Holidays, Festivals, and Events Life in Korea

Celebrating Parent’s Day in Korea

carnation parent's day korea

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Korea celebrates Parent’s Day on May 8 and Children’s Day on May 5. That’s why May in Korea is known as the family month.

Honestly speaking, some of us are lucky to show our love and respect to our parents. But some of us don’t express our feelings to our parents every day. We always don’t show gratitude and show how thankful to our parents. That’s why some of the countries are celebrating Mother’s and Father’s day separately.

But in Korea, they set a date to thank and celebrate parent’s day on one occasion, it’s called 어버이 날 (eobeoi nal). 어버이 (eobeoi) means father and mother while 날 (nal) is day. While in other countries, May 8 is being celebrated as Mother’s Day.

History of Parent’s Day in Korea


Parent’s day in Korea was started in 1956 by the Christian communities specifically Mother’s Day. Then this tradition was combined with the Confucianism traditional culture of Korea. At first, Korea was celebrating Mother’s day on May 8 but a question was raised about celebrating Father’s Day. That’s why on March 30, 1973, May 8 was declared for Parent’s day by President Ri Seung-man (이승만), the first president of Korea.

Since then, Korea has been celebrating Parent’s day to commemorate or remember the hardships of Parents for raising their children. This is also the day where children show their gratitude and thankfulness to their parents.

Celebrating Parent’s Day in Korea

Generally speaking, there are many ways to celebrate Parent’s day like having dinner together or buying our parents some gifts but in Korea, there’s a special way on how to celebrate it.

Pinning of Carnation/ Giving Carnation Flowers

carnation flower gifts
Carnation Flowers for Parent’s Day in Korea

If you have visited Korea in the first week of May, you’ll notice that there are many carnations being sold outside. It is because carnation is the one that symbolizes the Parent’s day here. The flower carnation symbolizes a bond of affection, fascination, and love. Here in Korea, carnation means admiration, love, and gratitude. That is why it was chosen to be the flower on Parent’s day.

During Parent’s day, the red and pink carnations are being pinned to parents on their left chest. As time evolves, different kinds of gifts started to be out on the market. Like carnation flowers on pots, carnation flower handmade soaps, carnation badges, and others.

Having Family Dinner

Koreans are like bees, they are busy all the time but one thing I’ve noticed is whenever it comes to their parents they will always give time to visit during special days like Parent’s day. This is because of the Confucianism culture, filial piety. Filial piety means to be good or have respect for parents, ancestors, and elders. Koreans carried this tradition since then that’s why when you married a Korean, they always asked their parents about something before they decided about it. Or whenever you travel, they always want to go together with the whole family. But these days, filial piety has been weakening due to changes in belief.

Giving Special Gifts

No one would say no to a special gift, right? And during Parent’s day, they always look forward to special gifts especially here in Korea. My friends always say that their Korean parent’s-in-law prefer a money allowance rather than a basket of carnation flowers. That’s why I always prepare cash during this day and tell my mother-in-law to buy what she wants. Some also give tour packages tickets to their parents, a new kimchi refrigerator, or whatever their parents ask.

But if you don’t have a job, the carnation flower will do and a simple dinner at home.

Read: Things to do on Children’s Day in Korea

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carnation parents day

Xoxo, Hyejin 💕

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26 Replies to “Celebrating Parent’s Day in Korea”

  1. This occasion is very Nice, Unique, Awesome, and Great, Dapat Talaga sa mga Ganitong Occassion Bigyan natin ng Oras At Genuine Love.. Because Parents is Most Lovely Of All Things….

      1. Wow ang galing po sa korea ano . Kung may childrens day may parents din .. nakakatuwa ung ganitong okasyon mapaparamdam ntin sa mga parents natin ung pagmamahal natin kahit sa simpleng family dinner pag bibigay ng mga special gifts 🤗❤️

      2. This kind of occasion is really great po talaga ,nakakatuwa po na nalaman na may ganito din po silang occasion. Magulang po talaga naten ay dapat bigyan ng mga ganitong celebration na mararamdam nila ang ating pagmamahal sa kanila. salamat po sa information na binigay niyo po at nagkaroon po ako ng kaalaman patungkol sa kung paano sila nag celebrate ng parents day. Nakakaexcite din po talaga na makapunta,makita o maranasan po ito sa kanila. Simple man o maganda man po ang ating maging selebrasyon,simple or bongga man po na regalo tiyak po na magugustuhan ng ating magulang.It’s our way to shows our love and appreciation for them.Our parents is our hero.😍🥰

  2. This kind of occasion is really great po talaga ,nakakatuwa po na nalaman na may ganito din po silang occasion. Magulang po talaga naten ay dapat bigyan ng mga ganitong celebration na mararamdam nila ang ating pagmamahal sa kanila. salamat po sa information na binigay niyo po at nagkaroon po ako ng kaalaman patungkol sa kung paano sila nag celebrate ng parents day. Nakakaexcite din po talaga na makapunta,makita o maranasan po ito sa kanila. Simple man o maganda man po ang ating maging selebrasyon,simple or bongga man po na regalo tiyak po na magugustuhan ng ating magulang.It’s our way to shows our love and appreciation for them.Our parents is our hero.😍🥰

  3. True halos event po yata meron ang korea. ❤️ Pero yung ganito na event na family month magandang nakaugalian po nila, makikita mo talaga sa mga resto or kahit saan kainan sa korea pag family month buo talaga sila family yung kumakain.. yun yung maganda sa kanila minsan nga po kahit hindi family month ganun talaga sila lumalabas at nagbobonding sila sa labas sa mga parks at nagpipicnic.

  4. Did not know they have an occasion as such in Korea. Having dinners seems really a nice way to celebrate.

  5. Oooh, wow! i didn’t know this side of Koreans that they ask for their parents’ advice before they make decisions, even as adults. Parang traditional pinoy.

  6. The post is so timely especially for the coming Mother’s Day. Since I only have my mom, I would like to treat her with her favorite food. Sobrang saya na kasi niya sa Jollibee spaghetti hehe!

  7. They truly give importance and respect to their parents. “Love your parents and you will be blessed” that was true because we will not be born in this world without them. They recognized the sacrifices of the parents to raise their children properly. I salute them and I know one day I will become one too.

  8. I wish this is celebrated not just in Korea, but the whole world as well. Sabagay we can always thenk them everyday for being good parents to us.

  9. I love it! I know everyday we should honor our parents but it is also nice to have a day specifically dedicated to them. They deserve it and more.

  10. Wow nakakatuwa po ung ganitong celebrating parents day . Yung kahit sa simpleng paraan lang gaya ng giving special gift having family dinner , mapaparamdam na ntin sknila ung love 🤗❤️

  11. What a lovely occasion for the whole family! Another great reason to give time for our family, and enjoy every adventures with them.

  12. OOhh.. so yung mother’s day and father’s day dito sa pinas and other countries hindi cinicelebrate jan, kundi yung mismong parents day lang? mas tipid ano? hahaha..

  13. Hello HyeJin! Thanks for sharing the background of celebrating Parent’s Day in Korea. Honoring our parents is priceless, and celebrating this occasion proves our love and respect for them. It’s good to know that Korea also has high regard for honoring our parents.

  14. I just found out about this. Idk why it’s hard to express our love for our parents everyday. There’s this feeling of getting shy! It’s nice that Korea has this <333

  15. Andami din palang mga traditional ganap yung Korea ano? 😀 That’s so nice! I love the meaning behind carnation flowers and the fact that even adults ask for advice muna even before decisions. Pero infairness tipid yung Parent’s Day kesa magkaiba yung Mother’s and Father’s day sa pinas hahaha that’s coming from a daughter na nagtitipid HAHAHA

  16. Love the way it’s was celebrated… somehow it was really a good thing , especially same culture to ours.It was just a big day for parents.

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