Beaches Around Korea
Beach season is from May-September in South Korea, and with large stretches of coast on the South, East and West you’re good to go. Escaping to the beach for mini holidays is very popular during the Korean summer. High time is July and August, but if you want to escape the crowds aim for late May/early June or mid to late September. Here are some of your options:
Haeundae Beach /해운대 해수욕장 – Busan
Busan, baby! There probably isn’t a more famous beach in Korea than Haeundae—Busan’s premier summer destination. In the height of summer, it is ridiculously busy here, with nearly half a million people hitting the beach on Saturdays and Sundays. Haeundae is synonymous with Busan’s reputation as a summer party resort area. As evening falls, party-goers make their way back to their accommodations to get ready for the night ahead. It is a family friendly beach too, with plenty to keep everyone entertained. If you fancy a quiet day in the sun, absolutely do not come here. There are quieter beaches in Busan that will be far more to your taste. Activities include tug-of-war, Korean wrestling and other traditional games.
Gwangalli Beach /광안리 해수욕장 – Busan
Gwangalli is Busan’s second most visited beach and stretches 1.4 kilometers. For those wishing to escape the crowds of Haeundae, this is a good alternative – it is still busy during the peak months, though. Gwangalli is a more family oriented beach than some others in Busan, offering a range of beach activities including windsurfing, jet skiing and water skiing.
Hyeopjae Beach /협재 해수욕장 – Jeju Island
If you are visiting Jeju Island during the summer, Hyeopjae needs to be on your list of places to see. The sprawling shoreline stretches for 9km while the beach holds approximately 6000 people.
You can go kite surfing, snorkel to check out Jeju’s fish, or just take in the views of Mount Hallasan and the Jeju coast.
Jungmun Beach /중문 해수욕장 –Jeju Island
Jungmun may be a relatively small beach, but the incredible scenery makes it one the most popular locations for shooting Korea dramas, movies and advertisements. It even plays host to a Beach Film Festival in the summer. To the right of Jungmun beach there is Haesikgul Cave, a natural sea cave. It’s a huge attraction here.
Sangju Beach /상주 해수욕장 – Sangju, Gyeongsangnam-do
Also known as Sangju Silver Sand beach, this plays host to visitors all year round. From sun seekers in the summer, to student campers in spring and autumn, to athletes who come to train during the harsh winter months. The beach’s soft, silver sand, nearby hikes, shallow waters and campsite make for an ideal family getaway. Sangju is the largest beach on Korea’s south coast and there is also plenty in terms of shopping and accommodation nearby.
Naksan Beach /낙산 해수욕장– Yangyang-gun, Gangwon-do
Located close to Mount Seoraksan – a popular national park and beloved hiking destination – Naksan beach is a 4km strip of coastline with a capacity of about 100,000 people. Naksansa Temple, one of Korea’s most well-known temples, can be found just 4km north of the beach. Other facilities found here are volleyball, a wrestling ring, and a 10,000 capacity car park.
Sokcho Beach /속초 해수욕장 – Sokcho, Gangwon-do
The beach in Sokcho, found high on the east coast, is just one of the many reasons people come here in their droves each year. The 500 meters of beach that is open to the public is set against a dramatic landscape. Visitors to the beach often combine it with hikes on some of the numerous trails offered at Mount Seoraksan.
Gyeongpodae Beach /경포대 해수욕장 – Gangneung, Gangwon-do
Gyeongpodae beach is located about 50km south of Sokcho and just east of Odaesan National Park. It is the longest of the east beaches at about 6km. The beach and surrounding area (Gyeongpodae) attract visitors each year to the numerous festivals held (Beach Dance Festival, Traditional Literary Festival, Festival of Cherry Blossoms, Beach Festival). Gyeongpodae, the place itself, is famed for its sunrises and moonrises. During the summer, visitors can partake in fly fishing, bungee jumping, boating, water-skiing and other things.
Guryongpo Beach /구룡포 해수욕장 – Pohang, Gyeongsanbuk-do
In Korean mythology, nine dragons, in the midst of a huge thunderstorm, emerged from the sea at Guryongpo beach and flew into the sky. That is where the beach got its name, literally ‘nine dragons’. For those who want to partake in some fishing, the rocks off the coast are an ideal vantage point to catch something. The beach is relatively small in comparison to some of the other beaches on the east side, but offers plenty for visitors. The comparatively mild winter temperatures make it a very popular destination for people looking to get some beach time in, during the chillier months.
Daecheon Beach /대천 해수욕장 – Boryeong, Chungcheongnam-do
This beach is found in Boryeong-si, the site of the internationally famous and not to be missed Boryeong Mud Festival (mid-July). A lot of Daecheon’s appeal lies in visiting the mudpack house on the far left hand side of the beach. However, there are loads more things to experience here at the biggest west coast beach. The 3.5km beach has a huge capacity of half a million people and a camping site, 10,000 capacity car park and a tourist information center (only open from July-August).
Eurwangni Beach /을왕리 해수욕장 – Jung-gu, Incheon
Eurwangni is a location ideal for those living in Seoul and Gyeonggi-do that just don’t have the time to get all the way to the south or east coasts. The beach here is convenient and can be done in a single day trip, whereas many of Korea’s beaches require at least an overnight stay. Tread carefully, though, as the shells buried in amongst the white sand can hurt your bare feet. The sea remains shallow until a far distance out, so it is great for younger kids. There are many activities to watch and get involved in. Jet skiing, banana boating, and beach wrestling are all on the agenda here.
Mallipo Beach /말리포 해수욕장 – Taean-gun, Chungcheongnam-do
If it’s great scenery you are searching for, then Mallipo beach is an excellent place to visit. Stretching along the furthermost mainland part of Taean, the beach is part of Taean Coastal Marine National Park. With a capacity of 100,000 people, plenty of people fill the beach during the summer months. Mallipo is one of the ‘Eight Scenic Views of Taean’ listed by the national park. The other seven are easily accessible if you have one full day or a weekend to tour around the park.
Byeonsan Beach /변산 해수욕장 – Buan-gun, Jeollabuk-do
More than a million people come to Byeongsan beach to enjoy the fir forest, white sands, and shallow, calm waters.