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InKAS Chuseok Party

Event date: 2013-09-15

Invite all Korean oversea adoptees to InKAS Chuseok Party


Office will be closed - August 23th

Event date: 2013-08-22

The InKAS office will be closed Friday, August 23th for supporting BNS meeting. We will be open for regular office hours on Monday


Hagwon

Event date: 2013-08-21

Hagwon (Korean: 학원) (also hagweon or hakwon) is the Korean-language word for a for-profit private institute, academy or cram school prevalent in South Korea. Although most widely known for their role as "cram schools", where children can study to improve scores, hagwons actually perform several educational functions: they provide supplementary education that many children need just to keep up with the regular school curriculum, remedial education for the children who fall behind in their work, training in areas not covered in schools, and preparation for students striving to improve test scores and preparing for the high school and university entrance examinations (the university entrance exam is also called suneung). Many other children, particularly younger children, attend nonacademic hagwon for piano lessons, art instruction, swimming, and taekwondo. Most of the young children have been to a hagwon for piano or art lessons at least once. Hagwon also play a social role, and many children, especially the younger ones, say they like going to hagwon because they are able to make new friends; many children ask to be sent because their friends attend. There are many hagwons for adults too, such as flower arrangement and driving-license hagwons.The term is also sometimes used to describe similar institutions operated by Korean Americans in the United States.

Children of all ages often attend hagwons, even those in the pre-school age bracket. It is not uncommon for students to be enrolled in several hagwon of different subject areas at once in addition to their normal school attendance. Hagwons often specialize in subjects like mathematics, foreign languages, science, arts, or music. Many hagwons also have adults as students, particularly those dedicated to teaching the English language.

While some see hagwons as filling a need not being adequately met by the public school system, others see them as creating an unequal footing between the poor and rich in Korea.

In 2008 it was reported that there were over 70,000 hagwons in South Korea with 47 percent of them focused on high school enrollment.

Impact on real estate

A higher than average concentration of hagwons in the Gangnam-gu area, specifically Daechi-dong, has been cited as the primary reason for an increase in real estate costs in the area. In the 1970s the Seoul government made some top schools relocate to the area; however, the schools there have become associated with entry into elite high schools and then elite universities. Many residents feel their children need to be associated with these schools in order to reach the upper levels of business and success. As more parents try to move to the area to allow their children to attend these schools,the prices of real estate in the area have risen to 300 percent of similar areas in Seoul. In 2003 the government had planned to develop a hagwon center in Pangyo to relieve some of the pressure on Gangnam, yet after heavy criticism for only shifting the problem around and not solving it, the government canceled the plan only a couple weeks later.


Korean shamanism

Event date: 2013-08-21

Korean shamanism, today known as Muism (Mugyo, "religion of the Mu") or sometimes Sinism (Shingyo, "religion of the gods", with shin being the Korean character derivative of the Hanja),[3] encompasses a variety of indigenous religious beliefs and practices of the Korean people and the Korean sphere. In contemporary South Korea, the most used term is Muism and a shaman is known as a mudang (무당, 巫堂) or Tangol (당골). The role of the mudang, usually a woman, is to act as intermediary between a spirit entity, spirits or gods and human beings.

Women are enlisted by those who want the help of the spirit world. Shamans hold gut, or services, in order to gain good fortune for clients, cure illnesses by exorcising negative or 'bad' spirits that cling to people, or propitiate local or village gods. Such services are also held to guide the spirit of a deceased person to higher realms.

The government has discouraged belief in shamanism as superstition and for many years minimized its persistence in Korean life. Yet in a climate of growing nationalism and cultural self-confidence, the dances, songs, and incantations that compose the gut have come to be recognized as an important aspect of Korean culture.

Beginning in the 1970s, rituals that formerly had been kept out of foreign view began to resurface, and occasionally even the manager of a Western-style hotel or other executive could even be seen attending a shamanic exorcism in the course of opening a new branch in Seoul. Some of these aspects of gut have been designated valuable cultural properties that need to be preserved and passed on to future generations.

The future of shamanism itself was uncertain in the late 1980s. However, observers believed that many of shamanism's applications would probably be performed by the psychiatric profession as the government expands mental health treatment facilities in the future.

Mudang

Mudang can be categorized into two basic archetypes: sessǔmu, who inherit the right to perform the shamanic rituals and kangshinmu, who are initiated into their mudang status through a ceremony. Sessŭmu historically lived in the southern part of the Korean peninsula, while kangshimu were found throughout the peninsula and contiguous areas inhabited by Koreans, but were mostly concentrated in the north (modern day North Korea) and the contiguous areas of China and the central part of the peninsula around the Han River.

Shinbyeong (spirit sickness)

The central feature of a shaman's initiation is her affliction with an illness known as a shinbyeong. This is also called the "spirit sickness" or "self-loss" and characterized by a loss of appetite, insomnia, visual and auditory hallucinations. A ritual called a naerim-gut cures this illness, which also serves to induct the new shaman.

Rituals or gut (굿)

The gut is a shamanic ritual during which the shaman offers a sacrifice to the spirits. Through singing and dancing the shaman begs the spirits to intervene in the fortunes of the humans in question. The shaman wears a very colourful costume and normally speaks in trance. During a gut a shaman changes his or her costume several times.

There are three elements of a gut. Firstly, there are the spirits as the object of folk beliefs. Secondly, there are the believers who pray to those spirits. Finally, there is the shaman mediating between the two.

The actual form of gut varies between regions. The unfolding and style of the shamanic rite depends largely on the objective of the ceremony. The individual character and abilities of the shaman bring a unique character to the respective ritual to be performed.


Ondol

Event date: 2013-08-21

An ondol, also called gudeul, in Korean traditional architecture, is underfloor heating which uses direct heat transfer from wood smoke to the underside of a thick masonry floor. In modern usage it refers to any type of underfloor heating, or a hotel or sleeping room in Korean (as opposed to Western) style.

The main components of the traditional ondol are a firebox or stove (agungi; 아궁이) accessible from an adjoining (typically kitchen or master bedroom) room, a raised masonry floor underlain by horizontal smoke passages, and a vertical, freestanding chimney on the opposite exterior providing a draft. The heated floor is supported by stone piers or baffles to distribute the smoke, covered by stone slabs, clay and an impervious layer such as oiled paper.

This Korean architectural element is similar to the kang bed-stove found in nearby modern-day Northeast China, historically known as Manchuria, which is used in and constructed similarly to the ondol.

Ondol had traditionally been used with a living space for sitting, eating, sleeping and pastimes, in most Korean homes before the 1960s. The furnace burned mainly rice paddy straws, agricultural crop waste, biomass or any kind of dried firewood. For short-term cooking, rice paddy straws or crop waste was preferred, while long hours of cooking and floor heating needed longer-burning firewood. Unlike modern-day water heaters, the fuel burning was either sporadically or regularly done (two to five times a day), dependent on frequency of cooking and seasonal weather conditions.

With the traditional ondol heating, floor spots closer to the furnace were normally warm enough with warmer spots reserved for elders and honored guests. Ondol had problems such as carbon monoxide poisoning resulting from burning coal briquette, and environmental pollution. For these reasons, other technology heats modern Korean homes.


Hanok

Event date: 2013-08-21

Hanok is a term to describe Korean traditional houses. Korean architecture lends consideration to the positioning of the house in relation to its surroundings, with thought given to the land and seasons.

The interior structure of the house is also planned accordingly. This principle is also called Baesanimsu (배산임수), literally meaning that the ideal house is built with a mountain in the back and a river in the front, with the ondol heated rock system for heating during cold winters and a wide daecheong (대청) front porch for keeping the house cool during hot summers.

Houses differ according to region. In the cold northern regions of Korea, houses are built in a closed square form to retain heat better. In the central regions, houses are 'L' shaped. Houses in the southernmost regions of Korea are built in an open 'I' form. Houses can also be classified according to class and social status.

Characteristics

The environment-friendly aspects of traditional Korean houses range from the structure's inner layout to the building materials which were used. Another unique feature of traditional houses is their special design for cooling the interior in summer and heating the interior in winter.

Since Korea has hot summers and cold winters, the 'Ondol (Gudeul),' a floor-based heating system, and 'Daecheong,' a cool wooden-floor style hall were devised long ago to help Koreans survive the frigid winters and to block sunlight during summer. These primitive types of heating and air-conditioning were so effective that they are still in use in many homes today¹). The posts, or 'Daedulbo' are not inserted into the ground, but are fitted into the cornerstones to keep Hanok safe from earthquakes.

Materials

The raw materials used in Hanok, such as soil, timber, and rock, are all natural and recyclable and do not cause pollution. Hanok's have their own tiled roofs (Giwa), wooden beams and stone-block construction. Cheoma is the edge of Hanok's curvy roofs. The lengths of the Cheoma can be adjusted to control the amount of sunlight that enters the house. Hanji (Korean traditional paper) is lubricated with bean oil making it waterproof and polished. Windows and doors made with Hanji are beautiful and breathable.

Regional differences

The shapes of Hanok differ regionally. Due to the warmer weather in the southern region, Koreans built Hanok in a straight line like the number 1. In order to allow good wind circulation, there are open wooden floored living area and many windows. The shape of the most popular Hanok in the central region is like letter "L" or Korean letter "ㄱ", an architectural mixture of the shapes in the northern and the southern regions. Hanoks in the cold northern region, are box-shaped like Korean letter "ㅁ" so that it would be able to block the wind flow in building Hanoks. They do not have an open wooden floored area but the rooms are all joined together.

Differences according to social class

The structure of Hanok is also classified according to social class. Typical yangban (upper class) houses with giwa (tiled roof) emphasized not only the function of the house, but also possess great artistic value. On the other hand, the houses of the commoners (as well as some impoverished yangban) with choga (a roof plaited by rice straw) were built in a more strictly functional manner.


National Holiday in Korea

Event date: 2013-08-14

January 1st. Seol Nal

 

 It's New Year's day in the lunar calender in Korea and it's the biggest holiday in Koea. Both South Korea and North Korea take 3 days holiday. People used to wear Hanbok (Korean traditional cloths). In this day, Koreans have a memorial service for ancestors in the early morning. Most of Koreans eat Tteokguk (rice cake soup usually with dumpling) in the morning. Eating Tteokguk means that people are getting older. We use white rice cake to make Tteokguk, because that means it represents a bright New Year. After that, people perform New Year's bows to their grandparents and parents. And children usually get New Year's gift money or words of blessings from them.

Yut-nol-e is the traditional folk game using 4 sticks. People throw Yut (sticks) and count which is overturned. Hwa-tu is the gambling card game which is actually originated from Japan. People play Hwa-tu a lot in holiday in Korea. And also people used to kiteflying in New Year's day.

January 15th. Jeongwol Daeboreum

 It's the 15th day of the New Year according to the lunar calendar. In this day, the first full moon appears. And moon viewing events are held in places. People thought that from this day, they can start the farm work. In Korea, moon symbols the yin, and it represents woman, richness. In this day, people usually eat Ogokbap (five grain rice) and bite on the nut to ward off the boils for a year. At night, people usually view the moon so they can read one year's farming fortune. If the moon is white, there will be a lot of rain this year, and if the moon is red it will be a year of bad harvest.

People usually do sheaf burning to wish to have a rich year. They burn the pile of branches when the moon rises in this day. Also, before Jeongwol Daeboreum day, people do Jwi-bul-nori. Which is making a fire in the farmland to wish to exterminate harmful insects, weeds.

April 8th. Buddha's birthday

In this day, roads near the temple are filled with lotus lantern. And lantern means to enlighten people. There's lot of religion in Korea, but Buddism has been existed in Korea for a long time, so it became the national holiday from unified Silla.

October 15th. Chu-seok

It's the second biggest holiday in Korea. In this holiday, people celebrate the harvest, remember their ancestors and share harvest with neighbors. After the harvest, people thank their ancestors by newly harvested rice and fruits. People have memorial ceremony for ancestors like New Year's day. It is 3 day holiday, so 75 % of Koreans visit their home during this holiday and it's often called en-masse migration. Because of that, during this day, train tickets or bus tickets are sold out very early. Koreans also call Chu-seok as Han-ga-wi. And they visit family member's grave in order to pay respects and thank for the harvest people made this year.

In Chu-seok, people play Tug-of-war, Ssireum (Korean wrestling), Ganggangsulae. Ganggangsullae is the Korean traditional circle dance play by woman under the bright moon. And people eat Song-pyeon like people eat Tteokguk in New Year's day. It's half-moon shaped rice cake stuffed with sesame seeds, sugar, sweet beans or chestnut filling. Some people make Song-pyeon with their family at home.

December 22th. Dong-ji

 Dong-ji is the day when the sun's longitude becomes 270 degree. So it's night is the longest in the year and it's day is the shortest. Dong-ji is also called as ' a little version of New Year's day '. Because from this day, the sun rises again and means that spring will come.

In this holiday, people eat Patjuk which is red-bean porridge. Red color means it could make people safe from ghosts or bad luck because in history, people believed ghosts hate red beans


Haeundae District

Event date: 2013-08-14

Haeundae District is a gu in eastern Busan, South Korea. It has an area of 51.44 km², and a population of about 423,000. This represents about 11.6% of the population in Busan. It became a division of Busan in 1976 and attained the status of gu in 1980.

Haeundae-gu can be reached easily on the subway, Busan Subway Line 2, or by train on the Donghae Nambu railway line from outside of Busan. Both Haeundae subway and train stations are built adjacent to each other.

Haeundae is an affluent beach front community that attracts tens of thousands of Korean tourists and foreigners to what many consider to be Korea's best beach. It has been subject to considerable commercial development in the past decades.

History

Haeundae takes its name from the ninth century Silla scholar and poet Choi Chi-won (literary name Haeun, or "Sea and Clouds"), who, according to a historical account, admired the view from the beach and built a pavilion nearby. A piece of Choi's calligraphy, which he engraved on a rock at Haeundae, still exists.

Haeundae used to be isolated from the large communities in Busan and Busanjin. It remained undeveloped, as did its beach, until the late 1970s and early 1980s. A small number of luxury hotels were constructed when new emphasis was placed on development of the area around the beach after the 1988 Seoul Olympics. More hotels and other tourist facilities have been constructed on the beach-front area since the mid-1990s, and shopping malls and movie theatre complexes have been built in the 'centre' of Haeundae: an area between Haeundae Station and the beach. The area's reputation and prosperity have continued to grow, except briefly during the Asian financial crisis of 1997.

Haeundae's geographical assets, along with its tourist facilities, have led to a regular role as one of the host venues for the annual Busan International Film Festival (BIFF), and Haeundae's Dongbaek Island was the location for the 2005 APEC Conference.

Haeundae New Town (해운대 신시가지-Haeundae Sinsigaji), a major commercial and residential redevelopment project begun in 1990, is located in the Jwa-dong area. This area lies in the southern shadow of Jangsan mountain to the north, and is bounded in the south by Haeundae Station on the Dalmaji Gogae line of the Korean National Railroad. Another development project, Centum City, has been ongoing since early 2000 and is now a major feature of Busan. Its BEXCO (Busan Exhibition and Convention Center) has become a popular venue for international conventions and exhibitions. Marine City, located nearby, is constructed on land reclaimed from the sea, and has several huge, high-rise apartment blocks. Additional apartment blocks, the most modern in Busan, are under construction, with water resorts and related facilities, for use by the public, also planned for Marine City.

Haeundae Beach

Haeundae Beach in Haeundae-gu is located at the southeast end of the city of Busan. Haeundae beach is only 40 minutes away from Busan's main railroad station (in the Downtown area), and less than one hour from Gimhae International Airport. Along the 12 km of coastline is Busan's most popular beach, and with Seogwipo's, it is one of the most famous beaches in South Korea. Because of its easy access from downtown Busan and the famous beach atmosphere, the beach is busy year round with several kinds of beach festivals and visitors from in and out from the country. Dongbaekseom (Dongbaek Island), located at the south end of the beach, offers a view of the sea by car and its coastline is famous for fishing. Oryukdo (Oryuk Islets), a symbol of Busan to many Koreans, can be seen in the distance from Dongbaek Island. During the hot summer months (late July to early August when most Koreans take their summer vacation), Haeundae beach becomes heavily crowded into a virtual human wall with thousands of people and parasols packed into a mile of sand. Visitors to the beach come from all over South Korea as well as outside of Korea. Haeundae is home to majority of expatriates currently residing in Busan.

There are many beach-related cultural events in Haeundae. Along with Geumjeongsan and Dalmaji (Greeting of the Moon) Gogae, Haeundae is one of the most popular spots in Busan to view the first sunrise of the year on January 1, with around a thousand gathering before dawn. Also, a famous beach event occurs in the first week of January when the temperature is around 0°C, the "Polar Bear Club." This event has occurred annually at the Choseon Beach Hotel since 1988. During the 2006 FIFA World Cup match between South Korea and Togo over 50,000 spectators filled the beach to cheer for the Korean team on a giant projector screen.[4] The Nurimaru, pure Korean meaning for Nuri (World) and Maru (Peak or top) was developed in preparation for the 17th APEC(Asia pacific Economic Cooperation) summit on Nov 18-19 in 2005, as the conference hall for APEC. The building is three-stories high and is located on the tip of Dongbaek Island. The ceiling of the Nurimaru is modeled after Seokguram, the famous Buddhist temple in Gyeongju.


Shopping Outlets

Event date: 2013-08-14

Wish you could buy the extravagant things on your wish list at more affordable prices? With a little luck and some know-how, you can worry less about your budget and find your favorite brand items at 30-70% off the regular retail price. Keep reading to find out where you can purchase trendy, luxurious items without emptying your wallet.

Premium Outlets

Yeoju Premium Outlets

Yeoju Premium Outlets was jointly developed by Simon Property Group (a corporation from the USA) and Shinsegae Chelsea. It was the first original outlet in Korea and offers products at 25-65% off the retail price all year round. Among the 144 brands, you’re sure to recognize famous names such as Giorgio Armani, Bally, Burberry, Dior, DKNY, Fendi, Gucci, Marc Jacobs, and Max Mara. There are also stores that sell shoes, bags, accessories, children’s wear, and house wares. Most products are from previous seasons and popular items are only available in limited sizes, so it’s best to go the outlet with no particular “must-purchase” item in mind.

Paju Premium Outlets

Following the success of the Yeoju Premium Outlets, Paju Premium Outlets opened on March 18, 2011 in Paju. Stores include Nike, Gap, Tommy Hilfiger, Bean Pole, Adidas, Coach, Gucci, Marc Jacobs, Max Mara, and more. The outlet offers 25-65% discounts year-round on all of its 150 designer brands. The Adidas store is a real bargain with clothes and shoes selling at 60-80% off the regular retail price. Giorgio Armani offers most items at discounts of 50% or more, and some Armani t-shirts are even available in the 20,000 won range.

In addition to fashion stores, Paju Premium Outlets also has 13 house ware brands including Le Creuset and Tefal, as well as a LEGO store.

Lotte Premium Outlets

As the largest outlet mall in Korea, Lotte Premium Outlet Paju has international brand stores not available in other outlet stores in Korea, such as Paul Smith, Mulberry, TAG Heuer, and Kate Spade. There are also 320 other popular brand stores including Beanpole, Polo, MCM, Nike, and Adidas.

There is also a multiplex cinema equipped with state-of-the-art digital audio systems, a Pororo kid’s café for families with children, a park on the rooftop, and various restaurants. With nearby attractions such as the Unification Observatory, Heyri Art Village, and Paju English Village, visitors can tour around after or before shopping.

Outlets Specializing in Local Brands

Gimpo Airport Outlet

The Gimpo Airport Outlet is located in the international terminal of Gimpo Airport, where flights connect to destinations such as Tokyo, Haneda, Osaka, Nagoya, Shanghai, and Beijing. Gimpo Outlet has an upscale atmosphere that is almost like shopping in your favorite department store. Another major plus is that the outlet is easily accessible via Subway Lines 5, 9, and Airport Railroad Express (AREX). This way, you won’t have the hassle of lugging your heavy shopping bags through a bunch of transfer points.

The outlet offers 207 local brands and typically sells the previous year’s fashions at 30-70% off. You’ll also be able to find a selection of specially designed seasonal items (this year’s fashions) that are sold at around 30% discount. Check out the 1st floor to find women’s clothing, leather products, cosmetics, and jewelry shops. The 2nd floor has men’s clothing and sports & outdoor gear. Kids’ clothing and lingerie outlets, cell phone shops and restaurants can be found on the 3rd floor. The Louisienne, a premium outlet that opened in December 2010, carries brands like Michael Kors, Coach, and Etienne Aigner.

The outlet provides a tax refund service where you can receive a refund on VAT (Value Added Tax). For shoppers from China, the outlet also accepts China’s UnionPay credit card.

The Lotte Mall Gimpo Airport, located next to Gimpo Airport’s international passenger terminal, has a department store, multiplex cinema, supermarket, hotel, and exhibition hall, providing even more cultural activities and shopping.

Munjeongdong Outlet

Just take the subway to Munjeong Station, and you’ll soon find yourself on a wide street full of great products and top brands like Polo, Bean Pole, Levi’s, Quicksilver, Nike, Adidas, and Puma. Nike offers off-season items at 40% discounts, including clothing, sports shoes, and hats.

At the Munjeongdong Outlet, there are also other shopping malls like Mods Shopping Mall, and other local and overseas casual wear and luxury brands.

Mario Outlet

Spanning 132,000 square meters in Gasan-dong, Seoul, Mario Outlet is Asia’s largest urban hybrid (two functions or roles combined into one) outlet that carries about 500 brands. It was established in July 2001 as a fashion outlet store situated in the heart of downtown Seoul. Over the years, it has expanded into “Mario Outlet Town” by opening a second store (Mario 2) in 2004 and yet another one (Mario 3) in September 2012. As the outlet mall with the biggest scale and the largest number of brands in Asia, Mario Outlet offers a one-stop shopping experience and various cultural services. It features diverse shopping categories ranging from luxury brand items to clothes, accessories, cosmetics, furniture, and house wares, as well as premium restaurants, fast food restaurants, kids’ theme park, and more. By offering popular domestic brand products at discounts of up to 80%, Mario Outlet is rising as a reasonable shopping space for modern consumers who value “smart shopping”.

In addition to accepting cash payments in US dollars and Japanese yen for shoppers from abroad, Mario Outlet conducts affiliate marketing with China UnionPay credit card to make shopping convenient for Chinese shoppers who account for a large part of the sales. The outlet also provides tax refund services through which you can receive a refund on VAT (Value Added Tax) for purchases of over 30,000 won at Mario Outlet. Tax refund tickets are issued right off at the customer centers located on the Mario 1 seventh floor and the Mario 3 eleventh floor. Further shopping conveniences offered by the outlet include shopping information services exclusively for international tourists. Pamphlets containing the outlet’s shopping information are available in English, Chinese, and Japanese at the Mario 3 third floor information desk and throughout the mall.


Flea Markets

Event date: 2013-08-14

Korea is starting to really embrace the idea of flea markets and second hand shops for gently used clothing and accessories. If you are looking for larger sizes or are in search of clothing with a more individualistic style, it’s recommended that you do some treasure hunting at one of the more popular weekend markets or shops. At first, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by all of the choices, but it’s worth a look and you may just find a diamond among all of the stones. Another plus to shopping second hand is that it’s incredibly cost-efficient. You can find the same leather jacket at a flea market for around 10,000 won ($9) that you would pay close to $100-150 for in a department store or boutique! Sizes are also very diverse and you can find both US and European sizes for most of the clothing being sold. Brand names are also mixed in with the non-branded items. High quality bags, shoes, jackets, sweaters, dresses, jewelery, etc. You can find it all at your local flea market or second hand shop.

Hongdae Free Market

 The Hongdae Free Market opens at 1pm every Saturday from March to November. Instead of used goods, you will find a variety of items handcrafted by college-age artists. The collection is quite extensive, ranging from hair ornaments crafted in Korean traditional needlework, to bags and hats with original, hand-drawn designs, shoes and diaries, and even music CDs just produced in a recording studio. You will also find portrait artists who will draw your caricature as well as impromptu musical performers. This place is vibrant with numerous things to see that are a pleasure just to see.

Artists who have registered with the Hongdae Free Market administration are permitted set up a stand or sell goods at the market. The ambience is much different from other markets, where you will find many unique, handmade crafts. If you want to see some young talent and passion, visit the Hongdae Free Market on a Saturday afternoon.

Seocho Saturday Flea Market

The Seocho Saturday Flea Market is located at the Bangbae-dong area in front of Sadang Station, Subway Line 2 & 4. It is one of the largest flea markets in Korea and sells all types of used goods except for food.

The market has clothing and accessories such as 500-won bags and 1,000-won T-shirts as well as electronic goods, antiques, and everyday goods. When buying an electric product, make sure to check the equipment before finalizing your purchase. The Seocho Saturday Flea Market is huge with thousands of participants, but there is no food on sale. To get something to eat, visit Yangjae’s market (across from the Seocho market) or Gangnam. Occasionally, simple snacks such as thick azuki bean soup and gimbap are sold at the flea market.

Gwanghwamun Flea Market

The Gwanghwamun Flea Market is on the way to Gyeongbokgung Palace. It is small but charming. The market hasn’t gained a lot of popularity yet, but when the weather is nice, there are many venders and visitors. The flea market is an interesting place to stop by when you are visiting palaces or other tourist sites in the area. The market is opened from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. every Saturday. If you have anything to sell, you can register on site and pay a participation fee of 2,000 won.

There are many great places to visit in Gwanghwamun, all within walking distance: The Ubiquitous Dream Hall in front of the Gwanghwamun subway station, as well as Cheonggyecheon Stream or the galleries in Insa-dong and Samcheong-dong. Across from Simin Yulinmadang, where the flea market is located, are Gyeongbokgung Palace and the National Palace Museum of Korea. It is a convenient and worthwhile to combine Insa-dong, Gyeongbokgung Palace, Samcheong-dong, and Cheonggyecheon in one trip. Picture taking is prohibited on the way from Gwanghwamun station to Yulinmadang because the U.S. Embassy is located in between.

Philippine Market

Every Sunday, Filipinos gather in a market in Hyehwa-dong to meet and chat with friends. The market sells groceries from the Philippines as well as magazines, and CDs, drawing both Filipinos and Korean clients. This flea market is especially unique in that it offers a rare opportunity to experience the local culture of the Philippines. If you want to experience Philippine culture in Seoul, visit Hyehwa-dong’s Philippine Market from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays.

While the main sales are groceries, the market also offers foods made on the spot, pojangmacha foods, ramyeon, and snacks. The prices are relatively low: a banana fritter wrapped in thin dough is 1,000 won and 3 mangos cost 5,000 won. If you want to try the cuisine of the Philippines, be sure to visit the market with an empty stomach.


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InKAS - International Korean Adoptee Service Inc
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