[su_heading size=”20″ margin=”18″]With high summer temperatures yet to hit the city, conditions on Busan’s most celebrated hiking courses are ideal. For an unreal ocean view, consider the expansive Haeparang Trail. The trail starts deep inside the heart of the Oryukdo Islets and heads northward along the East Coast through sights as diverse as the country it spans.[/su_heading]
The Haeparang Trail is a 770-kilometer-long trekking course along the eastern coastline – the longest trail in the country. Follow the waves and the wide open ocean views from Busan through Ulsan, Gyeongju and Pohang, all the way to Goseong, Gangwon-do, nearly at the northern border. It all starts where the East and South Seas meet, at Haemaji (greet the sun) Park in the Oryukdo Islets. Feel the majesty of the open ocean on one side of the route against rugged coastal cliffs on the other. A short walk along the seaside leads to a sandy beach surrounded by city structures. Keep heading eastward and there’s no limit to what you might see. The 71-kilometer Busan section of the Haeparang Trail includes four courses and stretches through Gwangalli, Haeundae and Songjeong to Imrang Beach in Gijang.
From the Oryukdo Islets to Gijang
Test your nerves overtop the ocean on the glass-bottomed skywalk observatory before testing your endurance on the trail. Take the walkway from the Oryukdo Islets to Igidae and continue until Gwangalli Beach. A stroll even farther alongside the Gwangan Bridge toward the mouth of the Suyeonggang River reveals Dongbaek Island, named for the camellia flower, which covers much of the space surrounding its forests and walkways. Soon, Busan’s best-known sands, Haeundae Beach, will come into sight. Past Haeundae, access Dalmagi Hill via Moontan Road. The hill offers endless views of the bustling beach area and a laid back atmosphere of cafes, restaurants and park trails. The route connects Haeundae with Songjeong Beach, a favorite haunt for surfers on account of its gentle waves and surf shops. Finish the seaside tour with anchovy-tasting at Daebyeon Port. The port is Korea’s largest anchovy producer and there’s no shortage of waterfront restaurants with fresh raw fish at the ready.
How to get there:
Get off at Motgol Station (Metro line 2) and go out exit 1, or Jigegol Station (Metro line 2) and go out exit 1. Take bus No. 27 at the nearby bus stop. Or, take bus No. 131 at the bus stop out of exit 8 of Suyeong Station, get off at the back gate of the Oryukdo SK View Apartment bus stop and walk.
This article appeared originally and is printed with permission of Dynamic Busan Magazine.