This was one of those day trips where I was completely prepared to let loose and become a child again. My friends and I had decided to spend a day at Lotte World, which is kind of the representative amusement park of Seoul or maybe even Korea as a whole. From what I was exposed to before this trip was the Lotte World was pretty hyped up to be a fun place for people of all ages. When I arrived there though, I was pretty surprised to see that probably around 60 to 70 percent of the park-goers were wearing uniforms and also seemed to be of high school age. Now, I only learned right then and there that it’s something like a trend or a tradition for people to either dress up in school uniforms when they go to Lotte World. I think the case is also that it’s a tradition for middle and high school students to go after school once in a while. This was a little hard for my brain to wrap around and I actually still have questions pertaining to how this tradition started and why it continues. If I were to guess though, I guess it may seem like a rite of passage or a celebration of youth? Going to an amusement park in your uniform before you get old seems definitely seems like a possible explanation.
I don’t think I’ve ever delved into lookism in South Korea yet, and I think it’s because I don’t necessarily want to put the country in a negative light because it can be taken negatively in the West. I’ve learned to think of it simply as a cultural difference, however. One thing I did notice when I went to Lotte World though, was that people spend hours and hours taking pictures in hopes of getting the perfect shot. I’m talking long lines for specific areas to take photos in front of. I truly respect it, I really do. Before coming to Korea, I had never been abroad, so for the first time in my life I encountered a population that took so much effort towards their physical appearance. I am still amazed by it to an extent, as someone who does not have the energy to put in that much effort, and I think it’s really cool that the majority of people here put in time and effort to look good everyday. But moving on:
What’s interesting about Lotte World is that there’s an outdoors portion and an indoors portion. The indoors portion has several floors and includes so many things: an entire rink, a mini zoo, so many restaurants and food stands, rides including a flume ride, and other general entertainment activities catered to youth/children. The outdoor portion has more of your typical carnival rides and a few roller coasters similar to the ones you’d find in Dorney Park or Six Flags. I have to say although you can most definitely spend your entire day here, I wouldn’t recommend it for people who don’t like waiting in long lines. I also feel as if the roller coaster selection was limited as well and I don’t even like them. One thing is for sure, I think we were at a disadvantage visiting during the pandemic and you should also take everything I say with a grain of salt because I’m never very excited to go to Six Flags. I’m more of a water park person. Actually now that I think about it I probably shouldn’t have been that excited to go to Lotte World.
But!! I would still like to recommend it to anyone! I think it’s an important rite of passage when in South Korea to be honest with you. I would also like to mention that the outdoor portion of the park is surrounded by water…either that or sitting on a mini lake. I am not sure if it is man-made, but I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if it was knowing how big the Lotte brand is.
I would like to mention that I thoroughly enjoyed the light show that happened at night. That was truly very cool!
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