Saturday, March 23, 2013

South Korea Day 3: Haeundae Beach

We caught the metro down to Haeundae Station on Line 2 and took Exit 3, heading down the road toward the beach until a small alley way caught our attention on the left. There was a sign to indicate that this was a traditional market, but was it the Haeundae market we were looking for? We were interested to visit it, and soak up the beachside atmosphere of the town.

Venturing into the unknown...

Haeundae appears to be a fusion between the traditional seaside town and an up and coming modern hangout with pubs and cafes springing up all over alongside the relatively new big hotel establishments. The beach boasts power surfs and fine sand, and is a bustle of activity with the young and old engaged in recreational arts and sports such as music and cycling. Tourists litter the beach posing for photographs with the pounding waves in the background.

We decided to walk through the market and were immediately overcome with a stimulation of our senses, especially that of smell. The fish market 'aroma' was at first overwhelming, especially to the children who were not used to it.

An array of fresh fish...

Octopus in black ink.

Sea cucumbers.

Small abalones in a tub.

Large sized venus clams were common throughout the trip.

Large whelks (Family Melongenidae) were common there.

Checking out the dogfishes.

Fresh vegetables... finally something fresh that does not wriggle and squirm.

Eateries and displays line both side of the walking street.

The alley way opened up into a well lit corridor lined on both sides with stalls marketing mainly fresh produce of seafood, fruits, vegetables, and things to eat. There were a handful of restaurants who parade their live seafood stash of abalones, whelks, flat fish, king crab, and enchinoderms such as sea cucumbers and other worms. Some ladies were sitting at the road side splitting sea urchins.

Typical display of God's creativity.

Sea urchin contents sold by the bag!

Before settling down in a restaurant to satisfiy daddy's craving for shellfish, we picked up some peanut pancake and steamed sweet potato to snack on as we continued to our exploration of the market.

Ahjuma shows us how it is done.
These were really good!

Complex carbohydrates!

After a little exploration, we decided to settle down in a little streetside eatery. Daddy requested a basket to choose his snaily friends and picked out a couple of whelks, scallops, and an abalone. They were quickly washed out and the scallops split, before being whizzed in a wok and placed over a gas stove in front of us with a little water. There was a slight struggle before the snails succumbed to the steaming and before we knew it, the smell of garlic boiled escargot filled the air before us. The meat was teased out of the shell skillfully with the wield of a chopstick and snipped up with a pair of scissors to make bite sized morsels, that went well with red sauce and wasabe served with pickled carrots, cabbage, kimchi, and radish. The kids had none of it, and the fare was only enjoyed by the adults today.

Typical display of seafood in front of an eating house.

Step 1: Choose your food; Step 2: wash thoroughly.


Step 3: steam well!

Mussel soup to go wash down the main dish.

Freshly steamed scallop.

Steamed abalone: it doesn't get any fresher than this... ten minutes ago it was still crawling around in the tank.

Dipped in red sauce.

Melongenidae with operculum... pure fat and protein!
After the escargot snack, it was getting late and we decided to stroll down and soak up the beachside atmosphere before heading back to the city. The kids had some time to play by the beach as we admired the waves.

People enjoying the well maintained walking paths by the sea.

Building our own dreams one handful of sand at a time.

Before we knew it, it was time to brush off the sand and make our way back to the hotel. On the subway, the kids were starting to feel tired, and we quickly made a stop at a nearby traditional eating house for a Korean styled dinner.

Kimbap roll for post dinner snack.

Vegetable dumplings.

kimchi soup.

The local eatery.
The hotel is just across the road from the restaurant so it was great to return to the warmth shortly after a good meal.


  1. Thanks for sharing. Enjoyed all the pics and descriptions of your adventure. Hoping to travel there this summer ourselves.

    1. Hi Joan, thanks for the comment! Glad your found this useful. Feel free to drop us a message or email if you've got any queries. We'll be making a trip back middle of this year!

  2. thanks for sharing. I really love all your adventures. I am planning to visit Korea in this coming May with my mom only. Will there be a problem for us since I can't speak Korean? I am so worried actually, but decided to be lost there. hahaha Anyway,how much did you pay for that seafood lunch? was that expensive?

  3. HI Jenny,

    So sorry for the late reply. I have been very busy with work. How is your planning coming along for this coming May? One thing to note when travelling with a senior. There is a lot of walking so it would be advisable to include more rest time for your mother.

    If you cant speak Korean, you can always rely on the international language - sign language. My husband went around on his own on his very first day in Seoul without a single word of Korean and he managed to get by, with lots of pointing and acting out what he was trying to say. The people there are generally helpful, though they may have difficulty understanding what you are trying to say. If you are going to Busan, the accent there is different from Seoul so most people find it difficult to comprehend what the locals are trying to say. Other than that, moving around using the subway is very convenient.

    You would do just great. Do let me know if you have any other questions. When is your trip?


    The seafood lunch was really cheap. We paid about less than S$20 for the whole thing.