresh air, and simply appreciate Mother nature. We even lied down and just enjoyed everything around us. Definitely one of the fun things to do in South Korea.

Another one of the popular things to do in South Korea is to visit Petit France (a bus ride away from Nami), but we didn’t get a chance. Oh well, next time. 😊

Trip Planning Tip 8

Seal your friendship at N Seoul Tower’s Love Locks

The iconic Namsan Seoul Tower aka “N Seoul Tower” is the second-highest point in Seoul. It makes for the perfect place to view the breathtaking Korean cityscape! You can reach the tower by riding a cable car (among other ways).

Top things to do in South Korea list: Visit N Seoul Tower’s Love Locks

This famous tourist spot is also known for its viewing deck on the rooftop where couples hang padlocks on the Tower fence to symbolize their eternal love. Many people refer to this particular area in the N Seoul Tower as “Love Locks” or “Locks of Love.” You’ll be reminded of Pont Neuf bridge in Paris.

But it’s not only for lovers or couples! Who said friends cannot seal a lock onto the railings? We definitely did it and we even scribbled our initials on the padlock to immortalize the moment.

TIP: Bring your own padlocks when going to Namsan Tower’s Love Locks! You can also buy from the shops there in case you forgot.

📍 Where is N Seoul Tower located?
105 Namsangongwon-gil, Yongsan 2(i)ga-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul, South Korea (Open Google Maps)

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Tip 9

Be kids again at Everland Theme Park

Everland Theme Park Korea
Top things to do in South Korea list: Visit Everland Theme Park

Everland is South Korea’s largest theme park with five different zones to explore. The 5 different themed zones in Everland are American Adventure, Zoo Topia, Global Fair, Magic Land, and European Adventure. You can even get up close with a huge variety of wildlife at Safari World!

Visiting a theme park in Korea is probably not as common as say, in Japan or Hong Kong, but I say go give Everland a visit! It’s not Universal Studios or Disneyland kind of level, but the rides and attractions here are not disappointing!

If you’re a daredevil and enjoy adventurous, heart-stopping rides then make sure to visit Everland!

And don’t miss this T-Express ride, their world-famous rollercoaster ride. It’s considered the world’s steepest wooden coaster and will definitely give you the ultimate adrenaline rush.

Here watch the video from their IG:

Unfortunately, my friends are afraid of heights and rollercoaster rides so I wasn’t able to try it. I’m not that crazy to ride it alone… although, in a hindsight, I probably should have given it a chance. Lol. 🙈

But I did ride this one alone:

It’s called the Double Rock Spin Ride. At first, it looks harmless, but the powerful spin and rhythm are sure to make you scream at the top of your lungs! Safe to say I made it out alive! And I’ll definitely add this ride again to my top things to do in South Korea for my next visit. 😂

💸 BUDGET TRAVEL TIP: Book your Everland tickets from Klook to get exclusive discounts!

Tip 10

Experience the nightlife in Seoul

Last but definitely not least, experience the nightlife in Seoul! No out-of-town country trip with friends is complete without trying the nightlife in a different city! Definitely add it to your top things to do in South Korea itinerary!

There are three well-known clubbing or nightlife districts in Seoul, namely, Itaewon, Gangnam, and Hongdae. Itaewon and Gangnam are more for the international adult crowd; while Hongdae clubs target the young local students (it’s near Hongkik University).

We were supposed to go clubbing in Gangnam, but for some reason, we ended up in Hongdae, in a club called NB2.

Video credit: StreetVideoJapan

I wasn’t able to capture any good photos or videos inside (because hello darkness, my old friend... lol), so go ahead and watch the video I discovered on Youtube to get a feel of Korea’s nightlife. The club (NB2) we went to was included in their roundup.

Trip Planning Tip Trail 2
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So there you have it for this post about the top 10 things to do in South Korea with friends! There are definitely many fun activities in Korea that you can enjoy with your travel buddies and barkada. What other fun things to do in South Korea would you like to add?

I hope you enjoyed reading this post about the top things to do in South Korea. Stay tuned for more! I’ll share more about my South Korea trip in my upcoming posts! Let me know in the comments section if you have any questions or other South Korea travel tips to share.

💡 PRO TIP: Learn more travel tips in this Ultimate Guide To Planning Your Trip In 8 Easy Steps! I covered the basics of planning a trip and also included the tried and tested websites and apps I normally use to score cheap deals.

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About Hazel Salcedo

A digital marketer who’s always daydreaming about her next getaway. This wanderlust is living proof that traveling can be affordable! She’s traveled to many destinations thanks to Piso fare flights. Read the 7 best seat sale hacks that worked for her.

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  1. I’ve always known I should visit South Korea, but you’ve truly solidified it with this guide. I would love to visit Gyeongbokgung Palace, it looks so beautiful. And I’d be eating chicken and drinking beer every single day! Saving this for a future trip.

  2. RM of BTS said that in an interview that it’s chicken and beer for them. I don’t think I’ll ever take the beer, but I’ll def the chicken.

    We have a Hello Kitty Cafe in Uptown BGC, haven’t tried it though. Not sure if it’s patterned after the one in Korea. You got me curious to check it out kasi mukhang matatagalan pa kami. makapunta Korea haha!

  3. I had never even thought of South Korea as a travel destination before. I know my kids would love the Hello Kitty Cafe. It’s a shame they’ve closed.

  4. The Everland Theme Park looks like such a fun place! We have a theme park not too far from us here and I love taking a day to enjoy all my favourite rides. The big rollercoasters are the best!

  5. I’ve been to Seoul for just one weekend, so I saw all the palaces and the shopping district you listed, but nothing else. So I’m definitely saving this for my return trip!! Thanks 🙂

  6. Chicken and beer is not really just a thing in sokor, but in japan too. Their kaarage and Asashi combo would probably be the counterpart to that. And dahil malabo pa makapag out of country now, try ko na lang pumunta sa Hello Kitty cafe in BGC for now hehehe

    1. Ahh yes I think chicken and beer combo is a universal pairing – so definitely other countries have their versions too. Haha lagi ko lang napapansin sa mga k-drama so I mentioned it. I love kaarage and Asashi combo when I was in Japan too! 💜

  7. Eversince na naging k-drama addict ako South Korea ang gusto kong puntahan, but because of pandemic ang plano napurnada na naman. Sa list mo Everland Theme Park at makapagsuot ng Hanbok ang nasa list ko. 🙂

  8. ive always want to go to SoKor.. 15 years dream na sya! pero ang gusto ko kasi talaga yunG Teddy Bear museum dahil sa Princess Hours. hehe!! ill take note everything in here. malay ko one day makapunta kami! yung son ko gustong gusto niya mag SOKor eh!

  9. One reason why I want to travel with my friends to Korea is to try the beer and chicken. Nakakainggit manuod minsan ng kdrama, 3AM tapos kumakain sila ng Korean chicken. Hahahaha! Possibly yun talaga yung kaunahan even with my family. 🙂

  10. If South Korea will soon be open for travelers then I will consider visiting soon. Will definitely visit your recommendations.

  11. Yes! We are postponing our trip. Thank you for sharing your wonderful adventure in Korea. I was totally looking forward to visiting the Hello Kitty Cafe and Nami Island.

    We are also very keen to try the famous olive chicken. 🙂

  12. Looks AMAZING! I especially loved the photos from the Nami forest and the Hello Kitty Cafe. I’ve heard that South Korea is such a fun place to travel to, I really hope I can make it there someday. I’ll definitely pin this for later for when I do!

  13. Everything looks amazing, except the roller coaster for me – that one looks terrifying. I love that you started this list with the optical illusion museum, as that would top my list too.

  14. I loved my time in South Korea! It’s an incredible destination! I wish I did Everland Theme Park! It looks awesome. I guess I have to go back one day.

  15. I loved my trip to Korea last year! I never knew I would come to love the country as I did. I did most of the things in your list however I regret not going to Nami Island. Perhaps another time!

  16. Oooh the Everland Theme Park rollercoasters look epic! It’s a bit of a shame your friends didn’t want to go on it…next time bring me. 😉

    I love the look of all of these, especially the palaces and Nami Island!

  17. My friend and I have always wanted to visit South Korea to visit that Hello Kitty Cafe! ♥ Hopefully once the pandemic is over, we can pay a visit and check it out ourselves ♥

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