Are you traveling to South Korea and would love to choose a hanok stay in Seoul but don’t know which one is the best? We have gathered 19 amazing options to help you make the best and most informed choice.
We lived in Seoul for almost one year and we are very familiar with the city and accommodation options, thus this guide will include all the information you need.
From hanok guesthouses hidden on the streets of Bukchon Hanok Village, to less popular options in the heart of the city – you will find it all here.
Plus, everything you must know about choosing the best area to stay in Seoul on your first trip to the city. Choosing to stay in a hanok is an authentic experience, but it is also a budget accommodation option.
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The Best Hanok Stay in Seoul
What is a Hanok?
A hanok is a traditional Korean house dating from the 14th century, during the Joseon Dynasty.
Koreans believed, and built their houses accordingly, that the perfect house has a mountain in the back and a river in the front.
Because Korea is a country with cold winters, hanoks have floor heating (ondol), and people are used to sleeping on the floor. Thus you can expect that when you book a hanok stay in Seoul.
While these type of houses have been built for hundreds of years, only few areas with hanoks still remain, such as the Bukchon Hanok Village in Seoul.
Why stay in a hanok in Seoul?
Of course, staying in a hanok house is not for everyone. However, if you are passionate about Korean culture, there is no better option than choosing to stay in a traditional house. By doing this, you can have an authentic experience, even if you choose one such guesthouse only for one night.
Moreover, if you choose to stay in a hanok, it doesn’t have to be a budget experience since there are plenty of luxury options.
What is the best area to stay in Seoul?
The answer to this question depends a lot on what you are planning to do and see in the city. Also, the length of your stay, your budget, and if this is your first visit to Seoul or you are returning.
Many people choose to stay in Myeongdong or Hongdae, especially when traveling for the first time. These are both great areas that will place you close to many of the important attractions in town.
However, if you would like to stay in a traditional Korean hanok, you might need to step a little bit outside of these two popular neighborhoods.
We would always recommend you to stay north of the river, that’s because here is where the historical part of town is located. Moreover, it is easier to access Incheon Airport when you choose to stay anywhere in Jongno, Myeongdong, Hongdae, Mapo, or Yongsan.
Read also: The Best Guesthouses in Seoul
19 great options for Traditional Hanok Stays in Seoul
This hanok guesthouse is perfectly set around the popular Bukchon Hanok Village area, within walking distance to both Gyeongbokgung Palace and Changdeokgung Palace. Moreover, the area is packed with restaurants and some of the most popular cafes in Seoul.
All rooms come with air conditioning, very useful if you are traveling during summer and the rainy season. Moreover, if you don’t want to eat out for every meal, you will have access to the hanok’s kitchen.
All rooms have a private bathroom so you won’t have to worry about sharing it with other travelers.
It is a great option for families traveling with children, since you can choose to stay in larger rooms, and also laundry is available.
Bonum 1957 Hanok and Boutique
Another boutique hotel hosted inside a hanok house, set in a prime tourist area, right in the heart of the city, on Bukchon-ro.
The hotel is set in an easy 15 minute walk away from the National Folk Museum and Gyeongbokgung Palace, but also close to many small souvenir shops and local cafes.
Other guests liked how spacious rooms are, but also having coffee on the balcony in the morning with a view of the garden and Namsan Tower.
It is worth knowing that this is a traditional house and no elevators are available, thus you might need to carry your luggage up stairs.
Also, be aware that in order to get the hanok stay, you will need to book the Korean-stay two-bedroom suite. All other rooms are in a newer hotel.
Gongsimga Hanok Guesthouse
Less than 1 kilometer away from the popular Insadong, this hanok guesthouse offers guests an authentic stay in Seoul.
While you won’t find much inside the room, you will have everything you need for a comfortable stay: air conditioning, heating (for your winter in Seoul), a private bathroom, and Korean mats for sleeping on the floor. Is you are traveling alone, be aware that the single room does not have the bathroom inside.
You can spend your free time in the house’s lounge area, and can prepare fast meals in the shared kitchen.
Previous guests have enjoyed their stay, appreciated how friendly and helpful the hosts were, and how delicious the traditional Korean breakfast was.
Bukchonmaru Hanok Guesthouse
Another excellent option set in the popular Bukchon Hanok Village, steps away from the palaces, and some of the most important things to do and see in Seoul. Right next to the guesthouse there is a bus stop for the bus taking you to Anguk Station.
Double rooms have a private shower, but shared bathroom, while the Korean-style family room has a private bathroom. All rooms have access to wifi, and you can choose between garden-view or landmark-view rooms.
A major plus that guests enjoyed is the free hanbok rental option. When staying here, you can borrow some premium hanboks (Korean traditional clothes) and take pictures at the nearby Palaces.
Eunpyeong Eunhwadang Hanok Stay
Choose to stay here if you want to skip the crowds and discover some less known Seoul attractions.
Sure, by staying here you won’t be right in the city center, or very close to the most important attractions, thus this might not be a great options for those traveling to Seoul for the first time.
However, Eunpyeong Habok Village is more authentic and in a very tranquil area. In the village there are also plenty of cafes and restaurants, offering some stunning views over Bukhansan Mountain.
You can choose between 3 room types depending on the number of people you are traveling with, and you get breakfast included in the room rate.
Luxury Hanok with private bathtub – BiGyuHeon
This is a truly luxury option for when you plan to spend a bit more time in Seoul, but want to stay in a traditional hanok house.
The outside is very traditional, while the inside is extremely modern and comfortable, offering you everything you might need during your stay. You have the whole house to yourself and your family, have access to a fully furnished kitchen, and a washing machine.
The accommodation is located in Jogno-gu, close to one of the less known palaces, Unhyeongung. You will be expected to do self check-in, but the location is easy to find, only a few steps away from Anguk Subway Station.
Hanok Guesthouse Suni
This hanok guesthouse is set in Dongseong-dong, tucked away from tourists, in a very local area. However, you will have access to public transportation, and you will be only 2.6 kilometers away from Changgyeonggung Palace.
There are single and double rooms, all with air conditioning. The single rooms don’t have the bathroom inside, but you will have access to a private bathroom in the garden – this might not be ideal if you are traveling during the cold season.
Heating, free wifi, and an airport shuttle are available at the hotel.
Previous guests loved how the family that runs the hotel cared about their stay, how delicious breakfast was, and the fact that the hotel is well linked to the city by public transportation and it offers access to a stream.
Hanok Guesthouse Nuha
Hidden on the streets of another picturesque area, this stay will set you close to Gyeongbokgung Palace, The National Folk Museum of Korea and Seochon Hanok Village.
Close by you will also find plenty of restaurants, stores, and cafes.
You can choose to stay here when traveling with a larger group or your family, because they also offer rooms for 4 or 8 people. Also, some of the rooms offer a seating area where you can unwind after the time spent wondering on the streets of Seoul.
NagNe House (Boutique Hanok)
Set really close to the subway station, the main palace, and Gwanghwamun Gate, this is a small hanok hotel. It features 5 double rooms, some offering garden views.
The small Korean garden is beautifully arranged and it is the perfect location for an afternoon tea or morning coffee.
While rooms are not big and the walls don’t offer much insolation, you get to experience the true hanok stay.
A hanok stay in Seoul rated as Exceptional by previous guests. The guesthouse is located close to Changdeokgung Palace and Jogyesa Temple, and guests have access to a shared kitchen, a sun terrace, and a sauna.
The house has 3 bedrooms and 2 bedrooms and can be rented out fully, hosting up to 11 people.
Moreover, there is a washing machine as well as dryer ready to use for no extra charge. It is the perfect option for those traveling as a larger group or with the family.
Located within walking distance from the Gyeongbokgung (Government Complex-Seoul) public transportation station, this is another great hanok stay option close to the main tourist attractions.
Rooms are available for single travelers, and for those traveling in groups of up to 4 people. You can expect traditional small rooms, with heated floors and shared bathroom. Also, the suit has normal beds you can enjoy if you mind sleeping on the floor mats.
Previous guests have considered the house to be safe, spanking clean, and equipped with modern conveniences but maintains the charm and intimate character of the historic building.
This is the perfect option for those who want to stay in a traditional house, but have a normal bed to sleep on.
By choosing to stay here you will be in a less touristic area, but close to Namsan Mountain, Seoul Station, or Namdaemun Market.
Some rooms have a private bathroom, and guests have access to a shared kitchen and the house’s beautiful garden. In the neighborhood you will find plenty of cafes.
Guests have considered it a unique place which offer great value for money. They also loved how friendly and welcoming the owners of the guesthouse were.
Luxury Hanok with private bathtub – Dongyoungjae Annex
Minutes away from the Kimchi Academy, Changdeokgung Palace and its beautiful gardens, this is one of the most luxurious hanok stays you can choose in Seoul.
Apart from the luxurious interiors, guests have access to a terrace and a washing machine. The whole house has only one bedroom and can be rented fully.
Air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchen, and toiletries are available on location.
Dajayon Hanok Stay
Set 200 metres from Jongmyo Shrine, this hanok stay in Seoul offers double and triple rooms with private bathrooms with shower.
You can also book your stay with breakfast, and choose between the continental and Asian options. Previous guests considered the owners to be very friendly and helpful, and the place tranquil and very clean.
Nuhadang Hanok Guesthouse
Another centrally located hanok guesthouse, that offers a laundromat, dry cleaning services and laundry services. There are plenty of room options to choose from, no matter if you are traveling alone or with your family.
The host can also support with shuttle services from and to the airport, or help you plan your Seoul itinerary. If you choose to drive in Seoul, they provide free parking on premises.
ICOS Guesthouse 1 – Female Only
The perfect choice for women solo travelers or for those who want to be in a safe place.
This women’s only hanok guesthouse is set in one of our favorite areas in town. Close to Sinchon subway station, but also within walking distance from Hongdae and Hongik University Station. If you would rather travel by bus, the airport limousine bus has a stop close to the hotel.
Guests have enjoyed their stay here and felt like part of a family, with the host taking care of them. Nearby, you will find convenience stores, cafes, and restaurants.
Haemil Hanok Guesthouse
Set close to the Jongmyo Shrine and Ikseon-dong Hanok Village, this hanok has double, triple and quadruple rooms.
Past guests that stayed at Haemil Hanok Guesthouse have given this property a great rating for its outstanding service as the main highlight for their stay.
It is worth knowing that smoking is not permitted anywhere, and you will have access to the hotel’s laundry services, useful when you travel for a longer period or pack light.
The highlight of this place? The in-house BBQ facilities.
Cheong Yeon Jae Hanok Hotel
By choosing to stay here you will be located at the heart of the Bukchon Hanok Village, with access to many cafes, museums, and restaurants.
You can choose a room type from the many available, or some of the services provided by the hotel such as taxi, luggage storage, or concierge services.
Rakkojae Seoul Bukchon Hanok Village
Rakkojae Hanok Hotel is set in the heart of the Bukchon Hanok Village and offers a unique package.
Set aside 3 hours for this ultimate relaxation experience, with traditional Korean ingredients good for the skin: Makgeolli (a traditional Korean drink made out of fermented rice), ginseng, and more.
You get a welcome tea and traditional sweets, a Jjimjilbang experience (45 minutes), and a Makgeolli spa experience (75 minutes).
You will want to book in advance because they only offer the experience to 2 people every day.