Foreign Languages Bookstore

Located on the bustling Sungri street, this bookstore is not far from the Koryo hotel. It’s not hard to miss, considering the complete lack of advertisements in the country, and it doesn’t have grand entry like many other tourist destinations here. Like other bookstores, there is an air of wistfulness that awaits you inside. Despite its name, you won’t find any books written by foreign authors here, instead there is a wide variety of books authored by North Korean writers. A team of foreigners have been tasked with translating them from Korean into a range of languages such as, English, French, Chinese, and Russian. Most of the books are written by Kim Il Sung and his successors, that or officials from the Workers Party of Korea. An extensive amount of biographies detailing every aspect of the Kim family’s lives are available for purchase here, including their anti-imperialist teachings, ironically sold in English. These biographies and selected teachings are some of the nicer books available for sale, and they go for about 8 USD each. If you have political aspirations yourself be sure to study the instruction manuals on how to run a socialist education system or economy. Other non-fiction must haves are historical letters to other governments, and North Korean accounts on recent issues such as the DPRK’s space program. The arts are also covered with epic poems, and books on the Juche ideology. Other goods such as decorations, currency, DVD’s, propaganda pieces, and pins are also on sale, making this easily one of the best souvenir shops in Pyongyang.