Busan has an excellent and varied nightlife scene, spread in uneven clumps across various parts of the city – a single evening can see you sipping soju over raw fish at sunset, rubbing shoulders with Russian sailors near the train station, throwing back beer with students in one of the university areas, then dancing all night at a beachside hip-hop club. To do this, however, you’d be spending plenty of money on taxi fares – best to simply pick an area and root down for the night.

The two main student areas – Busan National University to the north, and Kyungsung University west of Haeundae – are among the most interesting places to go out, and certainly the cheapest. Weekdays can be tame, but on weekends the partying goes on until the wee hours. The same can be said for the two beach areas – Haeundae and Gwangalli – which cater to a more upmarket crowd, and throw a couple of clubs and cocktail bars into the mix; there’s also the option of buying some cans at a convenience store and drinking on the beach. Central Busan is markedly less interesting: Seomyeon has a few clubs, though these can be full of soldiers, with fights breaking out on a regular basis, while the bars around Busan station tend to be populated with Russian prostitutes and men in the market for them.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

South Korea features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

10 top places to eat Korean food

10 top places to eat Korean food

Korean cuisine is world-famous – and with good reason.  It's this wonderful food that keeps dragging our author Martin Zatko back to Korea. Here he rounds…

09 Feb 2018 • Martin Zatko insert_drive_file Article
Rediscovering South Korea: why the time to go is now

Rediscovering South Korea: why the time to go is now

It’s a beautiful, culturally and economically wealthy country with much to see and explore – but South Korea is often viewed as off-limits thanks to its ira…

07 Feb 2018 • Matilda Battersby insert_drive_file Article
Video: the 1 minute guide to South Korea

Video: the 1 minute guide to South Korea

Though it may appear deceivingly small compared to some of its gargantuan Asian neighbours, South Korea is packed full of unforgettable things to do. While …

02 Feb 2018 • Colt St. George videocam Video
View more featureschevron_right