Christmas is over but there are still plenty of spots in Seoul to feel the holiday spirit and welcome the New Year. Here is a compilation of festive events continuing through the weekend.
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Seollo 7017, an old overpass transformed into an elevated park last year, just got a dazzling makeover. As the flowers and trees lose their leaves for winter, the pockets of small gardens on the overpass are now wrapped up in strings of lights.
The theme for this winter’s installation is “starlight.” Sections of Seollo will feature the 12 birth constellations and the Milky Way to resemble the night sky.
Sleigh slope at Mapo Oil Tank Culture Park
A cultural complex that was formerly an abandoned oil depot, Mapo Oil Tank Culture Park has already held its own Christmas events. However, a makeshift sleigh slope set up indoors will remain open every weekend until Jan. 20 next year. It is free and no prior registration is needed, but visitors under the age of seven must be with a guardian to ride the wooden sleighs.
Gangnam-gu Winter Festival
Gangnam-gu had a pig as the mascot of its winter festival held at COEX until Dec. 31, as 2019 is the Year of the Pig. An entire corridor on the first floor lobby will host art installations inspired by pigs.
A New Year countdown event will also be held at COEX Square, followed by fireworks and music performances.
On the first floor of COEX, visitors can also walk through a small forest comprised of unique Christmas trees, each designed by one of the seven artists chosen for the project. Santa Claus will also be hanging around to take photos with children.
Food will be provided by 20 small restaurants and food trucks that were chosen to cater for Eat The Seoul mega food festival last year. A temporary ice rink will be set up at the K-pop plaza until Jan. 27.
Winter Garden at Seoul Botanic Park
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Seoul’s new botanical park has received over 970,000 visitors since its opening in October. On Christmas Eve, it revealed its holiday-themed “winter garden,” featuring a seven-meter-tall Christmas tree and a cactus wearing a Santa hat inside its glass dome. The outdoor gardens will present light installations instead, such as a 12-meter-high Christmas tree, a walk-through light tunnel and trees wrapped in LED lights.
The indoor park is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and the outdoor light display can be viewed from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. The winter garden will be available until February next year.
Cheonggye Stream Seoul Christmas Festival
Cheonggye Stream, a reopened waterway that cuts straight through downtown Seoul, is covered with Christmas lights and art installations. The glowing decorations are set up in the first 700-meter stretch of the stream ― starting with the huge cake-shaped Christmas tree at Cheonggye Square ― and will remain until New Year’s Day.
Those who missed the Christmas Eve Concert at Cheonggye Square can join the 2019 Happy New Year Concert on Dec. 31 next Monday. Visitors can also float lanterns with their New Year wishes at activity booths located along the stream. Snacks and meals will be available from various food trucks.
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Seoul Christmas Market
The annual Seoul Christmas Market is back in two locations: one next to the ice rink at Seoul Plaza and the other at Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP). At each venue, visitors can enjoy food and drinks from 25 food trucks and finish their holiday shopping at 50 booths selling unique handmade arts and crafts.
Various concerts ranging from carols to magic shows are also scheduled for visitors. The market is open from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. from Saturday to Tuesday and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. from Wednesday to Friday. The market runs until Dec. 31.
Daehangno ‘Good Street’ Marronnier Park Festival
Daehangno, Seoul’s hub for theatergoers, is now decked with lights. A seven-meter-tall giant Christmas tree and an art installation featuring stacks of glowing boxes inscribed with well-wishing New Year messages have been set up at Marronnier Park, located near Daehangno’s main street. Visitors can also take advantage of photo zones adorned with Christmas motifs like snowmen and gift boxes.
Source: The Korea Times
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