Hanbok Experience in Seoul: Exploring Joseon Palaces in Hanbok

Whenever I travel to a new destination, I always want to learn the culture, tradition and history of that country. Whether it be sampling local cuisine, exploring historical attractions or dressing up in traditional clothing. Remember our Maiko Transformation in Kyoto, Japan? If you have not seen it yet, you may check it out right here. It was, for me, one of the most memorable experiences I had in Japan.

changing of guards ceremony in Gyeongbukgung Palace

When my friends and I visited South Korea a week ago, we decided to rent Hanboks and explore the Joseon Palaces wearing it. Of course, it is always nice to photograph yourself in traditional clothing, but more than that, wearing the Hanbok made me feel like a Joseon Princess. Koreans, specially the Ahjummas and Ahjussis complimented my friends and I. They can’t help but say ‘ippuda’ meaning beautiful as we walked by. Seeing their delighted faces, I get this feeling they are happy that foreign tourists appreciate their traditional clothing and show respect in their customs. 

Sheila celebrated her birthday the night we arrived in Seoul. Look how happy she was in this photo. Love you friend! Thanks for everything!

Hanbok Rental at Oneday Hanbok

Before we flew to Seoul, I emailed One Day Hanbok, a Hanbok rental service in Seoul, that we will avail their service. I was advised that the rental service costs KRW 15,000 for 4 hours and KRW 28,000 for 24 hours. I was also told they moved to a different location, which is in Chungmuro, and that their shop opens at 10:00 in the morning. That’s a bit late by Filipino standard haha. We did not realise it was winter and the sun rises at 7:30 in the morning! Lol.

So on our first day in Seoul (December 5, 2015), my friends and I woke up early so we could start exploring Gwanghwamun, watch the Changing of Guards Ceremony in Gyeongbukgung and make a quick stop at Changdeokgung before we go to Chungmuro. 

Changdeokgung Palace
one of the gates of Changdeokgung Palace

The palaces, as usual, were packed with tourists, both foreign and local. It was around 3 degrees celsius that day, a kind of weather that we never experience in the Philippines. lGood thing, the three of us were prepared for this trip. It was already my second winter trip to South Korea that’s why I have given Sheila and DJ an idea on how cold it would be. Thanks to Uniqlo’s Heattech products, the cold never bothered us anyway. Haha.

my friends DJ and Sheila at the entrance of Gyeongbukgung

Korean Barbecue for Lunch

After our half day Joseon Palace Tour, my friends and I took the subway in Jongno 3(sam)ga to Chungmuro Station. Finding the exact location of One Day Hanbok in Chungmuro is a bit of a challenge. Though we have their map on our iPhones, it took about 30 minutes before we find the building. When we found it though, we were all starving so we decided to have lunch first. It was our second Korean BBQ meal BTW. We really love Korean BBQ!

The food in that Korean BBQ house was superb! It was a bit expensive though as we paid around KRW 23,000 each. That was the reason why I only ate Eomuk for dinner that day. Lol!

I love this side dish! I never thought lettuce would taste so good with vinegar!

Our Oneday Hanbok Experience

We went to Oneday Hanbok after lunch. We entered the shop and we were assisted individually by their helpful staff. We were instructed to remove our down jackets and try two Hanboks of our choice. There are over a hundred sets of Hanbok in the shop, ranging from traditional Hanboks to the more modern designs, from extra small to extra large, for both sexes.

Overall Experience

So having tried Japan’s Kimono and South Korea’s Hanbok, which one do I like more? Kimonos and Hanboks are both full of vibrant colors, impressive designs and carry the traditions of their respective country. However, I like Hanbok more because even if you have full stomach, you will not look like a pregnant woman in her 2nd or 3rd trimester. Lol. If you would like to rent a Hanbok in Seoul, I recommend Oneday Hanbok. For me, the experience was totally worth the money and also, you get to enter the Joseon Palaces for free! How cool is that?!

When I saw my Hanbok, I already knew it was for me. Look how lovely it was!

Travel Notes

Oneday Hanbok Contact Information

Address: Il-Hong Building, Level 3, No.303, Chungmuro 4 (sa) ga, Jung-gu, Seoul.
If you are taking a cab, show this address to the driver:
서울특별시 중구 충무로4가 125-3 일흥빌딩 3층 303호
If you are taking the subway:
In front of Exit 8, Chungmuro station (Same building as KB , KIA motors) #303 Floor 3
Email: onedayhb@naver.com
Tel: +8270-4202-4310
Operating Hours: 10:00 am to 8:00 pm daily

Hanbok Rental Fee

  • 4 Hours – 15,000 Korean Won
  • 1 Day (24 Hours) – 28,000 Korean Won (Minimum rental duration is 4 hours)
  • Additional hourly fee – 4,500 Korean won
  • Basic accessories – Free (Hair accessories, bags) Special accessories – 2,000 Korean won (Kings hat, Gisaeng hat, Gat, dress underskirt etc.)

Hanbok Rental Deposit

  • Copy of ID card + Hanbok Rental Deposit of 50,000 Korean Won per Hanbok
  • OR deposit ID card + Hanbok Rental Deposit of 10,000 Korean Won per Hanbo (As a substitute an ID card, a valid Passport or Korean Alien Registration Card will be accepted. In case of group booking (max. 6 people), only 1 ID card is required.)

Disclaimer: All the reviews I write are my own opinions and I was never compensated monetarily to do this. We paid individually for our Hanboks 🙂

First Published: December 17, 2015

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