29 December 2010

I'm on my way to Taejongdae

Well that movie title thing didn't last too long.  But I do love movies, so I might still put the titles in from time to time.

In this article I'd like to give a little recap and history about the sights I've seen so far in Busan.  So let's start off with the places I visited on December 18th.

PIFF Square

Do they know they have a square removed from the side of their building?
This is the site of the Pusan International Film Festival, which takes place every year in October.  The area has 10 movie theaters in addition to some statues and hand prints from famous actors.  The Pusan International Film Festival, or 부산국제영화제, is one of the largest film festivals in Asia and focuses primarily on films from first-time directors.  The first festival, which was also the first international film festival in Korea, was held in 1996.  The festival screened 173 films from 31 countries in 1996 and has since grown to 355 films from 70 countries.  This year's festival is held from October 6th to the 14th so I might go check it out.

Jagalchi Fish Market
Jagalchi Market ( 자갈치시장 ) came into existence following the defeat of the Japanese Empire at the end of World War II.  The origins of the market's name are uncertain, but it is believed to have come from the word jagal, or 자갈, which means pebbles or gravel.  This could be in reference to the fact that the original market was surrounded by small rocks.  It is located at Busan Harbor and it is currently the largest seafood market in Korea and one of the largest in all of Asia.  You can seriously get anything that lives in the ocean at this market. 

And on to the sights from December 26th...

Chungnyeolsa ( 충렬사 ) is a shrine built to commemorate the soldiers who died during the Imjin War.  The shrine consists of 16 buildings and 92 memorial tablets in honor of the men who gave their lives defending Korea.  The shrine was originally constructed in 1605 (under the name Songgongsa), but was moved in 1625 and has received additions, reconstruction, and remodeling since that time.

Monument in front of Chungnyeolsa
Dongnae eupseong

Dongnae eupseong ( 동래 읍성 ) is a walled town that has existed in the Busan area since at least the eleventh century, and probably prior to that time.  The first records of the wall come from the year 1021, but it has been repaired and rebuilt multiple times.  Dongnae was actually one of the places targeted by the Japanese when they invaded in 1592.  It was also demolished in 1910 when the Japanese took over the Korean peninsula.  Nonetheless, it was interesting to tour around and it provided some fantastic views.

Taejongdae ( 태종대 ) is a park located on Yeong island in southern Busan. It as an area known for its beautiful rocky coastline and forests.  The name comes from King Taejong Muyeol of the Silla Dynasty, who supposedly enjoyed practicing archery in the area.

Cliffs leading from Taejongdae into the Korea Strait

So I am now all caught up on the history of the places I've traveled to so far.  I am really looking forward to going out in Daegu on New Years Eve and then heading up to Seoul for my 4 day weekend.

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