Surrounded by mountainous landscapes, Yangsan is a riverside city on the northern outskirts of Busan. It’s home to South Korea’s famous “temple without a Buddha”, as well as a lively theme park and country club.
Things to do in Yangsan
Visit the head temple of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism at Tongdosa, nestled in the foothills of Mt.Chiseosan. It features seven pagodas where the Buddha’s relics are housed, including a robe, begging bowl and bone from his skull that were brought from Tang China in 646AD.
The road that leads up to the temple passes through a forest known as “pine trees dancing in the wind” and is scattered with hermitages in a diverse range of architectural styles. Admire the mural depicting a boat as it escorts the deceased to paradise, then stop by the temple museum where an extensive collection of Buddhist artwork is displayed.
For the best views of the city, travel to the top of the Yangsan Tower where you’ll find 360-degree panoramic views of the city from the observatory. Grab a bite to eat at the on-site cafe while soaking up the vistas and peruse the collection of books at the library.
At the foot of Mount Yeongchwisan is the sprawling theme park of Tongdo Fantasia, which features a large swimming pool, natural lake and more than 30 different amusement rides. Fancy a round of golf? Head to the nearby Tongdo Finest Country Club to tackle 18 holes that offer scenic views of the area.
Getting around Yangsan
Yangsan is a 30-minute train ride from Busan and slightly further from Gimhae International Airport. Buses connect all corners of Yangsan, with inter-city services to Ulsan, Changwon and Gyeongju.