Seoul Sky Observatory in Lotte World Tower has the Best Views in Seoul… 555 Metres Up!
If you’ve lived in Korea for any length of time, you know that clear skies and good air quality are not necessarily a given. So, when you get 3 uninterrupted weeks of glorious blue skies, fluffy clouds and bright sunshine, you know it’s time to mark the occasion with something special.
For me, that something special, was a trip up Korea’s tallest building to the Seoul Sky Observatory. At its lofty height of 555-metres at the top of the Lotte World Tower, it’s the 3rd highest observatory in the entire world.
In this guide
- 1 Lotte World Tower Seoul Sky Observatory | 롯데월드타워 서울스카이
- 2 How to get to Lotte World Tower and the Seoul Sky Observatory
- 3 Seoul Sky Observatory Tickets
- 4 Lotte World Tower | Sky Shuttle Elevator
- 5 Seoul Sky Observatory | What to Expect
- 6 Best Time to Visit the Seoul Sky Observatory
- 7 Sky Bridge Tour at Lotte World Tower
- 8 Lotte World Tower | Other Activities
Lotte World Tower Seoul Sky Observatory | 롯데월드타워 서울스카이
The Seoul Sky Observatory is without a doubt the best place to get a birds eye view of one of the world’s few mega-cities. It’s located at the top of the tallest building in Korea!
It’s hard to appreciate the incredible vastness of this densely populated metropolis on ground level. But at 500+ metres up, it’s impossible not to be wowed by just how huge the city is.
Panoramic views from the Lotte World Tower Seoul Sky Observatory are astounding, with views of the city, surrounding mountains, and far-off oceans stretching out as far as the eye can see, in every possible direction.
There’s something spectacular to see out of every single window at the Lotte World Tower observation deck, but I was particularly entranced by the south-side view. It showcases the Han River, Namsan, and the N Seoul Tower in the distance.
It was – in a word – breathtaking.
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How to get to Lotte World Tower and the Seoul Sky Observatory
Address: 300, Olympic-ro, Songpa-gu, Seoul | 서울특별시 송파구 올림픽로 300
Seoul Sky Observatory is located on the top 7 floors of the 123 story Lotte World Tower, but the ticket office and entrance is located on the B1 Level of Lotte World Mall.
By Seoul Subway | The easiest way to get to Lotte World Tower is via subway. Get off at Jamsil subway station on Line 2. Take Exit 1 or 2, and follow the signs to Lotte World Mall.
Things can get a little confusing, because the OLD Lotte Mall from the 1980s is located across the street. Just make sure to follow the signs for the Lotte World Mall. This is where you can access Lotte World Tower and the Seoul Sky Observatory.
There’s tons of signage around though, so don’t worry too much about getting lost. If you do, there’s information booths in the mall, where you can ask for help. And yes, they can speak english.
By Car | If you decide to drive to Seoul Sky Observatory, you’ll can get 4 hours of parking for 4,800 won with your receipt. If you stay longer than 4 hours, you’ll have to pay regular parking rates for the extra time (500 won per 10 minutes).
Seoul Sky Observatory Tickets
There are 2 types of admission tickets to Seoul Sky Observatory: Regular and Fast Pass. These can be purchased in person at the ticket office on level B1, or in advance online for a small discount.
The regular admission ticket is for a set date and time. It allows you access to all levels of Seoul Sky, except the 123 Lounge. Tickets for adults cost 27,000 won (age 13+), and admission for children is 25,000 won (age 3- 12). 1 child under the age of 36 months per parent can enter free. You’ll need ID to take advantage of this.
The Fast Pass allows immediate admission at any time, and costs 50,000 won.
Once you pass ticket control, you’ll have to go through a security check that felt so much like an airport one, that I took out my electronics and placed them in a bin – not necessary – and um yeah, embarrassing.
Once through security, you’ll enter the elevator boarding area. There, you’ll be entertained by huge video installations about the construction of the tower, tourist destinations in Seoul, and the natural wonders of Korea.
You can’t get back onto the exhibition level once you’ve taken the Sky Shuttle Elevator to the top, so make sure you get your fill before you step onto the elevator and ascend to Seoul Sky.
Lotte World Tower | Sky Shuttle Elevator
From the B1F level, the Sky Shuttle Elevator climbs 117 floors in less than a minute, at a world record breaking speed of 600 metres per minute.
It’s something I definitely felt in my popping ears, but couldn’t see, because the entire interior of the elevator is covered in the world’s first ceiling and four-walled screen. It shows video of Seoul, the Han River and its impressive modernization over the last 50 years.
It was kind of a bummer not to be able to see outside as we rocketed up Lotte World Tower, but since the elevator isn’t on an outside wall, you wouldn’t see much anyway.
Seoul Sky Observatory | What to Expect
Your skyward exploration of Lotte World Tower Seoul Sky Observatory begins on the 117th floor. From there, you can take escalators up 1 floor at a time, until you reach the top and final floor accessible with a general admission ticket – the 122nd.
To keep things interesting, each level is slightly different with unique features and engaging window layouts.
117th Floor | Sky Show
The Seoul Sky observation platforms start on the 117th floor, where you can enjoy a Sky Show and Media Room, along with your views of Seoul.
118th Floor | Sky Deck
On the 118th floor Sky Deck, you can test whether you’re ACTUALLY afraid of heights by walking out onto transparent glass floors that give you an unobstructed view of just how high above ground you are.
I admit to shaky knees and a sickening feeling of vertigo as I made my way onto the Sky Deck, but I’m proud to say I did it. I even spent some time lounging around on top of them.
If you ARE afraid of heights though, beware – because you might find yourself standing atop transparent glass unawares. Staff have control of the clarity of the Sky Deck, and I bet they have quite a bit of fun scaring those among us who have a phobia of heights!
YEO YONG GUK TRADITIONAL MEDICINE SPA | After visiting Seoul Sky Observatory, treat yourself to a one-of-a kind traditional spa experience at Yeo Yong Guk. It’s in the same neighbourhood, and its designated as one of the top 25 MUST-GO Wellness Attractions in Korea by the Korea Tourism Organization. Check services here.
119th Floor | Sky Friends Cafe
There’s a small cafe on the 119th Floor, where you can grab an ice cream or drinks.
120th Floor | Sky Terrace
The Sky Terrace on the 120th floor is a definite highlight of the Seoul Sky Observatory. At 486 metres, it’s the highest outdoor observation deck in the world. It’s absolutely the best spot to get crystal clear pics of the fantastic landscapes around you, without dirty windows getting in the way.
Since this the only outdoor area at Seoul Sky Observatory, it can be closed unexpectedly due to bad weather.
121st Floor | Sky Mapping Show
The Sky Mapping Show offers a media art display on the windows of Seoul Sky Observatory.
122nd Floor | Seoul Sky Cafe
The 122nd floor is the last floor you can access with a general admission ticket. You can enjoy the views, while sipping a coffee from the Seoul Sky Cafe.
Best Time to Visit the Seoul Sky Observatory
It’s understandably very popular to visit Lotte World Tower Seoul Sky Observatory during sunset hours. On a clear day, the views are beyond extraordinary and what could be better than watching sunset from that high above.
It can get very busy at that time though, so it’s probably a good idea to reserve tickets in advance, especially if you’ve got your heart set on visiting during magic hour, on a weekend night or holiday.
If you’d like a more peaceful experience, I recommend going in the morning, on a weekday. You’re much more likely to avoid queues and crowds.
We visited the observation deck on a Friday around 11:30 in the morning. It was essentially empty, aside from a few super noisy elementary school groups, which are easily avoided by moving to a different floor.
Tickets can be purchased on-site for a 30 minute elevator boarding slot, on the hour or half hour. We’d bought tickets for the 12:00 – 12:30 time slot, but were able to go up earlier since there was no line. There’s a handy electronic board outside the ticket office that lets you know how many slots are available in real time.
Note that this is ONLY a boarding time for the Sky Shuttle elevator. You can spend as much time up at Lotte World Tower Seoul Sky Observatory as you want.
LOTTE WORLD THEME PARK | It’s great to combine Lotte World Adventure Theme Park and Magic Island with Seoul Sky Observatory, beause they’re steps away from each other. You can score nearly 50% off admission by booking passes online in advance. Check full details here.
Sky Bridge Tour at Lotte World Tower
The latest attraction at Lotte World Tower is the thrilling Sky Bridge tour. If you’ve got the nerve, this is a totally unique experience that gives you totally unobstructed views of Seoul, from 541-metres above ground, as you walk across a tiny bridge between the 2 peaks of the Tower.
It is possible to reserve a spot one month in advance, but it can be challenging for non-Koreans to do so. It’s probably easier to book tickets on-site, on the same day on the B1 or 117th floor of Lotte World Tower. Costs range from 96,000 to 132,000 won, and includes admission to Seoul Sky Observatory, the Sky Bridge tour, and 2 photos.
Lotte World Tower | Other Activities
There’s a FREE way to get inside Korea’s tallest building without forking out the 27,000KRW price tag to get up into the Seoul Sky Observatory… even though I think it’s totally worth paying that price at least once.
Sky31 Food Avenue
Sky31 Food Avenue is located on the 31st floor of the Lotte World Tower, and it’s open to absolutely everyone. Sure, it’s not the top floors of the building, but there are still incredible views of Seoul below.
You can access this food court in the sky by getting a free pass card in the lobby of the Lotte World Tower. When I visited, I couldn’t help but feel like I was getting past the velvet rope, into some sort of privileged territory, rather than just a food court.
There are huge windows on absolutely every side of Sky31 Food Avenue. I personally loved the evening view of Seoul’s city lights coming to life, but sunset would also be gorgeous and great for photography.
Keep in mind that even though the setting is pretty exciting, this is still just a food court, and dining options reflect that. There’s burgers, ice cream, Krispy Kreme, coffee and other humble options available there.
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Seoul Sky Observatory: Essential Info and FAQs
What’s the tallest building you’ve visited? Would you stand on a glass floored observation deck?