Listed below are some of the holidays celebrated in Korea. I’ve included the more well-known and/or most celebrated holidays. Each of these holidays will be highlighted on this blog on the date of the holiday in 2010-2011. At the end of the list are some links to more information about these and other holidays.
New Year’s Day — January 1
Seolnal, 설날 — Korean New Year, generally occurs on the day of the second new moon after the winter solstice on day 1 of month 1 on the lunar calendar. This corresponds with a date in late January through mid-February on the Gregorian calendar.
Dae bo rum, 대보름 — First full moon festival, occurs on the 15th day of the month 1 on the lunar calendar (basically two weeks after seollal)
Sam il, 삼일 — Independence Day on March 1 commenorates the March 1st Movement, which took place on March 1, 1919, when Koreans declared their indedpendence of Japan
Eo rin i nal, 어린이날 — Children’s Day on May 5 is day to celebrates Korea’s children
Parents Day, May 8 — Like Mothers Day or Fathers Day in the U.S. only combined. Children traditional give their parents a small gift and a red carnation.
Seokga tansinil, 석가탄신일 — Buddha’s birthday, occurs on day 8 of month 4 on the lunar calendar. The Lotus Lantern Festival is held at this time in Korea. This holiday usually occurs in May on the Gregorian calendar.
현충일, Hyeon chung il — Memorial Day on June 6 is a day to remember men and women who died during the independence movement or while in military service.
Dano, 단오 — Spring festival, which follows on day 5 of month 5 on the lunar calendar, which usually puts it in June on the Gregorian calendar
Jehunjul, 제헌절 — Constituation Day is July 17 and is a day to commemorate the constutition that was adopted July 17, 1948.
Gwangbokjeol, 광복절 — Liberation Day on August 15 marks the date in 1945 that Korea was liberated from Japanese occupation. Our Korean American community has a big event on or near this date.
Chuseok, 추석 — Known in the U.S. as Korean Thanksgiving, Chuseok is one of the most important holidays in the Korean culture. It falls on the 15th day of the eighth lunar month, meaning that the date on our calendar changes every year, but it usually falls between mid-September and early October.
국군 의 날, Gukgunuinal — Oct. 1 is Armed Forces Day in Korea. It’s a day to remember all of those who have served in the ROK military.
Foundation Day, Oct. 3 — Honors the foundation of Korea, including the myth of Tangun.
Hangul Day, Oct. 9 — Celebrates the written language of Korea
Christmas — December 25
Seotdal Geumeum, Lunar New Year’s Eve — Stay up all night and see the first sun rise of the new year.
Here are some links that might be helpful:
www.lifeinkorea.com/calendar/holidays.cfm — general information on the public holidays of the Republic of Korea
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_holidays_in_South_Korea — a list of the public holidays in the Republic of Korea, including which ones are business/government holidays and on which ones the flag should be displayed
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Korean_calendar — a list of the traditional Korean holidays
www.handipoints.com/fun-facts/korean-holidays — information, coloring pages, and a quiz on several Korean holidays