Just like Hongik University is situated by Hongdae’s many shops, restaurants and nightclubs, Ewha Womans University is conveniently located near Edae, a treasure trove for young women who like a) shopping and b) good bargains.
It was hard to resist all the shops of cute clothes and shoes as I walked from the subway station toward the campus. I walked past a plethora of street food vendors, cute girls’ clothes, and even a Barbie shoe store. What?!
As soon as I crossed into the Ewha Womans University campus, I liked it. It’s very open, verdant, and — oh my goodness — no motorcycles allowed on campus!(Well, at least on the walkways.) Seriously, this matters. You can walk around without having to worry about getting run over.
A quick word on the Ewha Womans University before I forget. It was founded in 1886 (at a different location) and has produced many of Korea’s female firsts, including the country’s first female Ph.D., first female lawyer, first female Constitutional justice, and first female prime minister.
One of the first things that catches your eye is the giant, steel & glass structure everyone’s heading toward. Imagine Moses parting the seas, that’s kind of what it looks like and feels like as you walk through. It’s called the Ewha Campus Valley complex, designed by famed French architect Dominique Perrault, and it appeared to be their student union/center. It houses a bookstore, food court, convenience store, and the Samsung Hall, a performance hall with 700+ seats, among other facilities.
I was kind of on a mission. Sure, I wanted to explore campus a bit, but I’d also read in my travel guidebook that there’s an awesome Gothic chapel on the third floor of Pfeiffer Hall. Cross through the Valley, up the steps, and you end up facing Pfeiffer Hall. It’s an administrative building, which I guess is why you wouldn’t expect to find a chapel in there. Well, I found it. And it is pretty darn awesome. It’s called the Ada Prayer Chamber and it’s tiny! You step in and it’s like you’re transported back in time. Creaky floors and all.
I ended up walking around campus some more — saw they have a museum, the Ewha Womans University Museum — but I wanted to head to the shopping area, too. (You can see more of my pics of the campus here.)
The neighborhood is called Edae, and I believe a couple of the main shopping streets eventually connect with the Yonsei University and Hongik University areas. The three schools are located near each other.
So, I know there are tons and tons of places to shop in Seoul. But here’s how I sum up Edae: it’s the perfect bargain place for young women to shop. They have plenty of cute fashions (party skirts, cute tops, lots of cute shoes and accessories), and you won’t break the bank. I mean, these shops are targeting the presumably broke college kids, after all. So things are like 10,000-30,000 won ($10-$30), you get the idea. I also saw multiple cafes, a pie place, a few hair salons, a women’s gym and various skin care & cosmetics shops.
I even paid my first visit to a cat cafe, Table A. Unfortunately, these kitties were either having the best naps of their nine lives or just not in the mood to entertain. Wah wah. I still bought a smoothie and got one grumpy cat to kinda sorta play with me. I really miss my Luna.
For more pics, go here. Thanks for reading!