Is Seoul safe for solo female travelers?(Part 2 : Must-eat places, Accommodation, and Safety)
Tteokbokki is every Korean girl’s soul food. It’s a rice cake, usually sweet and spicy, made with chili sauce. You can also find soy sauce-based tteokbokki, which is not spicy at all.
You cannot talk about Korean dessert without Hotteok, a flour dough pancake. Hotteok is usually filled with brown sugar and sometimes nuts. This fried sweet dessert is a must for whoever wishes to enjoy true Korean street food.
They are savory mung bean pancakes that are widely enjoyed by Koreans, as they are very common street food. There are many varieties (with pork, vegetables, kimchi, etc.) and they usually come with a spicy sauce. The best is to eat them fresh when they’re crispy on the outside.
Seoul is consistently ranked among the safest cities in the world, and you will find that most places are safe to walk around during the night without any worries. Some districts, however, can provide more special experiences for female travellers. Here are some of our recommendations of areas to stay:
⚈Jongro-gu is the heart of Seoul. If you get your accommodation in Jongro-gu, you’ll have easy access to many sightseeing spots such as Gyeongbokgung Palace, Insadong, etc. You can try to stay in a Hanok. A Hanok is a traditional Korean house. There are some Hanoks that have been turned into hotels or hostels. They usually have no beds; they offer you a traditional mattress instead.
⚈Gang-nam, one of the chicest and fancy areas in Seoul with endless high buildings, is the most expensive part of Seoul. Many big corporations are based here, so you can see real business life.
⚈Hong-dae& Hap-Jeong is the most popular youth district where you can stop by cute cafes, restaurants, and clubs. Many indie music artists and painters also stay around the district, so here you can feel the “hippie” part of Seoul.
⚈ Uber does not work in South Korea. You can use Kakao-Taxi, which is an app to book taxis. Kakao is one of the two biggest internet companies in South Korea and they provide many different digital services.
⚈ Public Transportation systems, such as the subway and bus systems, are very well developed in Seoul and you can go anywhere with this. Kakao maps will usually show what is the easiest way to get to your destination. Kakao Maps will be more useful than Google Maps in South Korea.
⚈ Express buses and trains are the most widely used intercity transportation. It’s better to make a reservation in advance if you’re planning to travel on the weekend.
⚈ There is a public bicycle service called 따릉이(Ddareungi). The rental fee is very affordable! (Less than 1 USD per hour.) You will need to install an app first. The app will show you available bikes around you.
According to The Economist’s [Safe Cities Index Ranking 2019](https://safecities.economist.com/), Seoul is ranked as the 9th safest city in the world. Crime rates are very low and you will see police officers almost on every corner. Attitude towards women is respectful and most female travelers say to have felt safe walking around the city even late at night.
That said, Seoul is still a huge city, so take the safety precautions that you would normally take. Avoid dark alleyways and areas you don’t feel good about and talk to the police if you find yourself in a tight spot. They will be ready to help and, even if they don’t speak your language, they have on-call interpreters for these situations.
As in any tourist city, look out for tourist scammers and jacked-up prices. These things can happen anywhere.
All in all, Seoul is a very safe city for solo female travellers! 😄