Visiting Busan, South Korea


Busan was the very first Asian city we’d visited outside Japan, and I was thrilled to finally experience a different corner of the world. Our daughter’s passport had just arrived, so we booked a flight and hopped out of town.

We stayed near one of the famous outdoor seafood markets, and just walking around gave us so many new-to-us things to explore.

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I will always stop for street art.

Busan, South Korea with kids

I wasn’t sure what to expect from Busan. Since our daughter’s passport came through at the last minute, we hadn’t planned very much for the trip. I was a bit sad at not going to Seoul, where I thought there’d be more to do. Then we actually got to Busan.

And there were coffee shops on every block AND it was gorgeous.

Busan with kids

It wouldn’t be a trip with me without a mandatory fun trip to a temple. We visited the stunning Haedong Yongungsa, a cliffside Buddhist temple built in the 14th century. It was our first ‘overseas’ temple beyond Japan’s Buddhist and Shinto shrines, and it was incredible how different they could be.

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Every animal from the Chinese zodiac. Happy Year of the Dog!

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During my study abroad semester in Europe, I just had to recreate the pose of every statue I saw. It’s nice to see how much I’ve matur– oh wait.

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Trying to teach my son my statue-imitating ways… he’s being the dragon in the background here.

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Mulan shoutout! Just kidding. I don’t think the Buddhist monks who built this in the 14th century had seen that yet. OR HAD THEY?

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Obviously one of our favorite aspects of Korea was the food. It was delicious. Sometimes spicy, but so flavorful and fresh.

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Beach street art! New life goal for my forever home.

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Without a lot of set plans, we wandered through the streets, discovering community foot baths, which was way cooler in Korea than maybe it would be in the U.S.

busan with kids

We also paid a visit to the Busan Sea Life Aquarium, which showcased and named animals exactly like I would if I were in charge of such things.

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