This lunch set is available for advance purchase by visitors at Sobaeksan Mountain National Park in Chungcheongbuk-do Province. (Korea National Park Service)
This lunch set is available for
advance purchase by visitors to Sobaeksan Mountain National Park in

Original article by Park Gil-ja and Kim Minji

Since cooking at Korean national parks is banned because
flammable materials are prohibited there, visitors can instead pre-order
lunchboxes made with the culinary specialties of a region and pick them up at the parks.
The Korea National Park Service (KNPS), an affiliate of the
Ministry of Environment, on March 26 said the lunchboxes are offered at the
national parks of the mountains of Sobaeksan, Jirisan, Gayasan and Woraksan,
the beach areas of Dadohaehaesang and Taeanhaean, and the city of Gyeongju,
Gyeongsangbuk-do Province.
The service, which is growingly popular with both domestic
and foreign visitors, seeks to reduce the use of disposable products and save
the public the hassle of bringing their own meals.
The park at Sobaeksan was the first to launch the service in
August last year, and the number of lunchbox purchases last year reached 1,092.
Spurred by the product’s growing popularity, the KNPS will
expand the service to 21 of the country’s 22 national parks by June.
A user can type “ 도시락을 부탁해 (One lunchbox, please)” in the
messaging app Kakao Talk to order on via chat. For English-language service,
one can call the operator to reserve a meal.
Ordering must be done between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. at least one
day before the user visits the park.
“Users can pick up their lunchboxes at the information
center in front of the park entrance and return them to (recycling) bins also
at the information center on their way down. A lunchbox costs KRW 7,000-8,000
and payment can be made at the information center or through credit
transfer,” a KNPS official said.