More than 50,000 Koreans left the city and moved to the country last year, the most ever.
According to the Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries on Thursday, a total of 56,267 people or 32,424 households relocated to rural areas last year.
That was a 37-fold increase from 12 years ago and up around 20 percent compared to 2012. A ministry official said, "A growing number of baby boomers who have started to retire are moving to the countryside."
By region, 29 percent of the households moved to Gyeonggi Province, followed by North Chungcheong Province (15 percent) and Gangwon Province (11 percent).
People in their 50s made up the biggest proportion, but more and more people in their 40s or below also opted for a slower pace of life with 38 percent.