MUCH LIKE THE NORTHERLY capital of Seoul, Korea’s second city, Busan, doesn’t truly come alive until after dark. When the sun goes down and the Diamond Bridge across Busan Harbour lights up, Busaners start their evenings with soju (Korean alcohol) and barbecue and often end at the noraebang (karaoke room), belting out K-Pop ballads until the wee hours of the morning.
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Korea offers plenty of options for those seeking a party. So it’s no wonder Seoul, the capital city, bursts with places where you can drink, dance, listen to music of all kinds — mostly the louder, the better — and give karaoke a try. The serious action starts around 10 p.m. and lasts until the early-morning hours, peaking around 1–4 a.m. Seoul’s club scene centers around the two most popular areas, Hongdae and Gangnam. Located near Hongik University, Hongdae pulses with clubs frequently packed with college students, which makes for a raw, artsy, hipster club scene and some unique venues like a former parking garage. Gangnam, located in an affluent part of Seoul, appeals to more seasoned clubbers looking for particular sorts of music, venues and crowds.