Busan
South Korea
By Chelsie Kozera

Busan, Korea is a port city that sits on the southeastern coast of the Korean peninsula. It is home to some of Korea’s most crowded beaches and some of the tastiest seafood in the country.  A lot of Korean cities can seem like cookie-cutter versions of the next, no matter where they are geographically within the country, but Busan has more unique aesthetics as it’s built right on the seashore welcoming in the waves from the Sea of Japan.

You can get to Busan through many means of transport. There is Busan’s Gimhae International airport (PUS) to the west of the city, only a few minutes from downtown by taxi or subway. Or you can fly into Incheon International airport (ICN) in Seoul and ride the KTX, or fast train, to Busan for three and a half hours. This city of 3.6 million is also a port for ferries from Japan, if you are coming into the country from the land of sushi in the south. WhatsCheaper.com can help you book your flight to Busan by clicking here (http://www.whatscheaper.com/flight.php).

Places to stay are diverse and there’s something for every budget. If you’re looking for high-end accommodations try the Seacloud Hotel right on Haeundae beach; it has amazing views of the ocean. No matter what kind of hotel fits your needs, WhatsCheaper.com can help you book accommodations in Busan, Korea (http://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php).

Busan has many sites and attractions to keep you busy for days.  Visiting the beaches in Korea during the summer months is an experience like none other, especially visiting Haeundae beach. If you get a chance to see this place during the low season, you’ll notice that it’s a beautiful stretch of white sand behind which the city’s most popular restaurants, bars, and hotels stand majestically overlooking the ocean. But if you visit this beach during a gorgeous summer day you will only notice the sea of umbrellas littering the stretch of land next to the ocean. Koreans are very protective of their skin from the sun’s rays, so you will also see that it’s hard to find a Korean wearing an actual bathing suit. Nonetheless, this beach is a must-see place in Busan to play in the waves on a hot summer day and maybe catch some rays through the narrow space of a thousand umbrellas.

Since you’ve already made the trek to Haeundae beach, you might as well visit the Busan Aquarium because it’s located right on the beach.  This impressive attraction is home to all types of marine life and can keep you busy for hours; but perhaps one of the most unique experiences the Busan Aquarium has to offer is a weekly shark dive with their Canadian scuba instructor. You have the opportunity to do a shark dive in the aquarium every Saturday and Sunday. Ten divers can go per day, which get broken into two groups of five divers, one group goes in the morning and one in the afternoon for a walk around the aquarium. The rosters are posted for the following four weekends and tend to fill up rather quickly. The instructor, Michael, will make you feel comfortable even if you are a virgin diver. You'll spend about one to two hours practicing with the scuba equipment in a small pool above the shark tank until you feel content and can properly do all of the techniques taught to you. Then you repel down 5 meters into the shark tank, where you'll do one lap around, lasting approximately 30 minutes. You can bring an underwater camera or rent one there. Pictures and videos help you remember how daring you were at one time in your life or they can be a nice final keepsake for mom and dad if you don't make it home from your diving adventure. The cost of the dive is 110,000 won for noncertified divers and 90,000 won for certified divers.

Shark diving too adventurous for your vacation to Busan? Don’t worry; there are plenty of other things to do. WhatsCheaper.com suggests you visit Korea’s most famous fish market, the Jagalchi Fish Market, in Busan. The market is located right next to Busan harbor and contains hundreds of fish caught fresh daily. This is also a cool place to visit at night as many tents serve fresh seafood and drinks outdoors. But if you’re not a fan of seafood then you can venture to Shinsegae department store for some good eats and fun shopping. Shinsegae is a franchise in Korea, but the largest store is in Busan; in fact, the Shinsegae department store in Busan is the largest in the world, surpassing even New York City’s Macy’s department store.

Still searching for an adventure that’s not quite as daring as swimming with sharks, but more exciting than shopping? Try the Busan Tower in the center of Yongdusan Park. This 118 meter high tower is a great place to get a view of the city and test your fear of heights. On the first floor of the tower, you’ll find a souvenir shop with lots of traditional Korean trinkets. Or ride the elevator up to the observation deck to catch a glimpse of ships coming into the harbor.  

Ultimately, Busan, Korea is a spectacular city on the coast with lots of activities for everyone. Korean culture is unique and quite different from the west, but this modernized country will feel like a breeze to navigate through. WhatsCheaper.com wants to help you book your vacation to Busan today!

MUST SEE IN Busan LIST:

  • 1. U.N. Memorial Park
  • 2. Haeundae Beach
  • 3. Busan Tower
  • 4. Beomeosa Temple
  • 5. Haedong Yonggunsa Temple
  • 6. Busan Aquarium
  • 7. Gwanganli Beach
  • 8. Yongdusan Park
  • 9. Busan Exhibition & Convention Center
  • 10. Busan Port

Busan EVENT CALENDAR:

  • 1. Dalmaji Festival - January
  • 2. Cherry Blossom Tree Festival - April
  • 3. Rock & Roll Festival - August
  • 4. Busan Sea Festival - August
  • 5. Jagalchi Fish Market Festival - October
  • 6. Busan International Film Festival - October

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Westin Busan
P.O. Box 29, Haeundae, 737 Woo 1-Dong, Busan, 612-600 South Korea
By Andrew Hemmelgarn

Already world famous, the Westin Chosun in Busan, South Korea has amenities to cater toward any world traveler.  With multiple 24 hour service centers and 290 newly renovated rooms, your stay is sure to be as relaxed or productive as you desire.  

Upon arriving in Busan, you may pass through downtown, which is only 30 minutes from the Westin Chosun.  Also within walking distance is the Nurimaru APEC House, home of the 2005 APEC Leaders Meeting that worked toward international agriculture trade.  Local attractions also include the Yong-Gung and Kyong Ju Temples and the Kwang-An Bridge.  

After entering the Westin Chosun, you may catch a view of the ocean and Haeundae Beach, located only 0.1 km from the hotel.  Check in is at 3pm at the 24-hour front
desk.  Additional 24 hour services include concierge, security, room service, and a full business center.  You’ll head up to your room to get comfortable with complimentary wireless internet and satellite and cable channels.  From here, there are a number of options for proceeding.  The Westin features a barber/beauty salon, florist, gift shop, and other services right in-house.  

There are also five world class restaurants on site, including cuisine that is inspired by the Japanese, Korean, and Irish.  The restaurant circuit is highlighted by the Camellia, a beachside restaurant.  In fact, the spectacular food is one of the main cornerstones of the Westin.  As mentioned previously, the Westin is within walking distance of the Nurimaru APEC House and the catering service of the Westin was specifically chosen to cater the meals of world leaders at the 2005 APEC Leaders meeting.  This feat is one that is unmatched by most in the world.  

The Westin Chosun has been a part of history and this unique experience is one that any traveler can appreciate.  Start your trip today at WhatsCheaper.com (http://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php). 

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