The idea of a farmer’s market is not new to Korea – there are plenty of small fruit and vegetable stands/kiosks wherever you go in Seoul, and at the two major market areas, which sell everything from imitation designer bags to rip off monkey wrenches, you will also find plenty of food shops and street food.
For more information on the two major markets, Namdaemun Market and Dongdaemun Market, please see “Shopping” section.
While there are no specific open-air markets for organic products, Koreans in general tend to use less chemical pesticides and preservatives on their produce. However, most major supermarket chains such as Emart and Homeplus have an organic section. Please see the” Hyper-Supermarkets” section for more information on these stores.
The Noryangjin Fish Market is located on the South side of the Han River, at the Noryangjin subway stop. Although expats don’t usually go there for their seafood needs, the place is a tourist attraction in itself and is worth a visit. You can buy (and then immediately eat!) anything you see, including the “weird” seafood that you’ve always wanted to try. This market is open 24 hours a day, although individual stall owners make their own schedules, and the auction runs from 1 AM to 6 PM and is a treat to observe.
Locals like to come here to eat. There is no special etiquette, although bargaining is not usually welcomed. Also, you will want to have some cash handy as most of the stalls are not equpiiped to take a credit card. The stall owners will take your (often, still squirming) sea creature of choice, chop it up and give it to you to eat – usually with a bit of dipping sauce. Prices range from dirt cheap for one piece of fish to much more expensive for premium whole fish.