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Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea 2378

No Life Club Posts: 2,167
Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« on: August 20, 2014, 08:37:18 AM »
Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor gear shopping suggestions in Seoul, Korea


Hi, all. :D

This is an unofficial guide for tourists' knife/MT/Outdoor gear shopping in Seoul, Korea. 

It is merely based on my own tourist experience during March, 2014, and by no means an exhaustive list.  Do view these as my humble service to those who has a little time to visit, and like to do a little buying on the side. 

Seoul is a very vibrant city that literally never sleeps, and it has much to offer in terms of culture, food and shopping.  Although it was a very short visit, I was happy to be able sample some of everything.  For food, if you are into Chicken soup, BBQ and spicy food, this will be perfect city to find many.  Shopping for brand name or Korean style fashion is legendary, there are shops that don't close until 5am in the morning.

For outdoor goods, there are many new local brands offering a good variety in all price ranges.  I was blown away by the sheer density of shops in one area.  There must be at least a good 20-30 shops within 1km of walk of Jongno 5 ga station!

I like to give thanks to friends whom have inspired and supported this 'tourist' series, and my special thanks go to bren10man whom has given me good direction and tremendous help in finding the Vic shop.  The following shop names/addresses should be accurate.  But if I have mistaken it, please feel free to correct me.


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Seoul

I visted Seoul for 4 days, and I do recommend the following if you are there for a short trip:

Gyeongbokgung Palace
N Seoul Tower (overlook entire Seoul, but very very long line, expect 3-4 hours queue)
Bukchon Hanok Village (Culture park, a lot of DIY workshop for Korean folk arts)
Dongdaemun and various shopping area (Doota almost 24 hours shopping plaza is legendary)
Korean BBQ
Tosokchon (Ginseng Chicken soup)
Knife gallery (in Jongno-gu, Anguk station)
Jongno 5 ga (for outdoor shopping)










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Knife/MT/Outdoor gear shopping in Seoul

During the short visit, I don't have enough time to go visit many department stores to see whether they have SAK/Knife counters there, and if you are really tight in schedule like me, the safest bet is to either go to the Vic shop in Nandaemun(if you are into SAK collecting, this is a treasure mine) or visit all the outdoor shops in area around "Jongno 5 ga" station.






Victorinox retail shop in Nandaemun
Within Nandaemun market, Namchang Dong area
East side of the "Orange" Daedo shopping building


I have tried for a very long time, using many different keywords/word combo/exact address on name card, to pinpoint the exact location of this Victorinox retail shop in Nandaemun.  But somehow Google map just couldn't display the exact location, so I figure the best way is to show you by map.  If you could find that 'alley', you will find the shop.





If you are taking subway, taking subway line no. 4.  The station to get off is 'Hoehyeon' station(#425) in NamChang-Dong area(between Seoul-station and Myeong-Dong), take exit 5 or 6.  And the Victorinox retail shop is located within Nandaemun market, on the 'alley' that runs North-to-South(where the white arrow is pointing on map), next to the Daedo Shopping Tower(the orange building in the picture).  The shop is located on East side of the orange Daedo building, and it is on the street level. 



The easiest way to find it is by asking the 'red jacket' area guide personnel for the "orange-colored Daedo shopping tower".  Once you get to the building, just simply walk around the entire building to locate it(should take you no more than 1-2 minute to walk around the building).  If you do plan to visit and want the exact address anyway, please feel free to pm me.


The shop owner is decent to dealt with, but speak minimum English.  I tried email him to confirm the address, but he didn't reply until I asked the hotel concierge to call him in the morning before my visit.  But I was really lucky to find a few shopkeepers around the area to call him, and eventually, a really nice gentleman take me directly to the Vic Shop. :salute:









Although the pricing is average retail prices, this Victorinox has an unusually large inventory and they do have many discontinued or harder-to-find items.  If you are new into SAK collecting, this will be a great place to hunt.  :cheers:






Jongno 5 ga area (for outdoor shopping)
Get off "Jonno 5(o)-ga" station on Subway line no. 1
Take exit 7


It will not be an overstatement if I call this a "little paradise for outdoor products". :o :tu:  I literally loss count after browsing the first 15+ shops.  Most of these shops carries a variety of different goods, but mostly wearables and footwares.  There are a few larger 'brand' shops where they are mostly the same brand, such as Northface, Soloman, Black Yak, etc.  I regretted the fact that I didn't do more research on what Korean brands are good for what, but most Korean new brands wearable are cheaper than its US/European counterparts.











If you are taking subway, get off at "Jonno 5(o)-ga" station(#129) on Subway line no. 1, and take exit 7 onto the ground level. Walk to the T-intersection(where the white pointer is on map), with your back to "Kwang Jang Market', walk east into that T-intersection.  Most of the shops are on that main alley, some are also located at the side allies.

Once in a while, I would find a SAK display shelf in these shops, and often find chances to find older SAK models.  Most of these shops are Ma and Pa shops, so they always offer a steep discount from the labelled price.  However, they are shopkeepers that would flat out gave me the extraordinary tourist prices, which I just politely leave shop and find the exact same thing with ~40% off across street.  :D





Knife Gallery
SW of "Anguk" Station(#328)
192-11 Gwanhun-dong
Jongno-gu, Seoul
South Korea














Most tourist probably will find this shop/gallery upon searching for blade shops in Seoul.  It is a neat gallery to display many theatrical 'weapon'(like those we see on LOTR or Barbarian, etc), and some traditional Asian swords/weapons(Chinese, Japanese, Korean, etc).  It also display some police equipment, but I didn't see much blade on display for sale.  And those are on 'sale' are extraordinarily priced.  Depending how much time you want to spend browsing, it may take 10-40 min to finish the browsing.  The entrance fee is supposed to be "free", but they expect you to pay regardless.(I really much rather they charge a standard fee, instead of stopping you right at entrance and automatically assume you won't 'donate' to get in ::))  The poker face shopkeepers speak little to no English, and don't seem to be too enthusiastic towards inquiries.

This is about good 15 min walk from Anguk station, so if you are visiting the Bukchon Hanok Village or shopping around the area, it may worth looking into.  The gallery is actually underground in a basement, and it is located in a back alley off from the main walking street.





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Tips of finding/buying knife/MT as a tourist in Korea:
--Before you go, it best to find local friends/Conceirge of your hotel to verify the shop address/hours
--Again, name a few well known brands of knives/gears and check with hotel concerige to see whether the shop you are going does carry them.
--Not everything listed on BF/MTO are accurate or up-to-date, I have found some shops relocated or disappeared.
--Use google map and 'street view' to see whether there is an actual shop there on the street, and check to see what's the walking distance to best plan your visits.
Wielder of the Bow of Banishment. Admin Team Point Of No Return Posts: 30,891 El Presidente del Fan Club Micky D
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2014, 09:23:56 AM »
Great walk-through mate, it's almost like I've been there myself. :D

Hero Member Posts: 858
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2014, 09:55:01 AM »
Great guide! Only need to know...............What did you buy! :pok:
No Life Club Posts: 2,167
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2014, 12:20:24 PM »
@Gareth, glad you like it!   :D

@Philby, haha, too much! :facepalm:  ;)  But here is a partial list for what I have gotten, and the price was much better than evilbay pricing:

Swisstool BO
Automobile 91mm
Swisschamp super timer
100th Anniversary Swisschamp
Damascus LE Climber
Boker silver Guilloché design
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 17,323 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2014, 02:04:32 PM »
Thanks for sharing. That was a great read.  :salute:

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
Hero Member Posts: 858
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2014, 02:29:20 PM »
@Gareth, glad you like it!   :D

@Philby, haha, too much! :facepalm:  ;)  But here is a partial list for what I have gotten, and the price was much better than evilbay pricing:

Swisstool BO
Automobile 91mm
Swisschamp super timer
100th Anniversary Swisschamp
Damascus LE Climber
Boker silver Guilloché design
Great haul from a great trip!
Global Moderator Point Of No Return Posts: 36,185
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2014, 02:32:02 PM »
I enjoyed reading that, now I want to go there.  :tu:
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 17,323 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2014, 03:58:36 PM »
Am I to understand that last place was more of a modern museum/display than a store?

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
No Life Club Posts: 2,167
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2014, 05:42:35 PM »
@Philby  Sure is!  :)

@Zoidberg  I want to go back and visit again too, too much to do and too little time.  :D

@Chako   Thanks for reading!  I personally think so, I have read from various sources that some expats do buy from Knife Gallery, but judging from their display and reluctance to answer my inquiries of what they carry, I doubt it is the best place to get sharps.  There are only a handful of knives and MT displayed for sale there, and those MTs looked second-hand to me.  :think:
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 20,019 I may get older but I refuse to grow up.
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2014, 11:07:34 PM »
Thanks for another addition to the tourist guide series. :cheers:

One day I'll make "that" thread. :facepalm:
No Life Club Posts: 1,145
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #10 on: August 21, 2014, 03:36:06 AM »
Wow, great write up! Thanks for taking the time to post this. I've been to Seoul many times and there is sooo much to see and do there. I'll have to remember this thread on my next visit, I wouldn't mind checking out a couple of those shops. :cheers:
Global Moderator Point Of No Return Posts: 36,185
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #11 on: August 21, 2014, 03:40:35 AM »
@Philby  Sure is!  :)

@Zoidberg  I want to go back and visit again too, too much to do and too little time.  :D

@Chako   Thanks for reading!  I personally think so, I have read from various sources that some expats do buy from Knife Gallery, but judging from their display and reluctance to answer my inquiries of what they carry, I doubt it is the best place to get sharps.  There are only a handful of knives and MT displayed for sale there, and those MTs looked second-hand to me.  :think:

Take me with you, I can carry your bags.  :)
Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 21,458 Gone

dks cy

********* *
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2014, 07:11:58 AM »
Nice  :cheers:

 :D

No gangnam style Victorinox knives?   :D  :D


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No Life Club Posts: 2,167
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2014, 09:01:24 AM »
@enki_ck   No worries, and if you'd like, I could do the research and put a post that includes everyone.  :cheers:

@bdAmmo   Do come back and let us know if anything changes or new addition!

@zoidberg   Do you have a picture?  ;)

@dks   :rofl:  Next time I go visit, I will remember that and ask them to make it.  The Gangnam style Vic is going to sell like hot cakes!  :D
Global Moderator Point Of No Return Posts: 36,185
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2014, 01:07:55 PM »
Yeah, look up, red pants.  ;)
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 20,019 I may get older but I refuse to grow up.
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #15 on: August 21, 2014, 07:35:29 PM »
@enki_ck   No worries, and if you'd like, I could do the research and put a post that includes everyone.  :cheers:

@bdAmmo   Do come back and let us know if anything changes or new addition!

@zoidberg   Do you have a picture?  ;)

@dks   :rofl:  Next time I go visit, I will remember that and ask them to make it.  The Gangnam style Vic is going to sell like hot cakes!  :D

Sounds good, we can sticky it and add new ones to the OP later.
Sr. Member Posts: 316
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2014, 03:57:55 AM »
Hi all. Just back from my trip to Seoul. Promised enki_ck that I would add on to comis' thread and so here I am. First off, I'd like to thank comis and brenman10 for their trip reports to the Mecca of sakheads. Finding the place based on comis' detailed description was super easy (ie. Hoehyeon Exit 5, turn right and walk straight ~120m until you see Daedo building, then walk around it)

As for the shopping experience, to be honest I was rather disappointed because I didn't find the models that I wanted. Based on brenman10's report back in 2009, I was hoping to buy a classic whistle, a 108mm trooper, a black timekeeper, alox soldiers etc. However, I think many SAK enthusiasts have visited the place in between 2009-2014 and bought most of the older and rarer models. I felt like a tomb raider who travelled a long perilous journey hoping to find treasure, only to find that the tomb had been cleaned out by the many others before me upon reaching. Most of the collectible models that remained are "for collection only" because the boss is down to his last one. As for those which he had more than one and was willing to sell, he was selling at much higher prices than before (ie. 2009), probably because he had found out about their collectibility and high resale value on ebay and outside of korea.

Here are some examples of the prices that he quoted which was non-bargainable:
Red classic caddy with pen - USD24
Red baker alox - USD28
Steel director - USD77
Granite director - USD110
Mother of pearl 74mm companion - USD275
Steel broker - USD50
Orange hunter pro - USD77
Classic black ice - USD77
Minichamp alox (silver/black/red) - USD37
100yrs Swisschamp in tin - USD95
Red supertimer with conventional numbers - USD133
Red timekeeper with Roman numerals - USD77
Classic flag series (US/FRA/CAN/GB/MEX/BRA/POR/SWE/ITA/GER/LIE/AUSTRIA) - USD20
Classic alox (pink/lime/orange/light blue) - USD22
Classic 58mm (all current available colours plus grey) - USD15
Vic lanyard (red/black/orange) - USD1
2014 Damascus Spartan - USD265

In the end, I just bought a set of the classic alox, a black alox minichamp, a grey classic SD, 4 red and 4 black lanyards and a classic black ice. I also bought an IMCO 6700 lighter out of curiosity at USD17.
Sr. Member Posts: 316
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #17 on: December 17, 2014, 04:08:00 AM »
Oh. I forgot to mention that I also bought a swissflame at USD33 from the camping gear street which comis mentioned. No box, un-used but has some scuff marks on the ruby scales. Most prob the lighter doesn't work as well but I always wanted one to add to my collection. I actually found another one for sale at the start of the street which had a box but it was priced at USD155!! So when I saw this at ~80% discount, I jumped at it.

I was also offered a red timekeeper from the same shop at the same price because the clock doesn't work but I walked away because i was looking for a black one.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2014, 04:11:47 AM by red_rider_1979 »
No Life Club Posts: 2,167
Re: Tourist Knife/MT/Outdoor shopping in Seoul, Korea
« Reply #18 on: December 17, 2014, 07:45:01 AM »
Hi, Red Rider.

Thank you very much for posting all this info, they are good references. 

To be honest, I too do felt the way you do, that it is possible not as many 'goodies' are left, and what's left the boss might have kept for himself for collection.  However, based on the prices you give for the items you have gotten, I think you have still made some good bargain, given all the crazy pricing on ebay right now.  Swissflame, even it doesn't work, at 33usd is a great bargain.  :tu:

 

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