South Koreans Migrating to Sokcho for Pokemon GO

Bus tickets are sold out for the next day or more from Seoul to Sokcho, a 2 hour bus drive, to play Pokemon GO!

Pokemon GO has not been released to South Korea yet, nor Japan or China. There is a lucky city in South Korea called Sokcho that has been able to receive service for Pokemon GO. This has caused an overflow of people coming into the small city of Sokcho. This already touristy town is ready though. Above you see a sign of a restaurant in Sokcho and it reads "Trainers, isn't it hot outside? Have some 물회("mulhwi", a type of cold seafood soup) and catch 'em all! Use our drinking water, restroom, and charge your phone for free!"

Pokemon GO has not been released in the Asian cells, AS16. However, the way in which Niantic positions the map of Pokemon GO, the northeastern part of South Korea is open, which is an NR15 area. With Seoul being only about 2 hours from Sokcho by bus, many people have been flooding in. This information was found out last night and since then the bus tickets from Seoul to Sokcho were sold out within a few hours after the information was known (sometime last night). The bus ticket for last night and this morning and afternoon tickets were all sold out within hours.

The city of Sokcho is very happy with the situation. Their Facebook is welcoming visitors and sharing a map of free Wifi in the city. The mayor is aware of the situation and is enabling the migration by catching some Pokemon himself. This is a translation of Sokcho City Hall official Facebook account, "Sokcho is suddenly very excited because of this map! The Twitter alarm was showing up on the phone since last night, and the visitors to Facebook & the blog are rising. Turns out that Sokcho is the beginning city of the "Pokemon GO" game, which was on the news last night. Because of the way the area is blocked off, Sokcho and Ulleung island became the only exceptions. When you google 'Sokcho,' 'PokemonGO' comes out as a related search. Thanks to this map, now the Sokcho City Hall is becoming more publicized."

Koreans are now calling Sokcho "태초마을" the Pallet Town (which is the town you start from when you start a Pokemon game). What is also interesting is that Pallet Town is located in Kanto regions, or the "eastern" regions. Sokcho is one an eastern city in Korea.

Would you take a 2 hour bus ride to this Pallet Town in Korea or are all these people crazy?


Published Jul. 13th 2016
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