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Summer festival guide

From music and dance to movies and beer, Seoul's got a festival for everything—and we’ve got everything you need to know for a summer to remember

Written by
Hahna Yoon

There's something in the air when June hits. It's the excitement of hot weather and even hotter parties. People just want to be out and they want to celebrite it with the things they love—be it music, movies or beer. Seoul stirs with a festival that specializes in all of the above. But what's going on and where? Time Out Seoul has the hot tips.

Essential Seoul festivals

Drink beer, be happy at the Great Korean Beer Festival
  • Things to do
  • Cultural centers
  • price 2 of 4

Just a few years ago, craft beer-barren Seoul gave birth to its first microbreweries and already, it’s no longer anybody’s baby. Quite different from average, mass produced Korean beer, these aromatic and flavorful beverages help to step up the country’s alcohol game. In fact, the third run of the Great Korean Beer Festival is testament to it.

Small film festivals
  • Movies

Although summer’s the season for blockbusters, a host of small film festivals have sprung up in Seoul for those interested in more niche genres.

Festival stories and experiences

Q&A: Hyukoh
  • Music
  • Rock and indie

In fact, they’ll be one of the most frequently appearing bands on the festival circuit this year, including the Seoul Jazz Festival in May, Rainbow Island in June and Ansan Valley Rock Festival in July.

In defense of naked dancing and the Queer Parade
  • LGBTQ+

“I just dislike the nudity and loudness.” These are the kind of disapproving statements we’ve heard from people trying to mask homophobia in political correctness. These statements are shared as if so-called “appropriate” behavior would automatically evoke respect and understanding. “Just stay calm and act normal!”they groan in complaint. What they really want to say is they want sexual minorities to stay in the closet. These kinds of remarks and these kinds of people are exactly the reason we need to support the Queer Culture Festival Parade.   

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