Walk along the Haeundae Beach deep in thought while looking out at the open sea to reach the cozy Dongbaekseom Island located at the end. Formerly an island, the coastal trail is now connected to the land through years of sedimentation. The people of Busan, however, still refer to the place as Dongbaekseom Island.
Dongbaek Park, built with the natural elements of the area still intact, is a beautiful place with a dense habitation of black pine. The 950 m long coastal trail formed around Dongbaekseom Island is just enough to take a leisurely stroll and organize the day’s work.
Walk a bit longer past the first observatory deck to see a lone rock statue. The Mermaid Statue was sculpted based on the myth of Princess Hwangok recorded in Samguk yusa (Memorabilia of the Three Kingdoms). Princess Hwangok, who married into a family that lived far away, consoled her longing for her homeland by looking out into the night sea when the full moon illuminated the ocean.
First installed in 1974, the statue was damaged in the 1987 typhoon. With the statue’s remaining upper body stored at the Busan Museum, the statue currently on view at Dongbaekseom Island was newly sculpted in 1989.
Walk along the connecting sea path to reach the Suspension Bridge. On parts of the bridge, you can see the ocean below. The bridge, however, is fairly short and installed on a moderately high location, which means that even those with fear of heights, including children, may safely cross.
The coastal trail connects to a white lighthouse and a wide observatory, where you can look out into the ocean to see the Nurimaru APEC House and Gwangandaegyo Bridge. Turn your gaze a bit to the left to see the Oryukdo Islets. This is a great spot to view the sea of Busan all at once.
The Nurimaru APEC House hosted the Busan APEC Summit in 2005. At the main meeting room, the circular formation of the chairs of Asian and Pacific leaders who attended the summit are on display alongside the meals and gifts provided during the event. The modern exterior perfectly harmonizes with the magnificent view of Haeundae, making the venue a unique international meeting place.
At Dongbaekseom Island, you can experience the ocean, forest, and nature in their natural state. Walk along the coastline, and view the symbolic architecture that represents Busan. The Dongbaek Coastal Trail is a must-visit destination during your trip to Haeundae.