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Taking A Tour Of Busan, South Korea

Feb 29, 2008
Busan, also spelled as Pusan, is the second largest city in South Korea, after Seoul. Situated in South Gyeongsang, Busan has a population of nearly eight million people. As the nation's major as well as the largest sea port, Busan has a plethora of sea routes that serve as gateways to Japan as well as to the other prominent parts of the world.

Lying adjacent to the Korean Straits and Japan, this bustling city is also credited to be the first international city in Korea, and connects continents such as Asia, North America, and Europe. Located on the coast of the East Sea, Busan boasts of a stunning landscape comprising beautiful shorelines, gorgeous beaches, secluded islets, towering mountains, and lush green areas. Hence, it is not a wonder why Busan is sometimes referred to as 'the San Francisco of Korea.'

From towers, forts, and shrines to scenic attractions covering hot springs, Busan presents a host of attractions for people touring the place. In other words, sightseeing in Busan has been categorized into such as seashore sightseeing and interior land sightseeing.

Included in the seashore sightseeing are incredible islands and beaches such as Haeundae, Songjeong, and Gwangalli Beach. All of these beaches are a haven for enjoying a number of water sport activities such as jet skiing, boating, diving, banana boat rides, and much more. When comes to the interior land sightseeing, it covers downtown Busan, interesting museums, ancient shrines, historical monuments as well as ruins, stadiums, and cultural centers.

Some of the most popular museums in the area are Fisheries Museum, which is the first of its kind in the museum; Busan Marine Natural History Museum - the country's largest marine natural history museum; Busan Museum of Modern Art, which has on display artworks done by artists of Busan as well as Yungnam areas; Korean Tea Museum, exhibiting more than 100 varieties of teas; and Suyeong Historical Relics Folk Art Center, which contains such cultural displays as Suyoung Nonchong-nori and Jwasuyoungbang-nori.

If you are a spiritual traveler, then your trip to Busan would not be complete without taking a tour to such shrines in the area as SamGwang Temple, which is one of the most remarkable Buddhist shrines in the area; Tongdosa Temple, which is probably the prominent of all Buddhist temples in the country; and Beomeosa Temple Complex, with a Buddhist nunnery. Equally fabulous is the historical sites in the country such as Kumjongsanong, which is the country's largest walled mountain fortress. A segment of a park, the fortress is attached with a Buddhist Temple, apart from several pavilions and botanical gardens.

Further, your visit to Busan would be incomplete without taking a visit to some of its beautiful parks and gardens such as Busan Aquarium - a marine park featuring more than 250 species of marine animals; Yongdusan Park, which is one of the most scenic areas in the city with more than 70 species of trees; Olympic Park, which is a treasure trove of several magnificent sculptures.

Geumgang Botanical Garden, one of the largest botanical gardens in the country; and UN Memorial Park, which commemorates the soldiers of more than 15 countries who sacrificed their lives in the Korean War. For those looking for fun-filled vacation, Busan comes with a number of amusement parks like APEC Theme Park; Amusement Garden in Grand Children's Park; Taejongdae Amusement Park; and Jayu Land.

Other not to miss attractions in Busan are the Busan Tower, which is about 118 meters high and located within Yongdusan Park; Jalgalchi Fish Market, a must-visit spot in the city; Tongnae Hot Springs, boasting of two huge pools, of which one is hot spring water and another with cold water; Dongbaek Island, an ancient island which is home to camellias as well as pine trees; and Dalmaji Hill, a picturesque area located to the southeast of Haeundae Beach. Above all, Busan hosts a variety of festivals and events including sea festivals, fishing festivals, polar bear swimming festival, tourism festival, and film festival.

In short, Busan has everything for an enjoyable vacation. Hence, in order to cater to the growing number of tourists, Busan boasts of a number of accommodation options. Many of the top notch hotels and resorts in the area allow tourists to choose from a variety of rooms such as standard, deluxe, apartment style, and suits.
About the Author
The Accor Group manages Hotels with the Sofitel, Novotel, Mercure, All Seasons, Ibis, Formule 1, Grand Mercure brands and offers services to corporate clients and public institutions: 23 million people in nearly 40 countries use a broad range of services engineered and managed by Accor Services.
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