What Are Some Facts About the Capital of South Korea?

capital-korea Credit: John W Banagan/Lonely Planet Images/Getty Images

Some facts about the capital of Korea or Seoul, South Korea are that it's the largest city in South Korea and that it is considered a mega city because it has a population over 10 million. The population was 10,208,302 as of 2009. Seoul covers an area of 233.7 square miles and has an average elevation of 282 feet.

Nearly half of the population in all of South Korea lives in the Seoul National Capital Area, which includes Incheon and Gyeonggi, making it the second largest metropolitan area in the world in 2009.

The city has been known by other names, but the name Seuol is believed to have originated from the Korean word for capital city. It is believed that Seoul has been settled for over 2,000 years and was founded by the Baekje, one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea, in 18 B.C.E. The city also remained the capital through the Korean Empire and the Joseon Dynasty. Seoul became known as Gyeongseong during Japanese colonization in the 20th century. The city was renamed Seoul when Korea gained its independence from Japan in 1945. North Korean Troops occupied the city in 1950 during the Korean war, and the city was nearly destroyed. In 1951 the United Nations forces took control of Seoul, and the city was rebuilt. Seoul is the headquarters for many international companies such as Samsung, Kia, Hyndai and LG.