Inside North Korea - 9 days

FROM USD $4,199

Delve into the mystery that is North Korea on this 9 day tour taking you from the incredible sights of Beijing to the Soviet-style capital of Pyongyang in the DPRK. Get inside this isolated country with visits to important historical monuments and fascinating museums complimented by trips to stunning mountains and ancient temples.

Day 1: Beijing
Huan ying, welcome to China and the start of your unique holiday! Airport arrival transfer and hotel check in. Overnight - Beijing
Day 2: Beijing
Today we drive beyond Beijing to Badaling where we can walk a section of the famous Great Wall, built during the Ming Dynasty. Here, the 6m wide pathway with regular watchtowers makes a formidable defence. Though never directly attacked, the wall was taken over by aggressors sweeping around from the side. Later we visit a cloisonne workshop demonstrating the ancient Chinese art of combining copper and enamel to make decorative pieces. Overnight - Beijing (B)
North Korea Tours: Pyongyang War Memorial Flickr Credit Staphan
Day 3: Pyongyang
Beijing - Pyongyang. This morning we transfer to Beijing airport for our flight to Pyongyang, the showcase capital of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. Isolated from the world and controversial with its stance on nuclear testing, North Korea is something of a mystery. On arrival into Pyongyang, home to 3 million people, we will be met by our official North Korean guides who will be escorting us throughout the trip.

En route to our hotel we will stop to see the Arch of Triumph. The Arch holds an important spot in North Korea's history as it is the place where Kim Il Sung addressed his people after the Japanese surrendered. Spend the rest of the evening in your hotel where dinner will be served. Overnight - Pyongyang - Yanggakdo Hotel (B, D)
North Korea Tours: Mt Myohyang Temple Flickr Credit D-Stanley
Day 4: Mt. Myohyang
Today we enjoy a visit to Mt. Myohyang - the Mountain of Mysterious Fragrance, a 2hr drive north of Pyongyang. This celebrated mountain is famous for its fresh air, unique appearance and stunning scenery of craggy peaks rising above clouds and thick woods of intoxicating aromas. We visit the two subterranean halls of the International Friendship Exhibition, filled with gifts to the leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. The gifts are divided into region and it's estimated that if you spent one minute in front of each gift it would take over 1 year to see the whole exhibition - we will only be shown a small sample!

After a short tea break on the balcony affording striking views of the mountains, we take a look around the thousand year-old Pohyon Buddhist Temple. Destroyed during the Korean War, the temple was rebuilt as a working temple complete with North Korean monks. After lunch we drive back to Pyongyang to see the 150m-tall Juche Tower, the highest stone monument in the world, where you'll learn about the country's guiding Juche philosophy often translated as 'self-reliance'. We finish the day with a visit to the Victorious War Museum. Overnight - Pyongyang - Yanggakdo Hotel (B, L, D)
North Korea Tours: Bridge of No Return DMZ Flickr Credit Expatinfantry
Day 5: Kaesong
It's an early start today as we drive to the historical city of Kaesong located near the DMZ. Chosen as the place for armistice talks, the city avoided being destroyed during the war. Continuing to the DMZ (Korean Demilitarized Zone) where North and South Korea continue their decades old face-off, we may have the opportunity to go into one of the huts that straddle the demarcation line and actually cross over into South Korea!

Heading back to Kaesong enjoy a visit to the Kaesong Koryo Museum, housed in a beautiful old Confucian University. Learn about the history of the area and see its collection of steles and pavilions from around the area. Lunch is a traditional pansanggi meal - something like Korean tapas with lots of different dishes served in gold bowls. After lunch we drive back to the capital visiting the Tomb of Wang Gwon en route. The afternoon is spent at the Pyongyang Schoolchildren’s Palace - a centre of extra-curricular activities for gifted children. Tour the classrooms and witness impressive performances of music, art, taekwondo and speech-making. Overnight - Pyongyang - Yanggakdo Hotel (B, L, D)
Day 6: Nampo
After breakfast today we drive to the Nampo West Sea Barrage, an 8km-long dam separating the Taedong river from the West Sea of Korea. Designed to prevent tidal surges from flooding Pyongyang, the dam is regarded as a great feat of engineering. We then return to Pyongyang for further touring of the capital, taking in Mangyongdae Native House - the native birthplace of North Korean President Kim Il Sung. We'll also enjoy a short journey on Pyongyang's underground metro system, one of the deepest in the world. The main stations of the network are rather stunning with superb lighting and beautiful mosaics.

Later we'll visit the Mansudae Art Studio where all images of the Kims are produced. Founded in 1959, the studio consists of groups working with woodcuts, drawings, oil paintings, embroidery and jewel paintings. The day concludes at a shopping store where you can enjoy a spot of souvenir shopping. Overnight - Pyongyang - Yanggakdo Hotel (B, L, D)
China Tours: Tiananmen Gate Beijing
Day 7: Beijing
Pyongyang - Beijing. Today marks the end of your time in North Korea. After breakfast and hotel check out we will transfer you to the airport for your return flight to Beijing. On arrival into Beijing we will transfer you to your hotel where the remainder of the day can be spent at leisure or independently exploring this fascinating city. Overnight - Beijing (B)
China Tours: Inside the Forbidden City in Beijing
Day 8: Forbidden City
This morning we explore the heart of Beijing starting with the vast Tiananmen Square where Chairman Mao’s tomb lies and various monuments to the people are located. Dominating the city centre is the Forbidden City, a centre of power for five centuries and seat of the emperors. Entering through the Gate of Heavenly Peace (replete with Chairman Mao’s portrait), we enjoy a guided tour of this old city within a city.

Later we take an exciting rickshaw ride through the Hutongs of Beijing, weaving through old back lanes, traditional courtyards and compact houses, gaining a fascinating snapshot of the city’s traditional way of life. Overnight - Beijing (B)
Day 9: Beijing
Today marks the end of your incredible adventure with On the Go Tours. After breakfast and hotel check out we will transfer you to the airport in time for your onward departure flight. (B)
Tour Details
  • Starts in: Beijing / Ends in: Beijing
  • Departs: Any day of the year - excluding 01-07 May & 01-07 Oct
  • No local payment required
  • Breakfast:8, Lunch: 3, Dinner: 4
  • Hotel Rating: 4 star hotels
  • Tour Guide: Yes for all scheduled sightseeing
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