Hey everybody! We’re back with another topic of things to do right here in Korea. There are a lot of travelers visiting Korea for the first time and they frequently ask a similar question, “what do you do when you have a couple of hours free on your hand?” Well, one thing that we like to do when it’s scorching hot or freezing cold outside is just staying indoors. But we’re not talking about staying inside a hotel or at a friend’s house and lounging around for hours, counting the minutes to go by. We are talking about hanging out at a mall. You’re probably thinking that roaming around a mall sounds boring and cliché. But this is not your ordinary mall. This is known as the biggest mall in Korea: Starfield COEX Mall. It’s located in Gangnam and it is gigantic. It’s so large that you might get lost as soon as you lose your way.
What are some things to do at the Coex Mall? Well, there are a few places that we highly recommend, one of them being the Coex Aquarium.
COEX Aquarium (코엑스 아쿠아리움)
This mall has one of Korea’s largest aquariums and there are about 40,000 living creatures inside. Normally people would think that just because it’s an aquarium, there would only be sea creatures. But that’s not the case at all. This place mainly houses sea creatures, but along with them, there are land animals as well. You get to (partially) experience the whole trip of going to a zoo by going to the Coex Aquarium. There are some interesting sea creatures here, but to be honest, the sharks are the main attractions.
Starfield Library (별마당도서관)
Another area of interest that attracts so many people to this mall, is the Starfield Library. It’s pretty new since it only opened around the summer of 2017. What makes this library so different than your average library near home? Well, the structure of this place is uniquely designed with three ginormous wooden shelves that reach the ceiling and these shelves stores over 50,000 books. You are literally surrounded by a (star) field of books. In our opinion, this place seems more like a bookstore rather than a library due to all the stores surrounding the area, but that could be just us thinking.
Various Events & Fairs
One other aspect of the mall that really intrigues everyone is the number of events that are held monthly. There are so many events that occur on a weekly basis that people come in hordes. One particular event is the food truck festival that happens twice a year called “Eat The Seoul” (잇더서울).
It happens right before summer and one during the winter. They sell so many delicious types of food like the “dinosaur leg”, bbq plates, monster chicken skewers, light-up cotton candy, and more. Along with the food truck festival, they also open the Great Korean Beer Festival. These two festivals are some of the most popular attractions in Coex. You have to literally wait 30 minutes in line to get your food because of the number of people. But it’s totally worth it because the food tastes absolutely amazing especially with the cold beer outside.
If you’re not sure of where the mall is located on the map, find Gangnam first and it’s near the area. But just to be certain, we’re give you some directions.
There are two subway lines that you can take to reach this huge mall: Line 2 and 9. For Line 2, you need to get off the Samseong Station and the signs will lead you. The station is literally connected to the mall so just trust the signs and you will be fine. But just in case, head towards Exit 5 or 6 and walk straight. For Line 9, you need to get off the Bongeunsa Station and take Exit 7 to enter the mall.