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banpo bridge rainbow fountain at night

There are 27 bridges spanning the mighty Han River in Seoul’s capital area, but Banpo Bridge remains one of the most iconic. There’s good reason.

The Rainbow Fountain attached to both its edges is the longest bridge fountain in the entire world. It’s a brilliant spectacle to see, particularly on warm summer evenings. Best of all, it’s free!

banpo bridge rainbow fountain at night

The Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain is incredible at night. Photo by 서울특별시 소방재난본부 (CC BY-SA 4.0)

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Facts About Banpo Bridge | 반포대교

Banpo Bridge is the top half of the first double-decker bridge ever built in Korea. It was completed almost 40 years ago, back in 1982.

You’ll also hear Banpo Bridge referred to as Banpodaegyo Bridge. They are one and the same, so don’t get too confused by this. It’s because the phonetic translation of the Korean 반포대교, is Banpodaegyo. This is actually a total misnomer, since 반포 = Banpo and 대교 already means big bridge, but it’s widely accepted anyway.

Banpo and Jamsu Bridge at night in Seoul, Korea

Jamsugyo is often under water during Korea’s monsoon season. Image by Yeon Woo Lee via Pixabay

Jamsugyo | 잠수교

The bottom half is called Jamsu Bridge, and it was specifically designed to be under water. In fact, the Korean 잠수교, actually means submerged bridge. When rainfall is high during monsoon season, you can count on Jamsugyo disappearing completely from view underwater.

Take a stroll across Jamsugyo during dry periods for unique views of the east and west sides of the city, with the waters of the Han as your soundtrack.

jamsugyo bridge

The bottom half of Banpo Bridge is called Jamsugyo.

Which side of Banpo Bridge should I visit?

Banpo Bridge is located almost in the exact centre of the city, and connects the districts of Seocho in the south, to Yongsan in the north.

some sevit floating islands at night

Access to the Some Sevit floating islands is on the south end of Banpo Bridge

The south end is definitely where most of the action is. There’s green space for picnicking, places to sit and watch the Rainbow Fountain light show, and access to the Some Sevit Floating Islands.

On weekends, in the warmer months, you can explore the Bamdokkaebi Night Market with its food trucks and unique shopping stalls. You can also enjoy views of Namsan Mountain and N Seoul Tower from the south side.

banpo dokkaebi night market during summer in seoul

The Bamdokkaebi Night Market is on the south end of Banpo Bridge.

The north side of the bridge is less developed, however you can still find bike paths, workout stations, and some green space.

TIP  |  Get panoramic views of Seoul from the top of Namsan Mountain and the N Seoul Tower Observatory. See only the observatory, or get a combo ticket that includes food and activities as well. Score the cheapest tickets to the N Seoul Tower Observatory by clicking here.

The Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain | 반포대교 무지개 분수

There’s a lot to do at Banpo Bridge, but one of the most well known attractions in the city and around the world, is the Rainbow Fountain show. Running for a total length of 570 metres on both sides, it’s the longest bridge fountain in the entire world.

The banpo bridge rainbow fountain at night

The Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain is the longest bridge fountain in the world

During the show, 380 nozzles suction water up from the Han River below and spray them out into a sparkling show of music and movement. A whopping 60 tons of water is used for every single minute that the Rainbow Fountain is operating.

The spray cascades outwards for an incredible 43 metres, before falling 20 metres back down into the river.

banpo bridge rainbow fountainYou can catch the fountain show during both the day and night, but it’s definitely better after the sun goes down. At night, the Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain is illuminated by a rainbow of 200 LED lights that highlight the shooting sprays of water, as they dance in synchronization with various pieces of music.

Did I mention that it’s free?

When to see the Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain show?

The Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain operates every day from April to October, four to six times a day. Each show lasts approximately 20 minutes. Schedules vary from season to season, and from day to day of the week.

Each Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain show lasts approximately 20 minutes

The current Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain schedule is as follows:

April 1st – June 30th & September 1st – October 31st

Weekday shows are at noon, 8:00, 8:30 and 9:00PM. During weekends and holidays, the fountain shows are at noon, 7:30, 8:00, 8:30 and 9:00PM.

July 1st – August 31st

On weekdays, shows begin at noon and every half hour starting from 7:30PM. The last show begins at 9:00PM. On weekends and holidays, you can watch the Banpo Bridge Moonlight Rainbow Fountain at noon, and every half hour from 7:30 – 9:30PM.

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bukchon hanok village in seoul

How to get a unique views

There’s a couple of ways to get unique views of Banpo Bridge and the Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain show.

Take a Han River Cruise

Get up close and personal with the Rainbow Fountain show by taking a Han River Cruise. Whether it’s a yacht or ferry cruise, you’re sure to get an exciting view that most people don’t see.

banpo bridge rainbow fountain at night

See the Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain from a different perspective

TIP  |  Taking a cruise atop the Han River is a great way to see Seoul. There are many cruise offerings – some with meals, entertainment, or music. If you want to see the Rainbow Fountain, be sure to book your cruise in the evening in order to see the LED lights and water at their best.

Here are some Han River Cruise options to check out.

Han River Cruise by YACHT   |   Han River Ferry Buffet Cruise   |   Eland Ferry Cruise from Yeouido  

Get thee to Dongjak Bridge

You can also make your way over to the south end of Dongjak Bridge, which is the very next Hangang Bridge to the west.

There, you’ll find two incredible eMart 24 convenience stores, both with incredible views of the city. Each is 5 floors and include cafes, snack zones, bookshop, lounge and outdoor rooftop, along with a limited selection of the usual convenience store goodies. They even have Heineken and local craft beer on tap!

On the west side eMart, you can see the N Seoul Tower and western side of the city. Head up to the cafe or rooftop on the east side of Dongjak Bridge, for unique views of Banpo Bridge.

How to go to Banpo Bridge by subway

It’s possible to drive to Banpo Bridge if you have a car, but I wouldn’t recommend it at peak times. There’s limited paid parking spaces, and waits for a spot can get pretty long (and frustrating).

The most convenient option for getting to Banpo Bridge is definitely via Seoul subway.

Get off at Express Bus Terminal Station and take Exit 8-1 or 8-2. Walk straight for 250 metres, turning right at the Express Bus Terminal intersection. Walk straight for another 400 metres and cross the road. Go through the underpass to arrive at Banpo Bridge.

Get off at Dongjak Station and take Exit 1. Walk straight for 20 metres until the reach the Banpo Jugong Apartments, make a left turn and walk straight for 900 metres until you reach your destination.

You’re all set! You know everything you need to know to see the Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain show. Who’s going?

The Banpo Bridge Rainbow Fountain is the longest bridge fountain in the entire world. At night, 200 LED lights illuminate an incredible show that you can't miss.

Comments:

  • May 1, 2019

    I missed going to Banpo bridge the last time that I went to Korea (it was February, so a weeee bit cold) – but I’ll definitely have to go see it once I’m there next year!

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  • April 24, 2019

    looks absolutely gorgeous by night! great pics!

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  • April 23, 2019

    Wow, this looks amazing. Great photos!
    Alison

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  • April 23, 2019

    I saw this when I was in Seoul in 2015. It was a great free thing to do! The music choices that went with the fountain display were very eclectic, which was entertaining. 🙂

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  • April 22, 2019

    The water coming out of Banpo Bridge does look like rainbow water. So cool! Didn’t know it was a double-decker bridge. I guess Jamsu Bridge below isn’t open to the public to walk across when it’s monsoon season. Banpo Bridge sounds like quite a long bridge and if you wanted a good workout, maybe you could walk all around it as a good workout and see all the views in a day 😛 Beautiful photos you managed to get of the bridge. The blue hour one looks amazing 🙂

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