Before visiting Korea you may hear of many famous areas such as Gangnam, Myeongdong or Hongdae but how about you visit the hidden gems of Seoul like a local?
Introducing Mullae-dong, an area originally famous for its ironworks . However, with artists coming, it is emerging as a new hot place for young people in Seoul.
A little bit of history
Historically, the area contributed greatly to the history of Korea’s industrial development since the 1960s. As of today, about 1,700 ironworks and metalsmiths still produce core industrial parts and materials, playing an important role in the manufacturing sector.
Charmed by the area and running away from the rise in rent in main areas, artists started to move from 2000s and found in Mullae-dong a blank canvas to give life to their art. In every corner, alley, stairs or rooftops, everywhere you go you can find works of art.
Combined with the ironworks, the unique atmosphere gave birth to an art village which attracted more galleries and studios. Many of them are open for performances or exhibits. As a result, more and more people started to visit the area as awareness of the street went viral.
What to do in Mullae-dong?
As soon as you arrive to the station, you find a lot of artworks, sculptures and graffitis hidden in the streets. It can be a fun activity to look for them, here are a few that I took (not spoiling the whole experience for you) try to find them and let me know, some are really hidden.
While exploring the neighborhood I got deeper and passed by the old garages where sparks from the machines were flying around and iron factory workers were actively moving around.
Surprisingly, Mullae-dong is rather brouillon, which gives it its own particularity. Although on the map its written mural village, it is not specifically fixed on that location.
The neighborhood has seen a rise in new coffee shops and restaurants, sometimes in places you wouldn’t even expect them to be. Mainly, this Italian restaurant in the corner was beyond my expectations. It is a cozy place which tastes authentic and you can find some vegetarian friendly alternatives.
- Location: 13, dorim-ro 133-gil, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul / Line 2 Mullae station exit 7
- Hours: Weekday 11:30 – 21:00 Closed on Sunday
- Specialty: Gamberoni Oven Gratin, Steak salad
Now for coffee shops, there are plenty of them, some hidden some not. I highly recommend Rust Bakery. As the name suggests it has a rustic vibe which matches the neighborhood perfectly. As you enter, you are hit by the wonderful smell from the bakery. Mainly croissants and pastries to go with your coffee break. There are different seating options, outside, inside and upstairs with each its own vibe.
- Location: Seoul 15, Gyeongin-ro 79-gil, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul / Line 2 Mullae station exit 7
- Hours: Everyday 11:00 – 22:00
To all my aesthetic seeking readers, I highly recommend this spot by the sunset as the colors really stand out.
How To Get There
Mullae Station Exit 7. to be more specific, when you get out of the station you will see different sculptures. Then, as the map suggests, Mullae-dong art village and most of the street art is in that area.
For more information about Mullae-dong, please watch a video clip taken by Korea.net in Mullae-dong: