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Location: 126o59' east longitude and 37o34' north latitude
Climate: Seoul belongs to the Temperate Zone featuring four distinctive seasons of spring, summer, autumn and winter. The yearly average temperature of Seoul is 12.9 degrees Celsius. Temperatures in Seoul tend to fluctuate throughout the year, reaching as high as 36.1 degrees Celsius in the summer and dropping as low as minus 13.7 degrees Celsius in the winter. Influenced by the North Pacific high-pressure system, Seoul has hot and humid summers with average temperatures above 20 degrees Celsius from June through September.
In the middle of summer, the city often records daily highs of over 30 degrees Celsius. In winter, Seoul is topographically influenced by the expansion of the Siberian high pressure and prevailing west wind with temperatures dropping lower than other regions on the same latitude. The rise and fall of the high pressure system causes a typical cycle of three successive cold days followed by four warmer days, relieving people from freezing temperatures.
The annual precipitation in Seoul averages 1,210.2 mm, which is more than the average amount of rainfall across the peninsula. Most of the rainfall is concentrated in the rainy months (monsoon period) of June through September when downpours account for about 70 % of the total annual precipitation. Except for those rainy spells, however, Seoul boasts fine weather throughout the year and is especially famous for its azure autumn skies.
Area: The total area of Seoul is 605.52km2, or 0.6% of the entire country. The Hangang (River) bisects the city into two parts: northern part (Gangbok) and southern one (Gangnam). Gangbok region totals 297.97km2 (49.2 %) while Gangnam is 307.55 km2 (50.8 %).
Among the 25 autonomous "gu" or wards of Seoul, the largest is Seocho-gu (47.13km2) and the smallest is Jung-gu with an area only one fifth (9.97km2) that of Seocho-gu.
The expansion of the city has been curbed since the last administrative reorganization in 1973. The lifestyles of Seoul citizens, however, have been influenced since the 1970's due to the rapid growth of satellite cities around the capital area. Bordering Cities & Counties: Gyeonggi-do: Goyang-si, Yangju-gun (county) and Euijeongbu-si to the north; Namyangju -si, Guri-si and Hanam-si to the east; Seongnam-si, Gwacheon-si and Anyang-si to the south; Gwangmyeong-si, Bucheon-si and Gimpo-si to the west.
Population: Seoul has a population of 10,321,449 individuals and 3,458,511 households as of the end of 1999. This accounts for about a quarter of the total national population. As for the proportion of male to female excluding foreigners, men (5,141,141) slightly outnumber women (5,123,119).
Five out of 25 "gus" have more than 500,000 residents. Songpa-gu has the biggest population of 668,421. In contrast, Jung-gu has a population of only 129,061. In the past 600 years since Seoul became the capital of the nation in 1394, the population of Seoul has grown 110 times.
It has one of the highest population densities in the world of 17,157 persons/km2. The number of foreign residents in Seoul as of the end of 1999 is 57,189 or about 0.55 % of Seoul's total population. They include 18,763 Americans, 12,283 Chinese, and 6,332 Japanese. There are people of more than 90 different nationalities currently residing in Seoul, forming a small global village.
Origin of Name: The name of Seoul comes from the ancient word 'Seorabeol' or 'Seobeol', meaning "capital"
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Life in Korea
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