April 29, 2010

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Namsan and N Seoul Tower

Seoul's city mountain and its landmark tower

Let me introduce you another awesome spot in the amazing South Korean city of Seoul. It's called Namsan mountain [남산 lit. "Southern Mountain"]. Namsan sounds similar like Chinese 南山 (Nanshan), because it originates from the same root. The name comes from its location, which needs to be put in the historic context. Namsan is now somewhere in the middle of Seoul, but in the old times, it was south from the historic city of Seoul. Namsan's name used to be Mongmyeok [목멱산 lt. "Wood-seeking Mountain"] or 木覓山 in Chinese (source).

Today people don't only go on top of Namsan because of the amazing nature and breath-taking view of Seoul below, they also want to see Seoul's landmark building - the N Seoul Tower [엔 서울타워]. It was completed in 1980 (we're same age!) and the strucure is nearly 237m tall, but if we include the mountain, it tops up at nearly 480m (source), standing out as Seoul's number one landmark building. Let me show you some of my photos of Namsan:

I took the train to Dongguk University station (Orange Line 3) and then took a bus (see small pic on the left) at a station. The bus was also orange color. I used my SMRT card and the ride cost less than 1000Won one way (0.60€)! There's also a Namsan cable car that can bring you up to the top, but I was advised by the hostel owner Danny not to take it, it's too expensive. I researched and a round trip costs 7500Won (5€), which is nearly 4 times more expensive (the price as in April 2010). If you want to save, better take the bus.

The road up to Namsan is winding, but not long. I reached on top in 10-15min.

A convenience store with souvenirs and beverages.

The N Seoul Tower seen from just below the peak of Namsan mountain.

The top area of Namsan mountain with groups of people everywhere.

N Seoul Tower on te left and the lattice transmission tower on the right.

Many pupils with teachers visit Namsan. While passing by, they were greeting me.

A nice pavilion on the northern side of the area.

The N Seoul Tower in it's full glory. Below is the observation deck.

See more of my photos of the N Seoul Tower>>

Namsan love padlocks: Couples put various locks on the rail (or fence) of the observation deck and profess their love for each other or write wovs on small notes. Then they throw the key over the rail and hope that the promises they gave to each other, will last forever. I wonder how many regret doing this, hehehe. Anyway, the idea is not original, love padlocks can be found in Tokyo and also in Taiwan, in Fengyuan (豐原).

Namsan love padlocks close-up.

Can you see how many there is? The whole fence is full of them. Koreans are romantic!

So am I, haha. I didn't have a padlock, but I did commemorate the special moment.

If you happen to go to Namsan, please check, if my message is still readable :-P

Here's the spot, where you can find it. I think it won't last long, I used a simple pen.

The N Seoul Tower from below.

See my huge N Seoul Tower photo here>>

The lattice transmission (or communication) tower nearby.

See more photos of the lattice transmission tower here>>

The view on south-western Seoul. Can you spot the thin and tall Building 63?

View from the other side, the north-eastern Seoul.

Beautiful, isn't it? I love this city.

I soon headed downward, took a bus and continued my amazing Seoul-tour.

Next time I want to see Seoul at night! (Photo taken from http://www.nseoultower.net)

How do you like Namsan and my photos?
HanCook restaurant: Seoul Yongsan-gu Yongsan-dong 2-ga San 1-3 N Seoul Tower F1
[My N SEOUL TOWER post][Huge N Seoul Tower photo][Transmission Tower]


  1. I feel so happy and honored to see my name was written at Namshang tower, at the famous and popular spot in Seoul, thank you so much. Hope next time we can visit there again and the words are still there, that would be so romantic.

    By the way, I love the pics of Namshang tower, the scene really looks so beautiful, and your photography makes it brilliant.

    PS: Seems I am the first commentator. :-P

  2. I love that padlock idea. How very cool, and it looks cute to! So much better then just a boring, grey fence..

    I also love the last shot. I love night time views, with the light and everything. Don't you wish you could take pictures like that? I wish I could have been able to capture beautiful scenes like that I have seen throughout the years.

  3. LOVE PADLOCKS!!! AWWWWWWWWWW :D nice to know that u n lily had fun. n btw.. WHY NO PIX OF U GUYS TOGETHER AGAIN!! *roarrrrrrrr*

  4. well here you dont have dedicated love spots we scribble almost everywhere bus, train, tourist spots, office and some times neighbor's home too :P

  5. now i know i should go there in the evening so that i could enjoy the sunset and spectacular night view of the tower...hhoohohho and the love padlocks... you can see them everywhere in china especially the tourist attractions... a good way to make money =p and south korea is very clean like japan and europe

  6. @Lily: I'm so happy that you comment here finally :D Yes, your name is on Namsan tower (not Namshang lo), hehe. Now hope that it'll stay there for a while, hehe.

    @Carina: Agree. Looks interesting with the padlocks. And the scenery is really beautiful, I'm very happy to have this chance.

    @Jess: Not me and Lily here, Jess. I was alone "-_-

    @Amogh: So Indians are also romantic :P

    @fufu: Yea, South Korea is really clean, cleaner than my country, which is also quite clean. And definitely cleaner than Taiwan I must say. But hey, Taiwan has the bubble tea!!! :)~~

  7. very pretty senary. That would be awesome to see seoul at night! Great traveling pics as always ;)

  8. awww. sweet.... i saw in many of their movies of this place & the apdlock thingy... boy! arent you lucky! now you got me soooo jeles!!!

  9. @Julie: Thank you.

    @Lily: Haha.. yes, I'm lucky. I felt like I was in a drama, just that there was no female part :P

  10. Hey that looks just like the KL Tower!!!!

  11. @Saby: All these towers look alike. I think Menara is taller :)

  12. The city looks so dense! But I can see myself living there. *wishing hard* *closing my eyes first* ;p

  13. The locks remind me of a very famous bridge in Rome, where lovers do something very very similar! Cool... (and it reminds me of a book... it's called "Ho voglia di te" where it's described!)

  14. @Johana: Yes, it's dense, over 20 mil people in Greater Seoul :)

    @Daisy: Cool :) Italy is famous for romantic things and people :)

  15. AWW thats so cuteeeeeeeeeee and romantic of u!!!

  16. ohh the padlock thingie tradition is so cute! it's the first time im seeing such a thing

  17. Ooooooooo.... Legalised vandalism. LOL

    Coming to realise something, seems that every country has a need to build a tall tower. Men and their phallic symbols. Hahahahaha....

    Have a good weekend!

  18. @Andhari: True.

    @Envoy: Annyong Hasseyo!

    @Jaimie: Cuz that's how I am :)

    @Manju: Snap! I should've written some of my bloggy friends' names :P

    @Lizzy: Yes, I agree with you 100%, hehe.

  19. I want to be romantic and leave a padlock there too. :)

  20. It's too bad it was so foggy by the time you went there. It's really hard to get good pictures of the city like that.
    It seems like a really awesome place to go overlook the city at night. Did you go inside the tower? Maybe they have a restaurant or something, one could bring good company to on a clear evening?

    I just saw something similar as this padlock thing in Italy when I went to Florence, but that was not anything love-related. People there liked to put plain padlocks (no messages or coloured hearts) onto certain places in the city. I think they did it for good fortune or something.
    Haven't ever heard of this Asian padlock-thing before, though.

  21. @Lina: I'm sure you'll get a chance next time :)

    @Sander: I didn't go inside the tower. There is a restaurant on top and I'm sure it's great, but probably not cheap. Well, the padlocks of love are a good idea, you can go to Fengyuan and leave yours there :)

  22. Oooo Seoul looks so beautiful at night. Actually, any big city looks gorgeous at night from a high view. I love taking flights into large cities at night just for the view of the city lights :)
    The sky looks very hazy there - is there a lot of smog pollution there?
    Hmmm the love padlocks are interesting - I don't think we have anything quite like that here for showing your love.

  23. @Karen: Actually I've seen small Asian city at night, that looked beautiful, but during the day they were messy and dirty :) Night covers a lot of bad things and the lights are beautiful to us. I don't know the pollution level in Seoul, but it seemed pretty ok, haven't seen any haze.

  24. Wonderful the love padlocks idea! I would like to go up there during my trip, so I will try to find your message and let you know next spring :)

  25. @Traveling Hawk: Aw, that would be great :-D Make a photo and send to me, I'll publish it :-D


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