This year’s festival – 1-10 April 2015!
There are lots of cherry blossom cool spots in Korea. At the same latitude, cherry blossom in Korea somehow come a little later than Japan; and their locations are often more spontaneous – unlike Japan, they may not be planted orderly in a park or heritage sites, instead, you find them lining up on the side of the road, or randomly grown in nature.
Some travelers (in this case, the flower viewers) decide where to go depending on where the cherries are blooming during their time of visit. As for the annual Jinhae Gunhangje, it’s a designated cherry blossom Festival held in this navy harbor – and it’s now around the corner! Mark it down on your travel calendar and it’s definitely a highlight of your trip to Busan.
I put Jinhae in my Busan trip’s itinerary as I saw the beautiful picture on travel websites and found this breathtaking stream called Yeojwacheon. The Yeojwacheon Stream’s Wooden Walkway offers a unique view of the cherry blossom on top and canola flowers at the bottom along the stream. Taking photos in the middle of the footbridge across the stream, the far end is just perfect as a vanishing point of the photo; and that’s where I headed straight away once I got off the bus in Jinhae.
My plan for the day:
Taking off in Busan > Jinhae > Yeojwacheon Stream’s Wooden Walkway > Jangboksan Sculpture Park > Jinhae Gunhagje – Jinhae Jungwon Rotary Intersection and Jinhae area > Jinhae Naval Museum > Jehwangsan Park > Final Walk Around the Festival and street performance
Taking off in Busan in the morning, go to Sasang station by subway. Go to Exit 5 you will soon find the bus terminal (부산서부시외버스터미널information: www.busantr.com). Simply buy tickets at the counter and it takes around 1 hour to Jinhae by bus.
Once got off the bus we took a map @ the tourist counter, and as I said we headed straight to the highlight location. We walked along the main street, headed north and finally arrived at the Yeojwacheon stream in about 20 minutes.
The Yeojwacheon is a long walkway and, therefore, we took our time enjoying the amazing view. There were all sorts of hawkers and rickshaw ride along the road, and at some point, we could go down and walk along the stream for some distance. The Jangboksan Sculpture Park was a little further away from the end of Yeojwacheon, and by then we were quite far away from the bus terminal. Trying not to walk the same way in return, we saved some time by taking bus number 35 (or 37) and got back to the festival site by lunchtime.
Once a year, the steaming food stalls, blooming flowers and carnival festivities spice up this little town’s quietness and celebrate the coming of spring. Sitting down in one of the food stalls we could go to the front of the counter, and point out all the delicacies that we love to eat. Trust me, I never say no to Kimchi :). After the meal, we carried on our journey to the Jinhae Navel Museum. It was a navy facilities which turned into an exhibition site during the festivals, and there was a shuttle bus that took us from the festival to the museum ~
There were statues, monuments, signs here and there, just follow the crowded and you couldn’t possibly go wrong. After the visiting, we took the shuttle bus and returned to the original site to our last stop of the day in Jinhae – the Jehwangsan Park. It was not high up on the hill, we walked up the peak anyway, or visitors could take the monorail ~ (http://monorail.cwsisul.or.kr/). There was a long queue outside the elevator to the tower since there was the only one available; we waited around 30 minutes but then we had a 360-degree panoramic view of Jinhae. 🙂
It was a bit of a shame that we didn’t have enough time to go up the Amin Road – Google it, it’s a road on the hill with Cherry trees lined up along the road. If visitors don’t rent a car, it is possible to go there by taxi (but make sure you have the contacts or able to call one on the way back). However, now this road is extremely famous, the traffic is horrendous at peak hours, and peak seasons and you might be stuck on the road…
Also heard that there are fireworks during the festival time. Totally Fab ~