A hot summer in Korea may sound like a dream, but most people that live here dislike the season. Not only is it the hottest time of the year but also the most humid and wet. Between July-August temperatures can reach 37°C and UV is incredibly strong. If you step outside in the middle of the day, you could be drenched in sweat within minutes. Or, you could be drenched in rain, as the scorching heat is interspersed with huge thunderstorms. The best way to stay cool is to remain indoors with air-conditioning, but Korea is beautiful in summer and the heat shouldn’t stop you from enjoying it. Therefore, here are some ways you can stay cool outdoors in summer in Korea!
1. Carry a Mini Fan
You will see many Koreans keeping cool with portable fans on hot days. These hand-held fans are convenient to use, rechargeable and come in a variety of styles. They’re ideal to use while walking around or waiting for the bus. What’s more, you can buy them almost anywhere at a reasonable price: check out Daiso, online markets or your local convenience store.
Samgyetang is a healthy broth made with whole chicken, rice, ginseng, garlic and jujube berries.
The mild flavour is certainly welcoming to foreigners, although, you may be used to eating a dish like this in the winter instead. After all, why would you want eat a hot soup on a hot day? Well, if the weather is hot and you eat something hot, you will start to sweat and release heat from your body! After sweating, your body will cool down. Furthermore, samgyetang is loaded with superfoods to restore nutrients lost through sweat.
3. Eat Bingsu
Nothing is more refreshing than an ice cream on a sweltering hot day. Bingsu is Korea’s famous shaved ice dessert, available with a variety of toppings. You can top your bingsu with fruit, chocolate, nuts, red bean paste and even tomato! Many cafes serve this dish in the summer and you will definitely feel cool after eating Bingsu.
4. Feel Refreshed with Iced Drinks
The Korean slang phrase “eol-juk-ah” means “even if I freeze to death, I order iced coffee.” Drinking a cold drink is the most refreshing way to keep cool on a hot day. Korea has cafes on almost every corner, where you can choose from iced coffee, bubble tea, smoothies and more!
The perfect summer scene, right? Beaches in Korea are always full during the summer and many bring tents to take shelter from the sun. Aside from swimming or paddling in the ocean, you can enjoy a picnic or play games on the sand.
6. Use an Umbrella or Parasol
You may notice that some Koreans walk with umbrellas even when it is not raining. As well as preparing for unpredictable rain showers, an umbrella is handy to shield your head from the sun, instead of a hat. Furthermore, since it is very humid, a hat may be uncomfortable to wear.
Don’t let the summer heat stop you from doing activities outdoors. Just remember to keep hydrated at all times, wear light clothes and apply sunblock to avoid getting your skin damaged.