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Holi “Festival of Colors” in Korea

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018

Starting from scratch in 2011 today Holi ‘festival of colors’ has become one of most important event for the cultural party goers in Korea. Every year in month of March thousands of foreigners and Koreans throng to the beach to enjoy this festival of colors with their friends and dear ones. We had the chance to sit with main organizers of the festival to get a preview what we can expect in this year’s festival

Here are the excerpts of the interview we had with Ms Muskan Gupta, lead member of the organizing team recently.
When and how did you begin celebrating this Holi festival in Pusan? Give us some rough estimate of the number of people who haveattended the festival in last few years

We have been organizing the festival since last 8 years (1st edition was in 2011) at the Haeundae beach and we had around 100 participants the first year (mostly Indians) and around,5000 last year from over 100 different countries. This year it will be the 8th edition of Holi Hai and we are expecting around 8,000 participants from all over Korea and abroad


Please tell us about the Holi festival in India. Why and how this festival is celebrated in India?

HOLI is one of the most famous & widely celebrated Indian festival which is particularly popular among foreign communities. The festival itself symbolizes equality and love for all. The festival is mainly celebrated by splashing colors on each other and dancing/hugging together regardless of your age, race, gender, nationality, social status etc.

Foreign participants enjoying the festival colors in Pusan
I came to know this year you are moving this festival to Goeje. Why did you choose Goeje over many other cities?

Holi festival is about spreading love and we have been very lucky to spread love among various nationalities in Korea. Haeundae (Busan) authorities were very kind to us in supporting this event for 7years. Moving to the beautiful island of Geoje is part of the plan to help promote tourism, exchanging culture with various nationalities, and most importantly spreading love which is what Holi is all about.


Are you making any transportation arrangements for people to go there? Please tell us how people can go there to attend your function?

We are working on transportation arrangements and will definitely help any groups who is interested to participate in to arrange the buses. Seoul Hiking & Nature group and Wink Travels are extending us very generous help in this regard. Wahyeon beach is a popular tourist spot and interested people can come straight to the beach on 18th March 2018. We will soon be updating information regarding bus transportation on our website

What kind of support you are getting from Goeje city to make this year’s Holi celebration a great success.?

Geoje city hall (especially tourism department) and Geoje police (foreigner branch) are cooperating us in a best possible way they can, to make this event a grand success. We are happy and satisfied with the kind of support we are getting from Geoje city officials.

What will be this year main attractions of this year’sHoli festival in Goeje? Please tell us what new programs we can expect on this year’s festival?

Wahyeon beach is one of the best beaches in the beautiful city of Goeje. This year’s main attraction would be cultural performances (Bhangra Dance and Belly dancing) which will be followed with Bollywood Beach party, and color throwing.

Goeje is quite far from Seoul? Are you not afraid you may not get same kind of respond as you used to get in Pusan?

The festival takes place on Sunday, March 18; 2018 at Wahyeon Beach - Goeje. We had faced similar uncertainties in 2011 when we first started Holi in Pusan. However, we were overwhelmed by the kind of response we got and people from different nationalities made this event a huge success. We are expecting similar love from people and we are excited to organise for this event in Goeje.

8. Usually what age group of people attends the festival? What attracts them to the festival?

Holi festival is for all family members and friends irrespective of their age. Our busy life doesn’t allow us to meet our family and friends very often. Holi is a perfect festival whose main attraction and basic purpose is about coming together, celebrating the camaraderie among us and to spread love and affection among our near and dear ones.

Apart from playing with colors what are other activities done during the festival
The festival involves various cultural performances (Bhangra and Belly Dancing), dancing on peppy Bollywood beats and eating traditional Indian snacks

What are your future plans? Where do you see this festival in ten years from now?
Our wish is to make HoliHai one of the biggest festivalsthat projects South Korea as one of the best tourist attraction for people with difference nationalities.

What kind of help are you expecting from Korean government and people to make this festival a great success in the coming years?
Official authorities including Geoje city authority along with Communication & Culture, Police, Health, and Fire department have collaborated with us to help us make it a successful event.


s Muskan Gupta is with her husband Mr Amit Gupta and Dr. Lakhvinder Singh , President of India Korea business and Policy Forum in Seoul

How do you see this festival playing greater role in strengthening India- Korea relations?
India’s relations with South. Korea has always been great. Holi festival would further nourish this relationship by making people to people contact with Indians living in Korea and by making Koreans aware of Indian culture and festivals. Cross-cultural sharing of love and a feeling of togetherness will strengthen India-Korea relations. It will be great work in public diplomacy bring two people and counties together.
For more information regarding the festival please visit


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