Autumn in Seoul is always full of fun outdoor festivities. On any given weekend you can enjoy concerts, art exhibits and even flea markets. It’s the perfect way to enjoy the beautiful fall weather and scenery right before winter kicks in and you can’t stand to be standing outside for more than a few minutes.
Last weekend, I decided to take advantage of the tame autumn weather and head to the Bamdokkaebi Night Market with the boyfriend and our pup. The market was held Yeouido Hangang Park and at first we were a little worried it would take us a while to find the location. However, once we arrived, it was kind of hard to miss. In the dimly lit park, along the river, sat a cluster of white brightly tents and food trucks.
As we made our way over, what seemed like mild crowed turned out to be a bit more than that. The various tents were swarming with people, but if you time it just right you can mange to get to one when it’s empty. The tents were full of handcrafted items like soaps, ceramics, dried flower arrangements, hand painted tea cups, jewelry and fragrances. There were also a few tents that sold vintage clothing and antiques.
I ended up purchasing a perfume stick from a booth called The Pauline. They sold them in 5 g (₩7,000), which looks like a tube of chapstick and 15 g (₩19,000) which looks like a tube of glue stick. I got the smaller since it seemed more convenient to carry around. Plus the fragrances are pretty strong, so a little goes a long way. I typically like sweet and fruity smells, but they were out of the one I liked, so I opted for a floral fragrance that my dog really seemed to enjoy. Yes… I’m that kind of person.
Speaking of my dog, there were also a few booths that sold handmade dog cloths, accessories and leashes. One booth made the cutest little bandanas and bow ties, I couldn’t resist buying him something. He patiently sat at the booth while I tried a couple of things on him and the girls running the booth were really nice and helpful. Everything ranged from ₩6,000~₩9,000 Won, which was quite a steal for handmade items.
If I’m going to be perfectly honest, the food is what really drew me out to the market. There was a cluster of trucks selling all sorts of deliciousness, from coffee and cocktails to churros, chicken skewers and even pizza! Much to my dismay, the lines to every single truck seemed a mile long! So eventually we had to settle on one truck and just wait in line. The chicken skewers smelled intoxicating, plus that truck also sold a special type of tteokbokki so we could try two things in one shot. Unfortunately, it took about an hour to get to the front of the line and they ran out of the tteokbokki about half way there. Sadness…
If you really want to try the food, I suggest getting there between 6 and 7. The lines for all the trucks will easily take you anywhere north of an hour and will not die down until the food is gone. Some of the tents also serve specially made items like teas, macarons and parfaits which don’t have insanely long lines, but they do run out quickly. I suggest visiting these places first.
If you missed it last weekend, don’t worry! The Bamdokkaebi Night Market will be held again for one last weekend on Friday, October 16th & Saturday, October 17th from 6pm~12am. It runs pretty late, but keep in mind that lots of booths sell out and the entertainment dies down as , so it’s best to get there early if you really want to enjoy everything the night market has to offer. Also, it gets pretty crowded so if you bring a small dog or dogs you may want to have something to carry them in.
If you do decide to go later, you may have a chance to see the mythical dokkaebi (도깨비), aka goblin, for which the market was named. So, if you like food, entertainment, handmade goods and goblins check out the Bamdokkaebi Night Market this weekend!