I was lucky enough to spend my Chuseok weekend at Busan with friends and we were able to stay at a hostel that was a 5 minute walk from Haeundae Beach. Needless to say, it felt extremely nice to be at a beach. After walking up and down so many hills and living in the busy metro area of Seoul, it was nice to see sand and the ocean. It was a much needed break from classes, I would say!
During this time of year, the Chuseok holiday is a time where families get together, pay respect to ancestors and enjoy wonderful home cooked meals in each other’s presence. In a sense, the holiday itself is like the Korean version of Thanksgiving back home in the states. It’s pretty common to see people carry around gifts with them as they travel back home to see family. But these aren’t just ordinary gifts; it’s much more traditional to see gift sets consisting of fruits, primarily, Korean pears as well as SPAM. Yes, I said it. SPAM. Everyone here loves Spam and it doesn’t come cheap!
Aside from the travel frenzy and gifts, my friends and I took the opportunity to travel outside of Seoul. Busan is located along the southeastern coast of South Korea. It is large port city, known for its beaches, mountains and temples. It is the second largest city in South Korea, after Seoul, with a population of approximately 3.6 million people. We specifically stayed at Haeundae area and by far, we had the freshest seafood available to our liking!
Haeundae was the tourist destination; as we were walking the streets we spotted foreigners left and right from a variety of different ethic background. Aside from the beach, people and amazing seafood, we also decided to visit the Aquarium. Now stop for a second and think back to the last time you went to an Aquarium. Grade school? Haha, well that was the case for most of us.
Walking into the aquarium, we felt like we were kids again!
As soon as we satisfied our inner child minds, we headed back out to the beach one last time before reaching the end of the night. There were so many performers and when there are performers around, more people come out to enjoy the show. The beach was much more crowded compared to the daytime.
But many of the performers were participating in the Busan Busking Festival which is a festival consisting of musicians and singers who come out to local attractions to perform live in front of interested spectators.
Busan was definitely a great break from Seoul! Being able to spend the Chuseok weekend with wonderful friends was more than enough because in all honestly, they’re just like my second family. So if you ever decide to travel to South Korea one day and get to experience the Chuseok holiday, don’t be afraid to venture out and plan a trip to Busan with friends. There so much to do but there’s so little time!