Where to Stay in Seoul: Best Areas & Accommodation 

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Heading to South Korea and searching for where to stay in Seoul? This guide covers the best resorts, budget hotels, and neighborhoods in this vibrant city. 

Seoul is a stunning city full of history, amazing food, and incredible people. Like many other capital cities around the world, Seoul is huge. While this means there are plenty of things to do in Seoul, sometimes the size of the city can be intimidating when trying to find accommodation. 

Accommodation in Seoul varies from quiet boutique hotels to hostels to luxury 5-star resorts. If you’re confused about where to stay in Seoul, you’re not alone. 

That’s why I made this guide to highlight all my favorite places to stay in this perfect city in East Asia. 

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Seoul Accommodation Quick Guide 

If you’re in a rush and looking for the best area to stay in Seoul, these three places are some of the best accommodation choices around the city. 

BudgetUpflo Hostel: For a great hostel in Seoul, check out Upflo. Unlike other hostels, all the rooms are private, but you will share a bathroom with other guests. The common areas are perfect for meeting other travelers, including a rooftop lounge and a game room with ping-pong tables. 

Mid-RangeHotel NewV: For the most amount of amenities at an affordable price, come to Hotel NewV. The business center is one of the best cities, making it a great choice for digital nomads or others coming to Seoul who are working. The hotel is located in Gangnam, which is the most common place in Seoul to see K-pop stars and other celebrities. 

LuxuryLotte Hotel Seoul: Known as one of the best 5-star hotels in Seoul, Lotte Hotel has some of the best city views from every room. Make sure to also take advantage of the pool, sauna, and fitness center. 

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Myeongdong is the main neighborhood for people coming to Seoul for the first time. It has the best Seoul accommodation, including budget and luxury options as well as some fantastic apartments for short-term rent. 

It’s a very busy part of the city, so get ready to fight through crowds. This is especially true when you are in the area shopping centers. 

There are also some amazing street food vendors in this area, so you can try all the best South Korean cuisine just steps from your hotel. 

BudgetSeoul City Hotel: Despite being a budget hotel, the rooms here are very spacious compared to some of the other low-cost hotels around the city. It’s right near a metro station, so you can easily get around the district as well as other parts of the city. All rooms have a TV, electric kettle, and fridge. 

Mid-RangeRoyal Hotel Seoul: For a nice and quiet stay in Myeongdong, I highly recommend this place. It’s still close to all the best attractions but on the quieter side of the district. There are over 300 rooms and a few suites. The suites even have AI technology where you can control the TV and lights. 

LuxuryThe Westin Chosun Hotel: This is definitely one of the best places to stay in Seoul if you want to be in luxury with all the best amenities. All the rooms have air conditioning as well as fridges and coffee makers. In your free time, make sure to enjoy the spa, sauna, and indoor pool.

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This is by far one of the best areas in Seoul for those coming to the city to try all the local cuisine. In this neighborhood, you will find expats, tourists, and even locals. It’s also a common district for backpackers and solo travelers. 

Not only does Itaewon have the most amazing food in Seoul, but it also has restaurants from all over the world, including Indian restaurants, Japanese restaurants, and even European restaurants. 

No matter what kind of food you are looking for, you will for sure find it in Itaewon. 

And when you’re not eating, make sure to stay at one of these great hotels. 

BudgetGood Stay Itaewon: If you’re a solo traveler or prefer the hostel vibe while traveling, check in at this amazing place. The bunk beds are closed in, so you still have plenty of privacy while also getting the chance to meet other travelers. There’s also a common area with a microwave, a small fridge, and a toaster. 

Mid-RangeG Guesthouse: This hotel is one of the best in Seoul because of the decorations in every room. Each room has a different theme with fun paintings and other artwork. It also has an amazing location within walking distance of the metro station and Itaewon Main Street. 

LuxuryBanyan Tree Club & Spa: Even though this hotel is right in the middle of the city, the property is very green and lush, making you feel like you’re in a remote location. It’s right next to the metro station, so it’s easy to get around from this top spot. The onsite restaurant serves a variety of Western and Korean options as well as great cocktails. 

clean street of itaewon, empty stree with signs advertising restaurants


Insadong is a unique area of Seoul. It’s considered one of the best Seoul neighborhoods for those that are more interested in seeing the traditional way of Korean life. 

If you’re interested in visiting one of the traditional Korean teahouses, Insadong is also the best neighborhood. Many of the shops and cafes are in old government buildings, so the neighborhood is very historic. 

You’ll also find the city’s top places to visit in this Seoul neighborhood, including Gyeongbokgung Palace and the Bukchon Hanok Village. 

BudgetGrid Inn Hotel: This hotel is basic but still has all the amenities you need for a comfortable stay in the city. The rooms have TVs and kettles. There are also washers and dryers that you can use for free, which is super convenient for longer stays. 

Mid-RangeMoxy Seoul: Right next to the beautiful Tea Museum, this is a great mid-range selection for those wanting to stay in Insadong. The paintings and decor throughout the hotel are stunning. All the rooms are equipped with TVs and Wi-Fi boxes, which are free to use. 

LuxuryNine Tree Premiere: For a modern and fun stay right in the heart of Insadong, book a room here. The rooms are modern with air conditioning and heat, perfect for visiting in every season. They also have TVs and coffee machines in every room. 

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This is the best place to stay in Seoul, especially for young travelers or those coming with small children. In this chill neighborhood, you’ll find Hongik Children’s Park and the Seoul Tower. 

If you’re here from March to November, make sure also to check out the Hongdae Free Market. It has tons of local goods and makes for some great souvenir shopping. 

BudgetBatwo Stay: For a great budget stay, make sure to get a room at Batwo Stay. The reception and all workers speak multiple languages, along with Korean, so getting around and asking for recommendations shouldn’t be a problem. The rooms are small but very comfortable. 

Mid-RangeRyse, Autograph Collection Seoul: This hotel is one of the best mid-range options in Seoul. They have a nice lounge on-site, perfect for relaxing and getting some drinks. They also have free Wi-Fi and parking. Make sure to also check out the fitness center, as it’s huge with plenty of machines!

LuxuryMercure Ambassador: Right near Seoul Tower, you’ll find this amazing hotel. All the rooms have air conditioning and TVs. The wood flooring is beautiful, along with the modern wooden decorations all over the place. It’s very classy, and you’ll look forward to resting your head here every night.  

aeriel view of hongdae, clouds in the sky

Top Things to Do in Seoul

Now that you have an idea of where you’re going to rest your head while you stay in Seoul, you might be wondering what to do when you’re not in the hotel. 

Here are the main activities around the city that you want to be sure not to miss!

  • Gyeongbokgung Palace: Come here to be transported back in time to when the Joseon dynasty was ruling Korea. Make sure to come at 10 a.m. or 2 p.m. so you can see the changing of the guard ceremony. You can also tour the 300 buildings and over 6,000 rooms. 
  • Bukchon Hanok Village: This lovely traditional Korean village is a must-see while in Seoul. The houses are over 900 years old and made with rice paper, wood, and stones. It’s a nice place to take photos and get some souvenirs. 
  • Namsan Park. Come here if you want to do some exercise while in Seoul or if you want to get some fresh air. It’s a lovely green space right in the heart of the city. 
  • Go to the DMZ. The DMZ is the military-controlled border between North Korea and South Korea. You need to join a tour to visit, as solo trips are not allowed. 
  • Jogyesa Temple. Right in the middle of Insadong, you will find this beautiful temple. The main attraction is the three giant Buddhas and a ten-story high stupa, which is a burial mound in Buddhism. 
  • Gwangjang Market. Ready to try some street food? Come to this amazing market. They even have octopus tentacles still moving, ready to be eaten! 
gyeongbokgung palace, mountains in the distance, trees turning into autumn colors of yellow, green, red, and purple, things to do in seoul, things to see in seoul

How to Get to Seoul

Getting to Seoul is very easy, thanks to the huge international airport, Incheon. You can find daily flights from everywhere in the world. 

Once you arrive at the airport, you can take the Airport Railroad Express, which takes you right into the heart of Seoul. The train leaves every few minutes so you never have to wait for too long. 

How to Get Around Seoul

Seoul has a very efficient metro system making it extremely easy to get from one place to the next. You can check all the routes and times here.

The more commonly used routes, such as the ones that go to tourist attractions, usually have metros every 5 to 10 minutes during much of the day.

If you prefer not to take the metro, you can take a taxi, although it will be more expensive. 

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When to Visit Seoul

Seoul experiences very cold winters and hot summers, so it’s best to avoid the city during these times. 

Try coming in April, May, or June, as the weather is getting warm after winter. You can also come in September, October, or November before the winter starts. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How many days is enough in Seoul? 

You will need a minimum of 3 to 5 days to explore Seoul. Ideally, try to spend a week or more if you can. Within a few days, you will be able to see the main attractions, but you might not be able to explore the lesser-visited parts of the city. 

In a week or more, you have time to find hidden gems, see all the tourist places, do some shopping, and do plenty of eating. 

What is the best district to stay in Seoul? 

Most tourists and first-time travelers to Seoul stay in Myeongdong. It’s one of the best districts because it has extensive shopping options, many restaurants, and some of the city’s main attractions. 

What is the main part of Seoul?

The central district of Seoul is called Jung-gu. Most people do not stay here, as it’s more of a business center, and there is not a ton of nightlife or restaurants. 

If you want to be in the center of Seoul and still have plenty of things to do, try staying in Gangnam, as it’s right downtown. 

Is Seoul safe?

Seoul is safe and has a very low crime rate. Some tourists experience petty crime, though, such as pickpocketing. 

As with all large cities, keep your bags close to you. When out at night, don’t leave your drinks unattended, and make sure you travel in groups. 

Where to Stay in Seoul: Book One of These Amazing Places Today!

If you have an upcoming trip to South Korea, I hope this guide helps you choose where to stay in Seoul. The city is incredible, with endless choices for hotels and accommodation.

You can even hop from one neighborhood to the next if you’re staying here for a long time as a way to see more of the city. 

Are you headed to Seoul? Which one of these places are you going to book first? 

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