Songdo Beach (송도 해변, 부산) in Busan is a beautiful, clean and popular escape during summer (and non-summer seasons as well). It used to be the locals’ relaxing and fun area but not anymore.
Most probably, there are more non-locals and international visitors who come to enjoy the beach. That’s because it is only about 3 kilometers from the busy business downtown of Busan. Besides, Songdo Beach is surrounded by tourist sites and other attractions.
Yes, I have been there and composed this article three weeks later. But I’ll do my best to recall my pleasant memories of the area. Better read to the end, right?
Some would say that Songdo is an alternate to Haeundae Beach, which I would sharply disagree. Reasons? Please, if you want to, see them a bit down below.
As starters, please let me say a bit of history or story about Songdo Beach…
It was said that Songdo was made as Korea’s first “official beach” in 1913. I believe that the Japanese did something to promote this area during their occupation.
Songdo used to be dotted with pine trees. Interestingly, the name ‘Songdo’ means ‘Pine Island’ in the Korean language.
The island beach began to be popular in the 1960s due to its perfect coastlines. However, just like other beaches in the world, Songdo suffered the loss of sandy area due to hurricanes.
Through the rehabilitation project by the local government in 2000, the beach has undergone reconstruction for around five years to restore and expand its coastlines aside from the additional beautification items (e.g., whale sculpture).
I believe that spending half-day is not enough. It would be best if you did it for a day to see and experience much about the area.
Haneul Walk Bridge
Haneul is ‘sky’ in English. It is such an interesting bridge, or I should say an observation deck from where you have better vistas on the surroundings.
On it, you will be greeted with strong breeze, which is great during summer, and a flock of seagulls begging for quick snacks.
On the deck, you will have a more unobstructed view of Songdo Mountain where the other end of the cable car is built.
I believe it would be more impressive during the sunset and evening time because of the entertaining lights around including the dancing lights of the nearby bridge.
It is also a romantic place. You will be competing with other many couples taking selfies. It is safe to do that here.
This island is exactly where you will see as well while on that Haneul Walk Bridge (or observatory). It has interesting stories and legends, including the romantic legend about a young man falling in love with a mermaid (sculptures are available).
It is named a “Turtle Island” exactly because of its ‘turtle-like’ shape. The islet is totally formed by rocks of interesting shapes. Visitors come to take photos either on the rocks or as backgrounds.
You have a good view of this sculpture from a cable car. Korean seas used to have many whales, and there were many whalers back then.
Fisherfolks used to catch them for food. Now, laws that protect these gentle mammals prevent people from catching them for consumption although at times these were violated.
Some love them, while some hated them. I like them! I noticed that many people, mostly young women, take photos with seagulls while feeling them with food (usually ‘junk’ food called ‘Saewookkang’).
What is interesting about seagulls is that they can navigate the rough winds and keep themselves steady.
I could think of human life (or my life) experiencing various challenges and difficulties but keeping steadfast, being happy or hoping to live a better life. Yes, I’m serious! ^^
Sea, beach, surroundings
Yes, these should be the reasons why you come to this area. Beach makes me happy. I cannot imagine life without a beach. It keeps me being calm and reflective. Keeps me going!
Songdo Beach is nice and well-maintained. It is immaculate and soft on your naked feet.
The sea is great as well. Its location is perfect for swimming and other activities in the water.
The sea waves are not strong normally. It is also safe for kids even for the smallest ones.
From the beach area, you will sea the cable cars crisscrossing before your very eyes (not annoying though). The scene makes it more exciting. Or even relaxing.
Opening and Service
Songdo Beach is open all-year-round. As you might have already guessed, it is packed during the summer season, or even before summer.
During the summer season, it is officially open to the public from around 9 AM to 6 PM. during this time, facilities and services are available. Some facilities are for rent. Also, lifeguards are only watching during this time.
Check out the facilities and services available during the operation hours...
If you came with a vehicle, you could park your car or vehicle are the parking areas designated nearby Songdo Beach.
There are many parking lots (about 17 lots and available 670 spaces, according to their website.
Some interesting sites and attractions nearby Songdo Beach area include…
Now, it is advisable and realistic to stay nearby Songdo Beach area if you want to enjoy it. Besides, it is an efficient plan to stay nearby because you can use this place are your base to explore other sites and exciting attractions around.
Feel free to check out the recommended and rated hotels around the area. See the comments of the former travelers, and don’t also forget to see the discounted rates. (I suggest that you book in advance to a much cheaper rate offer).
Try and explore the nice rooms along the hotels along the beach area...
And see more nearby hotels here.
Coming to this beach is very simple. Once you arrived Busan area from anywhere, you can take any public transport to get here. By the way, you can rent a car--cheap rental rates. Also, you can hire both a car and a driver.
Anyways, here’s how you can arrive via public transport…
From Busan Station (Subway Line 1), head for Exit 7 and take any of the following buses with numbers: 17, 26, and 61. Then get off at Songdo Entrance Bus Stop. You won’t miss the beach.
From Jagalchi Station (Subway Line 1), go to Exit 2 and then turn LEFT, then GO Straight for 50 meters and CROSS the street to Chungmudonggyocharo Bus Stop.
Then take any of the buses: 7, 26, 71, and 96. Listen to the announcement then get off at Songdo Beach Bus Stop. The announcement is both in Korean and English languages.
Now, if you have specific questions or any, please drop me a line, and I hope to answer as fast as I can.
Thanks so much for reading this article. Hope this has served your purpose.
Enjoy and have safe travels.