Amazing Sashimi at the Yeosu Fish Market in South Korea

Fresh fish at Yeosu Fish Market in South Korea
The Yeosu Fish Market is a local gem in the far south of Korea, packed with the country's best and freshest sashimi.

What's In This Guide?

If you’re a foodie traveling down south, then the Yeosu Fish Market is one destination that must be on your agenda. Along with Seoul’s Noryangjin Market, this is one of the best places to super fresh sashimi at great prices in all of South Korea.

Koreans know it, and now you do too.

What’s really nice about the Yeosu Fish Market (apart from incredible sashimi) is that it remains a very local Korean destination. The fishmongers are genuinely friendly and do not push the sale, even with foreign tourists like me, who evidently sticks out from local crowd.

You are respectfully given your space and left to your own decision making. If the looks of a fish in certain a store get your tummy rumbling for lunch to you, then you go there. If not, carry on without being pressured.

Before you get to the Yeosu Fish Market, here are some practical tips to make your visit worthwhile.

Where is the Yeosu Fish Market?

The Yeosu Fish Market is located in Yeosu’s central precinct, a walkable 2.5 kilometers south west of Yeosu Expo Station. It’s also very close to the Admiral Yi Sun Shin Monument and his Turtle Ship replica, which are both certainly worth visiting on the same day when in the area.

Next to the Yeosu Fish Market you will also find the Yeosu Specialty Fish Market. This is a separate market we did not visit. I understand it offers quite a similar experience with quality sashimi and perhaps other fish varieties.

How to get to the Yeosu Fish Market

Remember, Google Maps doesn’t really work in Korea due to local government data restrictions. Whether you walk, take public transport, or drive, I highly recommend you download Naver Maps for better navigation instructions.

If you’re staying in downtown Yeosu near the station, then I suggest just walking here. The 45-minute walk will take you past a few other destinations worth a visit like the Arte Museum and Angel Mural Village.

For public transport, the number 6 and 7 buses depart from Yeosu Expo Station and will drop you a less than 10 minute walk from the fish market in front of the Jungang Shopping Centre. The trip takes about 20 minutes in total.

For those driving, there is plenty of paid parking available along Isunsingwangjong-ro leading up to the Turtle Ship memorial park. Street parking costs just 1,000 KRW (USD 1) per hour which is affordable.

What are the Yeosu Fish Market Opening Hours?

The Yeosu Fish Market is open 7 days a week from 6am until about 7pm (Thursdays close a bit earlier).

If you’re here for the sashimi, then I suggest visiting by midday for the freshest fish. However, if you just want to walk around and experience the local Yeosu life, then visit any time during the opening hours.

How much does sashimi cost at the Yeosu Fish Market?

Fish is priced by the kilogram. While different fish species are priced differently, each store essentially offers the same pricing. So, while it’s harder to negotiate you’re also much less likely to get ripped off.

Expect to pay 40,000 KRW or more for sashimi. This price is based on a moderately sized fish which will be sufficient for two people. Remember, you are choosing an entire live fish to be served sashimi style.

If you want to eat your sashimi at the market, you’ll pay an extra 5,000 KRW per person for a table to be prepared on level 2 with typical Korean side dishes like kimchi, pickled radish, and bean sprouts. Your fishmonger will give you a ticket, so you know which store to go to upstairs.

It’s worth noting that the kimchi served in Yeosu is a special variety with a wasabi flavour to it, which the Koreans call God Kimchi. And damn it’s good!

To have the remaining fish head and bones turned into a nice seafood stew you’ll pay another 5,000 KRW. I highly recommend asking for this as the stew is so tasty.

All-in-all you’re looking at about 50,000 KRW for sashimi, side dishes, and a seafood stew for feed 2 people. It’s pricier than a typical Korean meal but certainly worth the experience.

Which fish is best for sashimi in Korea?

After checking with several Korean friends, the most popular fish to eat as sashimi in Korea is Red Sea Bream which is locally called chamdom.

Unlike Tuna or Salmon, the Red Sea Bream has a white coloured meat and has quite a tough texture making it chewy. The chewiness is something we didn’t expect, or really like in the beginning, but certainly grew on us as we made our way through the plate.

It’s said in Korea that the “sweetness of the fish grows on you with every bite” which I can agree with.

Other Great Destinations to Visit in Yeosu

Yeosu is fairly large and offers plenty of things to do from visiting contemporary art museums to hiking up the mountains to old temples from the Joseon Dynasty. Whether you have two days or a week here, you will find this diverse list of things to do in Yeosu super useful.

  • Nearby attractions: Admiral Yi Sun Shin Monument, Turtle Ship Replica, Arte Museum, Angel Mural Village, Yeosu Romantic Pocha Street, Odongdo Island
  • Worth a drive: Admiral Yi Sun Shin shipbuilding yard, Geomosan Hyangiram Temple, Southern Coastal Drive,

Author Bio

G'day I'm Josh (some call me Fishtank) and on this blog I'll show you how to travel Asia beyond what you thought was possible. We'll explore the highest waterfalls, most remote islands, eat the best street food, and plenty more!

Josh Shephard

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