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History & Politics of South Korea
South Korea, officially the Republic of Korea is an East Asian state on the southern half of the Korean Peninsula. To the north, it is bordered by North Korea (Democratic People's Republic of Korea), with which it was a single country called Korea until 1945. To the west, across the Yellow Sea, lies China, and to the southeast, across the Korea Strait, lies Japan. Approximately one-half of South Korea's population lives in or near the capital and largest city, Seoul, the second largest metropolitan area in the world.
After its founding in 1948, the country has struggled with the aftermath of 35 years of Japanese annexation, the Korean War, and decades of military rule, seeing five major constitutional changes. Pro-democracy demonstrations during the 1980s led to free elections in 1987. South Korea is now a multi-party democracy.
South Korea is a liberal democracy based on a presidential republican system with powers shared between the president, legislature, and judiciary. Since 1948, the constitution has undergone five major revisions, with each signifying a new Republic. The current Sixth Republic began with the last major constitutional revision in 1988.
Historical & Tourist Attractions in South Korea
Tourism in South Korea refers to the tourist industry in the Republic of Korea. Domestic tourism is quite popular, and expanding, among Koreans, but the country attracts relatively few international tourists. Most non-Korean tourists hail from the neighboring countries of Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan. The recent popularity of Korean popular culture in these countries has given international tourism a boost. Seoul is the principal tourist destination for non-Koreans.
Popular tourist destinations outside of Seoul include Seorak-san national park, the historic city of Gyeongju, and semi-tropical Jeju Island. Travel to North Korea is not normally possible except with special permission, but in recent years organised group tours have taken South Koreans to Kumgang-san mountain in the North.
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