North Korea is a unique phenomenon of the modern world. Nowadays, under the rule of the third governor, this nominal Communist state defied all expectations and managed to survive the last 25 years, after the dissolution of the Soviet empire. Today, you have the opportunity to visit the most isolated nation of the world, where the internet and biggest part of the 21st century remain unknown. A special trip, a bit dangerous but surely original and surrounded by mystery.
We will visit the largest cities in the country and see some of the attractions worth seeing if you ever get there.
Pyongyang is the capital of the country and it is the absolute metropolis as it was completely rebuilt after its destruction in the Korean War. It is considered inaccessible because its increased population does not allow the visitor to explore it.
Each visit to North Korea focuses on the capital, both from travel guides and tour guides. The main reason is the fact that the monuments are in the capital. Monuments that glorify the Kim genus. These include the Arc de Triomphe, the Judas Tower of Mutsuta and the Mansudae Grand Monument, where every guest is expected to show his respect.
Although impressive and though surreal, the true beauty of the city lies somewhere else. A beautiful walk in Moran Hill will give you the opportunity to see the residents enjoying their picnic quietly or admiring the sunset. Pyongyang is a city with a lot of beauty that you have to try enough to discover.
One of the most spectacular sights on the Korean peninsula, Paekdusan Mountain (Mountain Paekdu), encompasses the Chinese-Korean border on the far north-eastern edge of the country. Besides being the highest mountain in the country at 2744 m, it is also an amazing geological phenomenon, as it is an inactive volcano (whose crater has formed a lake) but also a site with significant mythological significance for the locals.
On Mount Paekdusan is also the Samjiyon monument. It is located in a vast forest area, overlooking Paekdusan and overlooking a large lake. The monument is there, reminding everyone of the battle of Pochombo, where the anti-Japanese forces used for the first time clean tactics of war instead of the usual guerrilla war, thus occupying the city of the same name (Samjiyon).
The area around Chilbosan (sometimes called Mountaint Chilbo) is one of the most beautiful places in North Korea. It is also incredibly remote – the only way to get there in a reasonable time is chartering from Pyongyang airport to Orang Airport, from where Chilbosan is a three hour journey on an irregular Mediterranean coastline full of tall toothed rocks, small fishing villages and sandy beaches. Although it may seem unlikely, it is still one of the best opportunities for someone who wants to meet and talk to the native North Koreans. In this case, the main problem is communication, unless you speak Korean or Chinese.
This East Sea harbor-city can not be described as a great tourist destination, but it makes an interesting stop on the road to Kumgangsan from Pyongyang. The city of Kumgangsan is an important port, a learning center with 10 universities and a popular holiday resort for the Koreans. It features lovely sandy beaches in nearby Sijung Lake and Tongjong Lake, as well as a newly built ski resort.
The second most industrialized city of North Korea is now open to tourists and is a great place to visit since it offers a variety of North Korean dishes. Excursions inevitably start with the Kim Il-sung & Kim Jong-il Statue on the main road and include a visit to the monumental Grand Theater Hamhung, the largest theater in the country, as well as a visit to the very interesting house of Ryi Song Gye, an impressive a complex of historic buildings surrounded by beautiful gardens.
It is clear that North Korea does not have any particular architectural beauty or character as a country. However, it has a great culture and a huge natural beauty, especially on the outskirts. It is a country without distinct contradictions and a sociopolitical haze, elements that are negative for the visitor. But the nature, the people and the uniqueness of the country are enough to stimulate our interest, and why not, to give North Korea a chance.