Ranked as the second largest metropolitan city in South Korea, Busan is the first city I flew to. In terms of location, Busan lays in southern part of South Korea which is suitable for my plan, traveling from South to North, ended up in Seoul.
It was late autumn at that time, the sky was clear blue with mild sunshine and chill weather.
Colorful leaves, combination of red, yellow, orange, and green, is what I dreamed to see of in autumn.
Most of travelers I met prefer Busan then Seoul.
They said Busan is relaxing, chill, and during summer, many tourists spend their time in the famous beach Haeundae and Gwangalli Beach.
Since I came during cold season, so I skipped the beach.
You can go to Busan from Seoul just for a little over 2 hours by fast train or KTX.
For a less pricey option, you could buy Korean Rail Pass (KR Pass) tickets here to visit Busan and other cities by fast train.
Here are several things that you can see as you’re traveling to Busan:
1. Beomeosa Temple
Probably the most famous temple in Busan.
Getting here is very simple, with a single journey subway to Beomeosa Station then continue by public bus number 90.
I had loads of time so I did a not so short walk up to the temple.
Despite getting lost for few times, finally I could enjoy my first temple in South Korea.
There are several sections for prayer, monk’s housing, and also temple stay which is cheaper than other temple stay program in South Korea, only for 40,000 won.
2. Mount Geumjeongsan
Situated in Busan, Gyeongsang Province, Mount Geumjeongsan offers breathtaking natural beauty and captivating hiking trails.
This picturesque mountain is a beloved destination for both locals and tourists, providing an opportunity to escape the bustling city and immerse oneself in nature.
As you ascend the trails, you’ll be rewarded with panoramic vistas of Busan city, the surrounding mountains, and the expansive blue sea in the distance.
Accessible from various parts of Busan and its suburbs, Mount Geumjeongsan is easily reached by both residents and visitors.
Whether you’re an avid hiker or a beginner, the hiking trails on this mountain cater to all skill levels.
The paths, adorned with limestone and rock formations of diverse shapes and sizes, offer a captivating journey through the mountain’s enchanting landscapes.
3. UN Memorial Cemetery
To commemorate the honorable soldiers who bravely fought during Korean War, the government volunteered the land for permanent use of UN.
As much as 16 countries contributed in the devastating war between South and North.
Two guards with a full set of uniform greeted me as I walked in.
Then, I saw a triangle-shaped building, looks like a chapel. Inside, the short video of the war was played and I could see how tragic the war was.
The admission is free, and the closest subway station is Daeyon Station.
4. Jalgachi Market
Jagalchi Market is renowned as the city’s premier seafood market.
Prepare to be amazed by the sight of colossal crabs, fish, clams, and various other marine creatures.
The market showcases an array of fresh seafood sourced from the waters between Korea, China, and Russia, offering a fascinating glimpse into the local fishing industry.
Jagalchi Market is a must-visit destination for seafood lovers and those interested in experiencing the rich maritime culture of Busan.
Discover the vibrant charm of Nampodong, a famous shopping district right next to the market.
This bustling area is lined with a wide variety of shops, offering everything from affordable streetwear to high-fashion garments.
One of the highlights of Nampodong is the Gukje Market Food Street, where you can sample delicious Korean cuisine.
This lively market is filled with vendors selling their mouthwatering treats along the roadside.
When you need a break, simply find a cozy café in the area and take a moment to relax.
Enjoy the laid-back atmosphere while sipping a refreshing beverage and soaking in the vibrant surroundings of Nampodong.
6. Busan Tower
No visit to Busan is complete without experiencing the iconic symbol of the city itself, Busan Tower, located in Yongdusan Park.
Originally opened in 1973, Busan Tower recently underwent a complete refurbishment and reopened on 15 December 2021 with a new name, Diamond Tower.
This popular tourist destination offers a breathtaking night view of the city and an array of entertaining activities to enjoy.
At the heart of Yongdusan Park stands a statue of Yi Sun-sin, a revered naval hero in South Korea.
Visitors can ascend the 129-meter Busan Tower Observatory for a panoramic view of the city.
The ticket price for admission to the observatory is 8,000 KRW.
7. Haedong Yonggungsa Temple
This beautiful temple on the cliff is also one of the main attraction in Busan.
Unlike most temples in South Korea, which are nestled in the mountains, this temple’s coastal location adds to its uniqueness and allure.
As you enter the temple, you’ll encounter a collection of 12 Chinese zodiac statues. To reach the main temple, you’ll need to descend a long flight of stairs.
The temple holds a special charm during sunset, with the soothing sound of waves crashing against the rocks, creating a serene atmosphere.
To reach this enchanting temple, take the subway to Haeundae Station, and then hop on bus number 181.
8. Gamcheon Culture Village
This tourist destination is very popular with its colorful building, which is aesthetic for Instagrammable photos.
Its location is not far from the tourist attractions of Jagalchi Market and Nampodong.
Originally, Gamcheon Culture Village was just an area for refugees after the Korean War.
Check out some of the day tour options that you can join to visit several tourist attractions in Busan!
In 2010, this area was finally transformed into a tourist destination that eventually became very popular.
It is recommended to visit in the morning as this area gets more crowded in the afternoon.
9. Songdo Skywalk
Don’t miss out on the exciting experience of walking above the sea along the remarkable Songdo Skywalk in Busan.
Stretching a remarkable 365 meters, this skywalk takes you from the Songdo Beach area all the way to Turtle Island.
Prepare to be mesmerized by the breathtaking views that unfold before you.
Take in the vast expanse of the deep blue sea, observe ships gracefully sailing across the waves, admire the scenic mountains, and enjoy the sandy beaches of Songdo.
On the other side, marvel at the towering bridges and buildings that adorn the landscape.
As an added delight, you’ll even have the opportunity to feed the seagulls that gracefully glide by.
Make sure to seize this chance for an unforgettable interaction with these beautiful birds.
10. Songdo Sea Cable Car
lso known as Busan Air Cruise, this tourist attraction in Busan is designed to revive the reputation of Songdo Beach, which happens to be the first public beach in Korea.
The Songdo Sea Cable Car stands out as the only cable car in Korea featuring an innovative anti-war car propulsion system in the form of a single cable gondola.
What makes it even more impressive is the incorporation of the world-renowned RPD (Rope Positioning Detector) system.
This cutting-edge technology ensures the lift ropes automatically halt or slow down when abnormal conditions are detected, making it earthquake-resistant and capable of withstanding tidal waves. How cool is that!
11. Ilumia Park
If you’re seeking delightful nighttime activities in Busan, a visit to Illumia Park is highly recommended.
After a day of exploring Busan’s various tourist destinations, the night offers a perfect opportunity to unwind and relax.
Immerse yourself in the enchanting atmosphere as you stroll through the park, breathing in the fresh air and basking in the glow of twinkling lights and captivating laser shows.
For couples on a romantic holiday in Busan, this experience will be truly memorable, thanks to the romantic ambiance created by the park’s scenic views.
With the presence of horses, mellow music playing in the background, artificial lakes, and numerous areas to explore under the night sky, Illumia Park provides a comfortable and soothing environment.
If you’re interested, note that Illumia Park is open daily from sunset until midnight, allowing you to enjoy its beauty and charm during the evening hours.
12. Haeundae Beach
Haeundae Beach, the renowned and bustling beach in Busan, stands as the top choice for beachgoers, particularly during the summer season.
Located in close proximity to Haeundae Beach, you’ll find Haeundae Market, a traditional market teeming with a wide array of delectable food offerings.
For convenient access, Haeundae Station, the nearest subway station, is just a short distance away.
13. Haeundae Beach Train
Experience the newest and most sought-after tourist attraction in Haeundae, Busan – the Haeundae Beach Train.
This charming train operates on the tracks of the old KA Donghae Nambu railway, offering a unique and nostalgic journey.
In addition to the beach train, there are a couple of other delightful tourist trains to explore.
One of them is the Haeundae Blueline Park train, promising an enjoyable ride through the scenic surroundings.
For a truly exceptional experience, don’t miss the Haeundae Sky Capsule, offering a captivating and elevated perspective of the area.
These exciting train rides provide an immersive way to explore Haeundae’s attractions, ensuring an unforgettable adventure for visitors of all ages.
14. SEA Life Busan
Nestled within Haeundae Beach, Sea Life Busan is an absolute must-visit tourist destination in Busan, especially for families with children.
This captivating attraction boasts an expansive aquarium that houses a remarkable variety of marine life, with approximately 250 species and an impressive 35,000 marine animals.
Prepare to be enthralled as you observe these captivating creatures through acrylic glass or as you walk through underwater tunnels. It’s truly a paradise for ocean enthusiasts!
Within the aquarium, you’ll also discover around 40 captivating exhibits featuring adorable penguins, lively piranhas, endearing otters, and mesmerizing sea jellyfish.
Isn’t it fascinating?
15. The Bay 101
Make sure to include The Bay 101 in your itinerary when exploring Busan, as this cultural and arts complex in the Haeundae area is an absolute must-visit.
The Bay 101 offers a wealth of captivating activities, impressive facilities, and an extraordinary experience with breathtaking views of the sea, especially during nighttime.
One of the main attractions here is the opportunity to stroll along the beach aboard a magnificent yacht at the Yacht Club. The yacht provides a delightful setting for various enjoyable activities.
You can unwind and take coffee breaks, savoring the picturesque cityscape from the sea while indulging in culinary delights.
With its unique blend of culture, art, and mesmerizing ocean views, The Bay 101 promises an unforgettable experience that will leave you with cherished memories of your visit to Busan.
16. Gwangalli Beach
Gwangan Beach, also known as Gwangalli, stretches an impressive 1.4 kilometers along the coastline of Busan.
As one of the most popular tourist destinations in the city, this beach is renowned for its pristine white sand and breathtaking scenery.
In close proximity to the beach, you’ll find a variety of charming cafes and restaurants, offering a delightful culinary experience to complement your visit.
One of the main highlights of Gwangan Beach is the opportunity to witness an awe-inspiring light show from the iconic Gwangandaegyo Bridge.
This stunning display adds a touch of magic to the already captivating beachscape.
When planning your trip to Busan, Taejongdae should be at the top of your must-visit list.
This natural park offers a stunning and exotic view of the sea, providing an enchanting backdrop for your exploration.
Capture unforgettable moments by taking selfies atop magnificent cliffs that overlook the vast open sea, situated at the southernmost tip of Yeongdo-gu island.
Within the park, you’ll also find amusement park facilities, an observatory, a lighthouse, and a large ship terminal, ensuring a wealth of exciting activities to engage in during your visit to Taejongdae.
If you happen to visit during the summer, prepare for an even more exhilarating adventure as you climb the cliffs.
The clear and mesmerizing view of the sea during this season is bound to leave you in awe, creating unforgettable memories that will stay with you long after your journey ends.
18. Oryukdo Skywalk
If you’re seeking another remarkable tourist destination in Busan that showcases breathtaking natural views, make sure to visit the Oryukdo Skywalk.
Oryukdo holds the distinction of being one of the two sites in Busan that is designated as a National Cultural Heritage Scenic Site.
To enhance the experience, a captivating skywalk has been added to the site. Imagine the thrill of walking on the sky, with a glass floor as your pathway, offering a unique perspective of the surroundings.
It comes as no surprise that in recent years, this attraction in Busan has gained immense popularity among tourists, thanks to its exhilarating nature and unforgettable experiences it offers.
19. Jukseong Dream Church
church building should ring a bell.
This church holds a special significance as it was constructed solely for the purpose of filming the K-drama series ‘Dream’. The dedication involved in creating this mock place of worship is truly remarkable.
Unsurprisingly, the Jukseong church has become a popular destination for fans of K-dramas, who flock here for exciting photo opportunities and to capture the essence of the series.
Moreover, photographers are drawn to this location due to the breathtaking sea view that surrounds the church.
The open sea and rocky landscape provide an extraordinary backdrop, making it an ideal spot for stunning photographs.
20. Gijang Traditional Market
In addition to exploring the natural and cultural attractions, make sure to indulge in the exciting activities of shopping and culinary exploration in Busan.
For an unforgettable shopping and culinary adventure, look no further than the lively Gijang Traditional Market.
This bustling market is a paradise for food lovers and shopaholics alike. As you stroll through the market, you’ll encounter numerous stalls offering a wide array of Korean street food delights.
From the beloved classics like tteokbokki, hotteok, jajangmyeon, and twigim to the flavorful odeng and hweori gamja, your taste buds are in for a treat.
But there’s one dish that you absolutely must not miss while at the market—the King Crab.
Considered the epitome of seafood delicacies in Busan, savoring the succulent and flavorful King Crab is an experience that will leave a lasting impression.
So, make sure to carve out some time to explore the Gijang Traditional Market, where you can immerse yourself in a world of delectable flavors and fantastic shopping finds.
21. Huinnyeoul Culture Village
Huinnyeoul Culture Village is a coastal village located on the sloping cliffs of Yeongdo in Busan.
The name “Huinnyeoul” translates to “white river,” a fitting description for this coastal village where most of the buildings are adorned in pristine white, harmoniously contrasting the vibrant blue of the surrounding ocean.
It’s no wonder that Huinnyeoul has earned the moniker “Busan’s Santorini,” evoking images of the picturesque Greek island.
At the foot of the village, near the beach, you’ll find the Jeoryeong Coastal Walk and the Huinnyeoul Coastal Tunnel, two attractions that have gained considerable popularity among visitors to Busan.
Comprising 14 interconnected streets and alleys, Huinnyeoul Culture Village is a treasure trove of captivating artworks and aesthetically pleasing architecture.
Everywhere you turn, you’ll encounter delightful scenes that beg to be captured, making it the perfect backdrop for Instagram-worthy photos that will showcase your unforgettable time in Busan.
22. Jinhae Cherry Blossom
Jinhae Cherry Blossom is the best cherry blossom season festival in South Korea.
For those seeking the beauty of spring in Korea, a visit to this extraordinary destination is an absolute must.
Prepare to be captivated as you witness the breathtaking sight of delicate cherry blossoms adorning the trees, creating a magical ambiance that will leave you in awe.
Not only will you be treated to nature’s stunning display, but Inhae Cherry Blossom also offers an abundance of Instagram-worthy photo spots, including a charming bridge and the picturesque Gyeonghwa Station.
Let your creativity soar as you capture the perfect shot amidst this floral wonderland.
If your visit coincides with the Jinhae festival, held between March and April, you’ll be treated to a series of captivating events.
Marvel at the mesmerizing lantern festival and be enthralled by the Korean Navy military band parade, creating lasting memories of this vibrant celebration.
To truly complete your experience at Jinhae Cherry Blossom, indulge in the iconic culinary offerings.
Delight in adorable bread shaped like cherry blossom petals, savor cute duck-shaped buns, and sip on aromatic coffee to accompany your adventure through this blossoming wonderland.
23. Running Man Thematic Experience
Calling all Running Man fans! Get ready to immerse yourself in an exhilarating adventure reminiscent of your favorite Korean variety show.
Step into a world of excitement and challenge as you embark on a journey through the 5 thrilling experience zones, designed to bring the Running Man spirit to life.
Engage in the exhilarating Running Ball game, where teamwork and strategy are essential for success.
Feel the adrenaline rush during the City Pursuit Battle, as you navigate the urban landscape in pursuit of victory. And prepare to be tested in the Maze Battle, where your wit and agility will be put to the test.
But that’s not all! As you partake in these hilarious and engaging games, you’ll also have the opportunity to collect coveted R-coins.
Put your skills to the test as you aim to gather more than 80 coins within the allotted time.
Achieve this feat, and you’ll not only earn a prize but also receive a certificate to commemorate your triumph.
Make sure to include this unforgettable experience in your Busan holiday itinerary, whether you’re exploring with family or friends.
With its idyllic location by the sea, Tongyeong boasts a selection of stunning beaches that are sure to captivate visitors.
Suryuk Beach, Bongam Beach, Bijindo Beach, Yeondaedo Beach, and Daehang Beach offer a diverse range of coastal wonders, from pristine sands to crystal-clear waters.
Whether you seek relaxation or adventure, these beaches have something for everyone.
But Tongyeong has more to offer than just its breathtaking beaches.
Explore the town’s rich history and discover hidden gems that await your arrival. Uncover the secrets of Tongyeong’s historic sites and immerse yourself in the local culture.
From ancient landmarks to cultural treasures, every corner of this town tells a story.
For an extra touch of magic, venture to Long Snake Island, a marine park located in the southern sea of Geoje Island.
This enchanting location served as the backdrop for the beloved K-drama ‘My Love from the Stars’.
Follow in the footsteps of your favorite characters and relive their romantic moments as you soak in the beauty of this coastal paradise.
25. Oedo Island
Did you know that aside from Jeju Island, there are lots of other beautiful and amazing islands that you can visit in Korea?
One such gem is Oedo Island, located in the scenic Gyeongsang Namdo province.
Oedo Island is renowned for its mesmerizing landscapes and panoramic vistas of the azure South Sea.
As you set foot on the island, you’ll be greeted by breathtaking views that blend the beauty of the park with the endless expanse of the sea, creating a tranquil ambiance that soothes the soul.
Every corner of Oedo Island is a picturesque backdrop, perfect for capturing those unforgettable moments and creating artistic photographs.
What makes Oedo Island even more remarkable is its rich botanical diversity.
With over 3,000 plant species, including rare subtropical plants seldom found in other parts of the world, the island is a haven for nature enthusiasts.
Immerse yourself in the vibrant hues and fragrant aromas of the various plant species that adorn the landscape, creating a harmonious blend of colors and scents.
While exploring Oedo Island, make sure to visit Windy Hill, a charming grassy hill overlooking the sea. This picturesque location has served as a backdrop for popular K-dramas like ‘Merry Go Round’ and ‘Eve’s Garden’.
26. Busan X The Sky Observatory
Busan X The Sky Observatory is a relatively new addition to Busan’s tourist attractions, but it has quickly become a popular destination for both locals and foreigners.
Located on floors 98-100 of the Haeundae L City Landmark Tower, the second tallest building in South Korea, this observatory offers a unique perspective of the entire city and its surroundings.
What sets Busan X The Sky apart from other observatories is the emphasis on comfort and relaxation.
Unlike other observatories where visitors come and go quickly, here you’ll find ample seating spread across the three floors.
Take a break at X The Lounge and indulge in pasta and grilled meats while enjoying the breathtaking view of the horizon.
If you’re in the mood for a coffee, head to the Starbucks located on the 99th floor and savor your drink amidst the stunning surroundings.
27. Daejeo Ecological Park
Daejo Ecopark, designated as a Natural Monument, serves as a habitat for migratory birds and showcases a diverse range of swamps, ditches, and grasslands.
The park is equipped with sports facilities at both ends, allowing visitors to engage in activities before or after exploring the various walking trails.
During spring, the park transforms into a mesmerizing sight with vast fields of blooming yellow yuchae flowers.
Adding to its charm, Daejo Ecopark hosts the annual Nakdong Canola Festival in April, making it a perfect destination for travelers visiting Busan during that time.
So, if you’re planning to go on a vacation to Busan in April, you’re in luck!
28. Busan Museum Art
Busan Museum Art opened back on 20 March 1998, with the aim of providing a space to showcase the creativity of fantastic modern artworks and enhance the artistic minds of the general public.
Inside the museum, you can see various exhibitions in different genres.
This museum consists of 5 floors, each of which has its own theme, including exhibition halls, archive rooms, education rooms, and an outdoor sculpture garden.
Those are 28 top things to do in Busan that you can visit.
So, if you have time, check out Busan while you’re in South Korea.
The boat departing to Jeju also the flights to Jeju from Busan are pretty cheap. Have fun and enjoy!
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Hi, my name is Velysia – a travel blogger from Indonesia. I’ve traveled extensively around Indonesia and Asia. I love hiking and learning new cultures. I hope you can find this blog useful, if you like my work, you can support me through paypal.