On October 10th, 1945, the Worker’s Party of Korea was founded in the Soviet occupied North of the Korean peninsula, later to be … » Learn More about Party Foundation Day & Mass Games Tour
- Trip Outline
- Trip Includes
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On October 10th, 1945, the Worker’s Party of Korea was founded in the Soviet occupied North of the Korean peninsula, later to be proclaimed as the DPRK. The party would become the mantle of the country’s party-state system and a self-declared “vanguard” of the country’s working class. Its position in the country’s political system is still of paramount importance with its founding anniversary celebrated annually as a public holiday. In 1995, the Worker’s Party Monument (pictured) was created on the party’s 50th anniversary.
Visit North Korea are happy to announce an opportunity for travellers to visit the country during this unique occasion, which is more often than not accompanied by a military parade. The trip will allow tourists to comprehend the significance of a single party system to the rule of socialist states and how this has been altered to North Korea’s unique political context. In addition, the group will have the opportunity to witness the country’s famous mass games at the Rungrado May Day Stadium, which are being hosted throughout September and October. Exact details to be confirmed. Either way, this program provides a premium opportunity to see North Korea at its epitome. There won’t be many other big occasions throughout 2019!
We’ll be heading into Pyongyang from Beijing, where we will take a sleeper train via Dandong. You’ll also have the chance to fly in by Air Koryo should you wish (additional fees apply). Once in the DPRK, we’ll be staying in the Sosan international Hotel. Outside of Pyongyang, we will get the chance to travel to the DMZ, Panmunjom, Kaesong and the city of Sariwon.
Beyond the celebrations of the foundation day and the mass games, elements of our trip will include all the must see sights of Pyongyang: This includes the metro, Juche Tower, the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum, the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun (Where the two previous Kims lie in state), the Grand People’s Study House and many more exciting sites!
Payment for this trip will involve making a 30% deposit in the run up (which can be done by a number of means) and bringing the remainder to the tour itself in cash. The DPRK visa can be processed by us for a fee of 50 euros. Concerning China, participants can either obtain a double/multiple entry visa, or if they choose the Air Koryo Option (295 euros return); they can qualify for a 72 hour transit visa on arrival.
Any questions or concerns should be emailed to [email protected]
Monday October 7th
- Meet your guide at 1:30pm at the Beijing Zhong Gu Hotel near Beijing Railway Station for a introductory briefing on North Korea. During this meeting, we’ll go over the tour’s itinerary, receive North Korean visas train and tickets, as well as a great chance to meet the group and to discuss any other questions you may have about the tour.
- Afterwards its time to depart Beijing Central station at 5:25pm for the overnight sleeper train to Dandong!
Tuesday October 8th
- Train group arrive at Dandong at 7:00am. We'll have a quick break to grab breakfast, then we need to be up and out through Chinese exit customs and on the train for 10:00am
- 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 the realities of rural life in the country
- Arrive at Pyongyang station for the evening, where we will meet our guides on the platform! We'll then board the bus and travel to the Sosan international hotel, where we will be given our rooms!
- Afterwards, it's time for dinner at the hotel! Then we can settle down and socialize for the night!
Wednesday October 9th
- We begin our day with a walk through Mansudae Fountain Park, before heading up to the Mansudae Grand Hill Monument – the two large bronze statues of President Kim Il Sung and Leader Kim Jong Il overlooking the city. For an optional two Euros, you may buy flowers.
- Next up 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 at the Gold Cup Restaurant
- Time for a ride on the Pyongyang Metro – We'll be going across six stations and Eeiting at the Arch of Triumph – the largest Victory Arch in the world, the arch celebrates North Korea's liberation from Japan in 1945 and the long struggle against it!
- Next, it's time to visit the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum – as North Korea tell their own story of the conflict between 1950-1953, you can see captured American weapons and vehicles, displays and dioramas from famous battles and much more!
- Outside the museum, all aboard the USS Pueblo – the only US Naval Vessel held captured by another country, seized off the coast of Wonsan in 1968!
- Now for Juche Tower- This stone column monument is the tallest of its kind in the world. It represents the eternally burning flame of the Juche ideology (Optional extra 5 euro to go to the top and see a panaromic view of all Pyongyang!
- Fancy some shopping after? We'll next be going to the Kwangbok department store, Pyongyang's largest and most popular supermarket. It is home to exclusive North Korean brands, where you can use real local korean won currency!
- Afterwards, it's time to visit a real North Korean brewery! Check out the Taedonggang microbrewery and even sample different varieties of the country's favourite beverage
- We'll wind up the day with dinner at the National Restaurant with a special performance
- back to the hotel
Thursday October 10th: Foundation Day
- A serious start to the day. We will be heading to the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun, known as the elaborate mausoleum for the Great Leader President Kim Il Sung and the Dear Leader Kim Jong Il. Here, their bodies lie in state. Formal dress is reacted, as well as your best behaviour!
- After the Palace, we'll go to see the Revolutionary Martyrs Cemetery – Here lies those who fought against the Japanese occupation of Korea, as well as the grave of Kim Il Sung's Wife, Kim Jong Suk
- Lunch at the Moran Hill Restaurant
- Go for a walk up Moran Hill to meet locals celebrating the Worker's Party Foundation Day- here we will be able to join them for BBQs, singing, dancing and other games!
- Special Events: Yet to be confirmed but being a national holiday could include a number of things, even potentially a military parade!
- Following that we will visit the Worker's Party Monument, built in 1995 to remember 50 years of the establishment of North Korea's ruling party. The three firsts symbolize industry, agriculture and intellectualism
- Join in a famous North Korean mass dance with locals!
- Now it's time for the big event: attend the country's famous Mass Games at the 150,000 seater Rungrado May Day Stadium- witness the largest organised display of gymnastics in the world as the event sets out the political legacy and story of the DPRK (prices listed)
- Dinner at the Ji Ha restaurant
- back to the hotel
Friday October 11th
- A very early start as we've got a lot of ground to cover. Our first stop is 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!
- Now it's time for the DMZ. First, we'll stop 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
- We'll srop 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
- Dinner at a local restaurant to try out North Korea's famous cold noodles (Raengmyeon)
- Overnight in Sosan Hotel.
Saturday October 12th
- It's time to depart! Those taking the train will arrive at Pyongyang railway station for the 10:25am train to Dandong! Relax and get lunch on the train! Those taking Air Koryo will fly out at 8.50am to arrive at Beijing for 9.50am!
- After DPRK exit customs, we'll arrive back in Dandong and then get the overnight train back to Beijing.
Sunday 13th October
- The train will arrive at Beijing for 9am, where we will part ways!
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