Christmas in Korea is a lot different from back home.
First of all, it’s a lot less commercial. Sure, you can still find signs of the holiday season here and there–especially at coffee shops like Starbucks and large department stores, who deck their walls with all the season’s decor. There’s even a really large Christmas tree of lights in downtown Gwangju, which can really put you in the holiday spirit.
And in the coffee shops and occasional boutique, you’ll even hear Christmas music.
Small sections of the larger supermarkets also have tables of kitschy Christmas decor–fake poinsettias, glittering plastic balls, felt stockings, and three-feet fake Christmas trees.
Christmas can surely be had in Korea–if you’re a little creative.
While it remains a lot less commercial than back home, the holiday in Korea is seen as an actual “date day,” similar to Valentine’s Day where couples spend the day out on the town in matching hoodies and cuddling matching teddy bears. It’s pretty cute. But way different than the Christmas experience in the West.
In cities with large expat communities–like our city of Gwangju–there are loads of events and charities to take part in. From a Christmas bake sale to adopting a child for Christmas from the local girls’ orphanage to Christmas concerts, there seems to be an event every weekend to get in the spirit of giving and rejoicing.
|Me, 36 weeks pregnant, with my homemade Christmas wreath, made from greenery from the mountain behind our apartment and fake poinsettias from HomePlus.|
So no matter where you are in the world, there are still many reasons and ways to celebrate!