Friday, May 28, 2010

South Korea - Part 5 Busan!

I'm ashamed to admit that we lived in South Korea for two years and never visited Busan. Busan is at the tip of the peninsula and is a huge port. In fact, our ocean shipment came from Busan when we moved to Korea. Busan is Hellena's home town and she wanted us to see her childhood home.

We took the train from Seoul and it was only about 2 1/2 hours. We arrived to a cool, overcast day. The first stop was a galbi restaurant that Hellena had gone to a lot with her family. It was HUGE and reminded me more of a hotel. She says there a lot of restaurants that size in Busan. The photo above is the front of the restaurant.

Here is Busan from the ocean. Hellena says the water is very cold year round.

There were a lot of walking paths and the scenery was beautiful.

It was the tail end of the cherry blossoms.

In one of the pagodas, people wrote their names and the date they were there so we did it too.

The cherry blossom petals reminded me of snow.

Busan is also know for puffer fish which is called bok in Korean. The chef has to been licensed by South Korea to be able prepare this fish. If prepared incorrectly it can be fatal. The week we were there a businessman in China was on life support for eating puffer fish prepared by an untrained chef. It is also very expensive. Hellena has had it before and she says that it doesn't taste good. We passed on this experience.

This didn't look much more appetizing to me.

We met up with Hellena's best girlfriends from childhood for dinner. They took us to a restaurant famous in all of Korea for it's tofu.

So famous that a former President had eaten there.

Hellena took my picture with the wall of fame. The restaurant was packed but being the foreigners we managed to get a room. The tofu was in a stew that was delicious and all the side dishes were very good too.

By then, it was after 10pm and we went to a hotel for the night. The three girls in one room and Curt and I in another. It was fun to see that the hotel souvenir shop had maedeup.

I don't think the girls got much sleep that night but they were so happy to see each other. One just broke up with her fiance because he didn't have any money and he didn't seem to be motivated to earn money. The other friend is married and her husband works for the family business which is the Korean mafia. Fascinating.
Her husband was out to dinner and she didn't tell him she wasn't coming home because she didn't want him to get too drunk. He tends to drink less if she is waiting at home for him.

One more day in Busan!


  1. I've never been to Busan! (Or Pusan... darn romanization changes....)

    I love the big maedeup wall hangings.

    Our friend Mr. Ha runs a puffer fish restaurant in Cheonan now. (I've never had it. Don't think I really want to!)

  2. I think the signature at the tofu restaurant is actually the current president. Maybe they meant, before he was the president.

    I don't blame you on the puffer fish. I had it once, but I could not enjoy it because I was scared. But next time you're in Korea, I do recomment trying the eel. It looks gross in the tank, but the way they grill it with the's so delicious.

    Great pictures! And I enjoyed seeing your wedding picture as well. So cute!

  3. 你要保守你的心,勝過保守一切,因為一生的果效是由心發出..................................................


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