Being that this was my first experience of spring in Busan, for me it was all about the cherry blossom! I’d been hearing about the phenomenon for months, had seen the images splashed all over internet and longed to see the pretty pinks line the streets.
Now don’t get me wrong, cherry blossom season was lovely and we got in a couple of weekend photo shoots with our little family while the little ones danced around under pretty petals. But what I didn’t know was that, once the ‘cherry blossom’ moment had well and truly passed, then other flowers would come into blossom and whole festivals would be created around them in the hopes of drawing crowds and allowing everyone to make the most of the natural beauty of the surroundings in Busan. Spring continued to unfold before our very eyes….and it was lovely!
We decided to make a trip to the see the fields of Rape Blossom (locally known as the ‘Yuchae Flower’) which brighten the way along the Nakdong River at the Daejeo Ecological Park. While it’s not in the middle of the city, it is close to Gimhae airport and took us less than an hour to drive there from Haeundae, even in Saturday traffic. They hold an event in the area (this year it was held from April 11th to 19th) but generally it hits headlines a week or so after the cherry blossom mania dies down, so watch out for it in future years!
As you approach the area, you’ll see the yellow hue lingering near the Gupo Bridge and the sudden backlog of traffic will mean that you’re in the right place! Parking wasn’t the easiest task of the day so we decided to park a little way away and walk over which worked out much better.
The festival itself draws a lot of people but, as the event is over a space of 760,000 square meters, it never felt over busy and we could get lots of photos without masses of other people in the shot! There’s a main walkway through the ‘gardens’ and then you can head off down smaller, narrower routes that get you up close and personal to these yellow flowers in full bloom. The festival ensures that you have photo opportunities at every corner and have put up quirky photo frames for you to stand behind, princess chairs for you to sit in, and an array of colourful windmills and other delights to add just a splash more colour to your visit.
While the festival is running there are food and drink trucks set up, arts and crafts stalls offering activities, ice cream sellers, street food and they set up public rest rooms so you have everything you need for a couple of hours of wandering around and enjoying the moment. Beyond the rape flowers, the Eco Park is a very nice place in itself with nice walks, nature, sports parks, and of course the river to take advantage of, so it would make a nice stop at other times of year as well!
The official festival is now over, but this shouldn’t deter you – this only means that the crowds of people have gone, but the blooming rape flowers still remain! It’s the ideal time to pop over and enjoy these little sunshine flowers!
If you’re not travelling by car, then you’ll be glad to hear the metro will get you pretty close to all the action. Take Metro Line 3 in the direction of ‘Daejeo’ and get off at the ‘Gangseo-gu Office’ stop before following signs to Nakdong River.