South Korea is famous for its K-Pop music, drama, culture, and tourism. Maybe you want to travel or live in South Korea. However, before you visit this country, it is a good idea to learn some of the traditions there. Listed below are some of South Korea’s unique traditions:
- Food and Drink
For many Koreans, kimchi is a daily part of life. Kimchi is made from shredded cabbage, cucumber, radish and other vegetables which are then fermented with various spices. Kimchi is often considered a symbol of Korean culture. Soju is the symbolic drink of Korea. When drinking and serving soju, there are certain requirements, including:
- First, one must smell and then drink it in one gulp
- The person must hold the soju glass with both hands if he received the glass from an older person/leader.
- When pouring soju for others, the person must hold the bottle with the right hand while the left hand touches the right elbow or forearm.
Korean people also have a habit of eating outside the home at 4 o’clock in the morning, because Koreans like a walk or gather together with their friends early in the morning. Because of this, many vendors are out selling food in the morning. Typical morning foods are green onion pancake (pajeon), tempura, kimbap and tteokbokki.
South Korean people are known for their respectful manners. Some examples of this are:
- When greeting leaders or a respected person, one must do so while bowing.
- If receiving or giving something, you must hold the gift with both hands.
Korean high school students spend most of their time at school. The school day begins at 8 a.m. and ends at 9 p.m. The school days are long because it is very difficult to get into college in Korea. Many Korean students also take private lessons or study together after school. Moreover, young men in Korea are also required to join the military for 21-36 months.
- Public Bath House / Sauna
South Korea has public bath house that are open for 24 hours with a large area for sleeping. Many Koreans spend the night there if they get stuck at a bus or train station. A bath house tradition is to eat boiled eggs there.
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