Category Archives: Rainy Day

Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art – Seoul MMCA 1st Anniversary

Brand new exhibitions across Seven art galleries, Fantastic facilities and kids-friendly staff – MMCA is getting better and better each time!

MMCA Seoul - Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art; Seoul box; Leandro Erlich Port of reflections

Kidsfuninseoul previously published a first-impressions post about Seoul Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art. That was exactly one year ago to the day. This time, we returned during one of these chilly days… brrr! The wide range of art we saw, touched, heard and interacted with, really illuminated and coloured our day!

This was fun, impressive, weird, self-questioning, beautiful, gigantic, unique. Come experience or rediscover MMCA for its 1st anniversary celebration: a highly diverse collection of art in all possible shapes and flavours including photographs, drawings, paintings, sculptures, sounds and videos.

What you may expect:

  • Located right in the main hall, Seoul box is the flagship space of the museum displaying huge pieces of arts. When it opened, Seoul box was displaying Do Ho Suh’s Home Within Home. Right now, you may admire the poetic, beautiful and mind-boggling art of Leandro Erlich: “Port of Reflections”. Incredible how the optical illusion is almost perfect. Kids had great fun playing and running in the black velvet room just underneath the boats.
  • Seven art galleries, currently running the following exhibitions as of December 2014: 1st Anniversary Exhibition of MMCA Seoul 《Garden》; Human, Space, Machine – Stage Experiments at the Bauhaus; MFV(MMCA Film and Video) SCINTILLATION OR DISAPPEARANCE; MMCA HYUNDAI MOTOR SERIES 2014: LEE BUL; Rebirth of Place: Expansion & Conflict of the Korean Modern Architecture; Site-specific Artwork Project 2014 <Super Nature>; MATRIX: MATHEMATICIANS _ HEART OF GOLD AND THE ABYSS.

A very lively and inspiring modern art treasure chest, MMCA is however clearly NOT a playground-style children museum. It is mostly appropriate with kids from elementary school and above with parental assistance.

Enjoy a day full of art!

Opening hours :
Closed : Mondays and January 1st
ㅇ Ticket : Until 1 hour prior to the closing time
ㅇ Museum Hours
– Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Sunday : 10:00 am ~ 6:00 pm
– Wednesday, Saturday : 10:00 am ~ 9:00 pm(18:00~21:00 : Special exhibition is free)

Admission :
ㅇ Admission fee is charged differently according to the exhibition (currently 4,000 KRW for all exhibitions; free under 24 years old).
Please refer to the museum website for details
ㅇ Permanent Exhibition is free.

How to get there :
– Next to Exit 1, Ankuk Station, Line No. 3 ~ 14 minute walk
– Next to Exit 2, Gwanghwamun Station, Line No. 5 ~ 17 minute walk

Parking Capacity: 384 Vehicles (Underground Level Parking Lot)
– 3,000 won for first 1 hour
– 500 won for each additional 10 minute period exceeding the first 1hours
– 25,000 won maximum daily charge(08:00~23:00)

For localization, see Seoul Maps for Kids & Families

For more information go to MMCA

MMCA Seoul - Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art; Bauhaus


Seodaemun Prison History Hall (서대문형무소역사관)

Symbol of Korea’s political resistance and its liberation, Seodaemun Prison History Hall is a captivating museum. Clearly not the usual ‘kids attraction’ but definitely worth a visit with older kids and for all those with an interest in Korea’s eventful history

Seodaemun Prison History Hall (서대문형무소역사관)

Foreword: this museum is not “fun” or totally recommended with very small kids. The prison memorial depicts very rough times of Korea’s history and provides clues to understand it. You should expect to see prison’s cells, torture rooms and more. Still, it is open to all public subject to parents’  discretion. Our younger kids (6 and 5 years old) had a great time. 
A little bit of history

Built in 1907, the Seodaemun Prison bears a special significance for all Koreans. During the Japanese annexation 1910-1945, the prison was used primarily to intern (and often eliminate) Korean political opponents to the Japanese authorities. After World War II and until 1987, the facilities continued to be used as a regular prison. Beside common-law criminals, political dissidents to the regime also contributed in high numbers to the prison’s population. The prison finally closed in 1987 before reopening in 1992 as a Memorial and Museum to celebrate all Korean patriots.

Start with the exhibition halls: walking through Korea’s tumultuous path towards Independence and Democracy

After entering the complex, you will start your visit with the Exhibition building. A lot of attention has been put to provide comprehensive yet synthetic information on the country’s history and main events related to Seodaemun prison. In the multiple rooms, you will learn about the end of Joseon Dynasty and the following Japanese occupation, the liberation and long quest to full democracy during the second half of 20th century.  The history of the Prison and the in-prison life occupy each one room.

Additional exhibits await you in the basement floor with wax figures model showing life in prison cells, police investigation, tortures, etc.

A walk through Seodaemun Prison’s buildings

You will likely be very impressed with this part of the visit. This is where you get to walk through the carceral buildings themselves. Check out the guards rooms, the prison cells, the isolation/punishments cells (reserved for the toughest cases). This looks like in a movie… except this was for real.

Several corridors are dedicated to the memory of Korean dissidents who served time in the prison in the 60’s, 70’s or 80’s. This helps greatly understand how South Korea became what it is today.

Continuing your visit, you may also check out the Execution building (or skip), the Women prison, outdoor exercise area and more.

Opening hours: 9:30 AM ~ 6:00 PM (Mar~Oct) or 5:00 PM (Nov~Feb)
Closed: all Mondays, Jan1, Seollal, Chuseok

Admission fees: 1,500 KRW Adults; 1,000 KRW  13~18-year-old; 500 KRW Children 7~12-year-old

How to get there:
251, Tongil-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul
Tel. 02-360-8590~1

By subway, line 3 until Dongnim-mun Station, exit 5.

For more information, check Seodaemun Prison History hall website.

For localisation, check Seoul Map for Kids & Families

Seodaemun Prison History Hall (서대문형무소역사관)



At the discovery of the Manhwa “Korean-comics” culture in Bucheon

Only in Bucheon’s Korea Manhwa Museum! Explore the diversity and colors of Korean comics, enjoy a 4D adventure ride, get your little ones caricatured by real artists…

Korea Manhwa Museum, Bucheon

Located in Bucheon about 25km south-west from Downtown Seoul, the Korea Manhwa Museum (한국만화박물관) – formerly know as Gyujanggak Cartoon Museum –  is a 4-level multi-cultural venue dedicated to the Manhwa art and culture. You may easily also visit the nearby Aiins World Miniature Park on the same day trip.

The comics and cartoons art started in the early 1900’s in Korea but became widely popular only after the Japanese occupation ended in 1945. Dedicated libraries and comics-shops were offering a large array of manhwa, ranging from political satire to children stories through sci-fi and other genres. The history of manhwa and the variety of genres are very well displayed throughout the exhibition. More about the culture can be read from Korea Blog.

The museum is spacious and modern. In addition to the temporary and permanent exhibitions, it accommodates various services and facilities including a cafe, art-and-craft workshop, comics-only library, and more.

There is a nice little folk-village reenactment just besides the Korean Manhwa museum, which provided an enjoyable bonus to our visit.

Things we liked best:

  • Clean, fun and vividly cartoonesque restrooms – don’t miss them!
  • Interactive and very well-displayed art exhibitions, including models of villages in the old days, giant comics books and characters, multimedia screens
  • Creative corners providing manhwa-style drawing opportunities for all
  • Fun 4D experience (the usual 3D vision + impressive seat moves and air vents effects) for an extra 1,000 KRW per person
  • Seeing realtime works from caricaturists and getting the final piece of art back home

For additional information, you may consult the official Korea Manhwa Museum web page (korean only) or Visit Korea.

Opening hours: Tuesday~Sunday 10:00 ~ 18:00
Closed Mondays, New Year’s Day, Seollal, Chuseok

Admission: 5,000 KRW ; free under 3 years old
Family admission: 15,000 KRW for 2 adults + 2 children

How to get there: Samsan Gymnasium Station (Seoul Subway Line 7), Exit 5
The museum is just a 3 minute walk from the station.

Address:  529-2, Sang-dong, Wonmi-gu, Bucheon-si, Gyeonggi-do 
경기도 부천시 원미구 길주로 1 (상동)

For localisation, see our Seoul Map for Kids and Families

Korea Manhwa Museum, Bucheon