Korea boasts some of the most exciting and unique festivals in the world.
They form an important part of Korean history and have been celebrated for generations. Themes around agricultural rituals and myths form the basis of many festivals held in small towns and villages. There are many to explore, so plan your visit around them so you don’t miss out.
01Boryeong Mud Festival
In July every year, Boryeong comes alive with the annual mud festival. Cover yourself head-to-toe in mud and party with mudslides, mud massages and giant mud baths. It’s a whole world of fun for young and old. And it’s great for your skin too.
02Andong Mask Dance Festival
Andong Mask Dance Festival is held in Andong area which is considered the capital of Korean traditional culture, with the theme of mask and mask dance. Andong ’s culture and religion have remained a great value over the years with various cultures intact.
03Jinju Namgang Yudeung Festival
The Jinju Namgang Yudeung Festival originates from the lantern lighting custom used during the Imjinwaeran War. Lanterns were used as a military strategy to prevent Japanese troops from getting through the Namgang River. Highlights of the festival include the floating of lanterns with personal wishes on the Namgang River, the parade of lanterns and the lighting of lanterns in remembrance of veterans from the Jinjuseong Fortress Battle. An exhibition of traditional lanterns from around the world is also not to be missed.
04Gimje Horizon Festival
Gimje Horizon Festival, held from late September to early October every year since 1999, takes place at Byeokgolje Reservoir, which is the heart of the Honam rice bowl. Many dynamic and active programs are available for festival-goers to participate in before the golden horizon.
05Hwacheon Sancheoneo Ice Festival
The Hwacheon Sancheoneo (Mountain Trout) Ice Festival takes place at Hwacheon in Gangwon province. This virtually untouched region is the first part of Korea to freeze over in winter, covering the river with a thick layer of ice. If you’re brave enough, have a go at catching some mountain trout with your bare hands. There’s also an exhibition of fantastic ice sculptures and you can sample some mouth-watering trout dishes.
06Incheon Pentaport Rock Festival
Pentaport Rock Festival is an emerging rock festival ardently supported by not just local rock fans, but by music fans worldwide. The festival takes place normally in early August, in Songdo City. Overseas rock bands will be playing in the lineup with local rock musicians for an energetic rock music festival that’s out of this world!