Second largest city of South Korea, Busan is one of the top destinations for tourists who visit the country. It has a population of more than 3.4 million of inhabitants and is referred as the “San Francisco” of South Korea.
We had the opportunity to travel to Busan for one day, let us take you there.
We left Gwangju early in the morning, as Busan was around 3.5 hours away by car. Until here, nothing extraordinary so far. However, as we got closer to the city, the view started to change and the blue sea appeared wider and wider in front of us.
The weather was wonderful that day, and we decided to find a place to park the car and to enjoy the scenery. There was no one, except for some fisherman, and the calm made our walk so romantically peaceful.
Visit of the Gamcheon Cultural Village
As soon as we arrived in Busan, we directly headed to the Gamcheon Cultural Village (감천문화마을). The place is especially famous for its colored houses located downhill of the Saha-gu mountain.
Back in the 50s, Gamcheon was considered a war-free place and many Korean sought refuge there. However, while Busan was growing (post-war), the village was unable to rebuild itself and became one of the poorest cities of South Korea.
Despite all the attention it is gathering today, the name of Gamcheon Village only started to shine in 2009, when the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism financially supported a project that aimed at transforming the village.
For 2 years, artists painted the houses, roofs, walls and stairs of the village, as part of the « Dreaming of Machu Picchu in Busan » project, in order to give the village an artistic and joyful atmosphere.
We can easily spend hours in this village, as some spots have been designed for tourists to take pictures. Mostly, you will find it enjoyable to get around the village and get lost.
What to eat in Busan?
Busan is home of the famous and biggest fish market of South Korea: Jagalchi Market (자갈치시장).
The market offers the possibility for visitors to either eat at one of the many restaurants on the 2nd floor, either to shop for their own fish and bring it to a restaurant (in which case, they will be charged for the cooking).
A few steps away from the market is the BIFF Square (Busan International Film Festival). The place hosts the annual event during which some actors leave their hand print on the floor. It is also the top place to find all sorts of Korean street food.
Enjoying a walk on the Haeundae beach
We stayed at a hotel located just in front of the Haeundae beach, the most famous one of South Korea. Therefore, we went out for another walk as soon as we dropped our luggage.
We enjoyed this peaceful walk accompanied by musicians and by the sound of the sea.
We finally arrived at a small street full of restaurant shops. One in particular grabbed our attention, as they were making steamed dumpling (mandu) outside. There was a little queue in front of the restaurant, but it was totally worth it as the Mandu was exquisite!