One of the best tourist attractions and date spots in Seoul is Namsan Tower and the Locks of Love. Namsan Tower or more commonly called N Seoul Tower marks the highest point in Seoul. It is located at the peak of Namsan Mountain and it’s where locals and tourists go to for a breathtaking 360-degree panoramic view of the city.
When I visited Namsan Tower in the morning, it was not as crowded as I thought. I eventually figured out why – it’s because visitors flock the place in the afternoon so they could catch the sunset.
Some prefers to end their day watching the sun go down from inside a cable car while on their way up the summit. Others opt for a romantic dinner with their special someone in one of the restaurants or cafes inside the tower, while some just choose to simply enjoy the view from the observation deck. Unfortunately, the view was bad the day I went. The clouds were so thick and I couldn’t see anything.
The lady in the ticket booth did mention about the clouds and asked if it was okay. Even though there was no view to actually enjoy and see, I still pushed through with it since I had a schedule to follow as well as tours that had already been paid for. I don’t mind anyway, because I still enjoyed my time while I was there.
The admission fee of the observatory as of March 2017 is as follows:
Namsan Tower is open 365 days a year. However, opening hours may change depending on weather conditions and operating schedule.
Entry to the observatory is possible 30 minutes before the closing time.
Sunday to Friday: 10:00 – 23:00
Saturday: 10:00 – 24:00
The Locks of Love is right below or right at the base of Namsan Tower.
It’s where you can find railings and fences adorned with thousands of padlocks and its keys thrown to the unknown (read: the vast forest of Namsan mountain). The idea is for couples to symbolically lock their love forever. There’s no admission fee to see the place. It’s only the padlocks you have to pay for (which are reasonably overpriced), but you can also choose to bring your own.
There are other attractions here in Namsan Tower aside from the observatory and the Locks of Love. There are duty free shops, cafes, restaurants, museums and exhibition halls as well. Here’s a screenshot taken from Imagine Your Korea.
There are various ways to get to Namsan or N Seoul Tower and the easiest way, in my opinion, is to take Namsan Sunhwan Shuttle bus no. 5 in Myeongdong station exit 3. Although you may have to wait a while since the bus comes every 20-25 minutes in my experience.
The bus will drop you off at the parking lot in Namsan mountain and then you’ll have to walk for about 2-3 minutes to reach the base of Namsan Tower. It will cost each person 1,200 won in cash and 1,100 won with T-money card.
You can also choose to come by cable car. Initially, I wanted to take this route so I could enjoy the scenery on my way up, but it was closed for inspections the day I visited. To get there, you have to walk for about 10-15 minutes until you reach the boarding place when you exit at no. 3 of Myeongdong station. The boarding place is called Namsan Orumi and it is a slanted elevator that connects Namsan Tunnel 3 to the Namsan Cable car.