Busan on cruise stopover Trip report - DIY

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Orlando, FL
6 Posts
Joined Aug 2018
I took a summer cruise and Busan was a port with a day to spend exploring. I decided not to take an arranged tour and explored on my own to check things out around the main city area which included street markets, shopping and the famous Jagalchi Fish Market. I knew very little prior to arrival and want to share my experience for others that maybe in a similar situation.

I was on the Princess Diamond and transportation shuttles ran on a regular basis to drop off and pick up in the downtown shopping district. There's nothing "at" the cruise port besides a mobile currency exchange and shuttles and you'll need to get some type of transportation to explore. Once dropped off there was plenty of things to see and do to keep you busy for day. We didn't do any temples or shrines and stuck to exploring the local street markets and shopping and walking around the area.

Highly recommend walking around the Jagalchi Fish market area. This is a huge area and you'll be amazed with the different types of seafood and creatures being offered with many places cooking right in front of you. Even if you don't eat or purchase anything, it's a site to see.

Shopping in the area includes a lot of street vendors but there is also a modern mall with the Lotte department store. Both the street vendors and mall offer a lot of food options also.

Overall a good day walking around downtown and seeing the different sites and culture. Obviously would like more than a single day but easy and a lot to explore around town if you choose to do something similar.

I made a video from the day if interested or feel free to reply if you have any questions if you're planning something similar.

Raleigh, NC USA
1,897 Posts
Joined Oct 2001
Thank you, DrakesTravel. You've just saved me hours of research and planned out day in Busan.

AND - welcome to cruise critic. I hope you'll post more of your experiences with the Asian ports.
Orlando, FL
6 Posts
Joined Aug 2018
Here's a couple pics from the ship off each side since I received some questions of which port or dock. Don't know the specific name of terminal but this will provide an idea of location. I saw someone elses video which required them to take a shuttle across the "bridge" and this was not the case when we docked this summer (June 2018).

1,114 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
This is Great. Will be there in Oct. Now I know what I'll be doing. No tours just walking around and taking in the sites.
Thanks for posting this. Great Job
Orlando, FL
6 Posts
Joined Aug 2018
Most of the "street" vendors will require cash. I thought it was interesting that after I exchanged money at the pier, I found out that the frequent shuttle service ($10USD) was booked to the room so cash for that wasn't needed. Most retail and businesses "in" a building took credit cards. If you're going to Japan, I found more cash only places there. In theory if you're not going to buy anything from local vendors, you can likely get buy without any cash but have a few major credit cards in case type not accepted or declined. So it depends on your spending interest but you can get buy with a little cash and use credit cards for major purchases. Of course you're going to get fees each time you convert money so something to think about both ways. We didn't use any public transportation or taxis so can't comment on that. Hope this helps.
Newbury Park, CA
468 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
We were there on August 10th also on the Diamond Princess and did a self tour. If you go to Lotte, try the basement (B1) food court. We had a great lunch and were able to order without much hassle. However, finding a seat can be problem if you go around lunch time. Many of the staff / crew and casino dealers from the Diamond Princess were also at the food court and pointed out what to order.

Note that there were a number of bank ATM's at Lotte if you want to get Won. The ATM's on the street and convenient stores charge fees above and beyond the normal bank ATM's.