Divers in 'hanbok' send underwater New Year greetings at South Korean aquarium

SEOUL (REUTERS) - Dressed in South Korea's traditional costume hanbok, two divers at a Seoul aquarium make New Year bows to visitors from underwater.

Under mysterious yellow and blue lights in the country's largest 2,200-tonne water tank, which holds 650 species of marine life, the divers swam alongside stingrays, sharks and other fish.

"It was a new and fun experience since I've never seen divers wearing hanbok in my life, and I haven't seen hanbok in a while because our family doesn't wear those on traditional holidays," 27-year-old Mr Yoo who was there with his girlfriend, told Reuters.

It is the fifth year the Lotte World Aquarium has held such a performance since it opened in mid-October 2014.

But this year, along with a "Happy New Year" banner the aquarium installs in the water each year, it put up another banner saying "Let's beat the coronavirus wisely".

The aquarium was quiet on a Sunday afternoon (Jan 3) as many people refrained from going out amid the third and largest wave of coronavirus infections in the country.

"It's unfortunate since (the aquarium) could have been a place where many people could enjoy altogether if it wasn't for the coronavirus," a 36-year-old dad Han Sang-jin said, with his baby daughter held in his arms.

Under its Covid-19 measures, the aquarium will be hosting the event twice a day on every Saturday, Sunday and on public holidays through to Feb 20.