Haeundae Beach (해운대해수욕장) is probably the most famous beach in the country. "Haeundae" was so named by scholar Choi Chi-Won (857~?) of the Silla Kingdom (BC 57~AD 935). When he was walking past Dongbaekdo Island, he was fascinated by it and left the carved words "Hae Un Dae" on a stone wall on the island. Haeundae is 1.5 km long, 30~50m wide, and spans an area of 58,400㎡. The white sand is rough and sticks easily to your skin. The sand of this beach is composed of sand that comes from Chuncheon Stream and shells that have been naturally eroded by the wind over time. Haeundae Beach is also famous for the various cultural events and festivals held throughout the year. At Haeundae Beach there is a Folk Square where you can enjoy traditional games such as neoldduigi (seesaw jumping), Korean wrestling, tuho(arrow throwing), tug-of-war and yutnori. There is also the Beach Culture Center and the Beach Library. Numerous people visit every year from June to August.
The Jagalchi Market (자갈치시장) is Korea's largest seafood market. After the Korean War the market solidified itself as a fish market. Most of the people who sell fish are women, so the women who sell here are called 'Jagalchi Ajumma,' 'ajumma' meaning middle-aged or married women.
This market represents Busan and is famous throughout the country. If you visit you can eat fresh raw fish right at the market. Even these days you can see women selling mackerel, sea squirts (ascidians) and whale meat on wooden boxes along the road.
Every year in October the Jagalchi Cultural Tourism Festival is held, and it is easy to visit because of the convenient transportation provided by the subway. The Jagalchi Market is where you can see the lifestyle of the indigenous Busan natives.
Gwangalli Beach (광안리해수욕장) is 1.4 km long, 64m wide, and is famous for its fine sand. This area has undergone a water cleaning program, and as a result, the water of the beach is pristine. The clean waters of this area also attract many fishermen. You can prepare raw fish dishes on the spot, right after you have caught the fish. For those looking for some action, there is the Olympic Yacht Rental where you can rent yachts. You can also enjoy water-skiing, jet skiing, windsurfing, and other exciting water sports. On the beach there is an outer concert stage where the Busan Ocean Festival and other various events are held. The area has a cultural center, a museum, theaters for plays and movies, an art gallery, TV station, and famous Korean and non-Korean fashion brand name shops. It is a popular gathering place for young people in their 20s and 30s.
Yongdusan Park, one of the most popular mountains in Busan
Yongdusan in downtown Busan, is one of the 3 well-known mountains in Busan. Its old name is Songhyunsan, which means a mountain has a view of the sea through the dense fine tree forest. Later the name has changed into Yongdusan. It came from its shape, which is similar to dragon head and people thought it has a spirit to defeat enemies coming over the sea.
On the mountain were shrine built by Japanese people during Japanese colonial role, but now are Cheokhwabi monument (the stone monument to the exclusion of foreigners from the country), Chunghontap (memorial tower for Korean war victims), 4.19 Revolution monument (the student's anti-government revolt), the statue of General Lee Sunsin(the great commander in Joseon Dynasty period(1392-1910)) and Busan tower.
During Korea war, displaced people built houses on it even on the top, but 2 times of big fires took all them away making it bald mountain. Since then, fierce efforts to plant trees have created such beautiful park. The name of the park was once Unam park in the time of the Liberal Party’s ruling but it went back to Yungdosan park after April revolution (1960). It is a place with beautiful scenery. Especially the night landscape from Busan tower is magnificent.
Attractions of Yongdusan Park
*Busan Tower(73.11.21) – 129m high (2 lifts), 1,510㎡ (Exhibition hall and Souvenir shop)
* Palgakjeong (Octagonal Pavillion) (73.11.21) – 3 stories, 915㎡ (1F:Aquarium, 2,3F:resting place)
*Exhibition pavilion(73.11.21) – 2 stories, 1,900㎡
*Statue of the Great general Lee Sunsin(56.3.20) – 12m high
* Cheongdongyongtap (Bronze Dragon tower) (89.9.7) – 4m high, Donganhuijehyungsang(a bust of an activist for national independence, An Huije (pen name, Dongan) – stone bust
*Flower clock (73.10.8))- 5m in diameter
*Welfare Center for the Elderly - 413㎡
*Literary monuments – 9 monuments made of native rock
*Busan citizens’ bell pavilion - 60.84㎡ of floor area, 11.62 m high
* Buddhist temple
Busan’s modern movie district was originally little more than a pair of cinemas that were built following Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule over half a century ago. However, major renovations took place ahead of the first Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) in 1996, and the newly transformed district was named BIFF Square on August 14, 1996Having been remade as a cultural tourist attraction promoting the advancement of Korea’s film industry, the BIFF Square has contributed to Busan’s newfound status as an international cultural tourist city. The 428 meter-long street stretching from the Buyeong Theater in Nampo-dong to the overpass in Chungmu-dong was divided into “Star Street” and “Festival Street,” and on the eve of the festival each year the “Ground Opening the BIFF Square” is held on the street. During the ceremony events such as the hand printing of famous movie celebrities and Nunggot Jeomdeung (snow-flower lighting) take place. A district such as BIFF Square, crowded with first-run theaters in a city is rare not only in Asia but Europe as well, and for this reason it holds great potential. In recent years, the square has grown into a more complex area featuring not only movie theaters but also shops and leisure facilities, attracting growing numbers of young visitors and tourists.* Hand-printed movie celebritiesIn 1997 – Wayne Wang (director, China), Jeremy Irons (Actor, England), Xie Jin (director, China), Kitano Takeshi (director, Japan), Abbas Kiarostami (director, Iran), Kim Ki-young (director, Korea)In 1998 – Imamura Shohei (director, Japan), Fernando E. Solanas (director, Argentina), the late Yoo Young-kil (director of photography, Korea, represented by his wife)In 1999 – Zhang Yimou (director, China), Hwang Jung-soon (actress, Korea), Yu Hyun-mok (director, Korea)In 2000 – Wim Wenders (director, Germany), Krzysztof Zanussi (director, Poland), Mohsen Makhmalbaf (director, Iran)In 2001 – Hou Hsiao-Hsien (director, Taiwan), Shin Sang-ok (director, Korea), Choi Eun-hee (actress, Korea), Jeanne Moreau (actress, France)In 2002 – Kim Su-yong (director, Korea)In 2003 – Jan Troell (director, Sweden), Lucian Pintilie (director, Romania), Chung Chang-wha (director, Korea)In 2004 – Theo Angelopoulos (director, Greece)In 2005 – the Late Lee Man-hee (director, Korea, represented by his daughter Actress Lee Hye-yeong), Seijun Suzuki (director, Japan)In 2006 – Istvan Szabo (director, Hungary)In 2007 – the late Edward Yang (director, Taiwan, represented by his son Sean Yang), Volker Schlondorff (director, Germany), Claude Lelouch (director, France), the late Kim Seung-ho (director, Korea, represented by his son Kim Hee-ra), Dariush Mehrjui (director, Iran), Enrio Morricone (composer, Italy), Peter Greenaway (director, England)In 2008 – Hark Tsu (China), Paolo Taviani (Italy), Anna Karina (Denmark)
Oryukdo Island is attached to the southern part of Busan, and depending on the day and the tide, may appear to be five islands or six islands, hence its name. Designated a Monument of Busan, Oryukdo Island is a rock island that can be said to be made purely of stones.Of all the five islands branching out from the mainland, all of them, except the one with the lighthouse, are uninhabited. It is composed of Usakdo Island, Surido Island, Gonggotdo Island, Guldo Island and Deungdaedo (Lighthouse) Island, but because the lower part of Usakdo are divided into two segments that appear as two islands, sometimes Usakdo Island is known as Bangpaedo Island and Sol Island as well, depending on the level of the water. The name of the Usakdo Island comes from this phenomenon as well. Because many ships that come to Busan pass by Oryukdo Island, where it holds Busan's signature cultural heritages as well.
Following the Korean War, refugees who had fled to Busan set up stalls in order to make a living, and this was the beginning of the Gukje Market (gukje meaning "international"). The Gukje Market is one of Korea’s largest markets; each alleyway is crowded with stalls, and it connects to the Bupyeong Market, Kkangtong Market, and other smaller markets. The market stocks such a wide variety of goods, that you can find almost everything you need right here.
The Busan Museum, offers seven regular exhibition rooms spread over three floors in addition to the Kiln Exhibition Hall, and the Outdoor Exhibition Hall. Opened in 1978, the museum has taken on a leading role in preserving traditional culture in Busan by obtaining a wealth of relics from strong excavation efforts, generous donations and purchases, and by meticulous research.The museum was remodeled in 2002 along with the opening of Exhibition Hall 2. The wide array of relics ranges from the Prehistoric Age to the modern period. The Outdoor Exhibition Hall is home to precious pagodas, Buddhist statues, and monuments. There are over 6,000 items from excavations in Busan and the Gyeongnam area in addition to items that have been purchased, donated, and collected. Those relics reveal the important historical and cultural heritage of Busan.
The '40-step Culture & Tourism Theme Street' is a 450m-street which starts from the Jungang-dong branch office of KB Bank and runs to the 40-step stairway of the '40-step Cultural Center' and continues on to the Palseong Tour. The time-honored 40-step stairway embodies the joys and sorrows of refugees and those displaced by the Korean War. The entire area has been recently renovated to reflect life in Korea in the 50s and 60s and is expected to become another major tourist spot. The '40-step Culture & Tourism Theme Street' was designated 'The Best Street' by the Busan municipal government in June 2004.br>
Haedong Yonggungsa Temple is situated on the coast of the north-eastern portion of Busan. This superb find of a tourist spot and temple offers visitors the rare find of a temple along the shore line. Most temples in Korea are located in the mountains. Haedong Yonggungsa Temple was first built in 1376 by the great Buddhist teacher known as Naong during the Goryeo Dynasty. Haesu Gwaneum Daebul (Seawater Great Goddess Buddha), Daeungjeon Main Sanctuary, Yongwangdang Shrine, Gulbeop Buddhist Sanctum (enclosed in a cave), and a three-story pagoda with four lions can all be seen looking out over the ocean.
The main sanctuary of the temple was reconstructed in 1970 with careful attention paid to the colors that were traditionally used in such structures. On the right-hand side, inside the a cave, is a uniquely designed Buddhist sanctum, while situated just in front of the main sanctuary is a three-story pagoda with four lions. The four lions are symbolizing joy, anger, sadness, and happiness. Other special sites at the temple are the 108 stairs and stone lanterns lining the rocky landscape. After going down the 108 steps, one will be delighted with the beauty of the temple. Midway down the 108 steps one can stop and enjoy the calming sounds of the waves, and view the majestic sunrise.
Many people often come to this spot on New Year's Day to make a wish for the new year as they watch the sun come up. April is an especially beautiful time of year with cherry blossoms in full bloom. The birth of Buddha is also celebrated in April (following the lunar calendar) and offers a spectacular night view as the temple area is aglow with electrically lit lanterns.