Busan Airport, formally known as Gimhae International Airport, was established in 1976 in Busan, the second largest city in South Korea. The airport, which operates both international and domestic flights, serves as the primary hub for Air Busan but is also used to a smaller extent for military purposes. There are two terminals at Busan Airport – a Domestic Terminal, and an International Terminal inaugurated in 2007. The airport has all the basic passenger amenities, such as free airport shuttle buses between terminals (5.50 am to 10.50 pm), free wireless Internet, Internet kiosks, ATMs, drinking water stations, and a variety of shopping and dining options. The currency used in South Korean is the Won. Located approximately 22 km from Busan Airport, travellers can get to the city center using the airport limousine or by boarding the Busan subway at Busan International Airport station on the purple line. There are also limousine bus services located just outside the International and Domestic terminals which will make multiple stops at the more popular tourist destinations and hotels.
As an urban modern metropolis, Busan is easily accessible via public transport. A travel essential for tourists is the Hanaro Card, which is a travel card that can be used for the subway, light rail, taxis, and local buses. The card costs ₩6,000, and will need to be topped up using automated kiosks located at subway stations or at selected convenience stores. If you want a fancy yet functional piece of memorabilia, the Hanaro Card can also be purchased in the form of mobile phone jewelry that you can hang it on your phone as you travel around. The prices for these ‘jewelry’ vary depending on the design. The four lines on the Busan subway service – Red (Line 1), Green (Line 2), Brown (Line 3), and Blue (Line 4) – will bring you to most of the tourist attractions. Rides are typically ₩1,300 or ₩1,500 depending on distance, and you can save some money with the Hanaro Card if you are transiting to another form of transportation. Taxis are also readily available, and fares can be paid for using the Hanaro Card as well.
Busan, the largest seaport in South Korea, is famous for its beautiful beaches, laidback vibes, and pristine nature spots. A great time to visit Busan is during the first 10 days of October, during the annual Busan International Film Festival. This festival is hugely popular and attracts long queues of people as it showcases many international films and usually premieres some of the best Korean films of that year. The events take place throughout Busan, although many are concentrated on Haeundae beach. Besides being famous for its beaches, such as Songjeong Beach or Gwangalli Beach, Busan also has some decent hiking trails which will take you through some important cultural landmarks like the Geumjeong Fortress or Seokbulsa Temple. Although most of the hiking trails are suitable for novices, travellers should go with a local or do some research beforehand as some of the routes are not well marked.
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