Covid Drinking Dens – 16


Leaving the hotel, I asked the taxi driver to stop at kwangali for some beer and cocktails at the old ex-pat bar, but it’s gone. The norae-bang singing room is still there, so we have some Heinekens, and go get sogalbi from the little restaurant where I once had to pretend I was five to ask where the toilet was!

Another taxi driver takes us further down the coast, past a dead scooter driver lying unbothered by the kerb, before we join the motorway overpass to Gim-Hae airport.

We drink our last cans of Cass outside the airport before being moved on by machine gun wielding policemen. Home time!

Covid Drinking Dens – 15


After a couple of days of, no-mask, freedom drinking, a day at the beach is needed. Haeundae is the big summer destination beach in Korea, but there’s a nicer, smaller, quieter beach just around the coast.

Songjeong beach is accessible by bus through the tunnel from Haeundae New Town. With its white sands and slower pace, it feels a world away from the rest of Busan. It also has small motels which charge by the hour!

We have crates of Cass on the beach, and relax, fully aware of our imminent return to England and it’s lockdown rules!

Covid Drinking Dens – 14


A flight from Manchester to Frankfurt will connect us to a Lufthansa Airbus to Seoul. A quick walk across the airport will connect us to a Korean Air flight down to the South-East, second city of Busan.

I hail a taxi at Gim Hae Airport to take us to the Chosun Beach Hotel, down by the sea in haeundae. I use to come here for Fish and Chips, Guinness, and to watch the Rugby. I even saw the guitarist from Gerry and the Pacemakers play ‘Ferry Across the Mersey’, twice, in a lounge bar style concert.

Anyway, the action is down by the main beach, where all of the ‘Pochangmacha’, Soju tents, are. We eat the freshest of fish, dipping wriggling tentacles into soy sauce, and down shot after shot of Soju. There are many bars of all kinds here, and we settle for a locked cell in the ‘Jail Bar’ drinking bottles of bad Hite lager, and eating blow torched cuttlefish.