A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul

March 04, 2019

Have you ever felt exhausted while traveling? Perhaps you're trying to hit as many tourist spots as possible within a short time frame that all your muscles start to hurt? That was me on a jam-packed 3-day trip in Seoul. Thankfully, I was able to squeeze in time to visit a Jjimjibang before my departure. If you're planning a visit to Jjimjilbang, here's a guide for this popular Korean bath and sauna experience.

What is a Jjimjilbang?


Jjimjilbang is a Korean bathhouse that is usually furnished with a communal shower area, hot and cold therapeutic tubs, ice room, heated salt rooms, sauna rooms, fitness room, lounging area, entertainment area, massage rooms, sleeping rooms, and a cafeteria. Most of them are opened for 24-hours so you could choose to stay overnight after relaxation. Visiting a Jjimjilbang is considered one of the must-dos to experience Korean culture.

A Korean R&R Getaway

You might think that a 24-hr bathhouse with so many amenities to offer would be extravagant and costly. In fact, they're actually very economical and down to earth. People there are laid back and Korean families love spending a weekend here as a getaway.

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul

Siloam Sauna at Seoul Station


Jjimjilbang can be found everywhere in Seoul. And Siloam Sauna is conveniently located approximately 8-minute walking distance away from Seoul Station, making visits extremely easy for travellers. A full experience of bath, sauna, and jjimjil (heating) only costs 11,000 won and that's about $12 CDN! If you choose to stay overnight or check-in after 8 pm, the price is slightly higher at 17,000 won ($20 CDN) and that's still a pretty great deal! No wonder why jjimjilbang is sometimes used as an alternative to hotels for budget travelers or for those laying over. Although the cost is low, the place is huge and well maintained. I'm surprised that a bathhouse can be as large as a 5-story!


A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Map

The Full Sauna, Bath, Jjimjil Experience


After you've paid for your admission, you'd be given a ticket to the female and male change area. The staff would then take your ticket and lead you to a small locker where you'd store your shoes away. The key for the shoe locker is then exchanged for their smocks (usually t-shirt and shorts), a towel and another key to store your belongings.

Don't be alarmed if you see other guests walking around and drying hair butt naked inside the change area. Because you'd have to strip your clothes off before heading to the bathing area downstairs as well. Luckily, the males are separated from the females. Directions and signs can be seen everywhere on the walls and floors. So you won't get lost even if you don't speak the language.

The bathing area is huge. The therapeutic baths and sauna rooms are on the other side of the room. You'll need to take a shower before dipping into the baths or going into saunas. Each bath varies in temperature and offers different medicinal effects.

Here are the several baths that they offer:

Giok Bath - This bath is created by submerging the jade stone deep underground to collect its energy.
Salt Bath - Releases stress and muscle pains. It also kills fungi on your skin, making it brighter and more elastic.
Loess Bath - Loess is living soil with medicinal properties that we energize the body.
Mugwort Bath - Known for its vitamin and calcium. It's especially beneficial for females to heal irregular menstruation and cramps. 

At this point, you could also get someone to exfoliate your body. Experienced body scrubbers are available for an extra cost. They massage your body to improve circulation and help remove dead skins. After your time at the bathing area, you could go back to your locker, get dressed and enjoy other amenities offered at the Jjimjilbang.

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Smocks
Me wearing their smocks after bathing. Do I look cute in them?

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Bath
Giok Bath

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Bath
Rest area in the bathing area

Get Pampered at Beauty Salon

Ladies could also get pampered at the beauty salon on the first floor. You could enjoy services like getting a haircut, a shave, nail art, lash extensions, foot care and trimming eyebrows. Just keep in mind that these cost extra on top of your admission. 

On the 2nd floor is a lounge area, a place where you could hang out with your friends, watch tv or sleep. I especially enjoyed the hot stone foot therapy when I was there. It helped relax my muscles and release tension from walking.

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Heated Stones
Hot stone foot therapy

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Heated Stones

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Lounge Area
Many people like to relax and hang out freely in the open area after bathing and sauna

Play Area for Your Children

Jjimjilbang is a family-friendly activity in Korea. And that's why some larger bathhouses like Siloam Sauna even has a designated area for Children. Parents could relax and escape knowing their children are safe and occupied in proximity.  

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Play Area

Lots of Amenities at Your Disposal 

What amazed me while experiencing a Jjimjilbang is that there was a peck more to do then just bathing and saunas. At Siloam Sauna, you could exercise at their fitness center, sing karaoke, play chess and table tennis, use their computers, host seminars/meetings, and play arcade games! All of these amenities could be found on the 3rd floor and are included with your admission.

De-stress and Escape in Fomentation Rooms

Fomentation rooms are what made Jjimjilbang unique. These heated or cool cave-like rooms are formed by natural materials to provide therapeutic effects to your body. At Siloam Sauna, there're so many rooms to choose from, such as the Oxygen room, Hard Charcoal Cold Room, Ice Room, Grotto Room, Blue Jade Room, Loess Sauna, Salt Sauna, Fire-based Sauna, and Jade Sauna. To detox and improve blood circulation, you could choose the high-temperature rooms like the Salt Sauna or Jade Sauna. These rooms can be found on the 4th floor of Siloam Sauna and are usually shared with all genders. They are definitely worth a try if you're new to the Korean Bathhouse experience.

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Fomentation Rooms

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Fomentation Rooms

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Fomentation Rooms
Fire-based sauna

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Fomentation Rooms
Jade sauna

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Fomentation Rooms
Salt sauna

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Fomentation Rooms
Ice room

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Fomentation Rooms
Charcoal cold room

Take a Power Nap

The bathhouse also has designated sleeping rooms for those of you who need to catch some sleep or stay overnight. Snorers are also encouraged to nap in their designated room so everyone can enjoy a comfortable and quiet time. 

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Sleeping Room

Fuel Up With Traditional Korean Food


After you're well rested, it's time to fuel up with food! A large cafeteria-like restaurant is available on the 5th floor. Everyone could enjoy delicious Korean cuisine without leaving the bathhouse. Koreans like to snack on a smoked egg with a cup of Shikhae after Jijimjilbang. Shikhae is a traditional sweet Korean rice beverage that is usually served cold and is super refreshing to cool your body down. If you're down for a meal, a variety of stews, noodles and rice dishes are also available. The restaurant accepts credit cards.

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna Restaurant

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul - Siloam Sauna eating at Restaurant


What do you think about the Korean bath experience? Would you give Jjimjilbang a try?
Let me know in the comments below.

Until next time!

Pin this for later!

A Guide to Korean Bath and Sauna (Jjimjilbang) Experience in Seoul


Check out my posts of other bath experience!

Hot Springs of a Lifetime in Kinosaki Onsen (Japan Travel)




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24 comments

  1. Sounds like a wonderful experience. Never been to something like this before. Would be nice experience

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    1. It was my first time experiencing as well, very relaxing and interesting at the same time

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  2. The Giok and Mugwort seem interesting for me. I would also like to try the hot stone foot therapy. Just by looking at the picture make me feel relaxed already.

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    1. Yes the hot stone foot therapy was great for tired feet! The baths could be intimidating at first but once you got used to the environment, it's really relaxing

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  3. it's amazing, the mix between the traditional and the modern architecture ,feel like in another world

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    1. Thanks! That's the beauty about travelling!

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  4. These look cool, not seen many of these treatments before, I'd love to try them out!

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  5. I would greatly love to try something like this out! I've never had a spa or sauna experience. And this one looks like top of the line luxury!

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    1. This is actually very common in Korea. They don't think of it as a luxury, but more of a relaxation escape.

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  6. A lovely guide to a wonderful place that is refreshing and so relaxing. this is something that I always wanted to do. It looks like you have a wonderful time.

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    1. I did have a fabulous time there. Thanks for your comment!

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  7. Good food and total relaxation! This is an awesome experience. Open 24/7?

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    1. YES open 24/7, you can stay there overnight!

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  8. Wow! I feel like I traveled with you. I definitely learned a lot. Great pictures and post! Thanks for sharing!

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  9. I have heard wonderful things about the bath houses. Thanks for the pictures and closer look. Great read.

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    1. Thank you Danielle! I'm glad you enjoyed it

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  10. I love the idea of spending a day enjoying the benefits of Jjimjilbang. It's a terrific way to rest and relax.

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    1. It sure is! And it doesn't cost much either :)

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  11. This looks incredible! I went to a Korean bathhouse/spa called Sojo Spa. It's in New Jersey and overlooks the NYC skyline... suuuch a cool experience and obviously I had to write a blog post about it too :) But now it has me really wanted to actually GO to Korea and go to ALL the bathhouses. Even more so after reading your post!!

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    1. Thanks Sarah! Your New Jersey experience sounds amazing too!! Would love to check out your post if you do end up writing about it!

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I'd love to hear your thoughts and comments! Come back soon :)

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About [span]me[/span]
Hello, I'm Lorita, a bubble tea addict. I'm here to inspire you to enjoy and create a pretty and fun-filled life you deserve.


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