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Korean New Year

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Bowing to Elders on New Year

Bowing to Elders on New Year

Naomi Imatome

Koreans celebrate New Year's Day at the start of the year on the lunar calendar (Solnal) and have done so for thousands of years. However, many Koreans now also celebrate the New Year at the start of the solar calendar (January 1). So these days, many people in Korea and abroad celebrate New Year's Day twice. But it is the lunar New Year that is one of the most important Korean holidays on the calendar.

New Year's Day is a family holiday, and the lunar New Year is a three-day event in Korea. Most people try to return to their family homes to spend time with relatives and honor ancestors. The solar New Year is also a family day for Koreans, even for those that live in the West where it is usually more traditionally celebrated with friends.

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