- Trip Outline
- Trip Includes
- Trip Excludes
Are you looking for a different experience this Christmas? Do you want to spend the festive season away from the usual experience of Turkey, family and gifts and instead do something different? We might have just what you’re looking for. Our unique “Christmas North Korea” program offers you the chance to get away from the same old routines of winter life and to tuck into a premium experience exploring the world’s most unique country.
With this tour, Santa’s sack holds in store lot of exciting things for us to do. We’ll be starting off in Dandong where we will head to the DPRK by train. Whilst in Pyongyang, we’ll be staying at the Ryanggang hotel. Out and around the city, we will be making the most of all its iconic sites, including a ride on the metro, a trip to the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum, Juche Tower and many more things. Not only that, but to add to the winter wonderland trip we’ll be travelling southwards to the DMZ border with South Korea and checking out the Panmunjom Peace Village, stopping on the way home at the historic city of Kaesong and then Sariwon.
We are absolutely certain that this adventure can prove to be the shining red star on top of your christmas tree. The Turkey is out, the Korean BBQ and Kim Chi are in! Sample Taedonggang other local spirits over your regular wine. In any sense, Christmas in North Korea is a great and exciting way to spend your holidays! Payment will involve making a 30% deposit in advance via bank transfer and bringing the remaining 70% forwards on the day of the tour. Make sure this the former is done with plenty of notice. The DPRK visa is also available for us to do on request for 50 euros. In addition, a Chinese double entry visa is mandatory for this program.
Tuesday 24th December
- It is Christmas eve babe, in Dandong railway station, our tour guide said to me: meet here at 8am. He gave us our tickets and NK visas too, to board the train to Pyongyang and dream about the trip...
- The train will depart Dandong at 10:10am!
- Once we've crossed the bridge, it's time to go through North Korean customs and entry, this may take a couple of hours.
- After this is done, enjoy the eye opening scenes of the North Korean countryside and see the realities of rural life in the country as we head onwards to Pyongyang
- Arrive at Pyongyang station for the evening, where we will meet our guides on the platform! We'll then board the bus, where we will reunite with those who were flying and travel to the Ryanggang hotel, where we will be given our rooms
- We'll be having dinner at a restaurant on the new Ryomyong Street, opened in 2017. Here we can celebrate Christmas eve!
- Back to the hotel
Wednesday 25th December: Christmas Day
- We'll begin this day with a walk through Mansudae Fountain park where we can see mosaic pictures of President Kim Il Sung and the leader Kim Jong Il.
- Afterwards, we'll head up to the nearby Mansudae Grand Hill Monument – the two large bronze statues of President Kim Il Sung and Leader Kim Jong Il overlooking the city. Here we will be kindly asked to pay our respects, flowers are optional if you wish.
- Next up is a trip to the Grand People's Study House, the largest library in North Korea and a fabled center of learning, check out the foreign language books!
- Afterwards is Kim Il Sung Square, the famous city square in Pyongyang that is frequently seen as the site of parades. We'll go for a walk here, and head down to the street to the Foreign Language Bookshop – here you can buy local literature, newspapers, badges, flags and all kinds of souvenirs!
- Lunch will be at the KITC restaurant. Try out famous Pyongyang Cold Noodles (Raengmyeon) or a traditional Korean Bibimbap.
- Afterwards it's time for a ride on the Pyongyang Metro! We'll be going 6 stops before heading out to the Arch of Triumph- Like that in Paris, but bigger! This magnificent structure celebrates the victory over Japan and the liberation of Korea
- Now it's time for Juche Tower- Monument to North Korea's National Ideology. Go up to the top for an extra fee and see an incredible panoramic view of all Pyongyang
- Afterwards it's time to see the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum. The local military guide will show us North Korea's depiction of the Korean War in this enormous complex, showing us around captured American weaponry and other equipment
- All aboard the USS Pueblo! Outside the Museum sits a captured US Navy ship seized in 1968 by the North Korean navy. It's still registered as an official vessel! See bullet holes inside on the walls where US and North Korean sailors clashed
- We will next see the Worker's Party Monument. This structure was built in 1995 and celebrated 50 years of the Worker's Party of Korea- The three giant firsts symbolize agriculture, industry and intellectualism
- Now it's time for a festive Christmas drink, we will be going to the Taedonggang brewery and really getting in the spirit with local beers!
- Dinner will be at the national restaurant, where we will be treat to a special performance
- Back to the hotel to rap up the christmas cheer!
December 26: Boxing Day
- A very early start as we've got a lot of ground to cover as we make the long trip to Kaesong and the DMZ!
- Heading to the DMZ, we will first stop by the Panmunjom Gift shop, where you will have another chance to buy hand painted propaganda posters and other assortments
- Our soldier guide, a real KPA officer, will then lead us into the DMZ. He will show us around Panmunjom village where the Armistice talks were held, as well as the signed document itself!
- Next he will take us through to the Joint Security Area, where North Korean, South Korean and American soldiers famously stand face off! Now, it is becoming a centre of peace and subsequently, relaxed in contrast to pass times. There may be an opportunity to cross over into the South Korean side and see the tree planted by Kim Jong-un and President Moon Jae-in last April (we cannot enter South Korea proper
- Lunch at the Tongil Restaurant in Kaesong- try our traditional Korean Pansangi- a series of assorted dishes served in bronze bowls. (Optional extras- If you're feeling daring, there is Dog Soup at 5 euro! Or, you can even buy a share a ginseng chicken, apparently it's good for health
- After lunch we will visit the Koryo Museum- An ancient centre of learning at the heart of the ancient Koryo Dynasty. See old Korean artifacts, clothing, coinage and weaponry!
- Outside of the museum sits the Korea stamp stop! Stock up on your stamps, postcards, posters and other memorabilia here!
- We'll stop by Sariwon City (Capital of North Hwanghae province) to walk in the historic folklore park. We'll also have the chance to view the city from the mountaintop pagoda.
- Re-entering Pyongyang, we will stop at the the Monument to the Three Charters of National Reunification, otherwise known as "the Arch of Reunification"- longing for the day Korea is reunified
- We'll then close the day with dinner at the Duck BBQ restaurant, a delicious meal, what a fantastic change from Turkey!
- Back to the hotel!
- We will be heading to Pyongyang station to board the 10:25am trip to Dandong, where we will say goodbye to our guides. Time to relax and reflect on our tour, lunch is available on the train!
- We will arrive at Dandong at around 5:00pm, where we will part ways! We hope you had a Merry Christmas in North Korea and a happy new year!
- Return trip fare by train Dandong/Pyongyang
- All hotels and meals in North Korea
- All site fees
- North Korean visa (50 euros)
- Chinese double entry visa
- Any tips
- Any additional spending in North Korea
- International flights
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