The viral music video has been viewed more than 150 million times on YouTube since mid-July, propelling South Korean rapper Psy to international celebrity status and launching a dance craze that’s made it socially acceptable for adults to ride imaginary horses in public. (video at the end of the post)
Lots of fans are aware Psy is singing about a place but many are still wondering: Where exactly is Gangnam and what is its style? This incredibly popular music video has raised massive interest in Gangnam — a wealthy district of Seoul.
Gangnam literally means “south of the river,” referring to its location relative to the Han River, which flows through the South Korean capital. The district has often been referred as the “Beverly Hills of Seoul” for its high-end fashion, fine dining and posh stores selling luxury brands.
For the best shopping, you can head to the Apgujeong-dong and Cheongdam-dong neighborhoods. In Garosu-gil, you’ll find many fine boutiques and trendy eateries specializing in Asian fusion. Gangnam’s food-related attractions also include the famous Kimchi Museum devoted to the traditional Korean pickled dish. This is the place to learn about its history and how it’s made. If fashion is more of your interest, the newly opened Simone Handbag Museum has displays for hundreds of purses dating from the 16th century. For visitors seeking to connect to Seoul’s past, there’s the Bongeunsa Temple, built in 794 and home to thousands of Buddhist scriptures.
Wherever you go in Gangnam, be prepared to spend lots of money and dress well to blend in. In general, people in Seoul are very fashion sensitive and the epitome of it would be Gangnam.
Planning on travel to Korea in near future? Feel free to contact us for our selection of Korea tour packages and our newly added Gangnam Tour.