Gijang-gun of Busan has the 8 Great Sights. Among them, Ilgwang Beach is the most famous and popular one. It is one of 7 beaches in Busan. While other beaches in Busan offer energetic and dynamic vibes, this sandy place welcomes you with a peaceful and cozy atmosphere.
On This Post
- Information about Ilgwang Beach
- Ilgwang Beach
- Cafe Queen
- More Things to Do in the Area
- Ilgwang Beach in Korean Movies and Kdramas
Information about Ilgwang Beach
Location & Map
17, Samseong 3-gil, Ilgwang-eup, Gijang-gun, Busan, South Korea
How to get there
- Ride Donghae Line and get off at Ilgwang station (일광/K124), Exit 1, and then walk 1km (0.6mile) to the beach.
- Ride Bus, No. 180, 182, or 188. Get off at Ilgwang Haesuyokjang Ipgu (일광해수욕장 입구 / Ilgwang beach) bus stop.
- Street parking is available but it could be really hard to get a spot during busy times.
How to pronounce Ilgwang Beach
일광해수욕장 /il-gwang-hae-soo-yok-jang/: Ilgwang is the name of the area. Haesooyokjang means a beach, especially where people can swim.
- Phone: +82-51-709-5446
The beauty of Ilgwang Beach goes way back to Goryeo Dynasty. People have appreciated the beach and the surrounding area since then.
The water in this area is shallower than other beaches in Busan. The waves are quieter here as well, thus the beach is popular for families with young kids. Normally, beaches offer endless horizon views of the ocean, but Ilgwang Beach provides visitors with a view that comes in one glance. Here the sea is surrounded by land areas just like a fish bowl. That’s why visitors to this pocket beach feel cozy and relaxed. In addition, this beach is less crowded than other beaches in Busan because it is located further from downtown Busan. It gets quite crowded during the peak summer season, though.
Recently, Ilgwang Beach has become even more attractive thanks to the variety of marine sports that the beach offers. Visitors can enjoy Jetski, Flying Fish, Banana Boat, Wake Board, and more. On New Year’s Day, the beach becomes a perfect place to welcome the year’s first sunrise.
Festivals on Ilgwang Beach
Ilgwang Beach is home to Gijang Gaetmaeul Festival every summer. Gijang County organizes this festival to commemorate the novel and movie, Gaetmaeul, in which the protagonist lives in this area. In addition, the place held the biannual Sea Art Festival in 2021. Busan Sea Art Festival is a biannual art festival held on one of the beaches in Busan. The festival started in 1987 and the previous hosting beaches include Dadaepo Beach and Songdo Beach. Find more information about Sea Art Festival on its website.
You can walk along a wooden deck trail at the beach’s southern end.
You can park along the street for free, but it could get really crowded during busy times.
Ilgwang Culture Street sign and a picture of Gosan Yun Seondo from the Joseon Dynasty, who is one of the grand masters of Korean sijo, which is a traditional Korean poetic form.
My wife and I wanted to have quick bites so we chose Cafe Queen and had Mozzarella toast and coffee. You can order a take-out or dine-in. It has a quite nice roof-top area as well.
Ilgwang Beach offers a variety of restaurants and cafes from seafood to brunch.
More Things To Do In The Area
If you are a fan of fresh seafood (especially raw seafood), you would love this part of Busan. At the southern end of the beach, several pojangmacha (food tents) on Hakri breakwater (학리방파제 /hak-ri-bang-pa-je/) welcome guests. It would be quite an interesting experience to enjoy seafood in the open area while watching the ocean.
A bit further from the beach, the Chilam neighborhood is filled with heotjib (raw fish restaurants). Drive south and you will find the photogenic Jukseong Church. Plus, the coastline from Ilgwang Beach is dotted with numerous cafes and restaurants with breathtaking ocean views.
Ilgwang Beach in Korean Movies and Dramas
While walking along the beach, you will see the statue of Haesun, the main character of the novel, Gaetmaeul, and the movie with the same title. She was a haenyeo, a woman diver, who was born and raised in the fishing village in the novel. The fishing village in the story is based on Ilgwang Beach.
Some other Korean movies and Kdramas were filmed in this neck of the woods as well. The list includes Fight For My Way, The Sheriff in Town, Entertainer, and My Brother.
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