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Molundae cliff

Molundae, occupying an area of 506,000㎡, was designated as Local Cultural Property No. 27 on June 26, 1972. The three Daes in Busan can be represented by Taejongdae, Haeundae, and Molundae. All three Dae have beautiful sceneries, which provide spectacular views of the ocean surrounded by thick forest and exotic rocks. People might be confused to hear that Molundae was once called “Molun-do(Molun Island)” since it is now linked to the continent.

However, Molundae, located 78m above the sea level, at the southern end of the Nakdong River estuary and to the south-west of Dadaepo, was an island called Molundo a long time ago. The evidence can be found in part of the Haesa Diary written by Jo Eom, an envoy who visited Japan in 1763. Here, he compares the scenery of Molundae to that of Haeundae and says, “Molundae used to be a small island in the Silla Dynasty and it is such a beautiful island that it appears to have the shape of an exquisite woman adorned in a flower.”

The Jungjong Chronicle in February of 1544 also mentions the building of Bongsudae, an observation post for Japanese ships, at “Molundo”. Regarding this record, Seoguji claims that the name “Molundo” was used in the Jungjong Chronicle because it had been so called for a long time, but it must have been linked to the continent in the time of Jungjong.

However, in the Cultural Heritage of Busan, published by Busan City, it says that Molundo had been an island until the 16th century, and this seems to be based on Jungjong chronicles. There is a time gap of at least 600 years between the Silla Dynasty and 16th century. The Haesa Diary, which mentions the Silla Dynasty, does not seem to be groundless. Jo Eom is a reliable man who was delegated as ruler of Dongnae-bu in 1757, promoted to the ruler of Gyeongsang-do in 1758, and dispatched as an envoy to Japan in 1763. On the way to Japan, he learned a technique to cultivate and store sweet potatoes on Daema Island, brought the sweet potato seeds to Dongnae, his hometown, and Jeju Island and taught his people how to cultivate and store sweet potatoes.

Gang, Pil-ri, ruler of Dongnae-bu in 1764, learned from the 7-year former ruler, Jo Eom the method of sweet potato cultivation and encouraged his people to cultivate sweet potatoes, writing a book named Gamjeobo. All these efforts made Dongnae the first region to cultivate sweet potatoes. The Haesa Diary, written by Jo Eom, who has such history related to Dongnae, supports the claim that Molundae had been an island until King Jungjo.

The name Molundae is a poetic term meaning ‘the island sinking under the cloud’ since the island is hidden by clouds and can hardly be seen in cloudy and foggy weather.

Here lie the remains of shell mounds which indicate the human existence in the Neolithic Age. There is a stone monument commemorating the sacrificed death of Lord Jeong Un, who fought as a lieutenant general in the Busanpo Sea Battle during the Korean-Japanese War. Dadaepo Guest House has also been restored in Dadaepo (at the present site of Dadaepo Elementary School).

Molundae is the last spot of Taebaek mountain range along the Nakdong estuary. It boasts an excellent landscape, which has been visited by many poets and calligraphers. A song sung by Lee Chun-won, Dongnae Magistrat, was about viewing the landscape from a far. The poem was engraved onto stone, and is known as the "Molundae Monument" on June 12, 1999 by the Saha Regional Development Council. The monument delivers the beauty of Molundae to visitors and the meaning of the poem is translated as follows:

Winds and waves are made up in the enormous distance.
Molundae in the sky is buried in white clouds.
The sunrise every morning is a red wagon wheel.
A legendary hermit descends on a crane.

In general, Molundo Island is called Molundae, but there are two structures in Molundo - Molundae and Hwasondae. Hwasondae refers to the structure at the end of east part, facing the south end sea of Molundo Island, while Molundae is a central structure facing the southern tip of the sea. The area with many islands in Busan is around Dadaepo, where Molundae is located. The southern archipelago and northern archipelago that protect the coast of Busan from a distance contain islands listed in the land register as: Mokdo, Gummundo, Dongseom, Donghoseom, Palbongseom, Solseom, Oriseom, Jwiseom, and Mojaseom, Jaseom (144 Dadae-dong).

Status of Cultural Asset
Cultural Property Name Status Period
Molundae Cliff
  • Busan Local Cultural Property No. 27 (Jun. 26, 1972)
  • The shape of a flying crane, one of the eight famous spots in Dadae.
  • Area: 506,000㎡
General Cultural Property
Operating Hours
Classification Opening Hours Remarks
Summer Period Apr. - Sept. (6 months), 5 AM - 8 PM ※ Controlled and managed by a military unit at the night time, except during the operating hours.
Winter Period Oct. - Mar. (6 months), 6 AM - 6 PM