The second-largest city in South Korea, Busan hosts everything from a world famous collection of hot springs to the world famous Pusan International Film Festival, held each fall. Busan is the coastal flipside to inland Seoul and it continues to compete with the capital, having launched a Summer Olympics bid for 2020.
Seafood, seafood and more seafood defines the Busan dining experience. The real local delicacy is raw fish and visitors are sure to be amazed just how many ways fish can be used without ever being cooked or heated in any way.
Busan offers beaches in abundance and soaking up the sun is the main form of recreation here. Other water sports like jet-skiing, parasailing and yachting are popular and the rocky islands off shore make for popular daytrips on chartered boats.
Busan is a shopper's heaven, with retailers continually rubbing their hands together as tens of thousands of cashed-up South Koreans arrive in town with holiday money to spend. The central area of Busan is made up of three separate shopping precincts, but they are all so large they have joined together to form one monolithic shopping world.
Busan is modern and despite its towering skyscrapers and legions of tourists, quite compact and easy to get around. The underground mass transit system covers every corner of the city and it runs like clockwork.
Busan is famous for its beaches, spas and temples. The main beaches can become excessively crowded in summer and on most weekends of the year, while the enormous health spas one claims to be the biggest in Asia manage to fill up despite operating cavernous facilities over multiple stories.