Across the street from Busan Station, there are many buildings adorned in Chinese characters and painted in red. It's Busan's Chinatown! There are a lot of traditional Chinese foods to be found, side-by-side with some Russian restaurants as well. If you are getting off the train from another Korean city at Busan Station, it is definitely worth a visit!
The front of a Chinese restaurant
There are many restaurants to choose from, and it smells amazing just walking down the street. There are also plenty of photo opportunities and some statues you can take pictures with.
The gates of Chinatown
Russian and Chinese letters light up next to each other down the streets. Being that it is not very crowded, it is a nice walk along the streets to discover more about Korea.
Along the walk you can find a wall with portraits of famous Chinese characters from Samguk Ji, a famous Chinese novel about different dynasties. Although the text is fictional, I have been told that it's a fun read and enlightens readers with a lot of great life lessons.
A dumpling store
You can sit down and eat food or you can get dumplings to go at the restaurant above. The history of Chinese dumplings is actually mentioned within the novel above. It is said that one "Medicine Saint" made dumplings with healing properties in the shape of ears to heal sick people who sometimes lost their own ears.
The main street of Chinatown is full of shops to explore, and although it is a little bit creepy at night, it is worth the visit! I would definitely suggest going during the day, but new explorations are always great!
After settling on a place, we were served some fried rice, dumplings, and soup. We tried to opt for more Chinese traditional foods, but of course there is always some kind of Korean influence. It was pretty delicious even though it was a mix of Chinese and Korean foods, a great infusion. You can get to Busan's Chinatown by taking line number one to Busan Station and walking across the street.
Be sure to also check out Incheon's Chinatown! It is a lot bigger and also a bit better than Busan's Chinatown.
After graduating from Emerson College with a BA in Writing, Literature, and Publishing, Ariel Rosen looked back on the semester she spent traveling around Europe and decided she must explore Asia. Her teaching job with ChungDahm April in Busan allows her to experience South Korea firsthand and with the enthusiasm of all the children she teaches. She is overjoyed to share a class with them and finds herself learning more from them and the bright beach city around her everyday.
Read Ariel’s blog here: http://arieldrosen.wordpress.com/