2.5 Nights – from €1099
** Our price is all-inclusive of round-trip flights from Shanghai on Air Koryo & DPRK Visa **
Pyongyang Autumn Marathon – September 20, 2020
DEADLINE: September 1, 2020
Take the weekend off and head to North Korea’s capital to run the annual Pyongyang Autumn Marathon! Besides the running, we’ll visit the highlights of the city and take a road trip to Kaesong and see the DMZ, where North and South are divided. This is a great opportunity to join and compete with the locals, enjoying the universal language that is sport!
Approximate registration fees, to be paid in USD cash in Pyongyang (if fees change, the difference will be nominal)
RUN THE FULL MARATHON – separate registration fee of $90 USD
RUN A HALF MARATHON – separate registration fee of $70 USD
RUN A 10K – separate registration fee of $50 USD
RUN A 5K – separate registration fee of $40 USD
THURSDAY NIGHT (SEP 17)
At 08:00pm (20:00) on September 17, meet the group at the Shanghai Pudong International Airport to check in for our 10:35am departure to Pyongyang. Approximate arrival into Pyongyang is at 01:55am (Friday, September 18) Our Korean tour guides will greet us on arrival at the airport. On arrival we will check in at the prestigious Koryo Hotel.
(Meals: Dinner on flight)
DAY 1 (SEPTEMBER 18) – KAESONG & THE DMZ
Take a morning drive through the countryside to the historic city of Kaesong. We will head for the DMZ where we’ll hear from our military guides a perspective of the Korean War that often gets discredited or unheard. At the DMZ, explore Panmunjom, shake hands at the exact place that the Armistice Agreement was signed between UN forces and the DPRK, and wave hello to the South at the blue houses in the Joint Security Area. Head to the Koryo History Museum, a UNESCO site, to learn about the Koryo Dynasty (where the name Korea originates). You’ll also have a chance to pick from the most varied range of postcards in the country at the Koryo Stamp Shop.
For lunch, enjoy pansanggi, a historic Kaesong cuisine traditionally served for royalty. Stop at the original Sonjuk Bridge, a UNESCO site. On our return to Pyongyang, stop at the iconic Arch of Reunification built to commemorate the proposals of reunification.
Overnight at the Koryo Hotel.
(Meals: B, L, D)
DAY 2 – PYONGYANG CITY TOUR
Begin the day with a visit to the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum, an elaborate museum depicting the Korean people’s fight against foreign invaders. We’ll have a guided tour of the war remnants, exhibits, and dioramas and learn about the Korean war from the North Korean perspective. We’ll also board the USS Pueblo, the “American Spy Ship” captured in 1968.
Visit the Grand People’s Study House, North Korea’s national library and the heart of study on the revolutionary Juche ideology. Check out the local intranet, visit the music appreciation room and flick through a handful of the up-to 30 million books said to be available here!
Visit Pyongyang’s central square, Kim Il Sung Square, home to many of North Korea’s military parades broad internationally. We’ll walk through the city to the Foreign Languages Bookshop, the best chance in the DPRK to pick up souvenirs such as books, stamps, DVD/CDs and posters.
After lunch, head deep underground to take a 5-stop ride on the Pyongyang Metro, the deepest metro in the world and filled with mosaics, monuments, and plaques
Learn about North Korea’s national ideology, the Juche philosophy, on a visit to the iconic Tower of Juche Idea. We’ll take the lift 150-meters to the top for the best views in Pyongyang city!
We’ll head to the International Football School to tour the facilities and enjoy a casual kickaround with the students (subject to availability). On the way, we’ll have a photo stop at the largest sporting stadium in the world (by capacity), the May Day Stadium!
Make a stop at the Arch of Triumph, the world’s largest triumphal arch. From the top, we will get a great panorama view of Pyongyang city.
We’ll then take a driving tour to familiarize you with the entire Autumn Marathon route. Dinner will be at the hotel where we will hand out bibs and timing chips for the Autumn Marathon.
Overnight at the Koryo Hotel.
(Meals: B, L, D)
DAY 3 – AUTUMN MARATHON!
Today you’ll get the opportunity to run the local Autumn Marathon! We’ll have an early start (approximately 7am) to get ready for the event. Race starts at approximately 9am and is over no later than 1pm. There is a pre-race ceremony starting at 8am and a post-race award ceremony starting at 1pm.
After the race we will cool down at the hotel with time to shower and rest up before we have lunch.
We’ll then visit the Mansudae Grand Monument, an important site famous for its large, bronze statues of President Kim Il Sung and Chairman Kim Jong Il. It is customary to bow and lay flowers here.
Visit the Mangyongdae Native House, a modest straw-thatched house in a serene park setting which is the birthplace of President Kim Il Sung. Pick up some supplies at the Kwangbok Department Store, a five-story department complex filled with local and imported products. It’s one of only two places in Pyongyang where tourists can exchange and use the local North Korean Won.
Line up your sights and show off your skills at the Meari Shooting Range, where you can fire a pistol, rifle or try your hand at archery.
During dinner we’ll have a small presentation to hand out your official marathon certificates! Dinner will be at a local Korean hotpot (jongol) restaurant, a favorite among locals.
After dinner, grab your luggage and head to the airport for an evening flight back to Shanghai. Approximate time of departure is 7:55pm from Pyongyang with arrival at Shanghai Pudong International Airport at 9:35pm. Please reserve connecting flights departing after 01:30am local time (+1 day), to allow sufficient time for immigration/customs clearance, baggage claim and re-check-in. Timings to be confirmed.
(Meals: B, L, D)
This itinerary is subject to change at any time.
What’s included in this tour:
- DPRK visa fees and handling
- Round trip flight ticket from Shanghai to Pyongyang on Air Koryo
- 3 nights’ DPRK hotel accommodations (double occupancy, 4 stars)
- 3 meals per day
- Coach transportation in DPRK
- Two local DPRK guides
- One local driver
- Admission fees (except those listed under exclusions)
What’s not included in this tour:
- Marathon registration fee (detailed above)
- Round-trip airfare to Shanghai from home country
- Chinese visa fees and processing, if applicable
- Travel insurance and medical evacuation insurance (required)
- Personal expenses (laundry, telephone, etc.)
- Extra drinks during meals (one complimentary beer included)
- Tips for guides and drivers (please budget $10 per day per traveler)
Excluded Entrance Fees for Optional Events
Entrance fees are priced in EUR but RMB and USD accepted.
- Elevator to the top of the Juche Tower, 5 EUR
- Elevator to the top of the Arch of Triumph, 5 EUR
- Flowers to be laid at the Mansudae Grand Monument, 3-5 EUR
- Pyongyang circus (if playing): 20 EUR
- Taedonggang Dining Boat: 10 USD
- Meari Shooting Range: rifle and per bullet fees apply
- Kaeson Amusement park entrance and rides, approximately 1-7 EUR each