10 Neat Things to do in Koreatowns Around Tacoma and Seattle

Lingua Asia Fun Things to do in Koreatowns in Tacoma and Seattle

Washington state has a lot more Koreatown action than you’d expect.

From Lakewood along Tacoma Way to Federal Way along Pacific Highway to Lynnwood also along Pacific Highway, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for.

If I haven’t lost you yet, here are the best Koreatowns in the Seattle metropolitan area (Seattle, Tacoma, and Bellevue).

While many Koreatowns have popped up in the last few years, Koreatowns like the one in Lakewood was founded in the 70s and use Korean signage, architecture and even romanization from that period.

It has an old-school Korean vibe that’s just swell. Food was a lot more straightforward back then and didn’t rely on industrialized methods and overuse of salt and sugar. It’s been around so long that it went from novel, to outdated to trendy again.

What to know

  • Washington State has the largest population of Koreans in the PNW
  • There are three main Koreatowns in and around Seattle in Lakewood, Federal Way and Lynnwood
  • You can find Korean businesses all over the state including Bellevue and Olympia

Complete list of Koreatowns in North America

Read on for great ways to enjoy Koreatown in Seattle and Tacoma and the surrounding suburbs.

What to do

Korean festivals, tours and cultural events

Chuseok Festival

Chuseok is the second largest holiday in Korea, and is traditionally for families. The annual Chuseok festival held by the APCC is for everyone. It offers folk games, traditional dances, and music performances in Tacoma.

4850 South Tacoma Way, Tacoma, WA, United States, Washington

Waba Korea Kā€‘Brand Expo & Festival, Seattle Waterfront

Korea punches well above its weight in many categories. This summer expo is the perfect way to experience the best of Korean food, culture, beauty, products, and technology.

Korean cultural organizations

Korean Women’s Association

The organization that started it all in Lakewood is now for everyone in the community. The KWA has a long history of service dating back to the 70s when Korean wives of American soldiers started moving into the region. They needed a place to share meals and support, so they formed the Korean Women’s Association. Lucky for us, a Koreatown popped up around them and the rest is history.

3625 Perkins Ln SW, Lakewood, WA 98499

Korean American Chamber of Commerce, Washington State

KACCWA provides a platform for its members to connect with one another, exchange information, and share resources. It also offers programs and services to help its members succeed in their businesses, including networking events, business seminars, and educational programs.

10700 SE 174th St #103, Renton, WA 98055, United States

Asia Pacific Cultural Center

The APCC bridges Asian American communities in Washington State through art, culture, education, and business. They also put on the ultra-fun Chuseok Festival every year.

4850 South Tacoma Way, Tacoma, WA, United States, Washington

Korean museums

Seattle Asian Art Museum

A gorgeous art deco building that houses an extensive Asian art collection from various time periods. They actually have a lot of Japanese artifacts, but you can find some Korean pieces as well.

1400 E Prospect St, Seattle, WA 98112, United States

Korean War Memorial

Built in 1989 to express gratitude to all who served in Korea, and remember the Washingtonians who lost their lives in the war.

14th Ave SE, Olympia, WA 98501, USA

Parks

Daejeon Park

Named after the sister city of Seattle in Korea, Daejon park is a lovely green space with an authentic Korean pavilion that’s worth a look.

1144 Sturgus Ave S, Seattle, WA 98144, United States

Noraebang

First Avenue Karaoke has reasonably priced rooms and a wide-selection of Korean, American, Vietnamese, and Chinese songs.

31220 Pacific Hwy S, Federal Way, WA 98003, United States

Taekwondo

Jae Hun Kim Taekwon-Do Institute teaches taekwondo as a practical martial art in a safe and engaging way.

1900 N 45th St, Seattle, WA 98103

Screen golf

While not specifically a Korean thing, screen golf is easy to find in the motherland. It’s also a great way to unwind after work or school. Back9 Parlor is like Dave & Busters with a golf focus.

3105 Alderwood Mall Blvd, Lynnwood, WA 98036, United States

Korean spa

With two locations, Olympus Spa is your best bet for a jjimjilbang experience in Washington.

8615 S Tacoma Way, Tacoma, WA 98499, United States

3815 196th St SW STE 160, Lynnwood, WA 98036, United States

What to eat

House of Mandoo

Korean dumplings are hardy and make a great snack/meal when you’re on the go.

9701 S Tacoma Way, Lakewood, WA 98499, United States

Insider Tip: Having a food allergy in Korea is uncommon, so be sure to mention things you can’t eat to your server.

Ho Soon Yi Restaurant

Serving all the classics like sundubu the way they’re supposed to be. Ho Soon Yi is named after the 1988 Seoul Olympics mascot. The building’s architecture matches that period too, so you know it’s old school.

8501 S Tacoma Way, Lakewood, WA 98499, United States

Yi’s Traditional Korean Beef Soup

In Korea, it’s a good idea to go to restaurants that specialize in one dish. Authentic seolleongtang is hard to find in the states, so this place is worth a look.

31248 Pacific Hwy S, Federal Way, WA 98003

Cho Dang Tofu Restaurant

Looking like something you’d find in an underground shopping center in Seoul, Cho Dang Tofu Restaurant serves great meals in dolsot (stone pots). Some of the best lunches I had in the big city were in restaurants with the same decor.

17424 Hwy 99, Lynnwood, WA 98037, United States

Seoul Hotdog

Korean style corndogs get to the point. They’re the quickest and easiest way to deliver fries, cheese and hotdog to your face. It all ends up in the same place after all.

18415 33rd Ave W Suite F, Lynnwood, WA 98037

LUMI Dessert Cafe

A stylish place to try bingsoo and other Korean desserts.

4713 168th St SW #101, Lynnwood, WA 98037

What to buy

Korean groceries

Paldo World has it all including a bakery and enough banchan to feed Lakewood.

9701 S Tacoma Way, Lakewood, WA 98499, United States

If you live closer to Olympia, Arirang Market is the OG place to get Korean groceries. I actually grew up going to a branch in Garden Grove.

7940 Martin Way E, Olympia, WA 98516

You can find an H mart in all three major Koreatowns in the Seattle Metropolitan Area.

31217 Pacific Hwy S, Federal Way, WA 98003

More about Korean grocery stores

Where to stay

Hampton Inn & Suites Seattle/Federal Way

A good choice for clean straightforward rooms in a great location.

31720 Gateway Center Blvd S, Federal Way, WA 98003

Where is Koreatown in Seattle, Washington?

You can find Korean businesses in and around Seattle, but the three main districts are as below.

lakewood

Lakewood

federal way

Federal Way

lynnwood

Lynnwood

Do I need to tip here?

While tipping is considered strange in South Korea, you should follow local tipping customs at Koreatown in Seattle.

What are some cool things I can do in Koreatown?

Here are a few ideas:

Did we miss anything?

Let us know your thoughts about Koreatown in Seattle!

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