Armed Forces Day in South Korea

Observed annually in South Korea on October 1st, Armed Forces Day is a day that commemorates the service of individuals currently serving in the armed forces of the Republic of Korea. The date was chosen because it marks the occasion when South Korean forces broke through the 38th parallel during the Korean War in 1950.

Although this is not a national holiday, and it is not a day off for the general public, it is a day for all South Koreans to take pride in their country, honor the South Korean flag, and pay tribute to the South Korean military.

The History of Armed Forces Day in South Korea

The Armed Forces of the Republic of Korea were founded in 1948 after the South Korean government was established following the liberation of Korea from the Empire of Japan. The country’s military forces are responsible for maintaining the sovereignty of the state and protecting its territorial boundaries.

As of 2022, it has a reported strength of 3.3 million personnel, composed of 2.75 million reservists and over half a million active service members.

Observing Armed Forces Day in South Korea

Although this is not a public holiday and most institutions operate according to their regular hours, it is a day when many different events take place. Not only are the Armed Forces of the Republic of Korea celebrating this day with internal celebrations, but there is also a large street parade that occurs in Seoul every year on this date.

During this parade, representative members of the armed forces and various pieces of military equipment can be found. On this day, there are also airshows, concerts, and other special events. Additionally, members of the Armed Forces of South Korea are usually offered discounts at amusement parks and other venues so they can enjoy their day.

Where is it celebrated?
South Korea (Observance)
When is it?
This year (2024)
October 1 Tuesday
Next year (2025)
October 1 Wednesday
Last year (2023)
October 1 Sunday