Gwangju Kimchi Festival
Spend a few days in Korea and you’ll see there is little doubt that the national dish is kimchi. Kimchi is basically anything that is pickled and flavored with a variety of spices. Most commonly, kimchi is made with cabbage, but any vegetable can serve as the base for kimchi. In Korea, every single meal comes with kimchi, so we hope you like eating it!
We didn’t stay long in Busan as there was a Kimchi festival in Gwangju we wanted to catch. The World Kimchi Culture Festival was a perfect introduction to the flavors and history of the Korean people. There’s an opportunity to taste tons of kimchi from many different vendors and to make your own kimchi under the guidance of a kimchi master. Award-winning dishes of kimchi from past years are displayed, as well as kimchi classes (alas, held in Korean with no translation). If you need a break from Kimchi, the Gwangju Folk Museum and Gwangju Art Museum are in the same park as the festival. And as any good festival should have, there’s great food for sale!
Of course it’s not just food at a festival; there’s also a program of performances. We watched a number of singers and bands hit the stage with everything from K-pop to opera. We arrived a day late for the breakdancing, but did catch a comedy juggling act.
The festival was a fun way to learn about Korea’s national dish and be introduced to the people and their traditions.