Café seoulism is one of Seoul’s hottest cafes right now. Famous for its stunning rooftop view, this bar-café is a great destination for dates, hanging out with friends, or for the very famous Instagram photo. Despite being in an out-of-the-way location for most visitors and residents of Seoul, the cafe provides one of the most unique experiences of any cafe in Seoul. This post includes all of the information you need to know before visiting. Opening hours, location, menu, best times to visit, and more!
Table of Contents
The café itself is located near Lotte Tower and can be found a short walk from Seokchon Station on Line 8 (the pink line). Once you arrive at Seokchon station, exit via exit 2 and walk straight for about 10 minutes. This will take you to the bottom of the building that Seoulism is located in. The building isn’t the most obvious, so make sure to keep an eye out. The cafe is located on the 6th floor of the building.
Seoulism has very long hours and is open from 11 am-11 pm on Monday-Thursday and Sunday. On Fridays and Saturdays, the café is open from 11 am until midnight. There are two downsides to Seoulism, and one of them is the popularity. It is a VERY popular café, so if you want to visit, either try to visit at a less-popular time, or expect to wait for a while. The other downside is the price. The café drinks go for double, or even triple, what you can find elsewhere in Seoul. This is a similar case with the alcohol menu.
The very famous Seoul sign at Seoulism.
The optimal time to visit depends on your wants. If you want to visit at the least busy time, consider visiting in the morning or early afternoon, before 1 pm. This will avoid most of the crowds and will give you time to enjoy Seoulism before it becomes very busy. If you are interested in having the best atmosphere and views, consider visiting around sunset time. In the summer, this means 6-7 pm, and in the winter, about 5 pm. Not only does this promise the best views, but it also means you get to experience the unique night atmosphere.
The stunnning views from the cafe.
Prices and Menu
Upon entering the café (through the red door located to the left of the elevator as soon as you exit) you are met with the counter to place orders. Each person must purchase at least one drink, and you aren’t allowed to sit until you order. If you are looking for the cheapest option, expect to pay about 7500KRW per person. This will get you a standard coffee such as an americano or latte.
Seoulism acts as a café until the evening, when it changes to a bar. Cocktails, wine, beer, and more are available for anyone interested – with the prices for drinks averaging 10,000-20,000KRW. It’s definitely not one of the cheaper cafes or bars, but it offers a unique experience and for some people, it will be worth the extra cost.
The café also offers brunch, desserts, and some general food. This food isn’t really considered meal food, with offerings such as nachos and cheese plates. The desserts are around 10,000KRW, with the brunch and general food going for 20,000KRW. For the full menu, please refer to their Naver page (unfortunately the menu is only provided in Korean).
The drinks are of decent quality and the servings (for the coffee) are much larger than most cafes. However, it is still undeniable that they are more expensive than typical cafes. Considering the location, and atmosphere of the café though, this is something that many people can overlook.
Once you enter the café it is instantly apparent that it is very nice. The inside follows a chic theme and is furnished with lots of wooden furniture. The atmosphere feels very hip, and the music helps add to this. The whole café is very well themed and visiting feels like an experience. Not even considering the rooftop view, Seoulism feels very unique and offers something different from the many other cafes in Seoul.
The interior feels very unique.
Many types of seating are available. The café itself has three main parts, the interior, the rooftop deck, and the Seoul sign. There are tables both in the interior and on the rooftop, and you can choose to dine either inside or outside. Both are very nice, and the choice is yours. Inside you will also find a large variety of seating – everything from window seats, to rocking chairs, to normal table seats, are available.
There are many different seats avaliable inside.
The Seoul sign sits above the rooftop deck and is the highlight of the café for most visitors. It’s one of the most popular Instagram locations in Seoul currently, and if you browse Instagram often, you’ve probably seen the sign I am talking about.
The sign is located on a separate platform to the rest of the café. This means that it is much easier to get the famous photo without other people ruining the shot. There is usually a line to get to the platform, and when we visited, this meant a 5-minute wait-time to get to the top. The bonus of the wait, however, is that it means you will get the platform to yourself for a few minutes.
Sunset at Seoulism
We arrived at the café at 5:30 pm on a Saturday (the peak time according to Google is 4 pm), and it was nearly full. When the sun was setting, the roof was very busy and everyone wanted photos. After the sunset, the traffic to the top lessened considerably and we managed to get the platform to ourselves for a full 15 minutes. Long enough for me to set up my camera on a tripod and get some long-exposure images.
Lotte Tower at night.
Since we stayed through sunset, we got to see the café transition to its bar time. The staff brought out some cute electric candles to light the tables where people were sitting, and the atmosphere felt truly unique from all of the other cafes I’ve visited in Seoul. Many couples and groups populated the café and ordered wine and beer. The atmosphere was really quite nice.
The sun goes down behind Lotte Tower.
Café Seoulism isn’t for everyone. On the other hand, it is a very unique café that offers one of the best views in the city. The atmosphere is something special, and while the location makes it harder to access, it also places it in an area that many people wouldn’t otherwise visit.
The biggest downsides of the café are due to the popularity that it has gained and the famous Seoul sign photo location. It has quickly become one of the most popular Instagram photos in Seoul, and as such, it attracts very large crowds. However, this is something that can definitely be avoided with some planning. The prices are on the higher end, but you get more than just a coffee when you visit Seoulism.