I mentioned Korea’s love for themed cafes before, but I had yet to visit an animal cafe. There are several dog or cat cafes in Seoul, but when I heard that there is a sheep cafe, I knew I had to go.
Yup, a cafe that has live sheep in it. Thanks Nature Cafe is in Hongdae, very close to the busy university streets. However, it is located on the basement level of the building, so it is surprisingly quiet and calm. Sunlight and fresh air flow down to an open air seating area. This is where the sheep enclosure is found. They were not roaming free around the cafe like some of the dog and cats cafes allow. There were two sheep when I visited, a mother and a lamb; how perfect for springtime!
The sheep have a little “sheephouse” where they can go to get away from the customers’ cooing. There is also a fenced area where they can walk around. Guests are welcome to reach over the fence and pet the docile creatures. I know this sounds weird, since sheep are known for being fluffy, but I had no idea how soft sheep are! I have vague memories of attending a sheep festival in my childhood, but I do not remember petting one. I was delighted at how my hand sunk into their soft, white wool. I alternated between petting and photographing the sheep. The owner was present and allowed my friend’s children to feed the sheep. The sheep were clearly more interested in food than their guests.
I think I would visit Thanks Nature again just for the food. I had my favorite tea honey citron tea there and also ate an amazing waffle. Waffles are my favorite Korean food, and this cafe reminded me why. The waffle was freshly cooked and piled high with massive strawberries, whipped cream, and chocolate. The waffle was so delicious that I briefly forgot about the sheep a mere two feet away.
Thanks Nature is one of Seoul’s beautiful, odd mixtures. Where else could you find a busy university district, sheep, and waffles living together in such perfect harmony?