• Capital area
11,704 km2 (4,519 sq mi)
• Percentage of South Korea's total population
GDP Nominal / PPP
US$684 billion / $918 billion
GDP per capita (Nominal / PPP)
US$27,055 / $36,127(2015) 
Seoul Capital Area
Seoul Capital Area (SCA), Sudogwon (Hangul: 수도권;
Hanja: 首都圈; RR: Sudogwon; MR: Sudokwŏn,
[sudoɡwʌn]) or Gyeonggi region (Hangul: 경기 지방;
Hanja: 京畿地方; RR: Gyeonggi Jibang; MR: Kyŏnggi
Jibang) is the metropolitan area of Seoul, Incheon, and Gyeonggi-do
located in north-west South Korea. It has a population of 25 million
(as of 2017) and is ranked as the fifth largest metropolitan area
in the world. Its area is about 11,704 km2. It forms the
cultural, commercial, financial, industrial, and residential center of
South Korea. The largest city is Seoul, with a population of
approximately 10 million people, followed by Incheon, with 3 million
1 Geography and climate
8 See also
10 External links
Geography and climate
See also: Geography of South Korea
The Capital Area occupies a plain in the Han River valley. It contains
some of the most fertile land on the Korean peninsula, although
relatively little of it is now used for agriculture. The
one of the country's larger expanses of level arable land, covers much
of the area of the cities of
Gimpo and Bucheon.
See also: History of
South Korea and History of Seoul
Satellite image of
Seoul and greater area
The Capital Area has been home to a Korean capital for around 2,000
years. Its central location and relatively gentle landscape have given
it a central role in the country's affairs.
The first capital to be constructed in the region was that of Baekje,
one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea. The country's first capital was
built in 19 BC and was named Wiryeseong. This is believed to have been
constructed near the modern-day boundary of
Baekje was unable to hold this territory, and surrendered the
Han River valley to
Goguryeo in the 5th century. The land was then
taken over by
Silla in the 6th century, at which point it came to play
a critical role in helping
Silla to establish ties with China.
After the fall of Silla,
Taejo of Goryeo
Taejo of Goryeo established the capital of
his kingdom in Kaesŏng, now just north of the Demilitarized Zone.
Mongol invasions of Korea in the 12th century, the seat of
government briefly shifted to Ganghwa Island, now just south of the
Incheon metropolitan city, where the Mongol naval attacks were
repelled for about a decade before the king voluntarily surrendered to
stop the carnage the Mongols committed in the peninsula, in order to
lure the king out.
After the fall of
Goryeo Dynasty in 1392, the newly founded Joseon
Dynasty had its capital (then called Hanseong or Hanyang), less than
100 km south of the old dynasty's capital, Kaesŏng. Hanyang was
chosen to be the new capital for mountains surrounding it making it
safe from enemies, and for the Han River, separating the north and
south parts of the city that let the trade business flourish. During
the new dynasty's rule, extensive road systems, administrative
buildings, royal palaces, and new ports were built, quickly attracting
wealth from all over the kingdom. During the
Korean Empire period,
Hanseong's public transportation was improved with the installation of
streetcars and manually drawn trolleys similar to taxis. Horse
carriage systems similar to the ones in Europe were also established.
Following the Japanese annexation of Korea in 1910, Hanseong was
renamed Keijo (Gyeongseong) and served as colonial Korea's capital.
Upon Korea's liberation from Japan in 1945, the former colonial
capital was renamed
Seoul and became capital of South Korea.
Korean War (1950–1953), the Capital Area became the focus of
battles so destructive that most of
Seoul and the surrounding regions
Seoul was especially hit hard, since it exchanged
hands four times during the course of the war.
During the latter half of the 20th century, the Capital Area began to
rapidly develop as South Korea's economic wealth expanded. Population
expanded fourfold since the Korean War. In 2001, the new Incheon
International Airport took over all international flights to Seoul.
See also: Demographics of South Korea
Covering only about 12% of the country's area, the
Seoul Capital Area
is home to more than 48.2% of the national population, and is the
world's fifth largest urban area. This percentage has risen steadily
since the mid-20th century, and the trend is expected to continue.
Currently more than half of the people who move from one region to
another are moving to the capital area. By 2020, it is projected
that more than 52% of South Korea's population will live within the
area, or 26,310,000 people. However, the
Seoul Capital Area reached
25,620,000 people by 2015, bringing the chance of reaching a
population of 26.31 Million in less than 5 years.
Seoul Capital Area's gross regional product was ₩663,833
billion(US$630 billion), generating 48.2% of the country's total gdp.
It is the fourth largest urban economy in the world after Tokyo, New
York City and Los Angeles, and the region hosts headquarters of 14
Fortune Global 500 companies.
Seoul Capital Area is now
experiencing a fast transition toward knowledge economy, so South
Korean government set out a plan to build a number of high-tech
business parks, such as
Digital Media City and Pangyo Techno Valley.
Industrial Clusters in
Seoul Capital Area
The South Korean government is now implementing a plan to create
several industrial clusters in the Capital Area. According to the
plan, for example,
Seoul is a 'Northeast Asia's Financial and Business
Hub', and southwestern coast, with
Incheon and Suwon, is
'International logistics and High-tech Industrial Belt'.
Seoul Capital Area is home to the most affluent and livable cities
and apartments in Korea but there are significant discrepancies
between cities and districts, particularly between those built in the
older and newer generations. Newer areas with more modern and
luxurious apartments and infrastructure are more expensive, along with
proximity to Gangnam District, the commercial center of the region.
See also: Government of South Korea
Various agencies have been set up to deal with the intergovernmental
problems of the region. Proposals for consolidating some or all of the
cities of the capital area into a handful of metropolitan cities have
thus far not been implemented.
Development in the area is currently governed by the Capital Region
Readjustment Planning Act (수도권정비계획법), first passed in
1982 and last revised in 1996.
See also: Administrative divisions of South Korea
Seoul Capital Area is divided among the special city of Seoul, the
metropolitan city of Incheon, and province of Gyeonggi-do.
25 gu (local government wards),
Incheon has 8 gu and 2 counties, and
Gyeonggi-do has 27 cities and 4 counties as the subdivisions.
Main article: List of districts of Seoul
Further information: Seoul
The 25 districts of Seoul.
Dobong District (도봉구; 道峰區)
Dongdaemun District (동대문구; 東大門區)
Dongjak District (동작구; 銅雀區)
Eunpyeong District (은평구; 恩平區)
Gangbuk District (강북구; 江北區)
Gangdong District (강동구; 江東區)
Gangnam District (강남구; 江南區)
Gangseo District (강서구; 江西區)
Geumcheon District (금천구; 衿川區)
Guro District (구로구; 九老區)
Gwanak District (관악구; 冠岳區)
Gwangjin District (광진구; 廣津區)
Jongno District (종로구; 鍾路區)
Jung District (중구; 中區)
Jungnang District (중랑구; 中浪區)
Mapo District (마포구; 麻浦區)
Nowon District (노원구; 蘆原區)
Seocho District (서초구; 瑞草區)
Seodaemun District (서대문구; 西大門區)
Seongbuk District (성북구; 城北區)
Seongdong District (성동구; 城東區)
Songpa District (송파구; 松坡區)
Yangcheon District (양천구; 陽川區)
Yeongdeungpo District (영등포구; 永登浦區)
Yongsan District (용산구; 龍山區)
Main article: List of districts and counties of Incheon
Further information: Incheon
The 8 districts and 2 counties of Incheon.
Bupyeong District (부평구; 富平區)
Dong District (동구; 東區)
Gyeyang District (계양구; 桂陽區)
Jung District (중구; 中區)
Nam District (남구; 南區)
Namdong District (남동구; 南洞區)
Seo District (서구; 西區)
Yeonsu District (연수구; 延壽區)
Ganghwa County (강화군; 江華郡)
Ongjin County (옹진군; 甕津郡)
Main article: List of cities and counties of Gyeonggi Province
27 cities and 4 counties of Gyeonggi-do. Below are seven of the
largest cities, sorted by their population size:
Further information: Suwon
The 4 gu of
Suwon (수원; 水原).
Paldal-gu (팔달구; 八達區)
Yeongtong-gu (영통구; 霊通區)
Jangan-gu (장안구; 長安區)
Gwonseon-gu (권선구; 勸善區)
Further information: Goyang
The 3 gu of
Goyang (고양; 高陽).
Deogyang-gu (덕양구; 德陽區)
Ilsandong-gu (일산동구; 一山東區)
Ilsanseo-gu (일산서구; 一山西區)
Further information: Yongin
The 3 gu of
Yongin (용인; 龍仁).
Cheoin-gu (처인구; 處仁區)
Giheung-gu (기흥구; 器興區)
Suji-gu (수지구; 水枝區)
Further information: Seongnam
The 3 gu of
Seongnam (성남; 城南).
Bundang-gu (분당구; 盆唐區)
Jungwon-gu (중원구; 中原區)
Sujeong-gu (수정구; 壽井區)
Further information: Bucheon
Further information: Ansan
The 2 gu of
Ansan (안산; 安山).
Danwon-gu (단원구; 檀園區)
Sangnok-gu (상록구; 常綠區)
Further information: Anyang, Gyeonggi
The 2 gu of Anyang (안양; 安養).
Dongan-gu (동안구; 東安區)
Manan-gu (만안구; 萬安區)
Anseong (안성; 安城)
Dongducheon (동두천; 東豆川)
Gimpo (김포; 金浦)
Goyang (고양; 高陽)
Gunpo (군포; 軍浦)
Guri (구리; 九里)
Gwacheon (과천; 果川)
Gwangju (광주; 廣州)
Gwangmyeong (광명; 光明)
Hanam (하남; 河南)
Hwaseong (화성; 華城)
Icheon (이천; 利川)
Namyangju (남양주; 南楊州)
Osan (오산; 烏山)
Paju (파주; 坡州)
Pocheon (포천; 抱川)
Pyeongtaek (평택; 平澤)
Siheung (시흥; 始興)
Uijeongbu (의정부; 議政府)
Uiwang (의왕; 儀旺)
Yangju (양주; 楊州)
Yeoju (여주; 驪州)
Gapyeong County (가평군; 加平郡)
Yangpyeong County (양평군; 揚平郡)
Yeoncheon County (연천군; 漣川郡)
See also: Transportation in
South Korea and Transportation in Seoul
Incheon International airport
Seoul Metropolitan subway, Line 3
Seoul Ring Expressway
The cities of the capital area are tightly interconnected by road and
rail. Many of the country's railroad lines, most notably the Gyeongbu
Line, terminate in the region. In addition, the needs for commuter
rail are served by the
Seoul Metropolitan Subway, which passes through
Seoul, Incheon, and most of the outlying cities.
The region is a nexus for travel by air and water. The country's two
Incheon International Airport and
Gimpo Airport, are
in the metropolitan area. International and domestic ferries depart
from Incheon's ferry terminals several times a day. Massive volumes of
international freight pass through the container terminals of Incheon
(primarily bound to and from China).
Seoul Ring Expressway (Expressway No. 100) connects satellite cities
around Seoul: Ilsan, Toegyewon, Hanam, Pyeongchon, Songnae, Bundang,
Pangyo and Gimpo.
Geography of South Korea
Demographics of South Korea
List of metropolitan areas by population
List of metropolitan areas in Asia by population
Subdivisions of South Korea
List of Korea-related topics
Seoul Ring Expressway
^ A government publication states that on 1 November 2010, the
population of "
Seoul Metropolitan Area" stood at 23,616 thousand,
which is the sum of the figures given for
Seoul (9,708 thousand) and
Incheon (2,638 thousand),
apparently including the periphery.
Source: "Preliminary Results of the 2010
Population and Housing
Census" (PDF). Statistics Korea. 21 January 2011. Retrieved 23 July
^ "국가지표체계". www.index.go.kr.
^ "통계청 - KOSIS 국가통계포털". kosis.kr.
Fortune Global 500 List 2017: See Who Made It". Fortune.
^ ""미군 잔류로 낙후된 동두천, 특별법 제정해야"".
^ Korea National Statistical Office (2008-07-22).
"e나라지표:수도권 인구 집중 현황" (in Korean).
^ Ryu Boseon (류보선) (2005-08-23). 수도권 인구 편중현상
계속 (in Korean). Korea National Statistical Office (KNSO)
^ Hong, Yong-deok (홍용덕) (2005-06-01). 각종 분산정책
불구하고 수도권은 ‘인구 블랙홀’ (in Korean). The
Official website of
Seoul Metropolitan government
Metropolitan Air Quality Management Office, in Korean
Capital Region Development Institute, in Korean
Chosun Ilbo metro news, in Korean
Public transport in the
Seoul Metropolitan Area
High-speed rail (KTX, SRT)
Metropolitan Subway Lines
Gyeongui–Jungang (K1, K3)
Incheon 1 (I1)
Incheon 2 (I2)
Gimpo Goldline (2018)
Seohae Line (2018)
Dongbuk Line (2024)
Seoul LRT lines
Seoul Express Bus Terminal
Dongseoul Bus Terminal
Sangbong Intercity Bus Terminal
Seoul Nambu Bus Terminal
Maglev and Monorail
Incheon Airport Maglev
KTX Family Card
Regions and administrative divisions of South Korea
Sudogwon (Capital area)
Special self-governing province
Special self-governing city
The Committee for the
Five Northern Korean Provinces