Saying that Koreans fully understand the old saying “work hard, play harder,” would be an understatement. The combination of a pervasive drinking culture and strong economic growth in the past 25 years has ushered in an amazing party scene in Seoul. With the drink of choice being soju, a clear beverage that is usually made up of grain (such as rice or wheat) or starches (such as tapioca or potatoes).

Take into account that drinking in Korea has no time limit, meaning there is no last call and alcohol can be consumed at any time of the day. So, let’s look at a brief timeline of a typical night out in Seoul with soju.

6:00 P.M. – Waiting
waiting for class to end

It’s that time to wait for the workday to come to an end. The clock just seems to tick just a little slower as we inch towards freedom.

8:00 P.M. – What To Do?
cell phone gets a lot of texts

Your phone starts to blow up as everyone ends their day. Everyone is asking the same question, “What are you doing tonight?”

10:00 P.M. – Getting Ready

The Ladies
girls getting ready for seoul
The Gents
guys getting ready before going out

As the ladies get ready the boys sit around and do, you know, men stuff.

10:30 P.M. – Pre-Gaming, with Soju

First Time With Soju
first time drinking soju
A Few Shots Later
a few shots of soju in

Soju is one of those drinks that taste horrible when you first drink it, but after a few shots tastes like nothing. Chug-a-lug!

12:00 A.M. – At the Club

The Awkward First Dance
awkward dance at seoul club
A Couple More Drinks Later
drunk dancing in the club

Not yet inebriated, the dancing starts clean and tame. A little later and a few more drinks and everything is crazy.

2:00 A.M. – Fresh Air and Soju at 7-Eleven
dance and fall in convenient store

All that dancing and it’s time to go outside for a moment to relax and gets some soju at the convenient store. After all, soju is cheaper than bottled water!

2:30 A.M. – Back in the Club

All “Dancing” Starts to Look Like This
dance and fall in club
And Your Head Might Just Be Thinking
beggars cant be choosers

All inhibitions are lost and you go crazy on the dance floor. And everyone of the opposite sex is starting to look like a ten at this point. So what the hell, right?

3:00 A.M. – Munchies

seoul eats

Okay, so you struck out for the night. Who cares when you’ve got all those food stands ready to feed you greasy goodness!

4:00 A.M. – What’s Left?

Few Are Left Standing, What To Do? More Soju!
don't need a glass to drink soju

It’s 4 A.M. and half of the people you arrived with are gone, what to do with those left standing? Make sure that buzz stays up and keep on drinking from that beautiful green bottle.

5:00 A.M. – Cab Ride Home
cab ride home in seoul

It’s getting late and it’s time to get back home, why not split the cab ride and save some money.

5:30 A.M. – Walk of Shame
morning after drinking soju, sunlight

As you walk back towards your apartment you get a glimpse of the rising sun. And you start to wonder if all that drinking was a good idea.

6:00 A.M. – Bed
going to sleep after soju

Yeah, totally worth it.

How do your nights out in Seoul or anywhere else in the world go? Let us know!

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Tired of soju? Check out some of soju’s lesser known counterparts in our article, Beyond Soju: The Wonderful World of Korean Alcohol!

About The Author

D Lee

D. Lee was once a work-a-holic turned explorer. He now seeks to see the world and all that it has to offer one place at a time. D. Lee is Cali bred, but is currently living in Seoul, South Korea. He enjoys trekking mountains, tasting diverse foods, and meeting people from around the world. D. Lee envisioned a consolidated place for readers to engage and sync in with Korean culture, which led him to co-founding SeoulSync.