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Thursday, 20 March 2014

Yongdusan Park + Busan Tower, Busan Jung-gu: Main Attraction of Busan Metropole

Yongdusan Park a.k.a Mount Yongdu Park (Hanja: 龍頭山公園) in Gwangbok-dong 2-ga, Busan Jung-gu, is one of the 3 well-known mountains in Busan. Its old name is Mount Songhyeon, which means a mountain has a view of the sea through the dense fine tree forest. Later the name has changed into Yongdusan. It came from its shape, which is similar to dragon head and people thought it has a spirit to defeat enemies coming over the sea.

On the mountain were shrine built by Japanese people during Japanese colonial role, but now are Cheokhwabi monument (the stone monument to the exclusion of foreigners from the country), Chunghontap (memorial tower for Korean War victims), 4.19 Revolution monument (the student's anti-government revolt), the statue of Admiral Yi Sunshin (the Great Joseonese Admiral during Japanese Imjin Invasion) and Busan Tower. 

During Korean War, displaced people built houses on it even on the top, but 2 times of big fires took all them away making it bald mountain. Since then, fierce efforts to plant trees have created such beautiful park. The name of the park was once Unam Park in the time of the Liberal Party’s ruling but it went back to Yongdusan Park after April revolution (1960). It is a place with beautiful scenery. Especially the night landscape from Busan tower is magnificent.

Busan Tower (Hanja: 釜山타워) at 37-55 Yongdusan Street/Yongdusan-gil, Gwangbok-dong 2-ga 1-2 beonji, Busan Jung-gu is a symbol of Busan that stands proudly 69m above sea level at a height of 120m. The top of the tower is modeled after the baldaquin of Dabotap Pagoda in Bulguksa Temple, Gyeongju, Northern Gyeongsang. Beloved by Busan citizens and tourists alike, the tower offers a stunning night view and plenty to see, such as the Statue of the Great Admiral Yi Sunshin, the Bell of the Citizens, a flower clock, the Museum of Musical Instruments of the World, and a bust of the Busan-based independent activist, Baeksan Ahn Hee-je.

On the first floor of the tower is a souvenir shop that sells Korean traditional handicrafts like masks, key chains, wallets, pottery, dolls, pearl fans and more. At the top is an observatory (designed after the baldaquin of Dabotap Pagoda in Bulguksa Temple) where the entire city of Busan can be seen. Moreover, there are several rest areas as well as musical instrument museum and a cultural relic exhibit hall in the vicinity of Busan Tower.