Busan is the second largest city in South Korea, after Seoul. It is a city by the sea, with a very important commercial port and it holds one of the most relevant cinema festivals in Asia.
Maybe because of its location by the sea, and because of its artsy spirit, being in Busan brought me a déjà vu feeling of my time living in Barcelona. Both are sea port cities with a very strong and colorful character, self consciousness, and love for art.
Busan offers a high contrast between its busy downtown and its remote temples, both in the surrounding mountains or by the sea.
I took the three pictures above in Beomeosa Temple, in the outskirts of a mountain surrounding the city. This place was far less crowded than the Haedong Yonggungsa Temple, by the sea. Its location near the mountains, totally surrounded by forest, together with the religious chants of the monks, gave the temple a very solemn atmosphere.
The place is also the start for a two-three hours trek that climbs one of the surrounding mountains. The views from the top of the mountain are spectacular, although I was so exhausted after the walk that I forgot to take any picture.
It is very easy and actually a good idea to “get lost” in the streets of Busan. Wander around with my film camera in hand led me to very unique places, like the narrow alleys of Gamcheon district, a residential area full of colourful houses on a hill facing the sea.
These little monk figurines where all around in Haedong Yonggungsa Temple.