This summer is expected to be hotter than usual, prompting authorities at the nation’s 270 beaches to step up preparations for summer vacation.
In Busan, major beaches such as Songjeong, Songdo and Haeundae on June 1 were officially opened to the public. Malipo Beach in Chungcheongnam-do Province opened a month earlier than last year because the summer heat arrived earlier than usual.
Beaches in other parts of the country are also rushing to open. Jeju-do Island’s Iho Tewoo Beach opens on June 21, followed by the island’s major beaches of Gwakji and Hamdeok on June 22. The beach on Seonyudo Island in Gunsan, Jeollabuk-do Province, will open on June 25.
July will see almost every beach in Korea open. Eurwangni Beach in Incheon will open from July 1, Gyeongpodae Beach in Gangneung, Gangwon-do Province, from July 5 and Mangsang Beach in Donghae in the same province from July 10.
The beach on Songido Island in Jeollanam-do Province will be the latest in the country to open on July 20.
In addition, this year will see several beaches open at night despite most beaches in Korea prohibiting entering the water after 6 p.m. Nighttime swimming is apparently in response to the growing number of visitors who arrive later to avoid the scorching daytime heat.
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Beaches to allow swimming in the evening will include Sokcho in Gangwon-do Province and Daecheon in Chungcheongnam-do Province. The areas where swimming is allowed and operating hours, however, can change depending on circumstances so visitors are advised to check beforehand.
A wide variety of events also await beachgoers this summer including festivals for micro-brewed beer and sand, a singing contest on the beach, free movie screenings, squid fishing and shell gathering.
An official from the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said, “People can have more fun this year because of more beaches being opened than during last year and a wide variety of festivals and events to be held,” adding, “For beach safety, please observe safety rules such as wearing a life jacket and not swimming while drunk.”