Most temples in Korea are incredibly similar. Modestly sized, beautiful multi-colored roofs, interiors with a number of Buddhist artifacts and simple grounds. Seokbul Temple has something extra. Located down in Busan, South Korea's seaside second city, the temple is perched on the mountains just over the city, with views in almost every direction. It's incomparable. I've also never seen carvings into mountainsides in any temple before, let alone any so detailed. I can't help but think that amount of devotion and effort it took to setup a Buddhist temple in that specific location. It's hard to be that secluded and yet still be so close to such a huge city.
On our way hiking to up the temple we got a bit lost and asked an American couple if they happened to know where it was. After telling us that we had missed the tiny pathway and our hour long hike would have been made much shorter had we just used the road, he mentioned that Seokbul (pronounced suck-bool) is easily the best temple he's been to in his 4 years living in Busan. The fact that it's a bit tucked away in the mountains keeps the crowds away and giving more of an intimate experience with the place, something of a luxury for Korean attractions.