In Busan: Igidae Coastal Walk

Back in November, I did the Igidae Coastal Walk with my friend and her parents. It was a beautiful day so it was a perfect time to walk along it. The whole walk takes about 3 hours to complete. I’m not in shape and I’m not a hiker so there were some points that left me out of breath. It was an amazing experience.

The walk spans from Namcheon to Oryukdo, about 4.7 km (about 3 miles). We live closer to Namcheon, so that is where we started our trek. I’ve been in Namcheon before, but never really walked past the big MegaMart. Past there is a nice walkway by the ocean and can be a great morning walk on the weekends.

Toward the start of the walk there were a couple of these bridges that you had to walk across that hung over the water. It was pretty cool although they moved a little as you walked on them. The scenery as you walk along the coast is just spectacular.

According to a little plaque on the journey, there is a cool story to the name Igidae.

“When the Japanese invaded Joseon in the late 16th century, they conquered Suyeongseong Fortress and held a feast to celebrate their victory at a high, open spot that commanded pleasant scenery. Two Korean gisaeng (female professional entertainers) were taken to the feast. They seized a drunken Japanese commander and jumped into the sea as a reprisal against the Japanese invasion of their homeland. Thus, the name Igidae, which means two gisaeng, was given to this place.”

Generally, the path along the coast isn’t interrupted. There was a point where it felt like we were climbing stairs forever and I had to take a break. But, you usually can see the ocean the whole time. The day we went, however, a section of the path was under construction so we had to take an unexpected detour into the woods. This is where it got rough.

It required climbing and holding onto whatever you could (because it was so slippery and there were so many rocks). There was a rope tied along the trees that you hung onto if you needed it, since it was such a steep climb.

Thankfully, my friend and her parents weren’t impatient waiting for me at all, what with all the breaks I took. Luckily we were close to the end so after all the uphill trekking it was only downhill from there.

We started the walk at maybe 10 in the morning and we reached Oryukdo at around 1PM. I had never been to Oryukdo before this day, but it was definitely really beautiful (just like anywhere in Busan).

We went over to the Oryukdo Skywalk, which was pretty busy, hung around for a bit and took the bus back home. It was a tiring day, but worth it in the end.