Korea Kids Cafes: Pororo The Little Penguin
Pororo the Little Penguin was first introduced to Korea’s child audience in 2003 and since has grown into quite the big man on campus… though he hasn’t seemed to age one day on screen.
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He has been in our lives since 2015 when our little one first met him and immediately fell in love with the quirky penguin that always seems to be getting into trouble doing one thing or another. Pororo started out 8 years old but is said to have aged a couple years in Season 3 and 4. There doesn’t seem to be a child in Korea that hasn’t heard of Pororo and the theme song can be heard from babe’s mouths, not to mention from their mother’s and father’s mouths too because you know… we pick that stuff up. From the hit show has come lines of toys and kids cafes as well as Pororo theme parks and more! Books that teach children important things like how and where to go poo, to put their hands up when they cross the road and what to eat for dinner to stay healthy and strong are all apart of this character’s line and boy if kids don’t just love it!
Popular with children from about 1 through preschool, we still watch it weekly in our house and of course being able to visit our life-size friends is fabulous whenever possible! Here is a quick guide to Pororo Parks in Korea and where to find them.
First, it’s important to know who is who:
Living in Porong Porong Forest, Pororo is joined by a group a friends including:
Crong: A crocodile that is the youngest of the friends and was discovered when he was just inside of his little egg. He was adopted and lives with Pororo and starts out at 3 years old in the first season. He learns to speak through the seasons though still can’t quite form full sentences.
Poby: A big polar bear who is 15 and the oldest of the group and who is usually trying to keep everyone safe and happy.
Eddy: A fennec fox who is 10 years old and loves inventing things and invented a robot named Rody who lives next door to Eddy now. He and Pororo are often competing.
Loopy: A pink beaver who is 7 in the beginning and is very shy and often nervous. She loves to cook and is often cooking for everyone and holds potluck meals in her home.
Petty: A female penguin introduced as Pororo’s girlfriend, but since they’re babies, they don’t even hold hands yet. They make google eyes at each other from time to time.
Harry: A 10 year old hummingbird sidekick of Poby and the second oldest of the cast. He lost his way from the summery warm island he wants inhabited and often daydreams of that far away warmer climate.
Tong Tong: A dragon who is around 12 years old and lives in a volcano. He has magical powers and can shift from a small dragon to a huge one that flies high in the sky. His magic chants often backfire and lead to a gauntlet of problems.
Yes, I know all of their names and I’m proud of that fact.
Second, what IS a Pororo Park?
Pororo Parks and cafes will vary slightly with what there is to do from rides on carousels to life size figures and Pororo’s house to play in to ball pits, cars and buses to ride and more. It’s all about the space available and of course marketing. Much of it will be for photo-ops and my kid was a-okay with that. Running up and finding each character was a treat for her. Pororo music will be playing in the background and there might even be a Pororo concert! Gimhae’s Pororo Park on the top of Sinsaegae Department Store offers just that. Throughout the day, a concert will be put on and let me tell you, the kids go WILD! They also feature a rather large “race track” and the kids can ride cars around it along with life size buildings to walk in and to play certain games. The interesting thing about this park is that it’s actually FREE to walk around and visit all of the characters if you don’t want to go inside the homes. The first time we went, our little one couldn’t do much anyway, so we just let her waddle around and find her friends and it was all free. The second time, we went on a holiday around lunch time and I guess snuck in because everything was open and no one was on duty checking for the wrist tickets you get upon purchase. There were also practically no people there so it was AWESOME and we ducked inside the lifesize homes to see what we could see! Technically, you need one of these wrist tickets to go INSIDE the homes, but the concert would be free and the figurines to see are free too.
- Tickets vary depending on location but for a two hour ticket for children you’re likely to pay between W10,000 ~ W20,000 depending on the size of the park and what there is to do inside.
- Adults accompanying the children are W6,000 ~ W10,000.
- Children under 12 months are free (snap a picture of their passport or birth certificate to show if asked)
- Children 12 months to 18 months are 50% off
Most locations open at 10:00am or 10:30am and close between 8:00pm and 9:00pm though me be a bit later on the weekends. (Final entrance tickets can be purchased two hours before closing but not after.)
Pororo Park is an awesome place to spend a morning or afternoon letting the kids run wild with glee as they meet their favorite television characters in person. From activities for wee ones and fun for a bit older ones too, it’s a must visit for anyone residing in or visiting Korea with kids.
Pororo The Little Penguin is definitely our favorite Korean character… right now anyway.
Pororo Kids Cafes & Parks In Seoul & Suburbs:
- 40-1 Jamsil-dong, Songpa-gu, Seoul (서울특별시 송파구 잠실동 40-1)
- B2 Coex Mall, 159 Samsung-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul (서울특별시 강남구 삼성동 159 코엑스몰 B2 G201)
- 3F A Block Lotte Premium Outlet Mall, 645 Munbal-dong, Paju-si, Gyeonggi-do (경기도 파주시 문발동 645 롯데프리미엄아울렛파주점 A블럭 3F)
- 2700 Hwa-dong, Ilsanseo-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do (대경기도 고양시 일산서구 화동 2700)
- 8th Floor, Iconix, 610 Sampyeong-dong, Bundang-gu, Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi-do (경기도 성남시 분당구 삼평동 610 8층 (주)아이코닉스)
Pororo Kids Cafes & Parks Around Korea:
- Lotte Mart 98 Jangsin-ro Gwangsan-gu, Gwangju (광주광역시 광산구 장신로 98 롯데마트)
- Hyundae Department Store 308 Jigjidae-ro Heungdeok-gu, Cheongju-si, Chungcheongbuk-do (충청북도 청주시 흥덕구 직지대로 308 현대백화점)
- 5th Floor Gimhae Sinsaegae Department Store 1264 경상남도 김해시 외동 1264 신세계백화점 김해점 5층