Fish Market – Busan

Our last stop was Jagalchi Fish Market — the largest fish market in all of South Korea. It is located along the waterfront in the Nampodong District of Busan. The Jagalchi Market is a very popular attraction for people traveling to Busan, the second largest city in the country. It is also quite a major part of the culture and economy in Busan. You can find virtually everything that swims in the sea served at either the restaurants or the fish market. If you are a fan of sushi and sashimi, this is going to be some of the best you’ve ever eaten (the second floor has many restaurants, but we did not go up since we were short on time). Fresh may not even be the word to describe it (fresh killed maybe more accurate), as the customer selects the fish from small tanks, they are then filleted right there on the spot. It is a must-see attraction if you are making the trip to this southeastern city in South Korea.

Most of the people who sell fish are women, and these women are called ‘Jagalchi Ajumma,’ ‘ajumma’ meaning middle-aged or married women. This market represents Busan and is famous throughout the country. If you visit you can eat fresh raw fish right at the market. Even these days you can see women selling mackerel, sea squirts (ascidians) and whale meat on wooden boxes along the road.

The main dock where the fresh catch of the day is unloaded. Was told that this spot is at is busiest early mornings. This was taken around 5 PM.

Not sure, but this seems to be a coaching session for the young man on the right. as with any other trade, good training, practice and supervision makes for perfection down the road.

One of the many Ajummas selling their fresh catch. Told that this women are considered very tough and hard working as they handle heavy cases of fish, chop fish heads and are very direct with you.

As mentioned before, we toured this market towards the end of the day. Looks like the busiest time was long gone. These two ladies are just catching up - notice the nice octopuses in the tank to the right. Yum, love a good octopus cooked to perfection with some olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper. Yum, yum.

Wonder was this gentleman was doing close to the market. Waiting for some lady perhaps? who knows, but he was impecable as you can see.

Taking care of a customer by killing and filleting what looked like flounders.


Definitely the slow part of the day. This lady is probably sick of people like me taking their picture all day long. She was nice, but her facial expression did not give me the warmest feeling.

Oyster looking mollusks, if I had time I would have loved to try one with some of the sauce you see on the upper right. Love fresh seafood.


Not sure what kind of crabs these were, but they were big.

This market is very large indeed. Probably hundreds of stalls all selling similar products. As the day winds down some are getting ready to close and start cleaning their stalls. Some just chill and rest for what surely be another busy tomorrow morning.

As we left I took this view of one of the many isles in the indoor portion of the market. It is a big place.

Once again, thanks for visiting. Next week my wife and I will be traveling to Ireland. Be sure to come back in a couple of weeks for some pictures and comments of our tour of Southern Ireland.

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