I've been to Samcheong-dong a few times, but have mostly stuck to the main street. I didn't realize there was anything to look at along the side streets until my cousin took me to Hwa-dong, a small neighborhood just off of Hwagae-Gil (화개길), towards the palace-end.
Turn right at the police station and you'll find a narrow street crammed with adorable cafes and over-priced boutiques. My cousin N. told me that much of the merchandise is "handmade", so stores may be pricier than average.
While in Hwa-dong, we stopped in a cafe called ICESAND. In addition to the usual coffee shop essentials, ICESAND offers an interesting selection of ice cream/yogurt sandwiches that are good to share. I recommend the Rainbow (Something Something) Sandwich, a super-sized macaron, filled with tart frozen yogurt.
The ice cream is great and all, but the real reason to hang out at ICESAND is their selection of fashion magazines -- in English! If you've been dying to spend a mindless afternoon, sifting through some fashion magazines, but not pay the high import fee, then you may want to check out ICESAND. Vogue, Cosmo, InStyle -- they got 'em all.
ICESAND also features a nice patio area that will be quite lovely for the days when we're not plagued by winter wind, rain, yellow dust, or mosquitoes.
89 Hwa-dong, Jongro-gu, Seoul
10:30 AM - 11:00 PM