Home » Planning » Jeju City Guide: All You Need to Know

Jeju City Guide: All You Need to Know

Everything you need to know to have the best time in the island’s biggest city.

Jeju City

Jeju City view from Dream Tower

Jeju City is the heart of Jeju. Situated on the northernmost part of the island, the island’s first city is home to its airport, port and the vast majority of the population.

It’s very likely that you’ll spend at least some time in the City during your Jeju trip. This Jeju City guide will help you make the most of that time by highlighting the main areas of the city and showcasing plenty of the things to do in each area of Jeju City.

About Jeju City

Jeju City has 2 main areas, Shin (new) Jeju and Gu (old) Jeju. There are also several smaller areas within these two main areas, plus a few satellite towns a short drive away.

The city is by far the most popular part of the island, with 492,397 of the island’s 676,489 population living on the northern part of the island, many of whom are located in the city.

Both Jeju International Airport and Jeju Port are located on the edge of the city by the coast, meaning almost all travelers visiting the island with pass through.

Jeju City has 4 distinct seasons. The summer months between June and August are very hot with temperatures typically hitting the high 20s and low 30s for the whole season.

Winter is warmer than many places on the Korean mainland, including Seoul, with average temperatures in January, the coldest month, sitting between 6.1 and 3.7 degrees celsius. Although, the wind in some parts of the city can make it feel colder.

Coastal Gu Jeju

This is the area of Gu Jeju on the coast. It’s one of the most popular areas for tourists and has a good mix of hotels, food and drink, shopping and even some historical monuments.

The best thing is that all the areas mentioned below are within approximately a 1km square radius so are relatively easy to walk between.

Tapdong

Tapdong is the area on the coast itself. It’s home to a walking path along the coast that ends in a large open space with basketball nets and plenty of space to walk around. This area has one of the largest concentrations of hotels in the city, including Ocean Suites, The Palace Hotel, and the Hotel Regent Marine.

The area is home to plenty of restaurants including several lamb skewer restaurants, a large selection of hoe restaurants (a sliced raw fish set menu that I highly recommend), that you’ll find on the easternmost end of the walking path, D&D restaurant for a selection of Korean food, Michin Buok that sells Japanese cuisine, Assalam which serves Yemeni Cuisine, and plenty more.

Nightlife is sorted via Magpie Brewery Taphouse, which sells beers brewed locally on Jeju, cocktail bar the Chemist, and a large outdoor Pocha, a type of Korean drinking establishment that sells beer, soju, and anju, which is the word for food that you eat while drinking and typically includes anything fried or dried, as well as plenty of soups and more.

Other highlights of the area include a shop for Korean high-end soap brand Aesop, a large Olive Young shop where you can buy all your K-cosmetics, and the Arario Museum which showcases both Korean and international modern art.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Geonib-dong 1444

Chilseong-ro Shopping Street

Chilseong-ro shopping center
Photo: Chilseong-ro Shopping Street

Travel a little further inland from Tapdong and you’ll hit Chilseong-ro shopping center. This is one of the island’s main shopping destinations and includes Korean high-street brands like Spao, 8 Seconds and Beanpole, as well as global brands like Nike, Adidas, and Lacoste.

There’s also an underground mall which is home to a ton of smaller Korean (and some international) clothing brands that is well worth exploring. A few streets east of the shopping center is Jeju Black Pork Street, which has a large selection of restaurants selling (you guessed it) Jeju black pork barbecue.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Ildo1dong 1296-5

Dongmun Market

Dongmun Market lies just southeast of Chilseong-ro shopping center. It’s the island’s largest permanent traditional market and sells a ton of stuff, from souvenirs to fresh produce and beyond. It’s also home to Dongmun Night Market, a set of food stalls selling a variety of street food type dishes from traditional Korean favorites to more experimental creations.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Dongmun-ro 16

Jeju Sanjicheon

Sanjjicheon Stream
Photo: Sanjjicheon Stream on a sunny day.

Jeju Sanjicheon is a river situated just south of the entrance to Dongmun Market and east of Chilseong-ro shopping center. It’s a nice place to walk and is home to several open grassy spaces you can look around.

You’ll find several interesting spots on the road lining the Sanjicheon.

  • Brava Gelato sells homemade gelato made with ingredients from Jeju and beyond and includes interesting flavors such as Chamwhe (a kind of small Korean lemon), rice (actually my favorite), and salted basil.
  • Arario Motel Gallery I and II are art galleries built in renovated motels.
  • Sanjicheon Gallery is built into an old sauna and focuses on Jeju art

There’s also a seasonal light show that in 2023 runs until November and see the area lit up from 8 p.m. until 8.30 p.m. every day other than Monday.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Ildo1dong 1146-22

Jeju Mokgwana

Jeju Mokgwana is around 600 meters west of Sanjicheon along the main road. This is the old government office from the Tamna period until the Joseon dynasty and its history goes until pre-1434 which is when the original buildings were burnt down.

The current version was restored in 2002 and it contains many of the features of traditional Korean buildings such as overhanging roofs and large sparse outdoor spaces. Take a walk around for an interesting look at Jeju’s history.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Gwandeok-ro 25

Sarabong Peak

Jeju is home to over 360 oreum, volcanic hills notable for their relatively low yet steep height when compared to the surrounding area. These hills are super fun to climb and due to being relatively low, are perfect for time-short travelers as you can do them in a few hours (or under).

Sarabong Peak is an oreum located on the coast in Jeju City. The walk to the summit, which is 146.5 meters above sea level, is covered in forest and when you get to the top you get views out over the sea. The path also connects to Byeoldobong Peak, a neighboring oreum which is 135.6 meters above sea level. Both paths are well-defined and while steep in places are relatively approachable.

You can spend anything from under an hour walking up and down Sarabong to a few hours exploring the paths across the two hills. The walk from Tapodong, mentioned above, is around 2.6km along Jeju Olle Trail 18, one of the coastal walking paths that circumnavigate the island, or just under 15 minutes in a taxi.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Geonibdong 387-1

Jeju City Hall

Jeju City Hall is around two kilometers south of coastal Jeju City. It’s the area built around the current government offices and is home to Gu Jeju’s main nightlife.

It has a student vibe with plenty of places to get food and drinks in the evenings. You’ll also find plenty of norebangs, which are Korean singing rooms that you can rent out and sing in while drinking.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Gwangyang-9-gil 10

Sinsan Park

Sinsan Park is around 1.5km from City Hall. It has several short walking paths and it’s well lit so can be a fun place to relax in the day or evening. It’s also notable for being one of the best places to see Jeju’s Cherry Blossom if you’re lucky enough to visit the island during this season.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Ildo-2-dong 830

Jeju Bus Terminal

Jeju Bus Terminal is situated around 1.7 km from Jeju City Hall on the way towards Shin Jeju. From here you can get buses to any place in the city and beyond.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Seogwang-ro 174

Shin Jeju

Shin Jeju is the part of Jeju City with the most city-like feel. Here you’ll find plenty of shops, restaurants, tall buildings and more. Unlike Tapdong and Chilseong-ro which is all super walkable, some of the below sights are a little more spread out and you may need a bus or taxi to get from one to the other.

Nuwemaru Shopping Street

This is an area in the center of Shin Jeju with plenty of shops, bars and restaurants. The street itself is pedestrianized making it easy to go for a walk and you’ll plenty plenty of restaurants and drinking establishments in this area.

Most of the shops are on a main road parallel to the pedestrianized street. This area is a short walk from some of Jeju’s biggest hotels including Lotte City Hotel and Maison Glad which has a seasonal outdoor pool. You’ll also find both the Lotte and the Shilla Duty-Free Stores nearby, which you can shop at if you have an international ticket.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Yeon-dong 273

Jeju Dream Tower

Photo: Trying to squeeze all of Jeju Dream Tower into a single image.

At 218.7 meters high, Jeju Dream Tower is by far Jeju’s biggest building. The majority of the floors are taken up by the Grand Hyatt Hotel Jeju, but there is plenty in the building to entertain even people who aren’t staying in the hotel itself.

The 38th floor is home to eateries the Steak House, which sells steak and seafood, cafe Lounge 38, and Korean drinking bar Pocha. All three locations offer great service, tasty food and drink, and some of the best views of the city and surrounding island.

Lower down on Level 2 and 3 is a shopping area that focuses on both high-street fashion and Korean designers. Keep an eye out for the Deli bakery for some tasty pastries and chocolate. You’ll also find Italian, Chinese, Japanese and Korean food on the lower floors.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Noyeon-ro 12

Halla Arboretum

Deer at Halla Arboretum
Photo: Deer grazing at Halla Arboretum

Halla Arboretum is a park that goes through forest and up an oreum on the edge of Shin Jeju. It’s a beautiful place to walk if you’re staying in the city and you can get some beautiful views from the top of the hill. The area is also home to a night market which sells a mixture of souvenirs and delicious food from within the forest setting.

Other highlights of this area include Nexon Computer Museum, which showcases computers from throughout history and includes plenty of interactive games and exhibits you can try, and Jeju Museum of Art, Jeju’s largest art museum that often has international exhibits to complement the domestic and Jeju art. It’s around 3 km north but easy to get to if you have a car or taxi.

Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Sumokwongil 72

Yongdam

Yongdam is a coastal area between Gu Jeju and Shin Jeju that stretches past the airport. It’s notable for being the home of Dragon Head Rock, a rock formation that’s said to be in the form of a (you guessed it) dragon.

The road starts at the Hancheol River which has a walkable suspension bridge and beautiful views of the coastal cliff. It then stretches along the coast and it’s a nice walking route that highlights the black, volcanic rock part of Jeju’s coast.

If you make it all the way to the end of the road, which is around 5.5km, you’l end up at Dodubong Oreum. There are also plenty of restaurants and cafes lining the road including plenty selling hoe raw fish set meals.

Dragonhead Rock Address: Jeju-do, Jeju-si, Yongduam-gil 15

Continue your trip

34 fun things to do in Jeju Island

Discover Jeju with our list of the best things to do, see, and experience.

The complete guide to Jeju Island

Everything you need to know about Jeju, including where to stay and what to do.

Hamdeok beach

Jeju's best beaches to relax in the sun

There are beaches all around Jeju. Here are some of the best.

Where to next?

Search our article library for more Jeju trip inspiration.

Photo of author

Duncan Elder

Duncan first came to Jeju in 2011. The plan was to stay for six months. 11 years later, he's still here and enjoys sharing his knowledge of the island on Inside Jeju.