Famous Festivals In South Korea

South Korea has a lot to offer when it comes to events and festivals. Almost each weekend you can find a different festival in another part of the country. Korea or “The Land of Festivals” always manages to organize the most unique events combining Korean history, art, culture, and food. It always seems that there is a festival for just anything: persimmon festival, kimchi festival or a hanbok festival. Read on for the most famous festivals in South Korea!

best festivals in south korea

Famous Festivals In South Korea In Spring

Spring is definitely one of the best times to come visit Korea. This is the season of many flower festivals around the country and in Seoul in spring.

1. Jindo Sea Parting Festival

On the first day of spring the Jindo Sea parting festival takes place all the way in the south of the peninsula. During the festival the sea parts and creates a 2,8 km path between the mainland and the Jindo Island. A true miracle!

Location: Hoedong-ri, Jindo-gun, Jeollanam-do
When: 3 days at the end of March
Buy Tickets: Free,  paid shuttle buses leaving from Seoul

2. Gyeongju Cherry Blossom Festival

Gyeongju, or often referred to as the museum without walls turns into a pink wonderland during the cherry blossom season. During the one week Gyeongju cherry blossom festival, performances and small markets are held all over the city. The main cherry blossom areas are Bomun Lake, Bulguksa Temple and the Tumuli Park. Check other things to do in Gyeongju here.

** This is my favourite festival when it comes to the Cherry Blossom festivals In South Korea. The city is truely stunning and the cherry blossoms only make it better. **

Gyeongju Cherry Blossom Festival in Korea

Location: Gyeongsangbuk-do, Gyeongju-si, Bomun-ro, 446
When: end of March, start of April
Buy Tickets: Free,  paid shuttle buses leaving from Seoul

3. Goyang Spring Flower Festival

The Goyang Flower Festival is Korea’s biggest and most important international flower exhibition. It takes place each year in Ilsan, a city just outside Seoul. Over 300 companies and organisation from all over the world gather to showcase their flower sculpture and products made using flowers.

The festival has several indoor and outdoor areas, including unique and rare plants exhibition, flower sculptures, flower experiences, different performance stages and other cultural events.

GOYANG FLOWER FESTIVAL south korea

Location: 595, Hosu-ro, Ilsandong-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do
When: 3 weeks during April and May
Buy Tickets: On site or online

4. Wangin Culture Festival

The Yeongnam Wangin Culture Festival is held when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom. This, still non-touristic, festivals celebrates the Korean Dr. Wangin, who was on a quest to spread Korean culture in Japan 1600 years ago.

The festival is located in the country side, surrounded by stunning nature. The main highlight of the festival is the Dr. Wangin Parade, which tells the story of the doctors achievements.

WANGIN CULTURE FESTIVAL south korea

Location: 440, Wangin-ro, Yeongam-gun, Jeollanam-do
When: early April
Buy Tickets: Free

5. Boseong Green Tea Festival

The stunning green tea plantations in Boseong are the largest producers of green tea in Korea. At the green tea festival, visitors can sample different kinds of tea from the different plantations and enjoy hands-on experiences like green tea picking, green tea scavenger hunt, green tea moonlight party, making tea and much more!

BOSEONG GREEN TEA FESTIVAL south korea

Location: 775, Nokcha-ro, Boseong-gun, Jeollanam-do
When: mid May
Buy Tickets: Free, paid shuttle buses leaving from Seoul/Busan

5. Seoul Jazz Festival

The Seoul Jazz Festival is Asia’s top jazz festival featuring famous artists from all over the world. The festival is held on the grass field of the stunning Olympic park in the Jamsil area. Big names have made it to the festival, since first started in 2006, like Jessie J, Sergio Mendes and Iron and Wine.

Location: 424, Olympic-ro, Songpa-gu, Seoul
When: end of May
Buy Tickets: Online

6. Jinhae Cherry Blossom Festival

One of the most famous cherry blossom festivals in South Korea. Jinhae is located in the south of the country and is the mecca for cherry blossom tourism. In April daily buses are leaving from Seoul and Busan to the festival. Enjoy stunning views at the Yeojwacheon Stream & Gyeonghwa Station and taste cherry blossom flavoured drinks and snacks.

When: early April
Buy Tickets: Free, book shuttle bus online

Famous Festivals In Korea In Summer

Summer is the season of intense heat and humidity. It comes as no surprise that most festivals during this season include some kind of refreshment like water or mud.

1. Boryeong Mud Festival

Of all the festivals in Korea, this is the one of the events in korea that attracts most international visitors. The first festival was in 1998, when cosmetic companies used Boryeongs Mud in their cosmetic products, as the mud is filled with minerals. The Boryeong Mud Festival was created to promote these cosmetic products.

At the festival, visitors can enjoy swimming in a giant mud bath, mud sliding or mud wrestling. After sunset, the party and fireworks start on the beach.

 

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Location: 123, Meodeu-ro, Boryeong-si, Chungcheongnam-do
When: mid July
Buy Tickets: On site or online (shuttle included)

2. Pohang Fireworks Festival

The Pohang Fireworks Festival is held annually at Yeongilbae Beach, with the steel company POSTEC in the background. The main event during the festival is the fireworks competition, featuring international teams. Other events are the parade of light, water gun survival games, performances, hot air balloon ride and a squid & beer party.

pohang fireworks festival korea

Location: 685-1, Duho-dong, Buk-gu, Pohang-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
When: end July
Buy Tickets: Free

Famous Festivals In Korea In Autumn

Autumn is a beautiful month to visit South Korea as the country turns into a golden paradise due to the autumn leaves. Check more things to do in autumn in Seoul here.

1. Andong Mask Dance Festival

The city of Andong is well known for its traditional Hahoe village, which houses the yearly Mask Dance Festival. The shamanistic festival dates back to the Joseon Dynasty, where common people used theater and mask performances to make fun of people with high power.

The festival grounds are on 2 different locations, in the Hahoe Village and on the grounds behind Andong train station. Events at the Andong Mask Dance Festival include, mask performances, fireworks, hands-on activities, and more.

Andong Mask Festival

Location: 239, Yuksa-ro, Andong-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do
When: end of September, start of October
Buy Tickets: Free, but performances tickets can be bought on site.

2. Jeongju Bibimbap Festival

Jeonju is known for their delicious Korean cuisine, mainly the Jeonju Bibimbap! One of the most famous Korean dishes worldwide and across Korea. Join this culinary festival to discover more about this signature dish. What makes Jeonju Bibimbap special is that it’s made with 30 different ingredients!

JEONGJU BIBIMBAP FESTIVAL korea

Location: 20, Hyeonmu 1-gil, Wansan-gu, Jeonju-si, Jeollabuk-do
When: end of October
Buy Tickets: Free

3. Seoul Lantern Festival

Each year the lantern festival is held along the 1.2 kilometer long Cheonggyecheon Stream, starting at Cheonggye Plaza going all the way to Supyogyo Bridge. Hundreds of lanterns are lid at 5 PM, illumination the city at the start of another cold winter. Each year, the theme of the lantern festival is different.

Location: 14, Jong-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul
When: first Friday of November to the third Sunday of November
Buy Tickets: Free

4. Goyang Autumn Flower Festival

Apart from having a festival in Spring, the Goyang flower festival is now also happening in Autumn. At the festival over 300 flower organisations and companies are showcasing their beautiful flower creations and sculptures.

The festival takes place along the river side which is super beautiful during autumn due to the leaves turning golden and red.

goyang famous festivals in south korea

Location: 595, Hosu-ro, Ilsandong-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do
When: First week of October
Buy Tickets: On site or online

Famous Festivals in Korea in Winter

Winters in Korea can be pretty harsh with temperatures going far below 0°C, but that’s no reason not to enjoy the pleasures winter has to offer. Check what to wear in Korea in winter and what to do in Korea in winter here.

1. Hwacheon Sancheoneo Ice Festival

The Hwacheon Ice Fishing Festival is a three week long festival and one of the biggest winter festivals in Korea. The festival takes place on a river covered with a 40 centimeter thick layer of ice. During this festival, people from all over the country come together on this frozen river to catch fresh trout! Going to the ice fishing festival is a wonderful day trip from Seoul in winter.

HWACHEON SANCHEONEO ICE FESTIVAL

Location: Hwacheon-eup, Hwacheon-gun, Gangwon-do
When: three weeks during January
Buy Tickets: Onsite or online

2. Gwangyang International Maehwa Festival

This is one of the first flower festivals of the year in early March. The plum trees start blooming earlier than any other trees. In Gwangyang, all the way down south of Korea, the Maehwa village transforms into a stunning pink paradise.

Gwangyang Maehwa Festival
Photo credit Abrielle The Human

Location: 55, Jimak 1-gil, Gwangyang-si, Jeollanam-do
When: 10 days early March
Buy Tickets: Free but paid shuttle bus leaving from Seoul/Busan

Liked this post about the best festivals in South Korea?Why notpint it?

Have you been to any of these festivals in South Korea? Which one was your favourite? Do you have any questions about any of the festivals in South Korea? Let me know in the comment section below.

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11 Responses

  1. Karlee says:

    Oh that lantern festival looks so beautiful!! Sounds like you’ll have a busy festival season in Korea!

  2. Justine says:

    Love it! Korea is definitely on my list. And I would love to visit while one of these festivals are going on 🙂

  3. Pauline says:

    I went to Korea .. 4 years ago now (time flies!), at the time of the Lantern Festival apparently!
    I didn’t know it, but my friend and I noticed those lanterns along the Cheonggyecheon Stream, and we wandered there at night, made pretty pictures! I thought it was for the Asian Games at the time, but turns out, it was not ^^
    (Funny that the theme was Games again though)

  4. Chloe says:

    I was just in Korea this Summer! I really want to go back! I’ll definitely need to check out these events if I ever get the chance to go in the Autumn! 🙂

    xo, Chloe //

  5. These festivals look amazing . Not I want to visit Korea 🙂

  6. ejnets says:

    This looks very cool, all of them. Definitely on my bucket list 🙂

  7. That’s so awesome that they have a festival for many different things! I wish there were more things to celebrate in the USA. I love the idea of the festival for their signature dish.

  8. Fall is my favorite season! It’s neat to know other countries also have fall festivals and other special events. The lantern festival looks especially beautiful and the food looks delicious.

  9. I regret it so badly that I have been to Seoul for the past two days, but haven’t had the chance to visit the Lantern Festival due to business dinners and all-day meetings… Will you cover this festival in a separate article or upload pictures of it on your Instagram account, Marie? That way, I could at least virtually participate… 😉

  10. Gina says:

    I’m so glad you reminded me of that lantern festival! This is my last year in Korea and I definitely can’t miss it! I’ll be sure to go this weekend especially since they have the lanterns for the Olympics. How was the bibimbap festival? I know it’s famous in Korea!

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