Home SOUTH KOREA ANNUAL FESTIVALS Geoje Holi Hai: A festival of colors, fun and vibrancy

Geoje Holi Hai: A festival of colors, fun and vibrancy

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Geoje Holi Hai: A festival of colors, fun and vibrancy

Geoje Holi Hai festival has been one colorful event. Holi is my absolute favorite festival. I heard a lot about the Holi Hai festival celebrated in Korea but never had a chance to attend one up until 2018. It was going to be celebrated right here on Geoje Island.

Holi symbolizes the onset of spring, love, and togetherness. It brings together all strata of society. It is interesting to know that similar events/festivals are celebrated in many parts of Asia and other countries. The Mud Festival in South Korea has become quite popular in the recent past. Similarly, the  ‘La Tomatina‘ festival in Spain or Orange Battle in Italy, are celebrated with great enthusiasm. People almost forget their differences, sorrows, status instead they just become humans enjoying the celebration. Such a festival is great levelers of the society.

A glimpse of Geoje Holi Hai festival

Geoje Holi Hai: A festival of colors, fun and vibrancy

The venue of the festival was Waheyon beach in Geoje. It is one of the major beaches in Geoje. For the event, temporary stalls of food, Holi merchandise and snacks were installed. Two packs of Holi colors and Indian snacks were included in the entry fee. Any additional color packet could be bought from the stalls.

The organizers provided the color packs. They were organic colors made of natural ingredients, biodegradable & skin friendly. Unlike the regular Holi colors, it could be washed off the skin and clothes easily using soap and water. It is important to note that the participants were not allowed to bring their color powder.

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Over the years the festival has changed its form. The chemical version replaces organic color although some eco-friendly options are available in the market. Hence it is advisable to use skin-friendly materials. Chemicals could be pretty harmful to skin, hair, and eyes.

Nowadays people prefer to use dry colors thanks to ‘Save Water’ campaigns. It is another thing that here in South Korea you can’t play water holi because the temperature is really low even in March.

 

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History & Significance of Holi

Most is know the history and significance of Holi. For those who are not very familiar with the concept, Holi is a spring festival celebrated mostly in the northern part of Indian subcontinent. It signifies the end of winter and arrival of spring. Similar events are observed in other parts of India each related to the change of weather and some mythological roots.

According to ancient texts, Holi symbolizes the victory of good over evil. There are many legends explaining the origin of Holi and its significance. According to the most famous legend of HOLIKA, an asura princess and sister of the King Hiranyakashayap was blessed by the Fire-god that she won’t be harmed by fire. Her brother believed that he is the creator and destroyer, the god itself. He had a son named Prahlad who turned out to be a staunch believer of Lord Vishnu. Disappointed and furious with his son’s devotion, the king ordered his sister Holika to enter a burning pyre with Prahlad. As per the legends, the fire burnt the evil princess and Prahlad came out unscathed.

My grandmother and mom told me many other stories. Holi brings many fond memories from the past. When we were young, we used to put fill our toy guns/pichkari with colored water and play all day long. There were many delicacies prepared at home to celebrate this major festival.

Few useful  tips for the participants attending Holi Hai in coming years

  1. Camera and recording devices are allowed in the festival, but you must ensure proper protection from color, sand, and water.
  2. The temperature drops around significantly around the late noon. It is better to bring warm clothing, especially for kids.
  3. The event is open for people of all ages. Hence you must maintain the decorum.
  4. South Korean are pretty conscious about their surroundings. They like to keep it clean and clutter free. As a respect to the host country and general courtesy, all the participants must try to keep the area clean.

Annual Festivals celebrated in Geoje

  • International Penguin Swimming Festival
  •  Daegeumsan Rosebay Festival
  • Marine Festival
  •  Geoje Island Flower Festival
  •  Geoje Codfish & seafood festival
  •  Geoje Art Festival
  •  Geoje Citizen’s Day
  •  Yangjiam Festival
  • Battle of Okpo Festival



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