For travellers in South Korea, there are a lot of weird and wonderful places to explore! It’s fitting then, that Korea has a huge selection of unusual accommodation choices for you to sleep in, too.
Korea is known for its unique hanok style housing where guests sleep on the heated floor. For many foreigners, this idea alone seems unusual but, trust me, when you see the places that actually fall under the weird category, you’ll realise how tame sleeping on the floor is! Regardless, a night at any of these accommodations will be a memorable addition to any Korean trip.
Here are 10 of the weirdest and most wonderful places to stay in Korea!
Sun Cruise Resort and Yacht
I’m going to start off with the strangest place on this list. While this hotel might look like a ship that has miraculously crashed into a mountain, it’s actually just a plain old hotel. In spite of its, ahem, unusual exterior, tourists travel from around the country to enjoy the hotel’s views out over the East Sea.
Location: Donghae, Gangwon-Do
Price per Night: 110,000 KRW ($98/£76)
Bomun World Pension
At this stylish and trendy hotel in the traditional city of Gyeongju, guests can choose from a range of fairy tale rooms. You can stay in a winter themed room, a princess themed room or even a woodland themed room. One of the biggest attractions to this pension is the spa jacuzzi bath. Plus, it’s conveniently located next to Bomun Lake: one of the prime spots for cherry blossom viewing in South Korea!
Price per Night: 115,000 KRW ($100/£80)
Cozy Theme Pension
Hands up who wants to sleep in a soju bottle!?This is the quintessential crazy Korean place to stay. From outside, the pension looks pretty lacklustre but, inside the fun themed rooms are insane. You can even sleep in a roll of 50,000 wons or the iconic Korean banana milk bottle. Best of all, this pension is in Gapyeong which is an awesome place to spend a couple of days and is a stone’s throw away from Seoul. So, if you’re entertaining guests on the weekend and want to give them an experience they won’t forget, this is a great option!
Price per Night: 120,000 KRW ($105/£82)
If you’re after a more strictly Korean experience, minus the crazy, then you have to stay at a hanok house at least once! You can find them all around the country with the bulk being in Jeonju, Andong, Gyeongju and Seoul. I had my first hanok experience at Christmas in Jeonju and there is nothing better than an ondol up full blast on a blistering cold day. Trust me!
Price per Night: 40,000 KRW ($36/£28) upwards depending on your hanok!
If you loved Cozy Theme Pension, then you’ll love UNIQUE Pension. Want to eat a shin ramyeon inside a shin ramyeon cup? You can do that here! (Every soju hangover dream of mine has come true!) Other rooms include a Starbucks cup, a Heineken can and a mini van. This pension is also located in Gapyeong so is perfect for anyone wanting to see Nami Island or The Garden of the Morning Calm.
Price per Night: 119,000 KRW ($106/£82)
Book Here (Korean booking only)
Seomjingang Rail Village Pension
Sleeping in public transportation seems to be a bit of a theme in Korea….. we’ve got a cruise ship themed hotel, and pensions with mini van beds, so it’s not surprising that there’s also a rail village pension. Seomjingang River is one of the most picturesque but underrated parts of Korea. I actually cycled along it last May and think it’s the perfect place for an escape from city life. After sleeping inside a train, you can wake up and have a brief ride on a steam train along the river!
Price per Night: From 60,000 KRW ($45/£32) to 300,000 KRW ($265/£205) depending on the number of people, the day of the week and season.
Book Here (Korean only)
Happy House Santorini
The Korean tourism industry LOVES to compare their own attractions to those of other countries. I can’t count the amount of time I’ve been to places dubbed “The Macchu Pichu of Korea”, “The Santorini of Korea”, “The Amalfi Coast of Korea” and so on. It’s not surprising then that Santorini has been reincarnated in South Korea! This pension overlooks the coast and has a swimming pool for guests to use, too. It’s located in Hwaesong City, not far from Suwon or Seoul.
Prices: From 120,000 KRW ($105/£85)
Location: Hwaesong City
Book Here (Korean Only)
This themed love hotel in Suwon has a variety of kitschy rooms. You can sleep in an Egyptian Style room and enjoy the spa bath after a long day of sightseeing! Love motels are all over Korea, but this is the most unique one that I’ve ever seen!
Prices: From 60,000 KRW ($53/£42)
Podo Hotel Pinx
Jeju Island is the prime domestic holiday location in South Korea with a lot of fun themed hotels and museums. For some luxury on your holiday, book into Podo Hotel Pinx. This eco resort has amazing views over the ocean and also Hallasan. The rooms have hot spring baths and earthy decor which is a huge contrast to some of the other properties on this list!
Prices: From $285/£220
Location: Jeju Island
And last but not least a Korean temple stay. A temple stay is the most fun, interactive and immersive way to learn about Korea’s unique branch of Buddhism. These are available all around the country and some temple stays have their own unique themes and activities on offer. I stayed at Golgulsa, a temple famous for its expertise in Sunmudo, a traditional Korean martial art. While I didn’t have as enlightening an experience as I would have hoped, it’s definitely a unique place to stay while you’re in the area!
Price per Night: Varies but usually around 50,000 KRW ($45/£35)
If you’re going on a trip to Korea, these hotels would be the perfectly deformed cherry on an already pretty weird cake! Don’t miss my guide on the most quintessential experiences to have in Korea!! If you’ve stayed in a strange place in Korea that’s not on this list, leave me a comment and let me know!
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