Celebrating Korean Lunar New Year

As the world ushers in the New Year, traditions and festivities vary across the globe. Some people welcome the new year on 1st January, but others—like the Chinese and Koreans—observe it later in the month. The Lunar New Year, or Seollal, is a very important event for Koreans that offers an insight into the diverse and intricate culture of their country.

South Korea is proud of its cultural legacy and is well-known for its contributions to a variety of industries, including entertainment and technology. Korea has a global impact, having given rise to internationally popular K-pop groups like BTS and Blackpink as well as delicious Korean foods like kimchi, samgyupsal, and soju.

This year’s Seollal, which falls on February 10th, is more than simply a date on the calendar; it’s an occasion to honor the family, respect, and prosperity for the years to come that define Korean values. Like Chuseok, families gather on Seollal to pay respect to their ancestors, eat together, and play customary activities.

Seollal is known for its early morning ceremony, during which families dressed in traditional Hanbok clothes honor their ancestors by serving a variety of dishes that represent wealth and prosperity. Furthermore, the well-wishing conversation captured in the term “새해 복 많이 받으세요” (saehae bog manh-i bad-euseyo), underscores the spirit of the occasion.

To further celebrate this cultural milestone, the Korean Cultural Center in the Philippines presents “Seollal: Tradition, Taste, and Experience.” Scheduled yesterday 8 February at the KCC Building in Taguig City, the event promised an immersive journey into Korean traditions, games, and cuisine.

Activities for attendees included a tour of the Exhibition Hall and Library, a talk by Dr. Kyung Min Bae from the UP Korea Research Center, and the creation of bokjumeoni, or lucky money pouches, which are believed to bring protection and good fortune. In addition, visitors can enjoy the traditional rice cake soup, or Tteokguk, which is served on Seollal and represents longevity, prosperity, and renewal.

In addition to bridging differences in culture, the event honors the friendship that has endured throughout the course of 75 years of diplomatic relations between Korea and the Philippines. In honor of this momentous occasion, the KCC and the National Museum of Korea are presenting “Endless Landscape: Digitally Reimagined Korean Art,” an exhibition including immersive video pieces that draw inspiration from well-known Korean artworks.

Visitors can explore Korea’s rich history and culture through captivating visual experiences from 19 January to 29 June. The KCC provides a free chance for you to fully immerse yourself in the lively world of Korean culture, regardless of your level of interest in K-dramas, K-pop, or Korean art.

So, why not embrace everything Korean at the KCC? Seollal beckons, inviting you to join in the festivities and celebrate the dawn of a new year in true Korean style.