Travel: Visiting N Seoul Tower / Namsan / Locks of Love in Seoul, Korea

I still secretly believe in Santa Claus. Yes, the idea of an old fat man in a red suit and an abundance of friendly helpers huddling somewhere in the North / South Pole preparing tonnes of presents for us is definitely possible. I mean, there’s really nothing wrong with channeling your inner child right?

This is the very same reason why I love Seoul N Tower / Namsan.  Besides the superb view, there’s also the Locks of Love. Urban myth has it that if you bring a lock, write your loved ones’ names on it, you’ll be “locking” in your love forever. Isn’t that the sweetest thought?!

I’m not too keen on the part where you have to hurl your keys over into the forest below though – I keep having thoughts of some power bird / monkey / squirrel / cute adorable little animal getting hit on the head by a flying key and cursing us humans to heaven and beyond.

Over on Namsan, you’ll be much entertained by the Teddy Bear Museum, the Tower (pay to go up higher to get a better view) and the Locks of Love.

There are several ways of getting up there:

  • by cable car (followed by some flights of staircases)
  • by car (followed by an uphill walk and then staircases galore)

I’ve gone up both ways before, and they have their pros and cons

Cable car:

  • Great view (if you’ve got a good spot by the walls. If you’re stuck in the centre.. well.. all you see are heads and armpits)
  • Fast (takes about 10-15 mins)
  • Long queue to get onto a cable car. (sucks if the weather is cold)

View if you’re stuck in the middle of the cable car

View if you’re by the wall/window of the cable car

View from the front of the cable car – we are fast approaching Seoul N Tower!

Car:

  • Long uphill walk (in summer: you’ll be sweating ; in winter: you’ll be nicely warmed up)
  • Lovely scenic view
  • Lactic acid galore when you have to take the flights of stairs up

One of my favourite photos of all time – my attempt at looking artsy fartsy totally worked out. This is the road heading up towards Namsan Tower if you go by car. You can’t drive all the way up – park and walk.

Heading up to the Roof Terrace where there are many locks

Me next to my lock – I visit my lock once every 3-6 months and it’s still there!

Creative ways of hanging their locks – a giant red bicycle chain +  lock!

How the locks look at night – it’s seriously pitch dark out there. Terrible for me who has major night-blindness

Special benches so that you can take the perfect lovey-dovey photo with your significant other. Clearly, our attempt at looking melancholy failed spectacularly.

Enough fooling around with the locks – it’s time to get a good view up from the Tower.

Seoul N Tower in the day

And the Tower at night – ignore extremely frozen faces – wind was icy cold that night!

 Time to buy entry tickets.

The main area in front of the Tower – Teddy Bear Museum, shops, cafes are in the background.

Here’s a sneakily-taken photo of my friend in the Teddy Bear Museum. Apparently photos are not allowed… but… they’re just too cute!

But wait, what’s this fancy light we see?

It looks totally like a scene out of Dragon Ball. Awesome!

The roof, the roof, the roof is on fireeeee, not. The Tower does have some fancy fire light show going on though.

The entrance to the Tower

Me, the Korean PR guy Byoung Il who’s now my friend, and my good friend Lili being complete idiots heh.

Me and some journalists and our Korean guide having a meal high up in the Tower – it was a buffet at the restaurant called n.grill. About SGD50+ each? Can’t quite remember since this was taken in 2009.

And the highlight of the night – the views.

See the Hangang River in the background?

And finally – a view from the Tower in the day time

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Because I can’t quite decide which colour turtleneck suits the Tower best, I’ve compiled them into gifs. 😀 (If they aren’t loading properly, simply click on them to open in a new window and view the mini light show)

Details

Address: Seoul-si Yongsan-gu Yongsandong  2-ga San 1-3

Contact: 1330 tt call center: +82-2-1330 (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

Alternative contact: +82-2-3455-9277, 9288 (Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)

Official website: N Seoul Tower

Opening hours

Sunday-Thursday
Observatory: 10:00-23:00
Restaurant: 11:00-23:00
Teddy Bear Museum: 10:00-22:00 (Last entry: 21:00)

Friday-Saturday
Observatory: 10:00-24:00
Restaurants (n.GRILL/Hancook): 11:00-23:00
The place dining: 11:00-24:00 (Last seating: 23:00)
Teddy Bear Museum: 10:00-22:00

For admission fees and more information, visit here.

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