The Seoul Botanic Park is Seoul’s newest attraction, opening less than two weeks ago on May the 1st. The park takes up an area of over 70 football fields and the indoor Botanic Garden itself is over 7,500 square meters.
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Seoul Botanic Park is located at Gangseo-gu and can be accessed via the Magongnaru Station. Magongnaru Station is located on line 9 and the Airport Express Line – just before Gimpo Airport Station. Exiting the station from exits 3 and 4 will take you to the park. Exit 4 however, is slightly closer.
This will take you straight into the Botanic Park, and from there it is a 15-minute walk to the Botanic Garden. This will take you to the ticketing area for the Botanic Garden, the main attraction of the park. This garden has a large indoor area (the Botanic Garden) and also a stunning outdoor area that is very well maintained.
Seoul Botanic Park is divided into four main areas. The first three make up the ‘park’ and are the Forest Field, Lake Garden, and Wetland. The final part of the park is the indoor Botanic Garden and this is the main attraction of the park. The outdoor park areas are all free to access and are open 24 hours, every day of the year. The Botanic Garden is open from 9:30 am to 6 pm and costs 5000KRW per adult, 3000KRW per teen, and 2000KRW per child.
Tickets to the Botanic Park. If you don’t want to spend money, a large part of the park is accessible for free.
The park recently opened after a six-month trial period and is still growing. While the indoor park seems to be in its final state, the outdoor park definitely still has some growth to do. Parts of the outdoor park are still quite bare, and many of the plants are still tiny forms of their future splendour. While the outdoor park is still nice, I can imagine it being a far more beautiful place to visit in the coming months and years.
The main attraction of the park, however, is undoubtedly the Botanic Garden itself. Personally, I didn’t even know that the park existed when I initially visited. I had only heard about the large indoor garden and seen pictures from there! Even after visiting, I would say that the Botanic Garden remains the greatest attraction. The park has a lot of attractions itself, but it’s has nothing that would make me visit Seoul Botanic Park instead of another fantastic park in Seoul such as World Cup Stadium or Olympic Park.
The indoor tropical lake as well and the water fountain.
The part that really does stick out is the Botanic Garden – the indoor garden. Home to over 3100 types of plants (and hoping to increase this to 8000), the garden has one of the largest varieties of plants I’ve ever seen. The Botanic Garden is divided into two main areas, the Mediterranean arid area, and the tropical humid area.
A view of the Seoul Botanic Garden from the Skywalk.
The park is also themed by cities across the globe. In the tropical section, there are themed areas for Hanoi, Jakarta, Sao Paulo, and Bogota – from Vietnam, Indonesia, Brazil and Colombia respectively. The arid section has scenes from Barcelona, San Francisco, Rome, Tashkent, Athens, Perth, Istanbul, and Cape Town – Spain, USA, Italy, Uzbekistan, Greece, Australia, Turkey and South Africa.
These scenes are all beautifully set out and are very aesthetically pleasing. These gardens are perfect for Instagram or other photos! Two of the most popular areas are the cactus setting and the pond setting. Both of which make for stunning pictures, and that’s not to mention the rest of the Botanic Garden.
Some of the stunning photo locations within the Botanic Gardens
While it’s not that important, there is a route through the Botanic Garden. Starting in the tropical section, you begin by passing through a waterfall and cave section. This leads around a tropical pond and eventually through into the arid section. From here, you can explore the whole area before taking the elevator (the stairs were still under construction when we visited) up to the Skywalk.
The Skywalk is a large bridge in the top of the building which provides a view over the garden as well as a great perspective of how large the area is, and how many plants the Botanic Garden has. The Skywalk will lead back through the tropical area, and right to the exit.
An overview from the Skywalk.
Before we went to the Botanic Garden, I personally still preferred other gardens and parks located within Seoul. However, after visiting the indoor garden, I have to say that the Seoul Botanic Park is a great place to visit within Seoul and somewhere that I recommend. The outdoor park is also very large, and this makes it a great place for picnics and exercise.
The Botanic Garden was my main reason for visiting, and it didn’t disappoint at all. On the contrary, I would say it was even better than I expected. The settings were really well designed, and while they didn’t always feel natural, they were very eye-catching. Both the arid and tropical areas had their own attractions, although I definitely preferred the tropical area. The lush vegetation, waterfall, and pond really made the garden feel like it was located in the tropics.
Some views from the arid area of the exhibit.
At the exit and entrance to the garden, a cafe and educational area can be found. The cafe was very busy when we visited, but that was due to some school groups touring the garden. There are also some sitting areas located right by the exit and water fountains nearby.
Things to Keep in Mind
A handy tip to note is that if you purchase the tickets at the entrance to the outdoor part of the Botanic Gardens (not from within the building), you can exit the garden to enter the building and still be able to access it again later on.
Another thing to keep in mind is that due to the nature of the plants inside the garden, it can be very hot. We visited on a day that was nearly 30 degrees, and the inside was hotter than outdoors. Make sure to bring some light clothing if you aren’t visiting in summer. If you are visiting in summer… Well inside might be cooler on a 40-degree day!
The Seoul Botanic Park is another park to be added to Seoul’s already very strong list of fantastic parks. If you haven’t had the chance to go out and explore the parks of Seoul, I can’t recommend it enough. Every park has its own attractions and everyone is worth visiting even if you’ve already visited the others.