(Photo by Erin Henderson)

In a report released by the Korea Agro-Fisheries and Food Trade Commission, the number of coffee shops in Korea at the end of 2021 was just under 100,000 (doubling from 2018), and the sales from coffee imports were over 1 billion dollars. Are you looking to dive into Korea’s prominent cafe culture? Here are three cafés in Seoul, each with a unique theme, that are worth a visit.

1. Café Nap Roasters

(Photo by Erin Henderson)

The café’/roastery originates in Pyeongtaek, near Osan Air Base, which still serves as its headquarters. In addition to having great coffee, the café in Yeonnam is a funky little space. When you enter the bright, white-walled shop, you will immediately notice the sloped brick floor in the center, the cafe’s focal point and draw for visitors like myself. Love their brew? Grab some cans to go!

- Address: 453-32 마포구 서울특별시 KR

- Hours: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Mon. -Fri. & 9 a.m. - 8 p.m. Weekends

2. Manhole Coffee Western

(Photo by Erin Henderson)

Walking through the door, you are transported back in time to the days of the Wild West. Wanted posters line the walls, cowboy hats adorn tabletops, and the dark wood interior is reminiscent of an old saloon. Not only can you find a variety of caffeinated beverages here, but you can also enjoy a beer or cocktail. There are three floors to choose from, including a basement where you can grab a seat at an old wooden desk and enjoy your drink with a glowing lamp light.

- Address: 맨홀커피웨스턴

- Waze: 24 Yeongdeungpo-ro 27-gil, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul

- Hours: 12 a.m. – 10:30 p.m., closed Mondays

3. Rain Report Croissant (Seongsu)

(Photo by Erin Henderson)

At Rain Report, you’ll be intrigued by the rainbow-colored croissants and delectable cruffins (croissant cupcakes). The sleek dark interior with a modern aesthetic invites you to relax and enjoy a drip coffee and pastry in front of a soothing rain feature. The drip coffees, Sunshine, Wind, Storm, Raindrop and Cloud, were inspired by the weather and the Meteorology Department at Namsan University.

- Address: 32 Seongsui-ro 16-gil, Seongdong-gu, Seoul

- Hours: 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. 7 days a week


About Erin : Erin Henderson is a professional freelance photographer and writer whose work has been featured in a variety of publications. She is also a mother of two and a Marine Corps spouse living in South Korea (soon to be Germany). You can find more of her work at erinhendersonmedia.com or follow her travels on Instagram @erinhendrsn.

The best stories from the Pacific, in your inbox

Sign up for our weekly newsletter of articles from Japan, Korea, Guam, and Okinawa with travel tips, restaurant reviews, recipes, community and event news, and more.

Sign Up Now