Korea Day 1: Common Ground
On our very first full day in Korea, we went on a mission to find this super sick shopping center made completely out of shipping containers. Common Ground is Korea's first shopping center of it's kind, designed by Kolon FnC, located in the Gwangjin district of Seoul and is one of the many things you can do while in Korea!
If any of you are Kpop fans and have watched Infinite Showtime, this is the place that they filmed the episode of the members filming and directing their own music video for their Christmas song, White Confession. Looked pretty cool on the show, right? It looked pretty cool in person, too.
This is the music video, thanks to All the K-Pop:
Common Ground is made up of 200 shipping containers and is capable of transforming into different structures. There are over 50 stores, but you won't find any mainstream brands here, it's mostly pop-up stores, local, indie, and up-and-coming designers.
It's super trendy, though. There are tons of different types of stores - from makeup, to accessories, to clothing - literally anything you can think of. There are also a few cute cafes to take a break in!
It's split into two sides, connected by a cute little bridge on the 3rd floor terrace (roof). The terrace is where most of the restaurants are located, and it's decorated super cutely, with strung lights and shit. I'd imagine it looks pretty romantic at night.
In the middle of the two buildings, there's a square area where events are held and food trucks are located. On the particular day we were there, staff members were setting up for an event called "2016 Marvel Run." There was a life-size Spiderman and a pretty big store space was dedicated to Marvel items.
We had a little snack at one of the food trucks, Kimchi Bus. They have a variety of tacos, quesadillas, and fries on the menu, with kimchi incorporated in some way.
We ordered a beef, kimchi, and cheese quesadilla. And it was magical. So noms. I want one right now, now that I'm thinking about it. Some kind of yogurt-tasting sauce was drizzled on top, the closest thing I can think of to compare it to is Greek tzatziki sauce, but without all the herbs. Whatever it was, it worked. Oh, and they have booze, too! Mostly foreign beers.
And they give you a cool souvenir. That circle thing with "UK" on it is a bottle opener! Definitely came in handy during the rest of my trip.
We didn't spend much time at Common Ground, and to be honest, I was expecting a lot more.
Although it's a really cool concept, the stores are all pretty small and there are definitely more apparel available for men than women. And it's not super affordable, a broke college kid wouldn't be able to afford most of the items there.
Judging by how empty it was when we were there, my guess is that others feel the same way. I think it'd be a really cool place just to hang out in, in one of the many cafes, just because it's pretty hipster and I'm kind of into that hipster shit. There was also a live DJ playing music for the place, and of course, she was in her own little shipping container. Cute.
I'd still recommend going to see it, especially if there's an event going on, or just to have dinner at night. It's super sick to look at and you'll probably get some pretty cool hipster photos there. ;)
Common Ground Address:
200, Achasan-ro, Gwangjin-gu, Seoul 서울특별시 광진구 아차산로 200 (자양동)
Take the metro to Konkuk University Station (line 2 or 7),
exit from exit 6,
and walk straight for about 250 m. You can't miss it.
website (in Korean):
After Common Ground, we walked around the area a bit and there's lots of other great shopping around. There's a huge North Face store, a Nike store, and an Adidas store, to name a few popular brands. High fashion stuff, too, like Zio Songzio!
Great boba, too!
This is definitely a fun place to visit and I totally recommend checking out the area. :)
Fun things to do in Seoul:
All Day Hanbok Rental in Seoul
Seoul Street Food Tour
SBS MTV The Show
Seoul K-drama Shooting Spots: 1 Day Small Group City Tour
Coex Aquarium Discount Ticket
N Seoul Tower Observatory Ticket
Han River Ferry Buffet Cruise
Lotte World 1 Day Pass + Lotte World Aquarium Combo Discount Ticket
DMZ Shuttle Bus & Ticket Package
Buyeo UNESCO Heritage 1 Day Tour
Make your trip easier!
Incheon/Gimpo Airport ↔ Seoul Transfer - Airport Taxi (24/7)
AREX Airport Railroad Express Train Discount Ticket
Seoul Luggage Storage Service
Seoul Luggage Delivery Service (Hotel ↔ Incheon Airport)
KR Pass (Korea Rail Pass): Cheap way to ride KTX & Trains
Korea Sim Card - Unlimited 4G/LTE Data Package
If you're looking for a place to stay in Korea, check out Airbnb! They have great listings that are often less expensive than staying at a hotel and that offer a unique experience. Get ¥3,664 (or the equivalent in your country's currency) off your first booking by clicking here and using my referral code. :)