Flag of South Korea

South Korea

South Korea, formally the Republic of Korea (ROK), is a country in Eastern Asia, occupying the southern half of the Korean Peninsula that lies between the Yellow Sea and the Sea of Japan. It is bordered to the north by North Korea (Democratic People's Republic of Korea), whilst Japan lies across the Korea Strait to the south and China lies to the west, across the Yellow Sea. Approximately half of South Korea's population lives in or near the capital and largest city, Seoul, the second most populous metropolitan area in the world.

In the Korean language, South Korea is called Daehan Min'guk (literally 'Great Han People's Nation'), or Hanguk for short. In English, the nation is often referred to simply as 'Korea', which is thought to have originated from the Goryeo (or Koryo) Dynasty, which in turn derived its name from the more ancient Kingdom of Goguryeo.

South Korea is one of the world's most technologically advanced and digitally-connected countries, and its entertainment industry has grown explosively since the 1990s, producing Asia-wide successes in television, film and music. However, the country still retains centuries-old customs and traditions, such as its ancestor worship and unique cuisine.

Map of South Korea