Most people who want to study the Korean language in Korea usually choose the capital of Seoul as their destination. However, there are many other places in the country where you can feel the calm vibes in the morning. In this article, we will discuss why Busan is a great place to live in and study Korean.
The characteristics of the city of Busan
As the country’s second largest city and one of the world’s largest ports, Busan is located on the southeast coast of Korea, overlooking the sea. If you are a person who loves the sea and cannot live without it, then this is the city for you. Within Busan are a number of huge beaches, including Korea’s most famous, Haeundae. What makes Busan even more unique is that it also offers mountainous landscapes. We’re not talking about dizzying heights, but it is very common to find several mountains in the city and some of them overlooking the sea. Whether it’s one or the other, this place offers a spectacular natural environment, from trekking to walking on the beach. If you decide to live in Busan, you will certainly appreciate the nature of the place.
In addition to the nature aspect, you can also get in touch with the traditional and modern aspects of the place. Busan is currently undergoing a period of rapid growth, with skyscrapers and futuristic buildings popping up like mushrooms; a clear example being the almost complete Haeundae LCT The Sharp complex, which will become the second tallest in Korea.
As for the traditional side, you’ll get a feel for it in old-traditional style neighbourhoods such as the beautiful Nampo-dong, which has a unique atmosphere, or in the many Buddhist temples that are adorned with colourful lanterns on Buddha’s birthday and provide a unique and wonderful experience.
What to do in Busan
As Busan is not the capital city, there will obviously be fewer cultural activities and events, but it does offer a lot of festivals, including some of the most famous and beautiful in Korea. We’re talking about the Busan International Film Festival and the Busan Fireworks Festival, where the fireworks are shot off from the Gwangalli Bridge, in a spectacular display. But that’s not all. Throughout the year, the city is full of events you can participate in such as comic cons or K-Pop activities. If you like cinema, then being in Busan is a good thing, because you can visit museums and many events dedicated to the seventh art.
What if you want to have fun and go out with friends and take a break from studying? On these occasions, living in Busan offers numerous alternatives. The city centre, Seomyeon, is a meeting point for all young people in the evenings and especially at weekends, so you won’t have any difficulty meeting people from all over the world. In addition there is Haeundae and Nampo-dong. Haeundae is super crowded in summer, both in the main street and in it is a small but very interesting traditional market, as it is located near the beach. Nampo-dong, besides having the largest fish market in Korea (the Jagalchi Market), is filled with lots of decorations around Christmas time. These are all activities that you can do during your study period here.
Advantages of living in Busan
If you decide to study and live in Busan, you will have many advantages. Firstly, the cost of living will be lower than Seoul and you will be able to manage your finances better. In addition, and most importantly, the weather in this part of Korea is much less extreme. This means that the winters, although still cold, will be warmer and more bearable. It’s also more bearable during the summer as it won’t be as hot thanks to the presence of the sea breeze.
An added bonus is that while you’re working hard to study standard Korean in school, walking the streets or being helped by the teachers themselves, you’ll get to experience the local dialect, known in Korea for its harsh but friendly tones.
In this city, as many people don’t use the standard language, you’ll have to adapt and learn to juggle both basic Korean and the Busan dialect. Finally, you’ll be able to enjoy the freshest seafood, as well as many local dishes. The location makes it easier to visit cities such as the ancient Gyeongju, the beautiful Jeolla Mountains, Daegu, and Jinhae, famous for its cherry blossom festival.
Living in Busan and attending a language course here has advantages in all respects. If you decide to take this step, you will not regret it.