Teachers Share their Experiences While Living Abroad!

Quirky Korea: Samcheongdong's Owl Museum

Posted on Sun, Feb 23, 2014 @ 01:00 PM

In case you haven't noticed, owls are super "in" right now, and Korea is definitely following suit. They also happen to be one of my favorite animals and in the past decade or so, I've amassed quite an owl collection. You can just imagine my elation and fascination, then, when I heard that Seoul has an actual Owl Museum! After spending the morning walking around the Bukchon Hanok Village, my friends and I wandered through the neighboring Samcheongdong to see what this Owl Museum was all about... 

seoul samcheongdong owl cafe museum

Now, to be clear: this is not a museum with live owls. (Though, that would be really cool.) Korea is famous for its weird cafes, including a variety of live animal ones, but this is simply a little cafe that is stuffed to the rafters (literally) with owl everything

seoul samcheongdong owl cafe museumThe most wonderful facade this owl lover has ever seen.

seoul samcheongdong owl cafe museumA mural on the outside of the museum.

seoul samcheongdong owl cafe museumAll the info you need about the museum. 

According to the information page we were given upon entering, the owls inside the cafe are all from the personal collection of Mrs. Myeong-Hee Bae, who has been collecting for over 40 years! She started young and has made an effort to find unique owls everywhere she goes. Even her family and friends have gotten on board, collecting owls for her when they see one that's worthy of being added to her collection.

seoul samcheongdong owl museum cafeA cute little bench, surrounded by owls, and perfect for a photo!

seoul samcheongdong owl museum cafeEverywhere you look -- owls.

The museum supposedly houses 3,000 owls, though I would argue that there are even more than that. I could've spent hours marveling over all of her owl pieces -- little figurines to huge paintings to ceramic plates to a Harry Potter and Hedwig blanket tacked to the ceiling. Basically, I was in complete awe of all of her owls and she might be my hero. 

seoul samcheongdong owl museum cafeShelves absolutely packed full -- some of the owls were the size of a fingernail! 

In addition to her collection being so huge, it boasts owls from around 80 different countries, "including China, Japan, Indonesia, Russia, and Zimbabwe." (Information from their website here.) 

seoul samcheongdong owl museum cafeI dare you not to be impressed.

seoul samcheongdong owl museum cafeThe drink menu.

There was an entrance fee of 5,000 won, but it came with a complimentary drink. We were then given little pieces of paper, Owl Museum branded stamps, markers, and crayons. I imagine that this caters to small children in particular, but we immediately started drawing owls of our own and carefully coloring them in while we sipped on our tea. 

seoul samcheongdong owl museum cafeHer gorgeous plate collection.


  • Opening hours: 10am-8pm

  • Closed every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday

  • Entrance fee: 5,000 won (comes with complimentary drink)

  • For more information, visit the Owl Museum's website, which includes a map that's helpful for navigating the streets of Samcheongdong. 

The area surrounding the Owl Museum is my favorite area of Seoul -- you have Insadong, two of the big palaces, the Bukchon Hanok Village, and of course, trendy Samcheongdong. It was a quiet, visually entertaining afternoon in the museum, and if you're working your way down the list of strange Korean cafes/museums, make sure to add this one. I highly recommend stopping by this odd but charming little museum when you're in the area!


Teach in Korea!


Between studying Japanese and Asian culture in university and setting her sights on a teaching career, it came as no surprise when Zannah Smreker announced that she was moving to South Korea to teach for Chungdahm Learning. In November 2011, Zannah accepted a position through Aclipse with the Yeonsu branch in Incheon, just southwest of Seoul. When she's not teaching, she keeps herself busy with exploring Korea, eating all the street food, and hunting down strange Engrish shirts. Check out her blog here for more of her adventures!

Tags: tourist spots in Korea, museum, things to do on the weekend, cafes in Korea, Cafe, museums, museums in Korea, Cafes, Weekend activities in Korea

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