Busan, South Korea
Home to almost 4 million people is South Korea’s second largest city and largest seaport, Busan. From its contemporary buildings to its ancient Buddhist temples, Busan is an amalgamation of both the past and the present, making it a fantastic and charming place to visit.
Experience Busan’s beautiful beaches, seafood and historic landmarks, like the Beomeosa Temple, as well as its famous tourist spots, like Taejongdae and the Jagalchi Fish Market. This thriving city also boasts great shopping, hot springs, fun water activities, summer festivals, cultural events and delicious and unique restaurants.
Popular cruise lines visiting Busan include Royal Caribbean and Princess Cruises.
Cruise ships set anchor at the Mipo Ferry Terminal, which is only a 30-minute drive away from downtown Busan.
Facilities nearby include:
Complimentary shuttle buses
How to Get Around
As Busan is a large city, it is recommended that you opt for a form of transport during your visit, rather than exploring on foot. Taxis are available outside the port gates, and the city has three subway lines and many buses. For a great sight-seeing tour, Busan offers a few hop on/hop off bus tours, one of which has a stop right outside the port gates. During these tours, passengers are able to get off at attractions they are most excited to experience.
Travel times from Mipo Ferry Terminal:
It is a 1 hour and 43 minute journey to Taejongdae Park
It is a 51 minute journey to Jagalchi Fish Market
It is a 53 minute journey to Busan Tower
It is a 1 hour and 43 minute journey to Beomeosa Temple.
Currency – The official currency of Busan is the won (₩). Banknotes are issued in many coloured denominations, including ₩1,000, ₩5,000, ₩10,000 and ₩50,000. Coins come in denominations of ₩1, ₩5, ₩10, ₩50, ₩100 and ₩500.
Time Zone – Busan observes Korea Standard Time (KST), which is 9 hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). Daylight Savings Time is not currently observed.
Weather – Busan observes a subtropical climate with dry winters and humid summers. During summer, average high temperatures reach around 26 degrees Celsius, and winter daily temperatures average around 8.3 degrees Celsius.
Beomeosa Temple – Located at the foot of Mt. Geumjeongsan is one of Korea’s biggest temples, Beomeosa Temple. Established during the reign of Silla King Munmu and shrouded with myths and legends, Beomeosa Temple is a landmark not to be missed on a trip to Busan. One Pillar Gate leading into the temple symbolises the movement from the real world to a more spiritual and tranquil dimension. The temple’s interior is adorned with detailed paintings; some of the best found are found in Buddha Hall.
Taejongdae Park– Busan’s famous spot, Taejongdae Park, is the perfect place to stop by to explore or relax. Here, visitors can hike through pine forests and take in beautiful ocean views on the cliffs. Many walk up the staircase towards the lighthouse where, on clear days, you can spot Japan’s Tsushima Island. Take in some culture at Taejondae’s two temples, Taejongsa and Gumyeongsa Temple, and head down to the beach to relax or enjoy some seafood. Entry is free and there is the option to purchase a ticket and ride the tram throughout the park. If you plan on visiting Taejongdae, make sure you wear comfortable shoes; while some trails are generally easy to navigate, others can be quite rocky and steep.
Jagalchi Fish Market – Stretching between Chungmu-dong and Namp’o-dong is the famous Jagalchi Fish Market. The market is comprised of two main areas: freshly caught seafood and dried seafood. Every aisle within the market is crowded with stalls selling produce from South Korea's ocean. Some stallholders even cook up their produce and sell them to those passing by. The market’s fresh seafood consists of fish, shellfish, eels and squid, and its dried seafood boasts of squid, octopus and anchovies.
Busan Tower – Symbolising the culture and history of Busan is the Busan Tower, which stands at a height of 120 metres. Situated in the popular Yongdusan Park, Busan Tower boasts panoramic coastline views and unbeatable night-time views. The park itself is an experience as the area is shaped like a dragon’s head emerging from the ocean. Around the tower, visitors can find a flower clock, a Buddhist bell and statues that pay homage to military and cultural stories. Busan Tower also has a book café, a museum and an exhibition hall at its base, as well as a café near its observatory.