Apr 192011

clams and mussels at taejongdae clam tentsThis is a strange memory, but I remember being 14 years old and watching a random show on the Discovery Channel or something similar on Okinawa. The people in the show were diving into piles of squid and clams and other strange sea aliens that I didn’t know the names of. It was cool when I was watching, but later that night, I’m pretty sure I had some Fear Factor-style nightmares, and I might have wet the bed. Not sure.

So anyway, flash forward to present-day in Busan. Who would have thought that one of the coolest things to do in this city was to eat the stuff that made me pee the bed all those years ago?

The Taejongdae clam tents are seriously a fun time. We show up after a long-ish bus ride to the end of Yeong-do, walk along this parking lot overlooking a pebble beach, and stroll down, scoping out the tents. I always feel like the prettiest girl at the ball as all the ladies who work the tents shout at my friends and me (Hey! Come on! You! Here!) and try to coax us into their tent. Don’t stress too much about the selection process: all are pretty much the same. They have no menus; our particular lady told us “memory” when we asked her for one, as she gestured towards the buckets of seafood out in front.

taejongdae clam tents eating on the pebble beachI’ve been here twice now, and both times, you just kind of mime what you want (or speak some Korean if you’ve got the skills), and the ladies will take care of the portions. I think clams (조개 – jo-gae) and mussels (홍합 – hong-hap) are the best things to go for here. There are also prawns (새우 – sae-oo) and some smaller shellfish, as well as Gaebul (the weird sea penis-looking things… I steer clear) if you’re feeling saucy. (NOTE: Just to be clear here: you’ll need to cook the clams. Sorry, just had to say it. You might want to use the scissors as well to cut the clams away from their shells).

There are no “prices” posted, but both times I’ve gone, it’s been about the same. For five people, mussels and clams, beer and some soju should run you 80-100k, depending on how much you drink. Another time, we had 10 people eating and the total was 160. Not bad, considering how much you get, and considering that the divers are about 50 meters away plucking the shellfish out of the ocean.

Tents at taejongdae that serve clamsTaejongdae is also a really nice scenic park that give you some nice views along the ocean, so you can go hiking before or after you eat. There is a small train (think something like those trains that go around the zoo) that goes around Taejongdae, and there is also a small ferry/tour boat that goes around a couple small rock islands off the coast. I’ve heard that you can get a ferry from Jagalchi market to Taejongdae, but I’m not sure about this.


FROM JAGALCHI/NAMPO: get to Jagalchi metro station exit 10 and take bus 8.
FROM SEOMYEON: get the 88-B or 88-A across the street from Judie’s Taehwa. The ride is about an hour.
FROM POINTS EAST (east of Seomyeon): Metro to Daeyeon station, exit 2 and take the 101 all the way to Taejongdae. OR you can take the 139, 1001 or 1003 to the Munhyeon stop and transfer to the 101 there. The ride from Daeyeon will take about an hour.
FROM BUSAN STATION: Bus 101, 88-A or 88-B will do the trick.

Take the bus to the END of the line (TaeJongDae) and you’ll get off in a parking lot. Turn left and you’ll see the entrance to the park. Turn RIGHT after the Family Mart, BEFORE the main gate. Walk down the path (it looks kind of seedy) till you come to a parking lot. You’ll see the tents and the ocean. ATM and bathrooms are to your left of the parking lot, slightly uphill, and overlooking the clam tents.

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  11 Responses to “Taejongdae Clam Tents – Yeongdo Island”

  1. this is a great trip. i’d also say that walking the first half of the shuttle train route up to the overlooks is worth your time. some nice views. also, you can take the number 8 bus at the stop that is located beside the sasang purple line station.i think it was 1,300w and after an hour taejongdae was the final stop.

  2. Two years ago I lost track of my camera in one of the clam tents. All the great photos of the ocean and precious family vacation was forever gone…. or so I thought! Last year I visited the same clam tent (it is on the far right when facing the stretch). Out of curiosity I asked the owner if anyone had seen it. She thought for a moment and said she had found a camera a while back and thinks it might be at her house, then without and delay she took a cab, went to her house, brought it to the restaurant. IT WAS INDEED THE LOST CAMERA! The photos, extra battery, memory card, soft case and ALL!!! Not only is the food great, the people are amazing! For anyone who can make a trip to the clam tents, I recommend the tent that is on the very end of the stretch!

  3. Are the clam teents still there during winter months?

    • Good question. I would guess “yes,” but i’ve asked our facebook page to see if anyone else has insight on that. I’ve been as early as April and as late as November, and it was pretty cold in April and they were/had been open, so that’s my reasoning!

    • someone said they went during february so i’d say you’re ok to go now.

  4. are they open during sunday and that will on chinese new year february 10 or 11….we are going there next month probably sunday or monday..i’m afraid restaurants will be close since its chinese new year.it will be my first time going there any recommeded place to visit for 1 day only since i’ll be staying in seoul. i am going to busan only for a day and i’ll be back at night in seoul. thanks in advance..

    • Hey, I don’t know for sure if they’re open then. I would guess “yes,” but it’s just a guess. Maybe you could find a general Korea Tourism number and ask them?

  5. what is the opening hour?
    what to visit @ Taejongdae besides the clam tent?

  6. My friend and i just went to these tents on 13 April 2016. CU on the map is the entrance to taejongdae park, follow the path to the food sign and u will see the tents (the tents are obstructed fr the park)

    The seafood was truly awesome & delicious. They have price tags now. Small is 40,000. Medium 50,000. Large 60,000. Soju is 6,000.

    As we were inexperience and there wasn’t a crowd, the aunt helped to grill the shells for us. If u can pick up the meat using the tongs, that means its cooked. We had 4 types of shell seafood, 3 prawn & 2 large pots of mussels, fried rice (super delicious and slight spicy).

    This is a must try. We went for the auntie near the end of the tents (where pple were fishing).

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