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|Haeunde Beach in Busan|
The grandest beach of the South, Haeundae Beach has all the great reasons in the world to be the best option for a great getaway. It is so far the most famous beach here in South Korea. Given that it is located in Busan which is by the way famous because of its beautiful and astounding beaches, the Haeundae beach is very much accessible to the public since it is located just within the city. No need to trek on far places because once you get into the city of Busan, you can just easily find it. However, because of its accessibility, it is also known to be so crowded especially during the summer season. If you go there during off season, that means beyond the boundary of summer months from June to August, the place is not really that crowded. I guess we're lucky to have visited this famous beach in September.
|A not so crowded Haeundae beach surrounded by buildings and hotels|
So we had a retreat at Yangsan City during the Chuseok holidays and we headed to Busan after that because it is just one hour away from the city. I did not really expect that much considering the fact that it is known to be the darling of the crowd. We arrived at the place in the early afternoon and I saw that the crowd was not really that bad. I just wonder why people like it to converge in one area whilst there are a lot of less crowded area in the beach. Of course we settled in a not so populated part just to avoid jostling with other people while swimming. I found it very spectacular because it was my first time to swim while being surrounded by the buildings and hotels.
If you plan to stay for like two to three days, hotel accommodation will never be a problem. You can book in one of Haeundae hotels built just in front of the beach. I can just imagine how awesome it is to wake up in the morning in the cool breeze of the sea, or to sleep at night overlooking the moonlight reflection in the water of Haeundae beach. Too bad we do not have ample time to book in the hotel and stay for one more day.
|In front of The Westin Chosun built right in front of Haeundae beach|
|The statue of the mermaid named Princess Hwangok gazing at Naranda|
But we were not contented taking photos in the photo opp area, we went extra mile by risking our lives trekking through the steep rock face to the statue. We totally blocked other tourists taking photos with the statue that time and we excuse them for that, it's just about 20 minutes of our shenanigan anyway. :). The name of this mermaid is Princess Hwangok, this is Haeundae's version of Little Mermaid of Denmark. According to the legend, Princess Hwangok of Naranda married King Eunhye of the Kingdom Mugung. Naranda is a country of mermaid and mermen, Princess Hwangok missed Naranda so much that she come out at night and gaze at the view of her homeland.
In the park, the presence of the gigantic rocks could never be neglected. There are big rocks, round rocks, steep rocks, small rocks, name it and you can find one there. So all I said was, "This place really ROCKS". And of course, no pun intended. :)
|One of the big rocks in Haeundae beach|
And you know what's more amazing in Haeundae Beach? You will never get starved there. There are tents in front of the sea selling some affordable Korean street food. There are sausages, ttokboki, barbeque and even ramyon. So if you feel like eating, you have these tents to rescue you.
The water of Haeunde beach is generally cold. I don't know if it is only true during the start of autumn period up to spring season, but even the sun is at its height, the first time you get into the water, you will feel like doing the Ice Bucket Challenge. It was soooo cold and I have to move around just to make the water a little bit warm.
|The cold water of Haeundae beach|
I guess what makes Haeunde beach popular and always the best option to visit at Busan is the sand and its very clean environment. The sand in the beach is very sticky, like it intentionally cling on your feet just to make you feel you are at the beach. It is not only best for swimming but also to walk around, to relax and to feel like you are in a vacation without even leaving the city.
|Kid enjoying the water|
To go to Haeundae beach in Busan via public transportation, get off at Busan Station. From Busan Station, walk at least 180 meters straight and take bus number 1003 to Haeundae beach. The beach is about 170 meters away from the bus station.
For those who will come from Seoul, you can take KTX from Seoul station to Busan Station. It is Line number 1 or Line Number 4. Taking a bus is a little bit tricky, so I guess the best option is via the subway line.
For more photos and videos, check out this short clip I made for the brethren of Sinwoldong Sungkyul Church Foreign Ministry in Seoul, South Korea.