Korean Festivals     

  

Boryeong Mud Festival

Steeped in culture, history and tradition, South Korea's festival offer is diverse, interesting and educational. Whether you visit South Korea in winter or summer, you won't miss a festival as there are events all year round.

Mountain Trout Ice Festival
Winter is an exciting time in South Korea as both locals and visitors flock to the Mountain Trout Ice Festival, which takes annually throughout January. With the setting of crystal clear ice and white snow at Hwacheon, the Ice Festival features activities that cater to all visitors. From mountain trout ice fishing, snow sledding, ice sculpture and many more programs, the event has something in store for families, couples, and all visitors.
Jindo Sea parting Festival
A few times during the year, the tide is low enough for people in Jindo to walk along a narrow path through the sea from the mainland to a nearby island. The phenomenon of the sea parting is sometimes called the "Moses Miracle" and it creates a path that is approximately 2.8 kilometers long and 40 to 60 meters wide.
Hampyeong Butterfly Festival
The end of April in Hampyeong, South Jeolla Province, is the time for butterflies and that's got nothing to do with couples but with actual butterflies. The festival allows visitors to walk through fields of wild flowers and observe the butterflies in their natural habitat when spring is in bloom. This is a great opportunity for enthusiasts to observe rare butterflies up close and learn about ecology.
Damyang Bamboo Festival
Each year Bamboo lovers flock to Damyang-fun in South Jeolla Province, famous for its lush green forests awash with bamboo, other trees and cultural sites. Apart from the beautiful scenery, visitors also enjoy orchestral concerts, traditional music, riding pedaloes, fishing, among others.
Muju Firefly Festival
When the night falls, fireflies light up the sky of Muju, North Jeolla Province. The event takes place each year in mid-June and the activities include a "fireflies exploration event" - in which visitors experience fireflies' natural environment - and trout fishing.
Boryeong Mud Festival
Nestled by beautiful mountains, the mud festival takes place on Daecheon beach in Boryeong. As the mud there is gifted with high levels of minerals, germanium and bentonite, South Koreans claim this mud helps improve your skin tone. The Boryeong Mud Festival, which takes place in mid July each year, is the most popular event among Korea's foreign community, and it features fun activities such as mud wrestling, the "mud king" contest, fireworks, slides greased with mud and dance parties.
Sinchon Water Gun Fight Festival
Grab your water gun and join one of the most exciting festivals of the year. Although it started off as a fun festival in which people of all ages and nations join play with a water gun, it now features other activities which reflect unique ideas and local artists take place in these activities.
Cool Summer Music Festival
Sinchon might have started the trend but it is not the only place that holds a water gun fight. In fact, Seoulland's Cool Summer Music Festival is not only famous for its performances but also for its large-scaled water gun fight which takes place in World Plaza. While waters streams from directions to cool off during the day, at night music programs take over, including Music Survival, Chi-maek (chicken and beer) Night, and evening performances.
Andong International Mask dance Festival
Each year around the end of September, the Andong International Mask Dance Festival takes place and offers visitors the opportunity to enjoy Korea's talchum (Korean masked dances), as well as international masked performances. When the nigth falls, don't miss Hahoe's highlight performance "Seonyujul Bulnori", where you'll be able to see spectacular fireworks light up the sky, creating impressive reflections on the river.
Jinju Lantern Festival
Each year in October the Nam River is lit up with hundreds of beautiful paper lanterns of all shapes and sizes floating down the stream. This festival features an interesting tradition in which visitors write their wishes and attach them to lanterns.
Gwangju World Kimchi Festival
As expected, the Gwangju World Kimchi Festival is held to promote the most famous Korean side dish: Kimchi. The event takes place in the country's Kimchi themed park, Gwangju Kimchi Town, which features a number of diverse kimch-related programs like cooking experience, art gallery, kimchi market, and other fun events. Some of the activities include a Kimchi Master Competition, along with other hands-on program. If you don't win the Presidential Prize, at least you get to take home whatever kimchi you made at the festival.

 

Seoul Dining Guide

  

Seoul Dining Guide Noryangjin Fish Market

Whether you are into veggies, rice, seafood or beef, Korean cuisine is a great crowd-pleaser not only for locals but also for Western tourists. From street food to spicy stews, Seoul's dining offer is highly varied and delicious.
As the competition is high, you'll be able to find exquisite food that is quite cheap. Since dining out is very popular amongst locals, food establishments get so packed, there's usually a queue of people standing outside waiting to be seated. If you think you've already tried one dish, you might want to try it again at another "town" which are streets of restaurants serving their interpretation of that dish.
From the western delights in Itaewon to fine dining in Apgujeong, outstanding food can be found all over Seoul. Restaurants, cafes and street stalls can be found in every neighborhood, offering meals that range from unpretentious dishes of DIY beef or pork barbecue as well as healthy rice and vegetable dishes, to sumptuous multicourse banquets that showcase signature dishes and are a feast not only for the palate but also for the eyes.
You can't leave South Korea before sampling Kimchi – a tangy side dish of fermented vegetables – and Bibimbap – a hot bowl of rice with sautéed vegetables on top, and, often, a raw egg or meat as well. Although Kimchi and Bibimbap are the most famous national dishes, you should also sample a hotteok – pancakes with sweet or savory fillings) on a street corner. An authentic Korean experience, however, is indulging yourself with a cake and a beverage in a teahouse.
Noryangjin Fish Market
Open 24/7, the Noryangjin Fish Market features fish auctions in the morning and a dining scene at night. It won't come as a shock all the restaurants that line the market offer fish. A local favorite is a raw fish known as hoe, which is thinly sliced – similarly to the Japanese "sashimi" - and enjoyed with soy sauce, wasabi, red chilli paste and vinegar, and a paste made of sesame oil, garlic and soybean.
Hangover cures
As a result of Korea's drinking culture, a large array of hangover-curing dishes and drinks are very popular in Seoul. From pre-drinking to post-drinking beverages to delicious and spicy stews and broths, there is a large range of hangover cures available for tourists interested in having a big night in South Korea.
Located in Eungam-dom, Daerim Market is home to Gamjaguk Street, an alley named after a famous Korean dish that spans the centuries. This deliciously hot potato and pork broth is also eaten as a cure for hangover. In the alley you can purchase the broth by referring to it as "guk."
But that is not Korean broth designed to cure your hangover. Made from beef broth, with cabbage, bean sprouts, radish and chunks of congealed ox blood, haejang-guk is a satisfying stew guaranteed to kick-start your dehydrated body after a big night. One of the best places to get this dish from is Chungjinok, which has been making it ever since 1937.
Gwangjang Market
Located in one of Seoul's oldest neighborhoods – Jongno-gu – and home to over 200 stalls, Gwangjang Market is Seoul's largest food alley. If you hungry while shopping for clothes or jewelry, from stall to stall you'll find a large variety of dishes to sample, ranging from spicy rice cakes to sushi, noodles, dumplings and numerous local delicacies. The market is renown for its specialty, which is the golden fried nokdu bindaetteok – mung-bean pancake – paired with makgeolli (rice wine).
Namdaemun Market
Gawngjang market might be the city's largest good alley, but if you are looking for an authentic Korean experience, you might want to head to Namdaemun market. Best known for being the biggest traditional market in South Korea, the market is the best place to sample locally produced food, ranging from cuttlefish and noodle soup to meat, chicken's feet and pancake.
Samwon Garden
Surrounded by alluring traditional gardens and waterfalls, Samwon is famous not only for its food but also for its heavenly ambience. Best known for serving world-class galbi – barbecued-beef meal - in the course of the last three decades, Samwon also offers less expensive options such as galbitang.

 

Where to shop and what to buy in Seoul

  

what to buy in Seoul

Whether you are into shopping for traditional, fashionable or luxurious goods, Seoul caters to every need and every whim. From cosmetics to cheap clothes and designer styles, the South Korean capital is a bargain hunter's paradise. The city is loaded up with department stores, malls and traditional markets so you can shop till you drop.

Although men usually go unnoticed when it comes to shopping, Seoul has plenty of stores that will allure men to spend their money. Electronic lovers are also in for a treat in the Korean capital as it is not only home to the headquarters for big brands such as Samsung, LG and Hyundai, but it is also the largest electronics market in Asia.
As shopping in Korea is so vast and varied, you might want to download the "Simple Korean Handbook for Shopping" prior your trip. This handbook will give you tips to make your shopping experience that much easier.
Wholesale Shopping
Famous for selling just about everything, but specialized in wholesale clothing, Dongdaemun Market is the biggest retail and wholesale shopping area in South Korea. From electronics to clothes and shoes, leather goods, fabric, accessories parts and sporting goods, there's nothing you won't be able to find in either its 26 shopping malls or its small shops selling everything from Korean fashion to Western styles. Before venturing into this jungle of shops, however, do put some comfortable shoes on as you might find yourself shopping for hours.
Divided by the main street, the market has two main sections. The first consists of massive shopping malls and sells both retail and wholesale. Open from 10am to 5pm the next day, keep your eyes open and you might catch one of the many events put on at the shopping center.
Meanwhile, the second section mainly deals with wholesale, so it has no changing rooms and refund policies are not guaranteed, so do check your products thoroughly before leaving, particularly if they are made in either Korea or China. While Korean clothes have a better quality than the Chinese ones, you can haggle if you find any Chinese merchandise with a defect.
Samcheong-dong
Home to shops and art galleries displaying everything from famous artwork to local pieces, Samcheong is the place to be for art lovers. As it is located far away from the hustle and bustle of the city center, its skyscrapers and shopping centers, the area radiates a peaceful vibe. If you are interested in accessory shops and small independent stores, you might want to head down Main Street and Hwagae-gil Street.
Ewha
Ewha is a group of hip and cheap shops that line the streets surrounding the campus of Ewha Women's University. As most of the customers are female students, there you can find bargains on a range of styles which are mostly feminine. Don't forget to check the back streets are there you'll find one-of-a-kind and trendy items at discounted prices, as well as shoes on sale.
Hongdae
Known for its independent clothing stalls, indie styles and street art and music, Hongdae is weekend flea market that takes place from March to November in front of Hongik University. Given its proximity to a university campus, this market is the place to look for bargains on high-quality, often unusual, products. Here they also sell the wares of the art students and local goods.
Luxury Fashion – Apujeong & Cheongdam-dong
The whole world has listened to Psy's smash hit "Gangnam's style" but not everyone is aware this is the where the rich and famous spend their money. In the heart of this district you'll find Apujeong and Cheongdam-dom, and as you'll expect, both areas boast the most luxurious stores of the country. From hair salons to plastic surgery, this where South Koreans get the full beauty makeovers they are famous for. These the a modern and luxurious lifestyle, which is reflected by its sophisticated bars and restaurants.
Cosmetic and Make Up Shopping
Seoul is a great place to shop for cosmetics as they are extremely cheap and they offer numerous gifts, free samples and special deals. The brands you might want to keep an eye out for are Skinfood, Etude House and Innisfree, and the best place to buy them is Myeondong.

 

Hashtag BTS

  

bangtan

You might have spotted on social media some reference to BTS. Either on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, you can spot #BTS on almost every newsfeed and you might be wondering just what in the world does BTS stand for. BTS doesn't have a cryptic meaning or “Before Throwback Saturday” doesn't really exist. Instead, it stands for Bangtan Boys or Bulletproof Boy Scouts. - a seven-member South Korean boy band that have taken over the world.

Ever since their debut song “No more dream” from their first album “2 Cool 4 Skool”, this K-pop band have conquered the hearts and minds of K-pop fans not only in South Korea but also around the world. Their success goes beyond the charts and they have also taken over the Internet.
Known for their large social media presence (6 million followers, 8 million+ YouTube subscribers and 6 million+ fans on Facebook), BTS featured on Forbes as the most retweeted artist on Twitter back in March 2016. As a result, Twitter launched its first ever K-pop Twitter emoji and it featured BTS.
BTS also went down in History as the first ever Korean group to top the Billboard Social 50, a sub-chart that measures reach across social networks. Their social media reach is particularly relevant in a day and age when charts reflect the most genuine way to measure streaming plays, radio and downloads.
Over the course of 31 weeks, BTS topped the Social 50, beating global pop stars the likes of Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Ariana Grande and Shawn Mendes.
When BTS member Kim Nam-joon took to the stage to collect their award, their fans tweeted #BTSBBMAS more than 300m times. The band's award and their social presence reflect South Korea's increasing cultural influence across the world. Their 2016 album Wings made it to number 26 in sales during its first month, which is the best position ever reached by a K-pop album.
Although the pop industry is a tightly controlled business in South Korea, BTS's success is partly due to its smaller independent record label, which found a market for a sober tone within the commercial and energetic world of K-pop, and allowed the band to include songs about loneliness and gender politics. While K-pop lyrics tend to play it safe, BTS' songs tackle themes of online harassment, suicide as well as critiques of police brutality.
Their label pioneered to movement to embrace the uncontrolled nature of social media and to allow the band to be themselves and share their real personalities with the world.
Just like other famous boy bands, BTS members' looks have helped them gain popularity amongst the female audience.
With a large international fan base - known as the “Army” - across Asia, Europe, Australia, North America and South America, BTS ranked number 5 on Fobes Korea Power Celebrity list in 2017.
BTS international impact is such that even the official Twitter account for the Times Square in New York City celebrated BTS's fourth anniversary. To congratulate the band Chinese fans rented space on the New York City's famous landmark and displayed a video on the massive screens. Times Square's Twitter account tweeted with footage of the BTS videos and photos being shown on the big screes, and hash tagged the post “4yearsBTSwithARMY.”
The post read as follows “We see you, @BTS_twt! Global Kpop icons #BTS are being celebrated on #TimesSquare screens for their 4th anniversary. #4yearsBTSwithARMY.”
Another world capital also celebrated BTS's anniversary: U.K. fans showed their love for the band on a billboard in London. Meanwhile, international groups collaborated to congratulated the band on a poster in a Seoul subway station.
These congratulations were accompanied by their respective tweets. For instance BTS UK ARMY UNITE tweeted “Our official photos of the #UKlovesBTS London billboard for @BTS_twt ! Thank you UK ARMY for working so hard to make this happen.”
BTS's phenomenon and social media success shows the role Internet plays on a music band's success. Their ARMY fanbase and their dedication to share, tweet and retweet about the band are hugely responsible for the band's global fame. It was their promotion of the band that earned them the Top Social Artist award. Apart from promoting them on social media, the ARMY fanbase collected over 100000 signatures to get them invited to attend the BBMAs, which marked a new height for the group.

 

South Korea boosts the Entertainment Industry

  

KOFIC

While other countries' entertainment industry is declining, South Korean entertainment industry is thriving. Here are some of the things South Korea is doing that other countries should emulate:

Screen Quota
Foreign films are a huge threat to the local film industry in many countries. The most threatening foreign films are those from Hollywood, which have huge commercial appeal, huge production budget that result in more appealing visuals and greater marketing campaigns. Therefore, domestic films are usually overlooked in favor of those from Hollywood. As movie theaters are interested in revenue, they tend to prioritize these foreign films over local ones.
In Korea, it works differently. In order to protect domestic films, the government imposes a screen quote on theaters in the country, making them screen domestic films for at least 146 days a year. It was a progressive move as they established it in 1963 when they didn't need it yet, but it served to protect the local industry when in 1993 Hollywood's blockbusters started eating away at the domestic industry's market share.
Korean Film Council (KOFIC)
The domestic film industry is also protected by the Korean Film Council, a self-administered body established by the government in 1999. The organization works under the umbrella of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism which appoints nine commissioners in charge of promoting and supporting the South Korean film industry on a national as well as international level.
KOFIC takes pride in supporting the production of indie films. KOFIC believes that with financial support, more unique and experimental films can be produced, diversifying the pool of films in the industry. Funds amounting to USD 1.1 million are available for filmmakers making shorts, features and documentaries.
In terms of support for films that have already screened at theaters, there is a grant which domestic filmmakers can apply to in order to get started for their next film. However, it will depend on the box office success of their previous feature. KOFIC will choose approximately 60 titles that will each be provided with up to USD 70,000.
International Film Festivals
South Korea also has a number of International Film Festival, such as the Pusan International Film Festival, the Jeonju International Film Festival and the largest one, the Busan Film Festival. These film festivals are aimed at different markets but all focused on introducing new films and first-time directors to audiences. The festival also attracts a young audience and helps the production of future films as the festivals bring directors and new talents closer to potential funding sources.
More Liberal Censorship
Funding
One of the problems for animation studios is funding. The South Korean government targets this problem by investing a total of 380 billion won on the country's domestic animation and character industries.
Movie Making Courses as Early as Elementary
Instead of waiting till college to learn movie-making skills, in South Korea some schools have invested in equipment to allow teachers teach movie making. This equipment includes actual blue screen technology and rooms with set pieces that can be used for role playing and staging of plays.
Directors, Writers, Editors, Composers and other Production Staff are just as important and Well-Paid as actors
The South Korean entertainment industry does not ignore people behind the scenes. Unlike other countries, in South Korea, directors, writers, composers, and other production staff are deemed as important as the actors and they earn a considerable amount of money.

 

Inspiring Quotes by K-Pop artists

  

kaijexo

If you need some motivation to make it in showbiz or just in life in general, here are some inspirational quotes by famous K-Pop artists.

“All the promises we made in the beginning, did we forget because we were busy? Or are we already too busy forgetting?” - Tablo (from Epik High's Spoiler)
“Don't be trapped in someone else's dream.” - V of BTS
“I wasn't born with anything, my weapon is hard work and determination.” - Seunghoon of Winner
“I'd rather bend than break.” - Kai of EXO (photo kaijexo)
“The more you feel like giving up, the more you can't do that.” - Tao of EXO
“I don't believe perfection exists in this world, but there are infinite amount of changes to being close to it.” - Daehyun of B.A.P”
“Cry out loud once. Look at the mirror and shake it off. I've cried like that before and others will have times like that too. Cheer up. You are not alone.” - Jonghyun of Shinee
“Rather than a hundred words, I believe that you can know someone's heart by looking at their eyes. I think it's enough if I see sincerity and truth in someone's gaze.” - Yongguk of B.A.P.”
“A dream you dream alone is only a dream; but a dream you dream together is reality.” - Yongguk of B.A.P.”
“Is this what you call love? With it, it's burden, but without it, you're lonely.” - Kang Gary of Leessang
“Rather than taking an easy route, taking a difficult route is more satisfying and interesting. Life is hard at times; life is easy at other times. It zigs zags and spinds round and round, it goes up and down. When all that is done, you'll probably smile and say, ‘I lived a very fun life.'” - Minzy of 2NE1”
“If you were to ask me the reason I tried so hard, there is no reason. Trying as hard as possible is everyone's duty in life.” - Rain
“When you laugh, you receive luck” - Onew of SHINee
“The greatest happiness on the stage is when our singing combines with the cheers of the audience.” - Seungri of BIGBANG
“Even though the language is different, the music is the same.” - Kai of EXO
“I'm going to make you smile so you'll never get bored” - Junho of 2PM
“I want to become a person that won't let my hard work go to waste.” - Kang Seungyoon of WINNER
“If you don't give up your hopes and dreams, then there'll always be a good ending.” - Minho of SHINee
“It's not okay to make a hurtful comment about people just because they don't reach your own standards.” - Amber of f(x)
“When trying to get through the tough times, I just surrender my body to the music and dance.” - N of VIXX
“Let's live while doing the things we like.” - Oh Sehun of EXO
“What we should really fear is not failure but the heart that is no longer brave enough to ake risks and embrace challenges.” - G-Dragon of BINGBANG

 

Rapper San E apologizes for his behavior

  

san e(1)

A recent online post has been published criticizing rapper San E and his manager for their ill-mannered behavior. In response to this post, San E posted a lengthy apology letter via Facebook in hope of defusing the rumors.

In his post, San E apologized for the misunderstanding that arose at the festival and for making fans wait for his performance.
The rapper wrote, "This is the first time something like this happened and I'm not very good with my words.... The things I write below are the truth that I remember and I will only speak the truth. If you read until the end, thank you."
San E continued, "I want to start off by apologizing to the audience who were waiting out in the cold. According to my agency (Brand New Music), they had already informed the reps of Owl Festival that because of a performance before, I would be able to arrive by 12 AM. I was told [by my agency] that this would be okay. And to confirm, my agency reminded them again two days prior [to the festival date] that I would be arriving by 12 AM and asked if there were any issues with it. After calculating the distance and the speed limit, we told the festival reps beforehand that it would be impossible to arrive before 12 AM. The festival reps confirmed and said they will run the event so that there would be no gap until [my] performance."
"In their second written post, it said that Brand New Music had told [the festival reps] on the day of the festival that we would be able to arrive by 11:05 PM. But even when I thought about it, 11:05 PM seemed impossible. It wasn't even 11:10 or 11:15. To think that the agency had irrationally cut down one hour [of traveling time]...... I called my agency multiple times to see if there had been any miscommunication. My agency told me that they had informed the festival that it would be impossible to arrive at that time."
Apart from denying that he had been late without notice, the rapper stated that he was unaware that there were fans waiting just for his performance and that because of his absence, the festival had come to a temporary halt.
He said, "I deeply regret that I wasn't able to perform my whole set for those who just wanted to enjoy the performance regardless of the situation and had to wait. If I had known that there were so many people waiting just for me, I would have canceled the DJ set and would have gone on stage with MR. No matter how many times I think about it, if I knew [how people were waiting], with my personality, I would have just gone up."
San E said he is a professional rapper and as such he takes his performances very seriously. He explained that if he had known about the situation, he would have abandoned his planned DJ set.
He continued, “I'm sure everyone would be the same, but I also take the stage seriously every time I perform. There was not one performance I did half-heartedly, so I've very sensitive before my performances and only want the best from the team that I perform with.”
He added regretfully: "I remember very clearly, I was in a very good mood because of the responsive crowd in Gumi. And when I arrived [at the festival], I signed autographs and took pictures with the people inside just like any other time. I read [on the post] that I was screaming and cursing... but from what I remember exactly, other than the normal greeting words, I did not communicate with any of the staff members. I also read that I had my earphones in and was ignoring the staff... The performance and the crowd are the most important so once I arrive and have done my initial greeting, I listen to my music and focus on warming up. And when everything is done, I finish up giving autographs and take pictures with the people. So how can you say I was ignoring..."
He continued explaining that he was only informed about the situation by his manager right before he went on stage, so he felt really bad for the audience and that is why he threw the jacket he was wearing into the crowd, in a way to try and make up for it.
He continued, "In the midst of my performance someone sent in a report and the police came and stopped the performance. I was also bewildered [when this happened] and when I was getting into the car, I asked, 'What is going on?' This was the first time something like this has ever happened. I was angry and firmly told the agency that if they were going to have the performance end like this, then they might as well not have scheduled it."
The rapper then addressed the writer personally and said, "When I read the post, it seemed like rather than communicating with me, the person had gotten mad after having friction with my manager and the DJ. First and foremost, there was a problem and if you had gotten angry because of what happened, I apologize. The things that you have mentioned, I will be more wary of the actions of my team as well as mine. I bow my head once again and apologize for the situation."

 

ARTLOVER Debut single

  

ARTLOVER

Korean Female Rapper “ARTLOVER” unveils debut track “Want U Back” out 2 March 2018

South Korean native and London based K-pop prodigy ARTLOVER has announced the release of her debut single “Want U Back” available on all digital retailers March 2nd.
With a background as a make-up artist serving clients such as ELLE, Vogue and Rankin, it's safe to assume that ARTLOVER has already had her fair share of success. The step from the world of fashion into music might be a small one but non-the less daunting.
“I really wanted my debut single to shine, and I've always thought in terms of music when working with fashion, so it was natural to take this route” the Seoul born singer says.
“Want U Back” is a rap driven Soul Pop gem dressed up in a retro suit about immature love and loss. The single is the result of a collaboration between the singer and the renowned JYP Entertainment producer Tae-Seop Lee (Twice, Day6).
The track is the first single off ARTLOVER'S debut EP due out soom.
Genre: K Pop, Hip Hop

Here's a video of the song

 

Western Celebrities who love K-Pop

  

Liam Neeson(1)

The Korean wave is taking the world by storm. Its influence is such that even the biggest Hollywood stars are taking notice. From Liam Neeson to Lorde, a log of big-name actors and singers know and love a thing or two about K-Pop and Korean culture.

One of the most prominent Hollywood celebrities taken by Korean culture is Liam Neeson. During his visit to South Korea on July 2016, the “Taken” actor showed that he's up to day with K-Pop. At the same time he was promoting his movie “Operation Chromite” he gave his best version of TWICE's famous “sha sha sha” move from the group's song “Cheer Up.” He also confessed that his love for Korean food, particularly Kimchi.
During an interview on Conan, Emma Stone revealed her obsession for K-Pop and gushed about her favorite, 2NE1. When host Conan O'Brien asked her to describe K-Pop, the star said, “it's a global phenomenon. It's beyond excellent. It's the best thing you've ever seen.”
Conan O'Brien is also taken with South Korean culture. During his visit to South Korea in 2016, he immersed himself in the many colorful aspects of South Korean life and culture. He tried to learn Hangul, visited a historic fish market and even featured in a Korean drama series and K-Pop music video.
The Grammy Award-winning singer Lorde is also a huge fan of K-Pop. She proclaimed her love for the genre, described it as having interesting melodies and songs, and then went on to affirm that the Korean version of pop is more captivating that the one in the West. According to allkpop, Lorde lists 2NE1 and Lee Hi as her favorite K-Pop acts.
K-Pop has also conquered the hearts and minds of The Vampire Diaries stars Nina Dobrev and Kat Graham. The actresses have proclaimed themselves fans over K-Pop groups on Twitter. Dobrev even tweeted about 2NE1 being badass and amazing, to which Graham replied that she is also obsessed with K-Pop.
Jaden Smith is also a fan of K-Pop. Will Smith's son had the chance to visit the YG Entertainment headquarters with his father in 2013. There he hung out with Yang Hyun Suk, CL, G-Dragon, Taeyang and T.OP. More recently, Jaden even showed love for G-Dragon on Twitter, calling the BIGBANG member his idol. Jaden has also revealed he plans on becoming a K-Pop Star someday.

 

South Korean celebrity couples

  

rain

If you talk about relationship goals, you talk about K-pop singer-danger and actor Rain and his long-time girlfriend actress Kim Tae-hee. The couple finally tied the knot at a Cathedral in Seoul. Kim wore a knee-length lace dress designed by her stylist. The couple are reportedly spending their honeymoon in Bali.

Another couple to look up to are Gianna Jun Ji-hyun - My Sassy Girl - and a banker. They married in 2012 at the famous Shilla hotel in Seoul. The stylish beauty wore a Jenny Packham dress on her wedding day. The couple had a baby boy afterwards and after giving birth, Jun made her comeback on TV with fantasy drama The Legend of the Blue Sea, now showing on SBS.
Actor Lee Byung-hun of G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra married fellow actress Lee Min-jung in 2013 at Grand Hyatt, Seoul. Since then, they went on and had a child in 2015.
Korean model and actress Lee Young-ae got married to a businesswoman in 2009 and they then gave birth to twins, a boy and a girl. Lee, who is best known for her role in the historic TV drama titled Dae Jang Geum, distanced herself from show business after getting married. However, she is making a television comeback after 14 years in the upcoming drama Saimdang, Memoir of Colors.
Another actor that features in Saimdang, Memoir of Colors is Song Seung-hun. The actor has a romantic story of his own. He has been dating Chinese actress Liu Yifei since late 2015 after they co-starred in The Third Way of Love (2015), a romantic comedy featuring a love triangle.
Kwon Sang-won fixated on Son Tae-young even before they started dating. He persuaded a mutual friend to introduce them and after they had go on two dates, he talked about marriage. Ever since, the love between the former Miss Korea-turned actress and the heartthrob actor has grown after a decade of marriage. They now have a son and a daughter.
Jang Dong-gun and Ko So-young are the South Korean version of Brangelina. They married in 2010 after a surprise announcement during Jang's fan meeting that took the entertainment industry by surprise. The pair have a son who was born in 2010 and a daughter who was born in 2014.
Bae Yong-joon and Park Soo-jin were able to ignore the controversy surrounding their 13 year gap and got married in 2015. Since then, they have welcomed a son to their lives. Bae rose to fame due to her participation in Winter Sonata, a Korean drama that marked the start of hallyu or Korean wave. Park, however, rose to fame as a member of a girl band called Sugar which disbanded back in mid-2000s.

 

  
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