Sex Tourism In South Korea?

South Korea is one of the most developed countries in Asia also it is a popular tourist destination also for those who are seeking a better job opportunity, it is a good place to start a career in any major field.


With a high demand for employment and promise of better pay illegal employment agencies often use tactics to entice migrant workers mostly women from South East Asia to work in factories, however most end up working as prostitutes.


Today South Korea has become a haven for human trafficking with thousands of Chinese women being recruited for the sex trade. Also women from Russia are being brought into the country by these illegal employment agencies to engage in this type of work.


Thus making it harder for local officials to eliminate prostitution altogether and although it is illegal in South Korea somehow the tide of migrant workers due to human trafficking made the country a popular sex tourism destination.



false promise
false promise

The sex trade has long been a part of Korea's society in as early as 1876 when the country first opened its shores to the international community thru a diplomatic pact. It brought in an influx of ethnic migrants from Japan and with it the first brothels began to spread in South Korea's major ports such as Busan, Wonsan and Incheon.


Since the end of the Korean War in the 1950s both North and South are still engage in a stalemate in its idiologies. With North Korea's random nuclear test as a sign of it's millitary might, the presence of the U.S. Military bases in South Korea serves as a major deterent to threat and the South in stopping the spread of Communism to this part of the world.

The presence of the U.S. Military in South Korea also made it possible for prostitution to flourish, until today camp-town prostitution still exist outside their bases in particular Camp Casey located in Dongducheon and Camp Stanley situated in Uijeongbu. Ironically these camp-towns served as a major contributor in Korea's economic development played a vital role in it's national security.


The operation of camp-towns is the result of a negotiation between the U.S. and the Korean government to allow prostitution for U.S. Military soldiers but with certain restrictions. Here a few of those requirements.



  • Bars, Clubs and Brothels which caters to U.S. Servicemen have designated areas with its close proximity to their bases.
  • Prostitutes are registered through the local government and they are required to carry a medical certificate.
  • U.S. Military Police provides the security of these camp-towns and allowed to detain prostitutes thought of being ill. This is to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted disease.

Today sex tourism in South Korea is still becoming very popular to a growing number of visitors. Despite efforts from the police followed by legal sanctions by the Korean government many of these type of businesses were driven to operate underground. One such Law was enacted in 2004 with the government forcing the closure of many brothels in popular red light districts.

Red Light District
Red Light District

However these efforts were short lived since on-line prostitution is also becoming popular and because of the competitive nature of this business, many prostitutes resort to lowering their prices to gain more clients.

 The four main red light district in South Korea are Yongsan Station, Cheongnyangni 588 and Jagalmadang in Deagu and Mia-ri in Seoul. Although not fully operational some establishments still exist with considerable tolerance from the government due to its vast earning potential and a way to for them to control the sex industry in the area.

Although people from all over the world come to South Korea on a regular basis whether to look for employment or otherwise. Americans still tops the list of it's visitors, however a large number of Japanese are also making frequent travels into the country. This is due to stronger economic ties and it's proximity to one another. Other nationalities such as Europeans and people from South East Asia also find Korea as a great place to visit including taking part in sex tourism.

The DMZ or Demilitarized Zone is one of the most popular tourist destination in Korea it is considered one of the last relic of the Cold War. It attracts a great deal of public interest since it is the most heavily armed border in the world. Ironically hostilities between opposing sides has been extremely rare in this area. With it's increasing popularity visitors are often greeted by soldiers who act as guides showing them a view of the old Korea that was preserved in this stretch of land since the 1950s. Also one may find it very differnet visiting the DMZ since it has no hotels or taxi cab in this area. However there is Duty Free Shop that sells souvenirs.

As far as the Sex Tourism In South Korea is concern, although the recent law made it's mark on this type of industry focus should be made on how to stop human trafficking to hamper the growth of prostitution as well. This is possible through tougher laws that needs to be passed to assist their law enforcement efforts.

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    Hey they don't allow these brothels in the "Camp Towns" anymore. The ones that do still pop up are marked restricted and if you get caught there or sometimes even close automatic punishment is handed out. The military along with government are really tired of the human trafficing.. Air Force is currently even trying to ban juicy bars.

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