Best VPN for South Korea in 2023

Julie Cole
Julie Cole | Contributing Writer
Last updated: January 23, 2023
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Censorship in South Korea is heavily restrictive. The Korean Communications Standards Commission (KCSC) works hard to remove all access to gambling websites and censor LGBT content outright. In addition, South Korea is one of the few developed countries where pornography is largely illegal. Moreover, if you’re caught posting anything against the ethos of the ruling party, you could even face jail time. Any and all online material deemed by the state as harmful or subversive is censored by the state, making it one of the most restricted developed countries worldwide.

Of course, this is serious business for anyone living in South Korea as well as those merely visiting. As such, it’s essential to get your hands on a virtual private network (VPN), since it allows you to connect to remote servers, and having a remote access VPN will prevent your personal information from getting intercepted or tampered with.

We have researched a multitude of different VPN providers currently available and handpicked the very best VPNs for South Korea in 2023.

Best South Korea VPN: shortlist

  1. The best VPN for South Korea
  2. VPN with unlimited connections
  3. Streaming-oriented VPN for South Korea
  4. The cheapest VPN for South Korea
  5. VPN with an enormous server fleet

How to download a VPN for South Korea:

  • Choose the most reliable VPN provider compatible with your device. We recommend NordVPN.
  • Download and install the application of your choice.
  • Choose a server in South Korea or pick any other location to connect to.
  • Enjoy all that VPN has to offer!

Try NordVPN for South Korea

Why do you need a VPN for South Korea?

Due to censorship laws in South Korea, a lot of online material may be blocked and inaccessible, which the ruling party may deem controversial or harmful. Moreover, there is a wide range of Korean dramas and other streaming material that is protected by geo-blocks that you will therefore be unable to stream outside of South Korea without a VPN. Furthermore, with a VPN you will be able to encrypt your internet traffic, hide your VPN usage with obfuscated servers or Camouflage mode and even gain access to better deals online.

Furthermore, a VPN will help you bypass any restrictions put in place in South Korea. For example, until 2022, there was a Cinderella law put in place within this country. This law forbade children under the age of sixteen to play video games between the hours of midnight, and 6 AM in the morning. Even though this unique law is now annulled, many others are still in place and actively restricting one’s liberties online.

Whether you’re trying to bypass censorship within the country’s borders, or simply trying to access your favorite K-drama from abroad, the solution is one – a VPN. By investing in a reliable virtual private network, you will not only bypass these restrictions but will also bolster your online privacy and will gain autonomy over your digital footprint.

VPNs for South Korea: overview

If you would like to bypass geo-restrictions imposed by the South Korean government, it is overwhelmingly beneficial to invest in a VPN service. With our picked VPN providers, you will be able to bypass geo-blocks and gain access to otherwise unobtainable material.

Therefore, the best VPN for South Korea should have privacy and security essentials, such as NASA-grade encryption, kill switch, and IP leak protection. In addition, a worthy South Korea Virtual Private Network has to offer great speeds as well as a wide selection of servers worldwide. What is even more important, the service should be at an affordable price, whilst the application should be easy-to-navigate and user-friendly.

1. NordVPN – the ultimate VPN for South Korea

Top VPN provider
Company location
Company location:
NordLynx, OpenVPN, IKEv2
24/7 live chat, Email
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
1,015 Mbit/s
  • Insanely fast
  • Great for streaming and torrenting
  • Large server fleet
  • No firmware for router

NordVPN is the best VPN for South Korea. Not only does it provide phenomenal security and unprecedented privacy, but it is an exceptional service to help you bypass any and all geo-blocks you may run into in South Korea. Since NordVPN is the best streaming virtual private network on the grid right now, you can be sure that the restrictions imposed by the KCSC are no match for this top-tier VPN service.

Based in Panama, outside the jurisdiction of the Five, Nine, and Fourteen Eyes Alliances, it offers around 5400 servers in around 60 countries worldwide. Therefore, with NordVPN, you will have a wide selection of different locations and servers to use at your disposal. In South Korea in particular, NordVPN offers around 17 ultra-fast servers.

More than that, since NordVPN employs the unique NordLynx protocol – it is the fastest VPN on the grid right now. Due to its insanely fast speeds, you will be able to stream content in 4K without any buffering. Moreover, NordVPN offers such virtual private network essentials as the kill switch, NASA-grade encryption, and even an independently audited no-logs policy. All of these features make NordVPN the top dog in the VPN industry.

With a price starting at only $3.49/month, it is one of the best cheapest VPNs available. With a 24/7 live chat customer support service and an extensive self-help section, you will have all the help you may need in case you run into an unforeseen issue.

What is even better, with a 7-day free trial (requires Android) and a 30-day money-back guarantee, you will be able to test out the service with no financial long-term commitment. You can also check out these coupon codes for alternative deals.

For a deeper investigation of NordVPN, read our NordVPN review.

2. SurfsharkVPN – a VPN with an unlimited number of connections

Top VPN provider
Company location
Company location:
WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2
24/7 live chat, FAQ
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
797 Mbit/s
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • 24/7 live-chat
  • Phenomenal global coverage
  • No logs policy not audited

SurfsharkVPN is one of the most popular VPN services worldwide. With a large server fleet containing more than 3200 servers in 100+ countries worldwide, Surfshark provides top-notch security and privacy to its users. Surfshark also has 10+ servers in South Korea, many of which are located in Seoul.

With SurfsharkVPN, the WireGuard protocol ensures breakneck speeds. Moreover, Surfshark’s unique Camouflage mode removes any traces of VPN use. In heavily restricted and monitored places such as South Korea, this is a feature that is widely useful. In addition, the MultiHop feature offers to route your internet traffic through two different servers adding an additional layer of privacy and security.

Furthermore, to all of these mentioned features, Surfshark offers a free antivirus and malware protection application. Moreover, you will be able to also use Surfshark search, which is a bare-bones, zero-log, and ad-free private search engine.

In case you run into an unforeseen issue, Surfshark’s live chat customer support will provide help 24/7. With a starting price of just $2.30/month, it is one of the best cheapest providers on the grid. Furthermore, since Surfshark has a 7-day free trial and 30-day money-back guarantee, you can try it out without any long-term financial commitment. For more deals, check out these coupon codes.

For a deeper investigation of Surfshark VPN, read our Surfshark VPN review.

3. PrivateVPN – streaming-oriented VPN for South Korea

Company location
Company location:
24/7 live chat
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
120 Mbit/s
  • Incredible for streaming
  • Budget-friendly option
  • Great for torrenting
  • Lacks WireGuard

PrivateVPN is a Sweden-based service that is considered to be one of the best streaming VPNs in the industry. With great capabilities to unlock different region-blocked libraries for a wide range of streaming services, this VPN is not only great for your privacy and security needs but for entertainment too.

Even though it is a significantly smaller option with only about 200 servers in around 63 countries, it is more than capable of fulfilling all of your VPN needs. With military-grade encryption, a strict no-logs policy, and IP leak protection, you will be secured from all malicious threats posed online. Moreover, with an available location in Seoul, PrivateVPN will be capable of providing you with a South Korean IP hassle-free.

Whether you’re simply trying to access South Korean Netflix or such local K-drama streaming giants as Wavve or TVING – PrivateVPN will unlock your desired content in no time.

At a starting price of a meager $2.00/month, you will gain access to a sublime VPN service. Moreover, with a 7-day free trial and 30-day money-back guarantee, you can test out all that the service has to offer with no long-term financial commitment. In case you are interested, check out these coupon codes for more alternative options.

For a deeper investigation of PrivateVPN, read our PrivateVPN review.

4. AtlasVPN – the cheapest VPN for South Korea

Company location
Company location:
United States
WireGuard, IKEv2
Email, tickets, FAQ
  • Great free version
  • Unlimited number of connections
  • WireGuard tunnelling protocol
  • No router configuration

Atlas VPN provides the best freemium Virtual Private Network, currently available. With a server fleet of around 750 different servers in roughly 37 different countries, it offers great connection speeds and a strict no-logs policy.

Furthermore, using Atlas VPN’s premium version will offer you such privacy and security essentials as data tunneling through WireGuard protocol, military-grade encryption, kill switch, and private DNS. Accessing seemingly ordinary applications in restricted and surveilled areas such as South Korea may be a difficult task. Currently, South Korea heavily limits access to LGBTQ+ content and pornography websites. With AtlasVPN you will be able to get access to all of the content you desire.

Even though this provider has a free version, we would highly advise you to opt for the premium version at a small subscription price of $2.05/month. Furthermore, by choosing to go with Atlas VPN’s premium version, you will get significantly more different perks and features. For example, the SafeSwap feature allows you to rotate several IP addresses at a time further increasing your privacy It is still the cheapest option available. Moreover, the 30-day money-back guarantee will allow you to test the service without any long-term commitment. Check out Atlas VPN discount codes to unlock even more great deals.

For a deeper investigation of Atlas VPN, read our Atlas VPN review.

5. PureVPN – a VPN with many different security features

Company location
Company location:
British Virgin Islands
WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2
24/7 live chat
  • Enormous server fleet
  • Dedicated IP option
  • Great for streaming
  • iOS and Mac applications provide fewer features

With an enormous server fleet of around 6500 servers in roughly 70 different countries, PureVPN is considered to be one of the greats in the industry. Moreover, it offers 14+ servers in Seoul, which is plenty, making this service a great option for South Korea.

PureVPN will make your connection safe via an encrypted tunnel, hiding your actual IP address. Furthermore, PureVPN employs military-grade encryption to protect you on both public and private WiFi networks. Furthermore, you will be able to enjoy South Korean streaming services such as JTBC and SPOTV at high speeds from anywhere in the world.

With an independently audited no-logs policy, you can be sure that none of your personal information will be gathered by PureVPN. Since this virtual private network service resides in the British Virgin Islands, it is outside the prying eyes of the Five, Nine, and Fourteen Eyes Alliances.

With a small starting price of just $1.33/month, you are sure to receive a bargain by choosing PureVPN. Moreover, in case you are not happy with your purchase, you will receive your money back with PureVPN’s 31-day money-back guarantee. In case you’re interested – check out these coupon codes for even more alternative deals.

For a deeper investigation of PureVPN, read our PureVPN review.

How to choose the best VPN for South Korea:

With such a wide range of different VPN services available these days, it can be quite difficult to choose the right service for your VPN needs in South Korea. To make this decision process a little bit easier, we have compiled a list of VPN qualities you should pay close attention to when choosing your South Korea VPN:

  • Security. Since South Korea is one of the countries that are widely surveilled, the level of online security that a VPN service can provide is therefore of the utmost importance. Security features that you should pay close attention to are NASA-grade encryption cipher, IP leak protection, and malware blocking or antivirus tools.
  • Complete privacy. South Korea has many strict laws in place that heavily limit the privileges of internet users within the country. A virtual private network will help you bypass these restrictions. Key factors to consider in this realm are obfuscated servers, a strict no-logs policy – better yet, an independently audited no-logs policy, and jurisdiction over the Five, Nine, and Fourteen Eyes Alliances.
  • Large server fleet. In order to get the most out of your VPN subscription, you should choose a provider that happens to offer a sizable list of countries and servers. An extensive selection of locations will prove its value once you are able to unlock geo-blocked content on a wide variety of different streaming platforms.
  • Great speeds. The use of a reliable VPN should not result in a significant loss of speed on your devices. We, therefore, recommend going with the fastest VPN on the grid right now – NordVPN. We also recommend opting for service with the WireGuard protocol at least, in order to protect your speeds. In addition, we recommend checking which providers perform the best via our speed test tool.
  • A combination of price and features. Price is one of the key factors to consider while choosing your VPN provider. That being said, the cheapest option is not always the best. In our research, we have thus concluded that NordVPN provides the most value for your buck.
  • Device compatibility. Since the vast majority of us use several different devices on a regular basis, it is important that our chosen virtual private network supports those devices and operating systems. Furthermore, in case you have a large household with many different devices, you could choose a service with an unlimited number of simultaneous connections per single account.

How to get a South Korean IP address

There are a variety of different ways to obtain a South Korean IP address. Having that in mind, we would argue that a VPN is the most convenient way to resolve this issue. Whether you’re trying to bypass South Korea’s restrictions, or you’re simply looking for a way to stream your favorite K-drama from abroad, you will undoubtedly benefit from a South Korea VPN. Here is a short guide on how to use a VPN in order to get a South Korean IP address:

  1. Firstly, choose a VPN with servers in South Korea. We highly recommend NordVPN with roughly 17 servers in this location.
  2. Download and install your preferred application on your device(s).
  3. Connect to a server in South Korea. With NordVPN you can also choose the ‘Quick Connect’ option, which will ensure the optimal connection within the area.
  4. Enjoy all the benefits of a South Korean IP address!

Get a South Korean IP with NordVPN

Should you use a free VPN for South Korea?

More often than not, free VPNs will not get you very far. They tend to be highly unreliable and slow. That being said, in case you’re particularly bound by your financial situation and in need of a South Korea VPN, we would highly recommend choosing Proton VPN or Atlas VPN. These services are reliable and offer the best freemium versions within the industry. Not only do they provide great geo-bypassing and P2P file sharing capabilities, but they also have strict no-logs policies in place, which means that you will be entirely safe, choosing to go with these free services. That being said, by opting to go with the free versions of these application services you will lose unlimited data, the capacity to unlock different streaming libraries, and P2P allowance.

Therefore, we highly recommend trying out a premium VPN. For example, our top choice – NordVPN offers a 7-day free trial. During the free trial, you will gain access to military-grade protection, incredible speed, and access to thousands of servers worldwide. If you decide to go with NordVPN after your free trial, the long-term subscriptions start from as little as 3.49 with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try NordVPN for free

Simply put – yes. Virtual private networks are completely legal to use in South Korea. This may come as a surprise, given the strict laws and regulations that the South Korean government imposes on the internet use of its citizens.

Therefore, you will be glad to know that no laws will be broken by you using a virtual private network to access your preferred content and bypass censorship.

Other ways to fully utilize a VPN in South Korea

Our handpicked VPNs for South Korea can help you bypass geo-restrictions, protect you against malicious threats posed online, and offer a load of servers globally.

Below you can find different ways in which you can maximize the benefits of a Virtual Private Network of your choice for South Korea.

Get South Korean content anywhere

Whether you’re trying to access your favorite Korean TV show from abroad, or simply trying to bypass conservative content regulations, a VPN will help you unlock everything that South Korea has to offer online.
Some of the honorable mentions you could check out with a South Korea VPN, include Wavve, TVING, JTBC, SPOTV, and South Korean Netflix.

Bypass censorship in South Korea

Since South Korea strictly regulates content available to its citizens, a reliable VPN can help you easily bypass geo-blocks and censorship regulations.

Some of the content that will become available with a VPN in South Korea includes PornHub and content for the LGBTQ+ community.

Elevate your gameplay

Not only will a VPN lift bans on media platforms, but it can also improve your gaming experience. With a VPN for South Korea, you can forget such gameplay issues as constant lagging, low latency, or even DDoS attacks.

Get better deals online

Most vendors modify their prices online depending on your location and HTTP cookies. Therefore, by changing your location, you will be able to access better deals on flight tickets and hotels, clothing, games, and many more.

Bottom line

With the increasing governmental and censorship restrictions, it seems that a VPN is a necessity rather than a luxury in South Korea.
That being said, after comparing and contrasting different VPN service providers, we have concluded that NordVPN is the best Virtual Private Network to securely bypass government-imposed internet access restrictions.

If you’re using a VPN for South Korea, which of these VPNs have you tried? Did we miss any great VPNs for South Korea? Let us know in the comments below.

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What is the best VPN for South Korea?

According to our research – NordVPN is the best VPN available for South Korea. NordVPN offers a wide array of features, such as awesome speeds, an independently audited no-logs policy as well as great content unlocking abilities.

Should I get a Virtual Private Network from South Korea?

According to our research, some local South Korean VPN providers have been confirmed to gather and breach the personal information of their users. Therefore, we would recommend opting for a tested and reliable service. Our top pick is NordVPN – now 68% off.

Can I watch Netflix in South Korea?

Yes, you can. South Korea has a unique Netflix library that is accessible only within the country. Therefore, by investing in a VPN, you will be able to stream South Korean Netflix from anywhere in the world.

Does NordVPN have a South Korean server?

Simply put – yes. Furthermore, NordVPN has roughly 17 servers in South Korea, which means you will be able to access your favorite Korean TV shows and local news. In case you bump into an overcrowded server – simply choose a different one and enjoy all the amazing perks that this service has to offer.

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  1. LittleThumbs_44

    Good to know they have strict policies and rules for censorship in South Korea. In other countries, many get away with fraudulent and shady practices.

  2. prinesscupcake

    Yikes, yeah, I would never carry a device to South Korea without something to guard my device’s identity. Security problems ahoy! I don’t currently have NordVPN, but I’ve been eyeing their two year plan, and this absolutely cinched it. I’ll definitely be getting this one.

  3. Gallagher786

    Are you telling me South Korea is this strict on the use of the internet? Going by the technological success attained by the country, one would find it hard to believe this level of restrictions still exist over there

  4. Ye Yin

    Does this work in China too?

  5. AndrewMKennedy

    I have a trip scheduled to visit South Korea this October and wouldn’t dream of trying to access the internet while I’m there without a secure VPN. I’ve read about South Korea’s high proportion of unsecured public hotspots, so with NordVPNs high level of security it sounds like a great choice.

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