Posted on July 17, 2019
There aren't many nations that can point to 500 years of uninterrupted self-rule, but Korea can point to way longer than that - from the late 7th Century (the 600s) until 1910, when Korea was taken over by Japan. That's more than 1,200 years of self-rule!!
One portion of that long period is called the Joseon Dynasty, which was founded July 17, 1392. That dynasty ruled for about 500 years, and the auspicious date July 17 was deliberately chosen for the day of adoption of South Korea's 1948 constitution.
This constitution sets up the South Korean government as a presidential republic with a lawmaking Assembly that has only one chamber. (The U.S. Congress has two chambers, the Senate and the House of Representatives, as does the United Kingdom, with its Parliament divided into the House of Commons and the House of Lords.)
For decades, Constitution Day was a no-work holiday, and special events such as marathon races were held. However, since 2008, this holiday - while still celebrated - is no longer a break from school or work.
Here are some things that make South Korea special:
- It's got the world's fastest internet and loads of high-level tech. Heck, it MAKES a lot of the world's high-level tech!
- For such a relatively small nation (it's about the size of England), South Korea has a HUGE economy - the 11th largest in the world!
- It rules the air!
First, South Korea has the busiest air route in the world, with the 280-mile transit from the nation's capital, Seoul to the international airport on the island of Jeju having more than 175 flights PER DAY!!! That means that that air route provides flights for more than a million people (roughly 1,285,000) per month!
That's almost twice as busy as the second busiest air route in the world!
Apparently, Jeju is now Korea's tourism hub because it has so much natural beauty and so many luxury hotels and casinos. Jeju is supposed to be the Korean Hawaii...full of dramatic volcanic landscapes and beaches, plus caves and more!
Second, South Korea has what has been often rated the world's best airport: Incheon International Airport, located near Seoul. It has gardens, free showers, and even saunas!
- Korea can brag about its awesome music scene (including K-pop), its growing movie biz, its world-leading breakdancing, its cuisine, and of course all of its ancient culture.
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