The Absolute DPRK – Coast To Coast – Shanghai Departure – 6.5 Nights

6.5 Nights  –  from €1480

** DPRK Visa and return flights from Shanghai included! **

Take a summer holiday break in North Korea! On this tour, leverage the perfect weather to explore both North Korea’s east and west coast and everything in between. Beyond the political highlights, we’ll hike to waterfalls into the remote, picturesque landscapes of Mt. Kumgang, enjoy freshly caught seafood in Wonsan, enter the Korean DMZ in Kaesong, witness industrial port life in Nampho and even visit North Korea’s second-largest city, Hamhung, where we’ll get to swim on a private sandy beach at a 5-star resort complex. This tour is a relaxed, fun-filled opportunity to lift the veil on North Korea in ways you didn’t think possible!

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Dates

Room Accommodations

Rooms come standard with two twin beds. If signing up with a companion and sharing a room, the double rate applies. If requesting your own room, single rate applies. If sharing is requested, we do our best. But if we cannot, single supplement fee applies.

Pay a deposit of 500.00 per item

THURSDAY NIGHT – DEPART FOR PYONGYANG

At 08:00pm (20:00) on Thursday, meet the group at the Shanghai Pudong International Airport to check in for our 10:35pm departure to Pyongyang. Approximate arrival into Pyongyang is at 01:55am (Friday) Our Korean tour guides will greet us on arrival at the airport. On arrival we will check in at the prestigious Koryo Hotel.

Overnight at the Koryo Hotel.

(Meals: Dinner on flight)

DAY 1 – DMZ

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!

After lunch, 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.

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 then visit the Party Foundation Monument, built to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the Workers’ Party of Korea, recognizable by the communist hammer and sickle but with an added North Korean twist.

We’ll then visit the Arch of Triumph, the world’s largest triumphal arch. From the top, we will get a panoramic view of Pyongyang city!

Take an evening walk on Ryomyong Street, an impressive boulevard home to Pyongyang’s most extravagant apartment complexes. Opened in just April 2017 to international media attention.

Overnight at the Koryo Hotel.

(Meals: B, L, D)

DAY 2 – PYONGYANG & NAMPO CITY

We’ll first visit the Mansudae Art Studio, the most prestigious fine arts studio and gallery in North Korea, the only studio given permission to depict the Great Leaders in monuments, murals and mosaics.

Visit the Mangyongdae Native House, a modest straw-thatched house in a serene park setting which is the birthplace of President Kim Il Sung. Take a look through 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.

After lunch, we’ll begin our drive to the west coast port city of Nampo. Our first stop will be the Kangso Mineral Water Factory, a famous name within North Korea, to get a glimpse into the workings of local industry. We’ll then drop into the Chongsanri Cooperative Farm, a model collective farm catering to the agriculture needs of surrounding communities. We will meet a local farming family and see inside their home here.

Then it’s onward to the jewel of Nampo, the West Sea Barrage, a massive dam and tidal wall built in five years across an 8-kilometer section of the rough sea. This is a major achievement well known to all North Koreans and a common backdrop in official state media.

On return to Pyongyang, dinner will be aboard the Taedonggang Dining Boat! Enjoy views of Pyongyang’s most iconic landmarks and an upbeat performance as we cruise the river Taedong.

Overnight at the Koryo Hotel.

(Meals: B, L, D)

DAY 3 – 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.

(Meals: B, L, D)

DAY 4 – WONSAN

This morning, we’ll depart for the east coast port city of Wonsan. The countryside scenery becomes increasingly mountainous on the east, and we’ll pass through no less than 22 tunnels on our journey! There will be a rest stop at the Sinpyong Tea House for coffee or tea in the fresh mountain air.

After arriving into Wonsan city, we’ll walk between dozens of fishermen to the Jangdok Islet where you can buy seafood that was caught just seconds ago by local vendors. The view back of the Wonsan city skyline is fantastic here. Lunch will be at a local seafood restaurant.

Walk in the sea breeze along the Wonsan city docks to Wonsan Square, the heart of the city with grand bronze monuments to the Great Leaders. We’ll then visit the Wonsan Revolutionary Site, a railway museum with historic relevance to Kim Il Sung’s victory over Japanese colonial rule.

Drive seafront to Wonsan’s yellow sandy beaches to the Songdowon International Children’s Camp, a typical socialist-style summer camp where we’ll have a guided tour of the facilities.

We’ll then continue our journey to the jewel of the region, Mt. Kumgang (Diamond Mountain), one of North Korea’s most celebrated mountains and the second tallest! This mountain range spans the south-east coastline and presents some incredible hiking routes

Overnight at the Kumgangsan Hotel

(Meals: B, L, D)

DAY 5 – MT. KUMGANG

We’ll spend this morning hiking Mt. Kumgang to Kuryong Waterfall. This is an 8km winding path amidst scenic valleys of emerald streams, unique rock formations, towering cliffs, and rich green foliage. This landscape is exceedingly famous in Korea and artworks depicting the area can be found all over the country!

After lunch, we’ll stop at the Samil Lagoon, a beautiful lake surrounded by forest and a hiking trail offering a great view of the surrounding area.

We’ll then drive to our overnight accommodation, the extravagant Masikryong Hotel inside the Masikryong Ski Resort complex, built at the order of Marshal Kim Jong Un in 2013.

Overnight Masikryong Hotel

(Meals: B, L, D)

DAY 6 – HAMHUNG & MAJON

Wake in the mountains and watch the sunrise from your private balcony before enjoying a hearty breakfast made with locally sourced ingredients. Before we depart, we will take the Masikryong ski lift or cableway to the near 1400m peak for an incredible morning view over the untouched mountain ranges. The ski lift or cableway is optional and there is a $15 USD fee to be paid on the spot.

Begin our drive to North Korea’s second-largest city and coastal industrial hub, Hamhung.

On arrival to Hamhung, our first stop is the Tonghungsan Revolutionary Site featuring large bronze monuments of President Kim Il Sung and Chairman Kim Jong Il. We’ll get hillside views of the city from here.

Head to Hamhung’s city square where we’ll get exterior views of the Hamhung Grand Theatre, an impressive piece of architecture and the largest theatre in North Korea. Then visit the Hamhung Old Royal Palace, otherwise known as the House of Ri Song Gye. Ri Song Gye was the first king of the Choson dynasty founded in 1392 and which stood until 1910 when Korean was annexed by the Japanese.

We’ll get an insight into local industry with a guided tour of the Hungnam Fertilizer Factory, where chemical fertilizer is produced on a massive scale.

Then check-in to our deluxe accommodation at the 5-star and recently renovated Majon Hotel. Not to be confused with the Majon Beach Guesthouse, Majon Hotel is the hotel our travelers historically never want to leave. It’s a resort-style accommodation secluded on an extensive private beach. Spend the afternoon at your leisure, going for a long walk on the beach, sunbaking or interacting with the locals over a game of Frisbee or volleyball!

In the evening, we’ll light up the bonfire and enjoy a local specialty, beach clambake!

Overnight at the Majon Hotel

(Meals: B, L, D)

DAY 7 – ULIM WATERFALL, NAM RIVER AND RETURN TO PYONGYANG

After breakfast, drive to the stunning Ullim Waterfall discovered relatively recently by the Korean People’s Army, a waterfall you’ll hear well before you see! If it’s a nice day we will enjoy a picnic lunch here. Feel free to throw our frisbees around, it’s a great way to interact with the locals.

After a stop for tea or coffee, we’ll continue to the Tomb of King Tongmyong, a UNESCO site with unique wall paintings showcasing the Buddhist influence of this time.

On return to Pyongyang, we’ll visit the Koryo Stamp Museum, a great place to grab some last-minute souvenirs.

After an early dinner, we’ll 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)

RETURN TO SHANGHAI PUDONG AT 19:55 ON THURSDAY NIGHT

This itinerary is subject to change at any time.

What’s included in this tour:

  • DPRK visa fees and handling
  • Round trip ticket from Shanghai to Pyongyang on Air Koryo
  • 7 nights’ DPRK hotel accommodations (double occupancy, 4 stars)
  • Meals as indicated
  • Coach/car transportation in DPRK
  • Two local English-speaking Korean guides
  • One local driver
  • Admission fees (except those listed under exclusions)

What’s not included in this tour:

  • Round-trip airfare to Shanghai from home country
  • Shanghai hotel accommodations
  • Chinese visa fees and processing, if applicable
  • Travel and medical insurance
  • Personal expenses (laundry, telephone, etc.)
  • Souvenirs
  • Extra drinks during meals (one complimentary beer included)
  • Beer at microbreweries (1-3 EUR per mug)
  • Extra a la carte items incurred during meals
  • Tips for guides and drivers

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 1-3 Euros each

For more information on the booking process, see How to Travel To North Korea
See Terms and Conditions for our refund policy and other disclaimers.

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