About Dokdo

  • Location
  • Composition & Size
  • People in Dokdo

People in Dokdo

Home > About Dokdo > People in Dokdo

First Residents

  • The first registered resident of Dokdo was Choi Jong-deok. Mr. Choi lived on Dokdo from 1965 to 1987 when he died. After his death, his daughter, Choi Gyeong-suk, and her husband, Jo Jun-gi, moved to the island.

Current Residents

  • On November 17, 1991, Kim Seong-do and his wife, Kim Sin-yeol, officially registered their address as 3 Anyongbok-gil, Dokdo-ri. Catching fish for a living, they have since been living on Dokdo, with Mr. Kim becoming the head of the village of Dokdo in 2007. They have even voted in national and local elections from Dokdo.
  • As of December, 2012, there were 10 people with their Residence registered on Dokdo, including Mr. and Ms. Kim; and over 40 people living on Dokdo including the residents, policemen and public servants. Since 1999, when a group of Japanese people registered their family domicile origins on the island, a nationwide movement called “Family Register on Dokdo Campaign” has been waged in Korea and 2,465 people moved their family register to Dokdo.


As of December, 2012, 40 Dokdo guards and 3 lighthouse keepers
are working on Dokdo.

Dokdo Guards

Four police officers and 36 auxiliary police are protecting Dokdo in two-month shifts.

Lighthouse Keepers

Three public servants from the Pohang Regional Maritime Affairs and Port Office
are working at Dokdo Lighthouse in one-month shifts.

Dokdo Ranger’s Office

Every year from March to November, the tourist season in Dokdo, a staff of two from the Dokdo ranger’s office under the Ulleung-gun Office are sent to the island to secure the safety of visitors.

Opening Dokdo to Visitors

In March 2005, the government lifted the ban on admission to Dongdo of Dokdo, replacing the permit system with a reporting system for entering the island. While Seodo remained closed to people, Dongdo was open to a maximum of 1,880 visitors per day. In June 2009, such a limit on the number of daily visitors was also abolished.