You may have heard about the word retro a lot but have you ever heard of the new word Newtro? Newtro means a mixture of “new” and “retro”. It is a pop culture trend that has been taken off in Korea recently. The Newtro trend mainly came from the popular Korean dramas, Mr. Sunshine and Hotel del Luna. These popular drama series led to a rise in popularity of the fashion, architectural styles and food that were popular in the 1980s and 1990s.
Youngsters dress up themselves in retro style clothes from head to toe has become a common sight recently. Thanks to the Newtro trend, fashion, food, interiors as well as Korean cafe culture are experiencing a new revival. If you are interested in discovering this latest trend, I am sure that Ikseon-dong will be a great place for you to pay a visit to!
A bit about Ikseon-dong
Ikseon-dong is one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Seoul, established back in 1920s. Ikseon-dong got its name after the word “Iksun”, which means “something better”. The neighbourhood is also well-known as the retro mecca of Seoul. The small neighbourhood features a modern twist to the traditional hanok houses. Besides, there are lots of antique shops, restaurants and unique cafes here. Walking through the mazed-like neighbourhood, there are always wonderful surprises waiting to show up at every turn.
The Madang Flower Cafe! The spot where colourful umbrellas hung outside the cafe is one of the hot photography site in Ikseon-dong.
Midamheon, a hanok-styled cafe located in Ikseon-dong. The cafe has a unique vibes, offering a mix of traditional and modern elements. The architecture perfectly shows the harmony between the architecture and green nature. The cafe is quite spacious, offering both indoor and outdoor seats. It is able to accommodate quite a number of customers. You can choose to sit cross-legged on the floor like how the Korean traditional custom works.
The price range is between 6000 won to 7500 won.
The cafe interior is classy and elegant while the outdoor of the cafe gives out tropical vacation vibes.
The photo below shows the backyard of the cafe.
The overall experience was good but it took a while for the drinks to come. We waited for about 45 minutes for our food and beverage.
If you wanna have some relaxation with good coffee in Ikseon-dong, Midamheon would be a good choice for you!
- Opening hours: 10.30 a.m. to 10.30 p.m.
- Address: 41 Donhwamun-ro 11da-gil, Ikseon-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul
In my opinion, Ikseon-dong perfectly displays a blend of modern and history in the heart of Seoul. The neighbourhood is not crowded as popular tourist site like Hongdae and Myeongdong. Most of the visitors here are the locals.
It is a perfect place to experience slow-paced atmosphere in Seoul by taking a slow walk in the mazed-like alleys and capture all those colourful moments! Make sure you don’t leave your camera behind when visiting here!
How to get there?
- Jongno 3-ga Station (Subway Line 1, 3, 5)
Read More: One Day Around Anguk Station