Seoul’s Vibrant Night Market

The Bamdokkaebi Night Markets are one of the most iconic events in Seoul that runs from spring to fall. We take a glimpse into the city’s vibrant night scene filled with food trucks selling all kinds of festival foods and arts and crafts booths.

Yeouido Hangang Riverside Park offers a place to relax for Seoul residents.
In one corner of the park, there is a group of young people. After making sure that everyone is present, they start drawing lots. They are the owners of food trucks that will participate in the Bamdokkaebi Night Market in Yeouido.

After deciding on the place to operate, 45 colorful food trucks enter the park one after another. The market opens at 6 p.m., but preparations begin as early as 3 p.m.

“We’re preparing early so that customers won’t have to wait long.”

The Bamdokkaebi Night Markets are found at Seoul’s four major tourist attractions, from April to October, on Friday and Saturday nights. Each market has a unique theme.

“We wanted to open night markets that were unique to Seoul. The idea was to create nighttime attractions in Seoul and to support startups run by young people.”

The night markets welcomed 3.3 million visitors last year alone. Due to their growing popularity, winning a concession to operate a food truck was a lot harder this year.

Korean electric bicycle market flourishes with help of office workers

Bikes are more than just a good way to break a sweat…, for some, it’s the main mode of transportation when punching in for work.
For any office worker suffering from quadriceps strain after tackling steep slopes in their daily pedalling, electric bicycle is a godsend.
Cho sung min explains further why it’s becoming one of the hottest items in the nation.
Korea’s e-bike or electric bicycle market,…is growing at a fast pace, with this year’s 1st quarter sales volume of e-bikes increasing at least 15 percent from last year…according to the Korea Transport Institute.

One of the factors that is contributing to this growth is the growing number of workers who commute by bike, with electric motors attached to bicycles covering up to 1 hundred kilometers in one charge..

Take Kim Min-jun as an example,…who resides in Yongin, Gyeonggi Province.
He rides a combined of 40 kilometers going back and forth to his office, located in Pangyo, south of Seoul.

“I used to arrive at the office physically exhausted. But now, I am less tired thanks to the e-bike, and I still get a healthy amount of exercise by riding it.”

Battery manufacturers are using this uprising trend of e-bikes as an opportunity to boost their sales as well.
Some companies are even providing customized batteries.

“Lithium batteries that are compatible with e-bikes are half the size and possess a life-expectancy that is three times longer than conventional batteries.”

Starting March of next year, e-bikes will also be allowed on conventional bike lanes, and this is expected to further increase the number of people choosing this convenient means to commute every day.

South Korea celebrates 30 years of democracy

This year marks 30 years of democracy in South Korea. Violent protests in 1987 paved the way for the transition from military rule. Earlier this year, many peaceful demonstrations led to the removal of President Park Geun-hye. But many say democracy is still a work in progress. Al Jazeera’s Florence Looi reports from the capital, Seoul

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