Boryeong Mud Festival ends after drawing over 1.8 million visitors

BORYEONG, South Korea, The annual Boryeong Mud Festival, one of South Korea's most celebrated summer events, attracted more than 1.8 million visitors despite unfavorable weather during its 10day run from July 1928, local officials said Monday.

The municipality of Boryeong, a South Chungcheong Province city 190 kilometers south of Seoul, said a total of 1,810,753 people visited the 22nd version of its mud festival held on Daecheon Beach.

Foreigners accounted for 21.4 percent, or 387,501, of the total visitors, marking a rise of 5.1 percentage points from last year's 16.3 percent.

The nationalities of foreign visitors, mostly from North America and Europe in the previous years, have been more diversified to include more from Southwest and Southeast Asia, Africa, South America and Oceania, according to the local government.

The number of visitors to the festival last year reached 1.83 million, including 298,100 people from abroad.

Rain fell in Boryeong for seven days during the 10day festival period. Despite such difficult circumstances, more than 1.8 million visitors came, having again proven the Boryeong Mud Festival's fame as a global festival, a city official said.

The official attributed the success of the festival to a nighttime opening, introduced this year for the first time, and colorful Kpop performances. On July 2526, the festival stayed open at night, drawing thousands of people to a large mud bath and other facilities for mudrelated experiences.

Nighttime performances held throughout the festival were also popular with visitors.

The highlight of the nighttime events was an opening concert and Saturday's Kpop Super Concert featuring idol singers, including Chungha, Lovelyz, NCT DREAM, DAY6, Pentagon, SF9, CIX and VAV.

This year's Boryeong Mud Festival provided a lot of fun and good memories to many tourists and citizens. We will prepare newer and more enjoyable programs for next year, Boryeong Mayor Kim Dongil said.

Boryeong is famous for its wide mudflats formed along the western coast, with its highquality mud that is rich in minerals and known to help prevent skin aging. Since 1998, the central South Korean city has organized the mud festival as part of efforts to promote its natural resources among international tourists.

Source: Yonhap news Agency

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