Spending Christmas and the holidays in a different country can be difficult for some of us. Growing up, I’m used to having a giant Christmas tree hung with ornaments, presents surrounding the tree, and having a great meal with friends and family. But, this is no reason to feel down during the holiday season. Here are some great places that you can visit and feel the holiday spirit during this winter season in and around Seoul.
Myeongdong - One of the Mecca’s for fashion and food in Seoul, it is a great place to start feeling the holiday spirit. While shopping around, you can hear some holiday music and enjoy a great meal. If you want to take some pictures that will get you in the holiday spirit, head down to the Lotte Hotel near Euljiro-1. Christmas lights have been on since the beginning of November and it is a great way to lift up your mood. Not only that, but the Shinsegae Department Store outside of Myeongdong Station has dancing winter video display that runs up and down the sides of the building. It is quite beautiful!
Lotte World Mall - One of the newest shopping destinations in Southern Seoul, Lotte World Mall is already lit up for the holiday season. Underneath the bridge that connects the mall and Avenue L stands a massive over 80 ft Christmas tree. This is one of the biggest trees that I have ever seen in person. Not only that, but the trees planted in front of the mall are lit up with Christmas lights ready to celebrate this season. It is such a beautiful place to drink some coffee and enjoy the sights.
Herb Island - If you are willing and/or able to get out of Seoul for a few hours, Herb Island in Pocheon is a wonderful place. Not only does this garden/park smell amazing with all of the different plants on site, it is a Christmas paradise. At the back of the park, it is Christmas 365 days a year. The garden is lit up with multi-colored lights and there are numerous statues of Santa Claus that you and your friends can take pictures with. If possible, I suggest to find one of the meetup groups that will go there so that you can make some new friends and to have a great time.
Petite France (French Village) - Located in Gapyeong, this is a village styled after the book The Little Prince. On a side note, The Little Prince is a popular book in Korea and is taught at ChungDahm. Here you can not only soak up the Christmas spirit via the music and decorations, but you can also try authentic French food and experience the French culture. This is also a very popular place where many famous Korean dramas were taped (the most recently famous being My Love From Another Star).
So with all of these great places near and around Seoul, there is no need to feel down during this Christmas/holiday season! Take some friends and have great time!