What to wear in South Korea

What to Wear in South Korea

Welcome, fellow adventurers, to yet another chapter of our exciting journey around the world. This time, we're jet-setting to the Land of the Morning Calm, South Korea. With its perfect blend of tradition and modernity, South Korea offers not only captivating sights and delectable cuisine but also a unique fashion culture that has taken the world by storm. This guide is here to ensure you're ready to explore this vibrant country in style, offering insider tips on what to wear in Korea. So pack your bags, fashionistas—it's time to embark on an unforgettable Korean adventure!


Top style tips for South Korea

  • South Korea experiences a wide range of temperatures, from hot summers to freezing winters. Pack accordingly: breathable fabrics for summer, warm layers for winter, and don't forget a good quality raincoat or umbrella for the monsoon season.
  • Koreans are known for their unique sense of style. To blend in, consider incorporating some trendy K-fashion elements into your wardrobe, like oversized blouses, wide leg pants, and cute accessories.
  • You'll be doing a lot of walking, whether it's exploring the bustling city streets of Seoul or hiking in beautiful national parks. Invest in a pair of comfy and stylish sneakers or flats. (try Hotter shoes, we love their styles and they are just so comfy).
  • Even during summer, indoor spaces often have strong air conditioning. Carrying a lightweight sweater or cardigan will keep you comfortable.
  • Koreans love their accessories! Incorporate items like statement earrings, scarves, hats, or even a cute mask to elevate your outfits.
  • Jeans are a safe and versatile choice when navigating Korean style. Pair them with a stylish top and you're good to go for most casual settings.
  • Koreans appreciate dressing up for a night out. If you plan to visit fancy restaurants or clubs, bring along a chic dress or a nice top to pair with stylish trousers.
  • If you visit historical sites like Gyeongbokgung Palace, rent a Hanbok (traditional Korean dress) for the day. Not only does it make for great photos, but you also get free entry to the palace!
  • If you're planning on going to the beach or a public bath, opt for modest swimwear. Bikinis are less common and may draw unwanted attention.

Remember, these are just guidelines, not strict rules! The most important thing is to feel comfortable and confident in what you're wearing.

Related Articles

What NOT to wear in South Korea

  • While South Korea is quite modern, it's considered inappropriate to show too much skin, especially around the shoulders and chest area. Avoid wearing overly revealing clothing, particularly in traditional or religious settings.
  • Uncomfortable Heels: While Koreans do love their heels, navigating the streets and subway steps can be a challenge in uncomfortable shoes. Opt for more practical footwear if you're planning on doing a lot of walking.
  • While South Korea is a safe country, wearing excessively flashy jewelry could attract unwanted attention and make you stand out as a tourist.
  • Shirts with slogans or graphics that might be deemed offensive or inappropriate should be avoided. Keep in mind that even though English is not the first language, many Koreans understand it.
  • When visiting religious or historical sites, dress more modestly out of respect. Short shorts or miniskirts are generally not advised.

Travel Essentials for South Korea

A comfortable, safe, and truly fun adventure is all about coming prepared, right? So, I've got your back and curated this killer list of 14 must-pack items that are non-negotiable for your Korean adventure. This ultimate Korea Essentials Checklist is your new BFF, featuring everything from the practical (think universal travel adapter and filtered water bottle) to those extra special treats (I'm talking Travel Sim Card and a snuggly neck pillow). So don't sweat the small stuff, lovelies – I've made sure to cover every single base for your upcoming journey into the heart of Korea!


Shoes to pack for South Korea

Let's talk footwear for your Korean adventure.

  • Opt for comfy shoes that you can slip off easily and still look fab – my go-to is Hotter shoes; trust me, they're a perfect blend of comfort and style.
  • Why the easy-off shoes? Well, when you're dining in traditional Korean restaurants with floor seating, you'll have to leave your shoes at the door, so you want that process to be smooth and swift!
  • Korean ladies love rocking their heels, but if you're all about that flat life (smart choice!), make sure your choice is as chic as it is comfy. Think elegant and cute – remember, even if you're going for comfort, there's no reason not to keep it stylish. So, pack those that can effortlessly transition from a casual day look to a sleek evening ensemble. Keep it stylish, stay comfortable, and happy exploring!


Clothing tips for women

  • Seoul is a cosmopolitan city and the women love to dress up. They are very well-groomed, so join in and feel at home.
  • However, be aware that it is also a conservative country so avoid showing cleavage, keep shoulders covered and if you have a short skirt do as the local women do and take a pashmina or wrap to cover your knees when you are sitting.
  • In restaurants with floor-style seating opt for a long loose skirt or pants for modesty.
  • On the beach local women wear shorts and t-shirts rather than swimwear. Unless you are in a tourist beach area, we advise that you avoid a bikini in favor of a one-piece suit and a sarong.
  • Embrace the local fashion scene. Oversized tops, funky prints, and pastel colors? Yes, please!
  • A skirt or loose-fitting pants are good in the heat and will protect you from the sun. A loose cotton shirt is very useful too.
  • If you are here on business go for skirt-suits (not too short) with heels.
  • Be it a breezy summer or a frosty winter, dress for the season. And always keep a chic umbrella handy for those surprise showers!
  • For those transitional seasons, layering is your best friend. Think light blouses, cardigans, and chic jackets.

Related Articles


Clothing tips for men

  • Layer Up, Buttercup! South Korea's weather can be pretty unpredictable, so don't forget to pack layers. This way, you can easily adjust your outfit according to the weather.
  • When in doubt, a classic pair of jeans can be your savior. They're versatile, comfortable, and always in style.
  • Koreans love a pop of color. Don't be afraid to step out of the black, white, and gray box.
  • For versatile and stylish beachwear, try the Madda Fella range of shirts, shorts, polos and swimwear.
  • Koreans appreciate a well-dressed man. Don't shy away from packing a nice suit for a special night out or a business meeting.

What to Pack for all 4 seasons in South Korea

What to wear for the Korean Winter (December, January, February)

***Get the Ultimate Packing List for South Korea***

Packing for the chilly Korean winters can be a bit of a puzzle, but fear not – I've got you covered. The key here is layers, layers, layers. Start with thermals that won't add bulk but will definitely keep you cozy. Then, build your outfit with stylish winter essentials like turtleneck sweaters, trendy oversized coats, and comfy jeans or thermal leggings. Don't forget a pair of chic boots (preferably waterproof), a warm hat, gloves, and a thick scarf. And there you have it – you're all set to brave the winter while looking like a K-drama star ready for her closeup! Stay warm and fabulous, snow queens!

Clothing tips for Winter

  • Layer Love: Start with thermals – these lightweight layers pack a punch when it comes to warmth.
  • Coat Check: Invest in a high-quality, insulated coat. Think puffers, long woolen coats, or stylish oversized ones that are all the rage in Korea.
  • Sweater Weather: Stock up on turtleneck sweaters or knit tops. They're versatile, cozy, and perfect for layering.
  • Legging It: Thermal leggings or fleece-lined jeans are a must. They provide extra warmth while being super comfortable.
  • Boot Camp: Choose warm, waterproof boots, preferably with a good grip for those icy sidewalks.
  • Head On: Keep your head and ears warm with a stylish hat or a beanie. It's a winter essential that doubles up as a fashion statement.
  • Glove Affair: Don't let your fingers freeze – pack a pair of insulated gloves. Consider touchscreen-friendly ones for easy smartphone use.
  • Scarf It Up: A thick, oversized scarf can be used to cover your neck, face, and even shoulders.
  • Sock It to Me: Woolen or thermal socks are your best friends during a chilly winter. They'll keep your toes toasty and happy!
  • Color Pop: Brighten up the dull winter days with a pop of color. Choose vibrant coats, scarves, or hats to add some cheer to your winter outfit.
  • For a complete list of things to pack, get our Complete Packing list for South Korea.

What to wear for the Korean Spring (March, April, May)

***Get the Ultimate Packing List for South Korea***

When Korea's cherry blossoms start to bloom, you'll want to be ready with your perfect spring ensemble. Start with light layers, as spring weather can be a bit unpredictable – think stylish blouses or lightweight sweaters that can be easily layered with a denim or leather jacket. Cute dresses paired with cardigans also make for a versatile and chic choice. A pair of comfy sneakers or flats are perfect for those leisurely walks under the cherry blossom trees. And, of course, don't forget your sunglasses to shield your eyes from the glorious spring sun. Dress light, stay breezy, and enjoy the beautiful springtime, blossoms!

Clothing tips for Spring

As the Korean landscape comes alive with the colors of spring, here are eight clothing tips to ensure you're strutting your stuff in style:

  • Layer Light: Start with light layers like cotton blouses or tees that can be combined with a light jacket or cardigan for those cooler spring evenings.
  • Jean Genie: A pair of well-fitted jeans is a versatile choice that pairs well with almost anything in your spring wardrobe.
  • Dress to Impress: Cute midi dresses or skirts with tights are perfect for the spring weather. Plus, they're easy to dress up or down!
  • Jacket In: Consider a denim or leather jacket. They're perfect for adding a stylish edge to your spring outfits.
  • Step Light: Pack comfortable flats or sneakers for exploring the beautiful spring scenery.
  • Shade Parade: Don't forget your sunglasses! They're a must to shield your eyes from the spring sun, and they instantly up your style quotient.
  • Scarf it Up: A lightweight scarf can add a pop of color to your outfit and can come in handy during cooler mornings and evenings.
  • Tote-ally Perfect: A roomy tote bag is perfect for spring. It can carry your essentials and even stash a light sweater or scarf.
  • For a complete list of things to pack, get our Complete Packing list for South Korea.

Remember, ladies, spring is all about celebrating new beginnings and colors. So, embrace the season, play with your style.

What to wear for the Korean Summer (June, July, August)

***Get the Ultimate Packing List for South Korea***

As the temperatures rise in Korea, it's all about staying cool while looking effortlessly chic. Lightweight and breathable fabrics are your best friends – think linen dresses, cotton blouses, and loose shorts. Sandals and comfy flats are perfect for those sunny strolls, and don't forget your sunglasses to protect your eyes from the brilliant summer sun. With the Korean preference for modest dressing, off-shoulder tops or sleeveless blouses are perfectly acceptable but avoid anything too revealing. Stay sun-smart, keep it breezy, and enjoy the vibrancy of Korean summer.

Clothing tips for Summer

As you're getting ready to bask in the warm South Korean sun, here are eight clothing tips to keep you stylishly cool:

  • Light and Airy: Opt for lightweight, breathable fabrics such as linen or cotton to stay cool in the summer heat.
  • Sleeve Savvy: Short sleeves or sleeveless tops are fine, but avoid anything too revealing to respect local customs.
  • Short Story: Loose shorts or midi skirts are perfect for a cool, casual daytime look.
  • Sandal Scandal: Choose comfortable sandals or flats for those summertime strolls.
  • Dress for Success: A breezy sundress is an easy and stylish choice for those warm summer days.
  • Shady Lady: Don't forget a pair of chic sunglasses to protect your eyes from the summer sun.
  • Hat's Off: A cute sun hat isn't just a fashion statement—it will also protect your face and hair from the sun's rays.
  • Waterproof Wonders: If you're planning on hitting the beach or pool, pack a cute swimsuit and a stylish cover-up.
  • For a complete list of things to pack, get our Complete Packing list for South Korea.

Remember, summer is all about enjoying the sun, the sea, and the outdoors. So, stay cool, keep it stylish, and make the most of the beautiful Korean summer!

What to wear for the Korean Fall (June, July, August)

***Get the Ultimate Packing List for South Korea***

When Korea's leaves start to fall, you'll want to be prepared with your perfect fall outfits. The chill in the air calls for warmer fabrics, so think stylish knits, comfortable jeans, and chic boots. A lightweight jacket or a trench coat is a must-have for those brisk fall mornings and evenings. Accessories like scarves and hats not only keep you warm but add a perfect finishing touch to your ensemble. Dress warm, stay stylish, and enjoy the gorgeous fallhues.

Clothing tips for Fall

As the Korean landscape bursts into the beautiful colors of fall, here are eight clothing tips to ensure you're looking as stunning as the fall leaves:

  • Knit Wit: Opt for cozy knit sweaters or cardigans. They're perfect for the dropping temperatures and always in style.
  • Jean Scene: A good pair of jeans is a fall essential. They're versatile and pair well with cozy sweaters and chic boots.
  • Jacket Required: A lightweight jacket or a stylish trench coat is a must-have for the brisk fall air.
  • Boot Up: Pair your outfits with chic boots – ankle, knee-high, or combat, they all work great for fall.
  • Scarf Ace: A cozy scarf not only keeps you warm but also adds a pop of color or texture to your outfit.
  • Hat Trick: A stylish hat can protect you from the chill and amp up your fall fashion game.
  • Layer Player: Fall weather can be unpredictable. Dress in layers so you can add or remove as needed.
  • Color Code: Embrace fall colors like browns, oranges, reds, and yellows in your wardrobe.
  • For a complete list of things to pack, get our Complete Packing list for South Korea.

Remember, fall is all about cozy comfort and the warm, earthy hues. So, wrap up, stay warm, and enjoy the gorgeous Korean fall.


Other Travel Essentials for South Korea

  • Travel Insurance: Don't forget to secure a reliable insurance plan before you jet off to South Korea! be it lost luggage, unexpected health issues, or trip cancellations. Compare various insurance providers here.
  • Tap water is considered safe to drink, but if you prefer to buy bottled consider taking a LifeStraw Filtration Water Bottle instead – you can fill up from any source for clean, safe water without wasting plastic bottles.
  • Universal Travel Adapter: Korea uses a specific type of plug (Type C or F), so don't forget to bring a universal adapter to keep your devices charged.
  • Toiletries: While Korea is known for its fantastic skincare products, you may still want to bring travel-sized versions of your must-have toiletries.
  • Scale: Avoid paying unexpected baggage fees – use an accurate luggage scale to ensure you keep within the weight allowance. Don't forget to leave room for souvenirs on the way home! You'll see all sorts of cute and quirky items, but if that's not your thing look for Korean metal chopsticks or long-stemmed metal spoons.
  • Travel Guidebook & Phasebook: For times when you're off the grid or want detailed travel info, a good old-fashioned guidebook can be a lifesaver.
  • Portable Power Bank: Keep your devices charged on-the-go, especially if you're using them for navigation or translating.
  • Comfortable Backpack or Day Bag: A lightweight bag is perfect for carrying your daily essentials during your excursions.
  • Snacks: Pack some of your favorite snacks for those moments when you need a quick energy boost.
  • Travel Insurance Documents: You never know what might happen, and having your travel insurance details at hand is always a good idea.

Related Articles