4 Fun Places To Take Kids In & Around Seoul
I’m always amazed at how many places there are that cater to kids here in Korea. From art museums to science museums and eco parks, if you’ve got a kid, you could find something to do every weekend of the year. Broaden some horizons, teach the little people about bugs, flowers, health and more. Here are four spots that we’ve been to recently that we really enjoyed and I think you will too.
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Bucheon EcoPark (부천자연생태공원)
The Bucheon Ecopark was a fun little find I came upon while out in the area to see some spring flowers. I put it on the map and remembered to head back out and luckily so. The ecopark is made up of a botanic garden, natural ecology museum and arboretum. When you first walk up, you’ll purchase tickets and head into the peach flower shaped botanic garden greenhouse (부천식물원). The peach flower is the symbol of Bucheon City and the building has five petals and each is a different theme. Start in the general plant garden petal and teach the kiddos about Venus fly traps and sensitive plants… aka the ones that fold up when you touch them.
From here, head into the aquatic plant garden and on into the tropical plant garden where you can also see the numerous butterflies that are fluttering here and there. This is where you can find the indoor butterfly garden. There is also one outside. Check out the succulent plant garden and then the indigenous plant garden. We really enjoyed this greenhouse and took advantage of the cooler air inside before we headed outside to see the arboretum. The arboretum (무릉도원 수목원) has a lot of features that both children and adults will love. There are trails that lead off into the forests on the sides and paths that lead through the flower gardens and sculptures. There is a pond with lily pads, a waterfall, a Hanok where children can play traditional games and a great outdoor playground. In the spring, the park is popular to see the tulips. Right now there are numerous flowers blooming in the butterfly garden attracting not just butterflies, but our little one was finding a ton of grasshoppers, caterpillars, roly polys and other creepy crawlers to her delight.
After enjoying the arboretum, head into the natural ecology museum (자연생태 박물관). This was probably our little person’s favorite part because she could actually touch some of those big bugs and hold them in her hands. She LOVES bugs. This is no exaggeration. She has brought home worms, dragon flies and continues to ask for more insect pets. Enter the Natural Ecology Museum an on the first floor you’ll find a river ecology area with various fresh water fish. Head across the hall to the live insects, reptiles and amphibians area. Head upstairs to the second floor to see fossils and a dinosaur exploration hall.
This was a great find for us and perfect for the little person that is interested in nature, insects and plants.
Days: Open every day except Mondays.
Hours: March ~ October: 9:30am – 6:00pm; November ~ February: 9:30am – 5:00pm
Admission: There are tickets available for just the botanical garden, the botanical garden and the ecological museum or for the botanical garden, ecological museum and the 3D theater. We did the botanical garden + ecological museum which also includes entrance to the arboretum.
- Botanical Garden: Adults: W2,000/Teenagers: W1,500/ Children: W1,000
- Botanical Garden + Ecological Museum: Adults: W3,500/ Teenagers: W2,500/ Children: W1,700
- Botanical Garden + Ecological Museum + 3D Theater: Adults: W5,000/ Teenagers: W4,000/ Children: W3,500
- NOTE: Children under 3 are free. Bring something for proof of age. Photo on your phone of child’s passport or birth certificate will work.
Address: 660 Gilju-ro Bucheon-si Gyeonggi-do (경기도 부천시 길주로 660)
Incheon Children’s Science Museum (인천어린이과학관)
The Incheon City government claims this project is the first children’s specialized science museum in Korea. The exterior architecture is really neat and if you stay into the evening, you can see the colorful areas light up. The concept of a child’s mind being like a sponge was used as the basis for all areas of the museum including the architecture as you can see. Head inside and pick up your tickets, which are supposed to be reserved in advance, to enjoy the three story museum. While a reservation is required, you can actually just do the reservation there and then get your tickets. They don’t let more than 500 people in at a time in order to allow everyone to have the best experience. We called to ask if we needed to make a reservation online and they said we could just go and do it so don’t worry if you can’t figure out their site. They’ll help you when you go.
The first floor houses the special exhibition hall, science library, and auditorium. The second floor houses the rainbow village, human body village and secret village. The third floor houses the earth village, urban village, and secret village and an exit to the roof garden… which isn’t so much of a garden but is for outdoor performances. When there aren’t performances, you can still go out and check it out. Good little spot to let the kids run up and down a bit.
Every bit of the museum was really well designed and our little person enjoyed all of it. The spaces were geared toward different ages so it’s good to know which areas are best for your child. We went to just about everything and the first couple of floors were definitely more suited for our 3 year old. The earth info was a bit over her head and she didn’t understand why the earth was sad, but there was a lot she could do. I highly recommend this museum for some science based activities and learning.
Hours: 9:00am ~ 6:00pm
Entry Times: 9:00am, 10:30am, 12:00pm, 1:30pm, 3:00pm, 4:30pm
Days: Open every day except Mondays and January 1st.
Admission: Adults: W4,000/ Teenager: W2,000/ Children: W2,000 (Children 6 and under are free with proof of age.)
Address: 108-1 Bangchuk-dong Gyeyang-gu, Incheon (인천광역시 계양구 방축동 108-1)
North Seoul Art Museum (북서울미술관)
The North Seoul Museum of Art drew me in as it is promoted as a resident-friendly public art complex that hosts free exhibitions throughout the year and they have specialized children’s galleries as well as cultural art programs for Koreans and foreigners in an effort to make art more accessible and familiar to people. The exhibition currently there is really colorful and straight from that, head into the children’s gallery and let them color and draw their own masterpiece. Some exhibitions are a bit more kid friendly, but there’s plenty for the kids to do and being FREE makes it even better.
If you’ve got kiddos that need a little rumble and tumble before they see some art they may or may not be able to touch, there’s also a kid’s play area with some balls and a slide. Head up to the second floor and there’s also a cafe with indoor and outdoor seating perfect for a little snack time. Take a look outside even if you don’t enjoy the outdoor seating options though and follow the steps up because you can walk around the rooftop as well and enjoy some views. There are also sculptures outside on the front lawn to walk around play on. If you have a little person interested in art, or/and you are, check out the Heyri Art Village in Paju. It’s an entire village of galleries, cafes and places for kids and adults to appreciate artwork.
Days: Open every day except Mondays and January 1st
Hours: Weekdays: 10:00am – 8:00pm; Weekends & Holidays: March ~ October: 10:00am – 7:00pm/ November ~ February: 10:00am – 6:00pm
Address: 508 Junggye-dong Nowon-gu, Seoul (서울특별시 노원구 중계동 508)
Agricultural Museum (농업박물관)
The Agricultural Museum is a great spot to check out with the little ones and (BONUS!) it’s FREE! There are various dioramas, hands-on and immersive learning areas to take advantage of. The museum was founded in 1987 to help urbanites and youngsters understand the importance of agriculture and Korea’s traditional farming practices. There are over 5,000 historical agricultural relics on rotation with currently 2,000 on display for public viewing.
On the first floor is the “History of Agriculture” where visitors can learn about Korea’s agricultural history from prehistoric times to the modern period. Head upstairs to the second floor to see the “Life of Agriculture” to see some pretty spectacular dioramas. From the second floor, head all the way down to the basement to visit the “Agricultural Cooperatives Promotion Hall” to learn about modern practices and some common food found here in Korea. If you have an early riser and want something to do, a kiddo you want to teach about farming, or just want to broaden some horizons, this is a great stop that is easy to find in downtown Seoul. We went on a weekend and it wasn’t busy at all which also makes it nice as a little break from people and opportunity to learn and discuss farms and farm life.
If you stop into the museum, head just up the road to a cute brunch cafe known as Kkilook, also the sound a bird makes. They have some great homemade brunch sets and they open early… which is pretty unheard of in Seoul. The Agricultural Museum and this cafe make for a great morning adventure with the little ones. If you don’t have a little one, the museum is a free stop and the dioramas are really really good.
Days: Open every day except Mondays, January 1st, Lunar New Year’s Day, Chuseok
Hours: March ~ October: 9:30am – 6:00pm; November ~ February: 9:30am – 5:30pm
Address:16 Saemunan-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul (서울특별시 중구 새문안로 16)
Address: 217 Sunhwa-dong Jung-gu, Seoul (서울특별시 중구 순화동 217)
Hours: Monday ~ Friday: 8:00am – 9:00pm; Weekends: 9:00am – 7:00pm
Want some more ideas for what to do with your little one around Seoul? Here are a few more ideas:
- Kiddo interested in transportation? New Parks Featuring Trains, Battleships & More In Seoul!
- Kiddo interested in animals? Animal Fun For Everyone at Zoolung Zoolung
- Kiddo interested in fish and sea creatures? Sea Life, A Petting Zoo & More At Aqua Planet Ilsan