One of Seoul’s newest, biggest, and most beautiful attractions is Seoullo 7017. Originally a highway, the structure was found to be dangerous and engineers deemed it unsafe for use after 2015. The plan was to destroy the highway, however, when the new mayor was elected, the plan was changed to instead ‘renovate’ the highway. The number 7017 represents the year on which the highway was created (1970), and the year it was turned into Seoullo 7017, 2017.
You can enter the structure from many different locations, with different staircases and ramps leading up from the streets below. Once on the actual structure, there is an amazing view to behold. The bridge itself is covered in different types of plants and flowers, as well as many different facilities and stores. Cafes (built to fit into the structure) line the sides, and everything from restaurants to trampolines can be seen as you walk along the highway. Off the sides of the path, the city of Seoul sprawls onwards in every direction.
I can safely safely say that creating Seoullo 7017 was a far better idea than scrapping the whole highway. Instead of being wasteful, they have managed to turn something that was deemed worthless into an amazing place for the citizens of Seoul (and the many tourists!). The only regret I have at the moment is that I didn’t go at nighttime. However, that will be soon!
Unfortunately, there have also been suicides off the bridge and now guards are stationed regularly at many points. At some points, the fences have also been raised higher.
In many of these images, you can see the green path that Seoullo cuts through the otherwise bland cityscape of buildings. The plants and nature, although in a totally artificial environment, add so much life and variation to the area around Seoul Station.
Every twenty or so metres the theme seems to change. In some sections, you will find bamboo, and bamboo plants line the side of the path. In other areas further along you will find other themes like flowers, or trees. The day I visited was a really great day to go as it wasn’t too busy, but it was lively enough that it felt like a place that has been welcomed and is appreciated by locals.
There are a lot of sitting areas surrounding the plants meaning that it is a great place to stroll along and enjoy in your free time. I love the circular design of the bridge, and the plants really fit in… It is a great, and truly unique, blend of nature and urban environments. As well as the many green plants, there are also lots of different (big pots?) containing flowers of all sorts. From roses to lavender, everything is here! While sitting down and enjoying the view of the city, I noticed the bees crawling all over the flowers. Bees do exist in Seoul!
While the bridge provides some amazing views itself, it also provides amazing views of the city! You get two very different and distinct views of the city from the opposite sides of the bridge. On one side you can see the trains and mostly undeveloped spaces, whereas on the other side you can see a multitude of bus stops and a mess of traffic.
Along the bridge there are also many buildings that house things like cafes that I mentioned earlier. However, another cool aspect of these little ‘towers’ is that you can walk up the staircases and get to the top… Which is usually covered in flowers and provides yet another great view!
Seoullo is something that makes Seoul unique from every other city out there. While some cities have similar sights, Seoullo is something that can only be found in Seoul., something that I recommend everyone visits at least once!