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Yeosu Expo to feature diverse exhibits, performances

Visual shows, hi-tech entertainment accompany displays by 105 countries and 10 organizations

Newly built facilities for exhibitions and performances are being unveiled in April, a month ahead of the opening of Expo 2012 Yeosu for a three-month run in the southern coastal town.

Spectators will be able to view thousands of exhibitions and performances in addition to thematic landmarks with a single Expo ticket that costs 33,000 won for adults on a standard day. Discounts are available online until April 30 at and 

Four thematic landmarks will be the first things that come into visitors’ sight once they set foot on the 250,000-square-meter site built on what was previously a harbor.

A bird’s eye view of the Yeosu Expo site
A bird’s eye view of the Yeosu Expo site

Unlike most of the facilities, which will be removed after the Expo, the thematic structures ― the Big-O, the Sky Tower, the Expo Digital Gallery and the aquarium ― will remain as tourist attractions.

The Big-O is an ring-shaped structure and floating stage on the sea where visitors will be able to view shows that involve laser and light effects, three-dimensional images, fireworks and fountains.

The Sky Tower is a 55-meter-high abandoned cement silo renovated for the Expo. It has an observation deck at the top and the exterior is made up of a functioning pipe organ that plays tunes including “Arirang,” a Korean folk song.

The Expo Digital Gallery is a 218-meter-long light-emitting diode screen that portrays images of the sea, and allows visitors to use digital devices to send messages to a whale that swims in the digital seascape.

The 6,000-ton aquarium will be the size of Korea’s three largest aquariums combined.

The Expo, themed “Living Ocean and Coast,” will house 76 exhibition halls including six designed by Korea ― the Theme Pavilion, the Korea Pavilion, the Climate and Environment Pavilion, the Marine Industrial and Technology Pavilion, the Marine Civilization Pavilion and the Marine Life Pavilion/Aquarium.

The Korean exhibitions will feature how the ocean can help tackle climate change, depletion of food, energy and natural resources, using experience-oriented content and performances.

There will also be international pavilions designed by 105 participating nations and 10 international organizations that showcase knowledge, technologies and cultures related to the ocean.

In addition to individual national pavilions set up by 50 countries including the U.S., China and Japan, 56 developing nations will jointly host exhibits in three ocean clusters ― the Pacific, the Atlantic and the Indian Ocean.

Seven major Korean companies are establishing their individual corporate pavilions in addition to a Korea Shipping and Ports Pavilion jointly built by shippers and port authorities, and a marine robot pavilion by Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering.

Thirteen companies and research institutes will take part in introducing the world’s best technologies, policies and products related to the Expo theme at the Ocean and Coast Best Practice Area.

Visitors will also be able to experience a deep-sea fishing simulation on board mock vessels and observe how fish are raised and harvested in a mini-fish farm in the “fisheries experience zone.”

By Kim So-hyun (