Seoul, 3 October 2023 (TDI): On October 3 every year, National Foundation Day in Korea is dedicated to celebrating the beginning of Korean history and the founding of the first Korean Kingdom as per the creation myth of Dangun.

The National Foundation Day is also called Gaecheonjeol in the Korean language Foreigners often mix up Korea’s National Foundation Day with Korean Liberation Day or Gwangbokjeol in the Korean language.

Korean Liberation Day falls in August and commemorates Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule and the establishment of the modern Republic of Korea.

National Foundation Day, on the other hand, marks the initiation of Korean history and honors Korea’s founding myth.

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The Korean creation myth predates the Three Kingdoms era and belongs to the Gojoseon period, which precedes the Joseon dynasty. According to legend, King Dangun established the initial Korean kingdom in 2333 B.C.

Dangun, also known as “the grandson of heaven” or “the son of a bear,” has a unique origin story. Hwanung, the son of the Lord of Heaven, wanted to live on Earth, so his father, Hwanin granted his wish. Hwanin allowed Hwanung and 3,000 followers to establish a city on Baekdu Mountain.

That’s why, Baekdu Mountain is considered Korea’s birthplace, straddling the North Korea-China border and being a volcanic caldera with a summit lake.

National Foundation Day is marked by grand fireworks displays across the country, with Seoul’s Yeouido Han River Park being a popular location and people gather there in large crowds to witness the fireworks.

Fireworks at Yeouido Han River Park
Global Felicitations on Gaecheonjeol

The government of Pakistan extended its warm wishes for Koreans on the Korean National Foundation Day.

Similarly, the government of Maldives and Cambodia also expressed their best wishes to the Republic of Korea and all Koreans around the world celebrating Korean National Foundation Day.