How Korea Celebrates New Year's Eve


While the end of the year is usually a night filled with exciting events and celebrations, this year might end up being a little different. But you shouldn’t let that stop you from imagining an ideal situation where you could spend your new year’s eve in a far off country. Today, we’ll be giving you a breakdown of all the best ways to spend New Year’s Eve in South Korea.

COEX New Year Countdown

Every year COEX holds one of the biggest fireworks displays to mark the New Year. The event usually starts off with performances from a few of Korea’s well-known artists and culminates in an exciting countdown to the New Year. Then cue the beautiful array of fireworks, inspiring music, and an invigorating energy you’re likely to never forget.


Ringing of Bosingak Bell

The bell is rung 33 times in the new year, which carries significant meaning in the Buddhist religion. The bell-ringing tradition goes back to the Joseon Dynasty, where it was rung 33 times at 4:00 am to signal the end of the night curfew and the start of a new day. It was also used to notify people when the main four gates and smaller gates around Seoul would open and close. Now the bell is only rung on special occasions including Foundation Day, Liberation Day, and New Year’s Day.


Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP) New Year Countdown Experience

Experience a special light show that uses innovative AI technology to display a series of lights against the normally silver walls of the DDP.  The lights dance along to the music, creating a magnificent visual-auditory experience filled with images of memorable events from throughout the year.


Yonggungsa Temple Scenic View

Originally built by a Buddhist teacher during the Goryeo Dynasty, this temple is beautifully situated along a gorgeous scenic shoreline. Many people visit the temple on New Year’s day to pray for the well-being of their friends and family.


Sunrise at Seongsan Ilchulbong

This mountain peak is another one of the special places that people go to see the sun rise at the beginning of the year. It offers not only an amazing view of the year’s first sunrise but also a fantastic view of Jeju—the island of peace. The only hurdle might be making the hike up to the top, but once you make it there, the view is definitely worth it.


Jeongdongjin & East Sea (Jeongdongjin Beach)

After hearing the ringing of the Bosingak Bell in Seoul, many Koreans head over to Jeongdongjin Beach on the east coast. As they watch the sunrise, they wish for everything they hope to achieve in the coming year, the health of friends and family, and a great year overall.


Virtual (Untact) New Year’s Eve Celebration

This year, in order to stay safe, people in Korea are taking a different approach to celebrating the New Year. Those looking to have some fun with friends are opting to have “untact” or “Lan” parties, otherwise known as virtual parties. Everyone plans to either order food and drinks, or make their own food at home with easy-to-use seasonings and spices like the Magic Chicken Powder. And, together (virtually) with all their friends and loved ones, people will be eating, celebrating, making their resolutions, and hoping for a better new year.

In Korea, like many other countries around the world, getting in shape and eating healthier is always one of the top resolutions of every new year. And Korea does it best with one of the most extensive diet, health, and fitness catalogs around the world—everything from Chitosan’s fat out tablets (Jungkook’s pick), Mealite diet management packs, and Class 101 courses for at-home fitness.