According to Religion News Service, there is a “government-led initiative to attract Muslim tourists to South Korea. The nation has hosted a Halal Food Festival, which recently ended; added more than 100 Muslim-friendly restaurants; and spent 200 million won — the equivalent of more than $175,000 — to provide prayer rooms at popular tourist destinations.”
In a predominantly Christian country, the Islamic population is only 0.2 percent, making hijabs and halal restaurants uncommon sightings. However, the Kamarul sisters, who are Muslim, have been visiting South Korea for that last seven years and say Koreans tend to be welcoming but largely uninformed about Islam. “It’s common for them to stare,” says Dina Kamarul, indicating her hijab. “I don’t think they are malicious — they’re just ignorant in this religion, so we try to take it positively and explain whenever they ask.”
The government has issued purple ‘Muslim-friendly’ stickers which mean a restaurant has halal options though the place itself might not be.Most of Seoul’s nine officially certified halal restaurants are found on Muslim street. Outside Seoul, finding halal food are often more difficult. To help Muslim tourists navigate the country, many travel agencies have tailored their patrons travel itineraries, to also include quiet and clean places to prayer as well as halal and Muslim friendly restaurants and accommodations.