Namhae (남해) in South Gyeongsang Province is considerably one of the most underrated island destinations in South Korea. During our winter trip to South Korea, we explored this island for the first time and it was one of the highlights of the trip. We love how quaint and beautiful the island is, and could resonate with why the locals lovingly call it The Treasure Island (보물의 섬).
Namhae is traditionally a summer vacation destination all thanks to its gorgeous seaside and captivating sunsets. Guesthouses & villas here boast million-dollar sunset views against the majestic sea. We decided to stay at MarinePia (마린피아), one of the popular seaside villas during our 3D2N trip in Namhae, and it turns out to be the best decision ever!
The guesthouse is located along the scenic coastal highway in the southwest of Namhae island. This is also the area where you can find lots of holiday villas in Namhae.
While there are public buses connecting places around the island, I would highly recommend you rent a car or hire a private cab in Namhae as it would be more convenient given that the attractions and matjibs (맛집) are scattered around the island.
MarinePia is a holiday chalet where holidaymakers can enjoy their vacation at its villas. The amenities include a common swimming pool, a GS25 convenience store with a perfect sunset deck, and a cafe.
We were so happy to see a convenience store right within the chalet compound as the nearest (and only) restaurant is a 5-10 mins walk and you’d definitely need a car ride to the nearest supermarket. So if you’d like to have a quick meal fix, a convenience store can be godsent.
The convenience store at MarinePia sells frozen BBQ meat (yes, you read that right!), marshmallows, fresh veggies and all things you may need for a BBQ party. I must say it is a thoughtful and brilliant set-up, as each villa come with its private BBQ deck and it’s a waste not to throw a BBQ party when you’re here!
We rented Villa 102 which is located on the ground floor, where there is a private BBQ terrace and an outdoor jacuzzi pool. It is a spacious sea-view villa with a mezzanine floor that serves as a bedroom. The interior was clean and simple, with some Mediterranean-inspired decorations that set the holiday mood.
Each villa comes with a fully equipped pantry. You can find a drinking water dispenser, a fridge, a micro oven, wine glasses, mugs, pots and pans and dining utensils… everything you’ll need to whip up a feast is provided. All you need is to purchase your groceries and condiments from mega marts like E-mart or Home Mart (if you drive), or you can get some basic BBQ food items at their very own GS25!
Bedroom & Bathroom
The villa accommodates 2 – 4 people. You can find a double bed on the mezzanine floor, and a sofa that can be converted into another double bed to accommodate the other 2 pax. While the bed is located on the mezzanine floor, it didn’t feel claustrophobic. The bathroom was spacious and clean too!
Private BBQ Terrace & Outdoor Jacuzzi Pool
What we enjoyed the most was the ocean-view private BBQ Terrace and the outdoor jacuzzi pool that comes with a heater! While it was December during our visit, the temperature was 12 degrees Celsius, and it felt cooling and comfortable. So we decided to go for a dip outdoor while gazing at that magical sunset. It was amazing as the pool was heated and it didn’t feel cold at all. Check out how it went on my IG Reels here!
Sunset at Villa 102
The sunset at MarinePia was magnificent. They almost seem as if we were looking through the gates of heaven. If not for the little surrounding islets in the background, I would have believed we were not in Asia but in Miami Beach!
Each villa is equipped with a BBQ pit and utensils. The management offers a KRW 30,000 set-up service that comes with charcoal and they’ll help set up the fire. If you are renting a car in Namhae, you’d have the option to purchase fresh meat, veggies and other materials you need at the supermarket which is a 20-30 mins drive away from the villa.
If you don’t drive, you can purchase frozen meat, instant food, drinks (wine included) and fresh fruits at their convenience store which is located within the chalet compound. There are also salt & pepper, gochujang, ssamjang, soy sauce and sesame oil for sale if you’d like to marinate the meat.
As we did not rent a car during the trip, we purchased all the ingredients for our BBQ dinner at their convenience store. We got frozen Samgyupsal (pork belly) and pork neck, Kimchi Bokkeum (Fried Kimchi), Oden soup, pickled radish, instant noodles and instant kimchi fried rice with cheese. We also purchased a small bottle of garlic & herb salt to marinate our meat.
While most of them are convenience store food and the meat was frozen, with the charcoal grill everything tastes great! The meat was surprisingly juicy and tender, with that perfect charred flavour from the grill.
We love the ocean-view terrace so much that we took our breakfast outdoor even when it was winter! The winter temperature in Namhae wasn’t too cold (around 12 degrees) and basking in the warm morning sun while drinking my morning coffee was true bliss!
Writers Note: We enjoyed our stay at MarinePia and were pleasantly surprised that the management provides a heated pool and jacuzzi during winter when most villas in Korea would have just shut them off. All amenities in the villa felt new and everything was kept clean and tidy.
While the staff speaks limited English, they were very friendly and welcoming. We witnessed two beautiful sunsets and enjoyed a lovely BBQ dinner during our stay and it was one of the most memorable trips we had in South Korea.
It was very affordable too – we paid KRW 180,000 per night (KRW 360,000 in total) as it was very near to Christmas day, and a quick check on their official site shows that a night at the same villa during November would only cost KRW 100,000! However, do note that the rental during summer would increase as winter is considered the low season in Namhae. You may book the villa on Tripadvisor too!
26-1, Seongu-ri, Nam-myeon, Namhae-gun, Gyeongsangnam-do, South Korea
경상남도 남해군 남면 남면로 946-3(선구리 126-1)
Tel: +82 10-7259-0089