Hongdae Guide

Hongdae Area

The Hongdae Area (Hangul: 홍대앞; hanja: 弘大앞) is a region in Seoul, South Korea near Hongik University, after which it is named. It is known for its urban arts and indie music culture, clubs and entertainments. The area is located in Mapo-gu in the western end of Seoul, stretching from Seogyo-dong to Hapjeong-dong.



Hongdae (Hangul: 홍대) is an abbreviation of Hongik Daehakgyo, Hongik University (홍익대학교). The term ‘hongdae’ is usually used in regards to Hongik University which has one of the nation’s top fine arts colleges in South Korea.



2015-06-04 15;49;25Hongdae area is known for its indie spirit, urban street arts and underground band musicians. Many known bands like Jaurim, Crying Nut and Peppertones are from this street and started as indie bands. The area provides street art festivals and performances, as well as music concerts by independent artists and mainstream entertainers.
Under the influence of Hongik University (Hongdae) which is well known for its prestigious art college, the neighborhood was built on a foundation of artistic souls since the 1990s. In the early days, thanks to the cheap rent back, budget musicians and street artists started moving into the ateliers of Hongdae area. Now many of them had later transform into cafes or live music venues and the area has long had a reputation as the mecca of urban arts and underground club culture. Despite the recent explosion of upmarket brand shops that pushes artists to move toward the southern area near Hapjeong Station, new indie rock bands show up every year and the street still enjoys a reputation as the city’s prime spot for indie musicians. YG Entertainment, the major K-pop agency is also located near the street.
The area also has an artistic and cultural with art galleries, studios, theaters, design shops and is also home to cafes, bars, restaurants, and nightclubs. Which draws revelers from a wide range of backgrounds, particularly university students, ESL teachers, and tourists. Some of the most well-known nightclubs are m2, nb2, Vera, and Cocoon. Nb2 is especially famous because it is run by one of three largest Korean entertainment agency, YG Entertainment, along with variety of hip hop music to please the customers’ ears.
Apart from art and culture, Hongdae is also home to reasonably priced independent clothing stalls, discount and vintage shops, especially along the main thoroughfare of Eoulmadang-ro, that caters to those wanting individuality with creativity. As well as kitschy, quirky and eclectic theme cafes, such as the Charlie Brown Cafe, themed with Peanuts characters, Hello Kitty Cafe, Bau House Cafe for dogs and puppies, Gio Cat Cafe, and Dr. Fish Cafe.
The Hongdae Playground, also known as Hongik Children’s Park, located between Wausan-ro and Wausan-ro 21-gil opposite Hongik University is home to street vendors who sell their wares in the evenings. It has also been used for location filming for MBC drama The 1st Shop of Coffee Prince[7] in 2007, KBS drama Mary Stayed Out All Night in 2010; and SBS drama A Gentleman’s Dignity in 2012.