Korean Wave (Hallyu = ?? = 韩流 ’Han Liu’ in Chinese) actually is a fever of Korean Culture and products related to fashion, performance, drama, song, cuisine, and lifestyle. Starting in Japan, China and Vietnam, the Korean Wave is now spreading throughout the whole world.
Recently, Hallyu, the Korean Wave of popular culture, has gushed onto the world’s shores as soap operas, film, pop bands, celebrities, and the B-Boy phenomenon experience increasing popularity abroad. While pop singers and troupes of B-Boys perform all over the world, exporting their talents, throngs of tourists converge on Seoul to get up close and personal with the places that feature in their favorite dramas. Korean dramas have gained significant followings all over the world, from England to El Salvador, Canada to Chile.
Now we can see Korean things anywhere over the world. Korean Restaurants with its main food menu Kimchi can be found in most big cities everywhere. Winter Sonata aired in 2002 may be the first and most popular Korean TV drama that made the korea fashion, musics, and actors have also become very desirable in Asia.
In New York, Korean restaurants have been popping up everywhere in the trendy downtown areas such as the East and West Villages, Soho, and even the Upper East Side.
Chuncheon in Gangwon Province was once crowded with foreign tourists as the local drama ``Winter Sonata'' (2002) gained popularity abroad. The house at which leading actor Bae Yong-joon stayed in the drama is no longer crowded with fans of the drama. In 2003, 139,000 foreigners visited the city and the number reached 390,000 two years later. Last year, 230,000 people visited.
A tsunami of Korean TV series such as "Autumn Fairy Tale," "Joyful Girl," "My Love, Patsi," and "Jewel in the Palace" followed its success. "Jewel in the Palace" which showcased Korean food was as addictive as "Winter Sonata".
The popularity of Korean Drama continued with Boys Before Flowers, that made another Korea's fever. The drama 's wave again had rised the popularity of Korea Fashion, Korea tourism, and many of young generations in Asia are being hypnotized and imitating style of Lee Min-ho, Kim Hyun-Joong, Kim Bum, etc.
Hollywood Movie now also can not be seperated with Korean Actor. It is not a suprise if we see Daniel Henney in film X-Men, Lee Byung-Hun in GI Joe, or Rain Bi in Ninja Assassin.
The main attractions of Korean Wave actually is Korea Pop. Although not all communities understand with Korean Language, but nowadays who don't know TVXQ, Big Bang, SS501, Wonder Girls, F(x), 2PM, BoA, etc.
The musicians, which included Wheesung, f(x), 2PM, 2AM, U-Kiss, 4Minute and Jang Nara, were in China to perform in the Feel Korea K-POP Night and K-Fashion Show to promote tourism in Korea as part of the “2010-2012 Visit Korea Year”. It is a prove that Korea Wave has spreading very fast in China.
The Korean government hopes that the star power of pop singers and celebrities will help attract more Chinese tourists to Korea in the coming years. This event and more like it that showcase Korean pop music, fashion, tourism, drama and digital content are being organized by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism; the Korea Foundation for Cultural Exchange; the Korea Creative Content Agency; and the the Visit Korea Committee.
The rising of Korean Wave, no doubt, has increased the tourism in Korea. The success of South Korean dramas, movies, and music served as a major tourist magnet for South Korea in 2005, with tourists from countries such as Japan, China, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam.
The girl group 4minute performs at the Feel Korea K-Pop Night in Shanghai.
Photos of actor Bae Yong-joon, who starred in “Winter Sonata,” at a shop in Chuncheon, Gangwon Province
Boys Over Flowers, another successful korean drama
Lee Byung-Hun Korean Actor also starred in Hollywood movie GI Joe
Rain Bi. Korean male celebrities are now among the highest-paid actors outside of Hollywood
Seoul Garden Restaurant
ZingDo Korean Restaurant
Clockwise from top left, Korean blockbuster film“, Shiri”directed by Kang Je-gyu; BoA of SM Entertainment; Korean TV drama “Jewel in the Palace”starring Lee Young-ae
Watch 2PM at Incheon Korean Wave Festival 2009 video here