11 Of The Best Beaches in Korea You Haven’t Heard About

When summer comes, it’s amazing how fast those beaches start beckoning. With the temperatures rise, the sun’s rays are strong and all I can think about are lapping waters, sandy beaches and swimming, swimming, swimming. The salty seas refresh and luckily in Korea there are miles and miles of beaches to choose from. The western coast, eastern coast and southern coast of Korea offers up beautiful beaches of all kinds.

White Sands Beach, Big Island, Hawaii, USA, sunset

From white sand and clear blue waters in the east to the long mud flat fun of the west and then the sprawling beaches of the south, not to mention Jeju’s beautiful white sand, black sand and rocky beaches too, there is a beach for you in Korea.

Here are some that you may not have heard about yet and some that you should definitely check out THIS summer in Korea!

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1. Hanagae Beach (하나개해수욕장)

Muuido, Bobo & Chichi
Hanagae Beach is the very tidal and popular weekend getaway beach for people living in Seoul located on Muuido Island.
Go horesback riding, ziplining, ride an ATV, or simply just enjoy the coastline. You can rent tiny little cabins that sleep four adults comfortably right on the beach for only W40,000 ~ W60,000 (prices vary depending on season). At night you can build a campfire right on the beach and cook your own dinner or simply enjoy the tranquility of the entire place with some friends. The tides here are really dramatic and comes and goes quickly during the shift and is an interesting experience all of its own. We also recommend hiking the nearby trails to get an incredible aerial view of Hanagae Beach as well!
For more info, check out: Bobo&Chichi

2. Kkotji Beach (꽃지해수욕장)

Anmyeondo, Korea: Kkotji Beach

Kkotji Beach is said to be one of the best places to view the sunset in the country and tourists to Anmyeon-do would be remiss if they missed this coastal hot spot.

Two rocks that jut up out of the water on the north end named “Grandmother Rock” and “Grandfather Rock” are a huge draw and most visitors hope to glimpse the sun as it sets between these two legendary hills. Legend has it that a wife turned to stone while she was waiting for her husband that did not return from war… though that would suggest that only one rock should exist then, doesn’t it?

Where To Stay: Anmyeondo Plaza Hotel

For more info, check out The Soul of Seoul

3. Gosapo Beach (고사포해수욕장)

Gosapo Beach, Hedger's Abroad

Blending both the lovely Korean shoreline with the iconic mountains that dot this country’s landscape, Byeonsanbando is a must see of Korea’s National Maritime Parks.

Our favorite beach in this area is certainly Gosapo Beach with its grove of pine trees that skirt the beach making camping a perfect place for visitors. The grove is elevated from the sand granting unobstructed views of the ocean spreading into the horizon. On the south end of this beach is an impressive cliff that frames the beach spectacularly. At low tide you can try your hand at digging for clams as the tide retreats towards the horizon and into the setting sun making the beach a picture perfect place every evening.

Where To Stay: Benikea StarHills Hotel

For more info, check out Hedgers Abroad

4. Mongsanpo Beach (몽산포해수욕장)

Anymeondo, Taean-gun: Mongsanpo Beach

This beach is one of the less popular in the area which made it a dream for us with plenty of space to spread out and enjoy the sunshine, the water and more.

Campers had plots under 50 year old pine trees and there were just enough pensions and boutique hotels for everyone. Mongsanpo caters to the beach goer that wants to dig for shellfish and then eat it up. There’s also a great national park and a forest of 120 year old pine trees nearby. It’s a great adventure away.

Where To Stay: Goodstay Pinnochio Pension

For more info, check out The Soul of Seoul

5. Seonnyeo Rock Beach (선녀바위)

Seonnyeo Rock Beach, Incheon, Korea

While Eurwangli Beach and Wangsan Beach are more popular in the area, Seonnyeo Rock Beach is a great little spot that has a sandy spot in the center and is flanked by rocks on either side.

The beach is named for a prominent rock shaped like a fairy in the center of the beach. During the day the tide goes out and then hunting for crabs and other shellfish is a real treat. Set out in Incheon, it’s easy to get to for a great weekend away from Seoul and provides a lovely place to watch the sunset.

Where To Stay: Incheon Airport Hotel Oceanview

For more info, check out The Soul of Seoul

6. Jeongdongjin Beach (정동진해변)

Jeongdongjin Beach, Gangneung, Korea

The white sands and crystal clear blue water are famous on this beach but even more famous is the view of the Sun Cruise Resort shaped like a ship and set on top of an overlook at the southern end of the beach.

The drama “Hourglass” shot here in 1995 adds to the area’s mystique. The immaculate sands and the water was right up my alley. A beach rail bike is a bit of a tourist trap in my opinion, but the parks, restaurants, cafes and more in the area make this a perfect beach getaway spot. Just look at that photo… this is a beach that cannot be missed!

Where To Stay: The Haslla Art World Museum Hotel

For more info, check out The Soul of Seoul

The beaches in Gangneung have gotten more and more popular for summer getaways for locals. If you don’t have a ton of time but still want to get out to the coast and see the views, take a tour. Klook offers a tour to the area to see spots like Youngjin Beach where “Goblin” featured a popular scene that was filmed here. They also stop at some ideal spots for ocean views and you can even bike around or take a zip wire while you’re there.

7. Anmok Beach (안목해변)

Anmok Beach, Travel Stained

If you love creamy-toned sand, vivid blue water, caffeinated beverages and a local vibe, then Anmok Beach is the place for you.
Anmok is relatively undeveloped compared to surrounding swathes of sand like Gyeongpodae and Naksan Beach. When we visited there were no umbrellas for rent, no vendors offered us bingsu or grilled squid, and there were no sporting facilities set up, save for too many noisy seadoos disturbing the peaceful surroundings. No matter though, because the real draw of Anmok Beach is the wonderful “Cafe Street” that faces the East Sea. There are many huge places to choose from including the Greek-feeling Cafe Santorini, or AM Bread & Coffee which offers, you guessed it, bread and coffee, and a lovely patio. We wound up in the 3 story Bossa Nova, mostly because it had huge floor to ceiling glass windows, and a super high roof terrace from which to enjoy the incredible views.
Where To Stay: Seamarq Hotel
For more info, check out Travel Stained

8. Sungeut Beach (순긋해변)

Sungeut Beach, Gangneung Korea

Last summer I wanted to plan a trip out to the eastern coast of Korea but didn’t really want to the pay the prices for a stay on the very popular Gyeongpo Beach.

We ended up at a GREAT inn less than a minute walk from Sungeut Beach. The water was beautiful and the beach was too. It wasn’t as busy as other beaches in the area and also had a small forested area to the north to walk through to the Terra Rosa forest cafe. Our hosts provided a BBQ dinner that we could eat at outside picnic tables and a little mart was in walking distance. It had everything we needed in a quieter but no less beautiful atmosphere.

Where To Stay: S202 Hotel

For more information, check out The Soul of Seoul

9. Naksan Beach (낙산해수욕장)

Yangyang-gun, Gangwon-do, Korea: Naksan Beach

Naksan Beach has an awesome location just east of Seoraksan National Park.

Take a hike in the mountainous area and then head to this beautiful beach. There is also a gorgeous temple on a seaside cliff as well that makes for another great activity while visiting the beach. The four kilometer long beach is lined with pine tree forests and camping spots as well as budget friendly and luxury villas. Even though I visited during high season, there was plenty of space to spread out and not feel like we were umbrella to umbrella. There is a wooden boardwalk that allows you to take a walk along the beach and into the forested area that backs the beach too. There are some very popular tours from Seoul that take people out to Naksan after visiting Seoraksan National Park. If you’ve wanted to see both the tall mountain peaks of Korea and the beach in one day, take this tour. You’ll love it.

Where To Stay: Naksan Beach Hotel

For more information, check out The Soul of Seoul

Want to take your own road trip up and down the coast? Rent a car. Avis is pretty affordable and with a group of friends, it’s the best way to get back and forth, off the beaten path, and all around. Once you get out of Seoul, the roads or open and the paths varied. Where do you want to go?

10. Gyeongpo Beach (강릉 경포해변)

While Gyeongpo Beach is one of the most popular beaches on the northeast coast, I think there are some spots around the area that are a bit more unknown.

There is a gramophone museum that is a quirky cool spot to visit right near the beach and when that hunger pang strikes, head to the salt water tofu street for some super delicious eats. The white sand beach is a must and the area has quite a few spots to check out. Don’t miss this hot spot that is hot hot hot for a reason. The white sand and the emerald blue waters will make you glad you found out about this beach that is an easy bus ride out of Seoul.

Where To Stay: Seamarq Hotel

For more information, check out The Soul of Seoul

11. Hajodae Beach (하조대해변)

Hajodae, Bobo & Chichi

Located on Korea’s northeast coastline is one of the country’s most underrated beach destinations, Hajodae Beach.
This tiny little beach town offers a gorgeous pristine turquoise coastline with beautiful white sand and is never crowded. If you’re a beach lover and hate the crowds that popular beach destinations like Busan often have, this is the perfect escape and a much prettier view in our opinion. An easy 30-minute bus ride from Sokcho will land you in the tiny town where you can find a few hotels and restaurants. If you’re into camping you’re in luck because it’s okay to camp right on the beach for free. Nearby is a military base, so make sure you’re not like us and accidentally wander onto the wrong beach or you could wind up getting scolded. Also, do not attempt swimming at night as it is rumored you could be mistaken for a North Korean more soldier trying to sneak onto the South Korean shores.
Where To Stay: Zio Resort
For more information, check out Bobo&Chichi

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16 Responses

  1. Hallie! Your posts are so AMAZINGLY thorough! Seriously, I am in awe of your comprehensive write-ups and am so inspired to get to that point one day! Soooo, even though I lived in Korea for a year, I never saw a beach ONCE until I revisited about a month ago and saw Gwangan for the first time in Busan. Mongsanpo Beach would be my pick out of this lot just because its amazing there’s a pine forest right next to a beach?!? So cool!

    • Hallie says:

      Aw, thank you so much for the compliment. I always know what I look for in other blogs, get those 5 “W Question” answered and just hope to get straight to the point and back out again hahaha. I LOVED Mongsanpo for sure. So much space to spread out and a different kind of beauty to see. Hope you can see some more of the beaches here at some point. ^^

  2. wrpalomo says:

    My family has done beach early this year in Busan and we’re not likely to go to one this summer because of hubby’s schedule. But Muuido is on the list even for just a day. The Seonnyeo Rock Beach is very memorable for us. This was the shooting location of the movie my son was a part of and he still remembers those “fairy” rocks.

    • Hallie says:

      Muuido is on my list too for this year. Seonnyeo ROck Beach was one of the first weekends away with my now husband. I thought it was just lovely. That’s so cute your son was in a film there. I’m sure he loved it.

  3. Korea really does have some great beaches, doesn’t it! I have never visited any of these as I lived down South. My faves would be Dadaepo Beach which is Busan’s nicest and most underrated beach, Bijindo Island which is tiny and all beach and the beaches on Geoje and Namhae Islands. I miss Korean beach time!

    • Hallie says:

      I have never spent enough time at the beaches in Busan. A quick afternoon here or there while visiting our family down there or when my husband has a concert but I need to see some more. There is a nice rock beach my husband took me to once down there that I really loved though..

  4. So you chose the pic of poser Bear Agri for the post eh? 😉 When I see all the different kinds of beaches in Korea, I feel like I should get out and explore different ones, but I just can’t tear myself away from the white sand/blue water combo. Somehow I just don’t feel satisfied unless that’s what I’m seeing… and still wanna spend a night in the crazy Suncruise Resort sometime!! 🙂

    • Hallie says:

      I agree. If I am going to have a beach weekend, I want to go to the east coast to have the white sand and blue water. However, last summer at the mud flats was great though I also had a beach weekend to the other coast planned just after that so maybe that’s why I enjoyed it. Best of both coasts I guess.

  5. I agree with the title! I haven’t heard all of them. The only beach I visited in Korea is Eurwangli Beach. Thanks for compiling this list. I think this is very helpful for expats who wants to hit the beach without leaving Korea.

  6. Megan Indoe says:

    This makes me wish we were back in Korea to check out some of these incredible beaches we never got to go to plus revisit the ones we did! Thanks for including us!

    • Hallie says:

      Yes! Thanks for a great addition. I still haven’t been out to the beach you suggested though I’ve heard of it often. I need to get out there!

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